Home Cooking: Coconut Curry Chickpeas with Pumpkin & Lime

photo credit: The New York Times

As “pumpkin month” comes to a close at The Occasional Nomads, this last recipe was a new one for me – we just had it for the first time this past week. However, as far as ease of preparation and great flavor it knocked it all out of the park and will be placed in regular rotation here. This yummy curry recipe comes from the The New York Times via a recommendation from Reader Laurel, to whom we will be forever grateful for sending it our way.

The list of ingredients looked rather intimidating at first, and I thought it might be a tricky recipe to get through, but once all the chopping was done and the cans opened it came together very quickly and easily. Garam masala, an Indian spice blend used for curries, is not an easy ingredient to find, but I actually have a small jar purchased from Penzey’s spices earlier this year when I was putting together the pantry. Besides curries, garam masala is used in dishes like tikka masala and butter chicken among others. Indian cooks traditionally make their own garam masala, but Penzey’s affordable blend is a worthwhile addition to my spice shelf. I also keep a bag of jalapeños in the freezer – they are a little soft when defrosted but can still be seeded and have as much flavor as fresh ones. The two small-ish peppers I added were just enough heat for us without being too spicy, but more jalapeño can be added if hotter is preferred.

I admit to not adding cilantro when I made it this week, but that’s because I forgot to pick some up at the farmers’ market last week. The recipe made more than enough though that leftovers were frozen for later, and cilantro will be added when we have those as it will make this fabulous vegetarian/vegan dish taste even better.


  • 3 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 2 jalapeños, seeded or not, thinly sliced
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1-inch piece of fresh ginger, minced
  • 4 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 ½ teaspoons garam masala
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • ½ teaspoon ground turmeric
  • Two 15-ounce cans chickpeas, rinsed
  • One 13.5-ounce can coconut milk (do not use light coconut milk)
  • One 15-ounce can pumpkin purée
  • 1 ½ teaspoons salt
  • ¾ cup chopped cilantro, (additional for for serving, if desired)
  • 2 to 3 tablespoons fresh lime juice, plus wedges for serving
  •  Cooked rice

Heat oil in a large skillet, then sauté the chopped onion, jalapeños, and bay leaf until the onion starts to turn golden, about 8 minutes. Add the ginger and garlic and cook and additional 2 minutes, stirring frequently. Stir in the garam masala, cumin and turmeric and cook for an additional 30 seconds.

Add the chickpeas, coconut milk, pumpkin, 1/2 cup water and 1 1/2 teaspoons of salt to the pan. Simmer for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally, to let the flavors come together. (You can add more water if it becomes too thick.) Finally, stir in the chopped cilantro and add lime juice to taste.

Serve the curry over rice and top with more cilantro and lime wedges on the side. The Times also suggest couscous as an alternative to rice.


8 thoughts on “Home Cooking: Coconut Curry Chickpeas with Pumpkin & Lime

  1. So glad you loved it! I made it for my ‘kids’ in England and they loved it too. I’m going to make some this week. Can’t wait.


    1. We both really loved this recipe. It made a LOT though – we were able to freeze over half to have when YaYu is home, and we still had leftovers that we enjoyed a couple of days after I made it. I was surprised how easy it was – the ingredients looked quite daunting before I started.

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  2. That looks great! My husband like neither pumpkin nor chickpeas so I will have to make it when he’s out of town and freeze the leftovers for workday lunches.


    1. We enjoyed this for leftovers several times, and that’s after freezing over half of it to have later! Along with some rice, this would be a great workday lunch. Easy to prepare too and so tasty!


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