Indian Chickpea and Pumpkin Soup

Visit the Indian Food Glossary for information on the ingredients in this recipe
Indian Chickpea and Pumpkin Soup

Winter squash soups are a healthy and economical way to comfort and nourish the body and soul during the long cold months ahead. Chickpeas add depth and protein to this colorful and delicious autumn pumpkin soup, enhanced with a zesty Indian seed and spice tempering that will warm and delight your guests. Serve with a whole grain for a complete and wholesome vegetarian meal.

Indian Chickpea and Pumpkin Soup
Indian Chickpea and Pumpkin Soup
Recipe by
Cuisine: Indian
Published on November 15, 2009

Warming and nourishing fall or winter chickpea and pumpkin soup tempered with zesty Indian seed and spice seasonings

Preparation: 10 minutes
Cooking time: 1 1/2 to 2 hours

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  • 3/4 cup dried chickpeas
  • 4 cups water
  • 1-inch piece cinnamon stick
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 4 dried whole red chilies
  • 1 tomato, chopped
  • 1 cup cooked pumpkin (unsweetened)
  • 1/2 teaspoon sea salt, or to taste
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon urad dal
  • 1 teaspoon brown mustard seeds
  • 1 teaspoon cumin seeds
  • 1 teaspoon ground coriander
  • 1/2 teaspoon fenugreek seeds
  • 1/2 teaspoon fennel seeds
  • 1/4 cup dried unsweetened coconut flakes
  • Rinse the chickpeas under cold running water and soak overnight in a bowl covered in several inches of water.

  • Drain and rinse the soaked chickpeas and add to a medium saucepan. Cover with 4 cups of fresh cold water, add the cinnamon stick, and bring to a boil. Turn the heat down to low, cover, and simmer for 1 to 1/2 hours or until the chickpeas are soft and buttery. Discard the cinnamon and set aside.

  • Heat a large saucepan or soup pot over medium heat. When hot, toss in the olive oil, wait a few moments, then swirl around to coat the pan. Add the whole chilies, stir for 30 seconds, then add the tomatoes and cook for 5 minutes. Stir in the pumpkin and continue to cook, stirring, for another 3 or 4 minutes.

  • Discard the chilies. Pour in the chickpeas along with their cooking liquid, and bring the soup to a low boil. Turn the heat down to low, cover, and simmer for 10 minutes.

  • Remove from heat and purée the soup until smooth using a hand blender or in batches in a countertop blender. Season with salt and set aside.

  • To temper the soup, heat a small frying pan or saucepan over medium heat. When hot, add the olive oil, wait a few moments, then swirl to coat the bottom. Toss in the tempering seeds and spices, and stir until the mustard seeds begin to pop. Remove from heat and pour the seasoning into the soup. Let sit for a few moments to let the flavors mingle before stirring into the soup.

  • Meanwhile, toast the coconut over low heat in a small saucepan for 10 minutes, stirring or tossing frequently, until lightly browned.

  • Ladle the soup into bowls and top with a scattering of toasted coconut.

Makes 4 servings

Indian Chickpea and Pumpkin Soup

If you liked this recipe you may also enjoy:
Toor Dal Pumpkin Soup
Spicy Peanut Pumpkin Soup
Indian Style Cream of Cauliflower Soup

On the top of the reading stack: The Land of Green Plums by Herta Muller

Audio Accompaniment: Chessa by Shuttle358


Johanna GGG said...

sounds lovely with all those spices - love the idea of toasted coconut for a garnish

sra said...

Sounds lovely and warming! Looks really great too! One question: why did you recommend adding yoghurt whey or lemon juice to the soaking chickpeas? Thanks for the entry!

Priya Suresh said...

Delicious and filling soup..very prefect for me..

Agata Chmielewska (Kurczak) said...

It must be very tasty! I love chickpea and pumpkin! Today I have also pumpkin soup at breakfast, but not so interesting

Parita said...

Hey Lisa the soup looks hearty and welcoming, perfect for the season!

Usha said...

Sounds like a flavorful and hearty soup, loved the garnish of toasted coconut....

Kalai said...

Delicious and Yummy soup.

Lisa Turner said...

Hello Sra,

I do get asked the question about adding yogurt whey or lemon juice to soaking liquid from time to time. The reason is that chickpeas and most other legumes contain phytates and enzyme inhibitors that can actually block the absorption of minerals into the body, and can cause intestinal problems in some people. The acids in yogurt whey or lemon juice help break down these phytates and inhibitors more than simple soaking in water, a result that is beneficial to everyone and not just those who may suffer intestinal difficulties.

Do be sure to drain the soaking liquid before cooking the beans as well.

A_and_N said...

Just perfect for the weather :)

General Tom said...

I love to be Vegan.

Oraphan said...

That soup looks absolutely beautiful! It sounds so healthy and delicious. I'm a BIG fan of pumpkins and chickpeas. I love this recipe, thanks for sharing. So glad I found you, you've such a wonderful blog:)

Astra Libris said...

I love the combo of pumpkin and chickpeas! Soooo delicious and autumn-y! I confess I do adore all things chickpea... :-) Such a beautiful photo, too!

Revolving Spice Rack said...

What a combination chickpeas and pumpkin. Great for this time of year.

Ivy said...

I would have never thought to combine chickpeas with pumpkin but I think that it is a great combination.

Jacqueline Meldrum said...

That sounds really, really good Lisa! I will definitely be trying this one and I love the coconut on top.

test it comm said...

This is one tasty sounding pumpkin soup!

Anonymous said...

Love it. I make a similar soup and everyone loves it! Indian and Middle Eastern cooking so lends itself to vegan living. I usally make my own spices but I found an Indian blend I can't believe!! It belongs to the adult indulgences line of spice blends. I found them on ETSY. Incredible flavor! I put it in my soup and people can't believe how good it tastes.
I love your site!

cookeaze said...

Looks delicious and easy to prepare.I have seen so many Pumpkin Soup recipes of late, that i am inspired to have just pushed me over the edge with this easy version!