Italian Chickpea Soup Recipe | Vegetarian Times Skip to main content

Italian Chickpea Soup

Back in the days before you could log on to, readers clipped out this 1993 recipe, copied it by hand to give to friends, and kept the original safe in a recipe box. Here, we've reprinted and revised it (our 2009 taste buds wanted more spice) so no one has to dig into recipe archives to try it again—and in a month or so, it'll be online for all to enjoy.



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4 cups low-sodium vegetable broth
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1 medium onion, chopped (1 ½ cups)
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3 cloves garlic, minced (1 Tbs.)
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1 small bay leaf
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1 tsp. dried thyme
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1 tsp. dried oregano
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⅛-¼ tsp. cayenne pepper
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2 16-oz. cans chickpeas, rinsed and drained
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2 large sweet potatoes, peeled and cut into ½-inch cubes (6 cups)
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1 stalk celery, finely diced (½ cup)
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1 Tbs. Dijon mustard
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⅓ cup chopped fresh parsley, plus a few sprigs for garnish


1. Bring broth, onion, garlic, bay leaf, thyme, oregano, cayenne pepper, and 2 cups water to a boil in large saucepan over medium heat. Simmer 5 minutes. Add chickpeas, sweet potatoes, celery, and mustard, and simmer 10 to 12 minutes more, or until vegetables are very soft.

2. Mash vegetables and chickpeas to chunky purée with potato masher or large spoon. (Chickpeas will remain mostly whole.) Stir in parsley, and season with salt and pepper, if desired. Garnish each serving with parsley sprig.

Nutrition Information: 

8 g
Total Fat: 
2 g
Saturated Fat: 
<1 g
51 g
0 mg
405 mg
9 g
7 g
Serves 8

Comments on this Recipe

Really delicious and filling! I also added about 2x the spice and mustard for lots of flavor. I will definitely be making this soup again.

I see and taste why this recipe got passed around in 1993.....its wonderful! So easy, makes a nice size batch, but I'd double it next time to have some in the freezer. Followed the recipe, except I added more garlic. Did try it the 2nd time with butternut squash instead of sweet potatoes, but not as good. Follow this recipe. Enjoy!

This was very good! I had to leave out cayenne due to my intolerance of it. My beau added a touch to his bowl and said it was very tasty. I will keep this recipe and definitely make it again! Start off with a big salad and you have a great meal.

Very yummy, especially for fall! I love the combo of the chickpeas with the sweet potato, and the soup has a really nice, hearty texture and heat to it. We added about 1.5-2x the spices and mustard, as we prefer bolder flavors. Just looked up the recipe as I'm about to make it again! I agree with "Cook"--wish I'd thought to get enough stock so I could double and freeze it.

I made this serveral times last year when the recipe was re-printed. And I just went on-line to search for it again as I couldn't remember which issue I had orginally seen it. It is now printed and in our family cookbook for good. This soup is delicious! Hearty enough to satisfy my husband and fill up the kids, easy to make and low enough in calories for me! It's a keeper! I also reduced the cayenne pepper but otherwise it always comes out great!

This was really excellent. Only thing I changed was hubby wanted more spice so I added a hot curry. Delish with green salad. Very satisfying.

Wow! This really is good! I never would have tried it because chickpeas aren't my favorite but this recipe is really nice. I prepared it exactly according to the recipe and added some olive oil and sriracha to each bowl. So very satisfying, tranquilizing and mmm!

This recipe came out while I was in college and my roommates and I loved it! I still have the original page from the magazine along with a beat up old recipe card. I still make it every year in the Fall. One thing I did notice was that the original recipe had 3 large carrots (peeled and cut into cubes) in it. I can't imagine the recipe without the carrots so wanted to make a note of that here.