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Two bowls of chickpea tomato pasta on a wooden table.

Chickpea Tomato Pasta

5 Stars 4 Stars 3 Stars 2 Stars 1 Star 4.3 from 3 reviews
  • Author:
  • Prep Time: 10 mins
  • Cook Time: 20 mins
  • Total Time: 30 minutes
  • Yield: 6 servings 1x
  • Category: Main Course
  • Method: Stovetop
  • Cuisine: Italian
  • Diet: Vegan


  • One 15-ounce can chickpeas, drained and rinsed (or 1 1/2 cups cooked chickpeas)
  • 3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 small red or yellow onion, diced
  • Fine sea salt, to taste
  • 3 medium garlic cloves, thinly sliced
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano (see note below)
  • 1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • One 15-ounce can tomato sauce
  • 1 teaspoon maple syrup, honey, or granulated sugar (optional, see note below)
  • Freshly ground black pepper, to taste
  • 1 pound penne (or another short pasta)
  • 1 generous cup basil leaves, gently torn


  1. Bring a large pot of water to a boil for the pasta.
  2. Place half of the chickpeas in a shallow bowl. Using a fork or potato masher, mash until they turn into a chunky paste. Combine with the remaining whole chickpeas and set aside.
  3. Heat 3 tablespoons of olive oil in a large skillet over medium-low heat and add the onion with a pinch of salt. Cook until soft and translucent, 5 to 7 minutes. Then add 3 thinly sliced garlic cloves, 1 teaspoon oregano, and 1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes, and cook for 30 seconds more.
  4. To the skillet, add the tomato sauce, 1 teaspoon sweetener of your choice, a few grinds of black pepper, and all of the chickpeas. Stir to combine and cover tightly with a lid. Bring to a simmer and cook for 10 minutes.
  5. Generously salt the boiling water and cook the pasta according to package directions until al dente. Reserve 1/4 cup of the pasta water before draining.
  6. Drain the pasta and return it back to the pot. Add the tomato-chickpea mixture, 1 cup torn basil leaves, a few more grinds of black pepper, and the reserved pasta water. Stir to combine, taste, and adjust the seasonings, if needed. Serve immediately.


  • You can sub with dried parsley, Italian seasoning, or Herbes de Provence.
  • I like to add a bit of sweetener to tomato sauces to balance out their acidity. This really helps round out the flavors, but you can leave it out.


  • Serving Size: 1/6 of the recipe
  • Calories: 430
Tofu with tomatoes.

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