Legumes | Soups, salads, vegetables & potatoes

Chick peas and Spinach Soup

Have you ever tried to cook your own chick peas? Have you achieved a good result the first time you tried? Have they been tender and tasty? Of course it’s always easier to buy a can of precooked chick peas but I enjoy learning and preparing things by myself and chick peas have been a hard challenge for a long time.

So, here you have some tips and tricks to get soft home made garbanzos :D.
* When soaking them in water: do it the previous night, double volume of water, hot/warm water, add a teaspoon of salt. Only if the chick peas are a bit old, add also a teaspoon of bicarbonate.
* When cooking them: Pour the chick peas into boiling water and make sure the water never stops boiling until they become tender.
* Adding herbs or a ham bone will improve their taste and flavour.
I’m sending this recipe to Running with Tweezers and her Souper Soup Challenge, is there anything better than a hot soup during cold winter days?

Also sending it to Tasty Recipes and her event SWC: Soups. Because we all want to eat healthy, don’t we?

There’s still some days to send your recipes to both events… surely you have a soup you want to share :D.



In the mood for more soups? Try this one and impress your guests! Tomatoe Soup with Shrimps. No more soups? maybe you prefer a legume based dish like this one: Fabes con Almejas, land and sea in a perfect marriage. Or a greener option… Green peas with eggs and bacon.

As soon as I post this dish, I’m running to my terrace with a beer and some nuts… the sun is shouting my name and I don’t want to make it angry ;D.


Ingredients for 4 servings: 300 grs of dry chickpeas, 300 grs of fresh spinach, 100 grs of smoked bacon, 2 onion, 1 ham bone, 3 ripe tomatoes (if you don't have then 3 table spoons of canned fried tomatoe), 3 garlic cloves, olive oil, and salt.

  • Soak the chickpeas hot water the previous day (see tips).
  • Get water boiling in a big pot. Make sure it doubles the volume of the chickpeas. Add the ham bone and 1 onion to the water and some salt. When it boils, strain the chickpeas and add to the pot. Make sure the boiling doesn't stop. It can take 1 or 2 or even 3 hours to get them soft, it will all depend on how old are they. Taste now and then to see if they are soft enough. If you should add some water, boil it aside in a different pot and add it to the chickpeas pot only when it boils.
  • Meanwhile, pour some oil in a casserole, fry the bacon cut in strips, when golden, reserve. Peel and cut the other onion and fry at low heat until it becomes transparent, then add the chopped garlic and when fragrant the tomatoes. When the tomatoes have lost its water add the bacon back and stir for 2 minutes.
  • When you see the chickpeas are getting soft, add the bacon and veggies sofrito to the big pot and stir. Once they are tender, add the cleaned and dry spinach leaves and cook for 5 more minutes. Taste and add some salt if needed.
  • Enjoy!


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02/26/2009 · 12:00 h by Bellini Valli

This looks so delicious Nuria. I have realy converted to chick peas. They were delicious with my Iberian Acorn Ham:D

02/26/2009 · 12:19 h by MeetaK

this is so my kind of dish! i love chickpeas and with the spinach it makes it absolutely perfect!

02/26/2009 · 14:26 h by Joan Nova

I think I might make that for lunch today (with canned garbanzos…sorry, Nuria). Looks so tasty.

02/26/2009 · 14:39 h by tami

This looks awesome – great photo, too! Thanks for taking part and good luck!

02/26/2009 · 16:29 h by Passionate About Baking

The pictures are beautiful & so inviting Nuria. Do you know that the only way we do our chick peas in India are from scratch. No canned ‘fancy stuff’ like chick peas, pumpkin puree, chopped tomatoes available here. I made my own pumpkin puree this morning. Adding a piece of cinnamon &/or bay leaf while cooking the chickpeas also infuses them with a warm flavour.

02/26/2009 · 18:00 h by Maria

I love chickpeas and your soup sounds amazing. Beans and legumes are so versatile and can be made into anything from soups, to stews, to dips or just as easily used in salads. Thank you for the cooking tips :)

02/26/2009 · 21:27 h by JennDZ - The Leftover Queen

This looks delicious Nuria! Chick peas are some of my favorite food! In fact I have some soaking right now for a tagine I am making tomorrow for a dinner party! :)

02/26/2009 · 21:45 h by pigpigscorner

I want a bowl right now! Perfect for winter!

02/27/2009 · 0:36 h by Jen of A2eatwrite

This sounds delicious. I agree with you on the difficulty of getting dried chickpeas just right. BTW… I’ve got a little bloggy love coming your way tomorrow (Friday).

And make sure you keep Mr. Sun happy!

02/27/2009 · 1:15 h by Laurie Constantino

Beans and greens, delicious, delicious, delicious!! Chickpeas are my favorite – such good flavor – mmmmm-mmmmm.

02/27/2009 · 1:15 h by Neha

You have such a wonderful blog nuria. Everyone in my family loves chickpeas(servrd in any form), and we never bought the canned ones. Its always soak, n then pressure cook. Thanx for sending this lovely soup to me, (so as i also came across urs lovely blog)

02/27/2009 · 14:53 h by Peter G

Nuria, I actually don’t mind the canned ones as they are convenient and still quite nutritious. I have to say the soup is delicious looking and especially with bacon!

02/28/2009 · 3:04 h by giz

Those are really great tips for the chick peas. I’ve never made soup with chick peas but always love them in salad and my very favourite is soaking overnight, boiling until almost soft and then loading them with pepper and eating them just like that – just like popcorn.

02/28/2009 · 15:55 h by glamah16

Lovely. And I envy your Spamish sunshine.

02/28/2009 · 19:03 h by Marc @ NoRecipes

Great tips! I’ve always been a little afraid of cooking the dried ones… well more like too lazy, but your post has inspired me to get a bag the next time I’m at the market.

03/01/2009 · 0:24 h by we are never full

looks beautiful, nuria. but you’d still watch me adding chorizo to this!

03/01/2009 · 2:48 h by elly

I make almost this exact dish with white beans instead of garbanzos. It’s so simple and delicious! Your version looks fantastic. I admit garbanzos are maybe my least favorite bean, but since I already know I love this type of dish I may have to try it with the chick peas next time!

03/01/2009 · 7:41 h by Emily

Mmm, this looks incredible! I love chickpeas; they’re so nutty and delicious.

03/02/2009 · 12:46 h by Peter M

Beyond soaking the chickpeas for 24hrs., they are easy to prepare, healthy and of course delicious!

I have a batch waiting for me too!

03/02/2009 · 14:00 h by Núria

Thank you all for your comments :D. Winter is back and I’m back in front of the computer ;D.

03/02/2009 · 20:32 h by matt wright

YUM – I love chickpeas, and this is a fantastic looking soup.

04/15/2010 · 5:09 h by Nathan

Nuria, I made your Potaje de Garbanzos Con Espinaca yesterday and it was DELICIOUS :) I wanted to thank you for the recipe. I made a blog post about it when I cooked it, check it out I hope you like it :)


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