Chickpea Hot Pot Recipe

Not a traditional hotpot recipe, instead...a fast-cooking bulgur cooks in a light orange-juice accented broth. Plenty of chickpeas, tiny cauliflower pieces, onions, and greens add texture and substance to the hearty pot.

Chickpea Hot Pot

Today's chickpea hot pot recipe was inspired by a small burst of early spring cleaning. I have a certain shelf in a certain cupboard in my kitchen that houses all manner of grains, legumes and rices. These ingredients do their best to spill over and infiltrate other areas in their proximity (the refrigerator, various bowls on the countertop, other cupboards), but I do my very best to keep them in their place. One of the problems I run into are the almost empty bags and jars - the 1/2 cup of purple rice here, the 3/4 cup of whole wheat couscous there. I end up with whole clusters of these stragglers. On this particular cleaning spree I came face to face with a large billowy plastic bag containing just a handful or two of bulgur wheat nestled in one of its corners. Not wanting to toss it out, I used it as the starting point for today's recipe. I have an abundance of citrus around right now, so the fast-cooking bulgur cooks in a light orange-juice accented broth. Plenty of chickpeas, tiny cauliflower pieces, onions, and greens add texture and substance to the hearty pot.

And for the sticklers, I don't meant hotpot in the traditional sense, I'm naming it this because we're literally talking about a big hearty pot of hot stew - and truth be told I think I've overused the soup title lately here, here, and here.

Other bulgur recipes:
- Bulgur, Celery and Pomegranate Salad Recipe
- A Beautiful Bulgar and Spinach Pilaf Recipe

Readers looking to make this gluten-free can trade in an alternate grain (quinoa would be nice) and this should work for you as well - I'd likely pre-cook the grain and stir it in, but you might also cook it in the pot.

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Chickpea Hot Pot Recipe

Leftovers are going to thicken up ovenight - thin with a bit of water/stock while reheating, and adjust for seasoning again. You can find bulgur in the bins at most natural food stores and Whole Foods Markets.

1 large yellow onion, chopped
a splash of olive oil
a couple pinches of salt
2/3 cup uncooked bulgur
1 14-ounce can of chickpeas, drained and rinsed
4 1/2 cups vegetable stock
1/2 cup orange juice
1 1/2 cup cauliflower, trimmed into small trees
2 cup kale or chard, destemmed and cut into thin ribbons

olive oil for finishing drizzle
red onion, chopped for garnish

In a large pot over medium-high heat saute the onion in the olive oil along with the salt - for a minute or until the onion begins to soften a bit. Stir in the bulgur. Stir in the chickpeas and the stock. Bring the ingredients to a simmer. Cook for another few minutes, it should start to thicken. Taste to see if the bulgur is cooked through, if so add the orange juice. If not, simmer for a couple more minutes before adding the juice. Stir in the cauliflower and the kale as well - simmer another few minutes, until the cauliflower is just tender. If the stew is on the thick side, thin with a bit more water or stock. Taste, and add salt if necessary. Serve garnished with a drizzle of olive oil and red onions.

Serves 4 - 6.

If you make this recipe, I'd love to see it - tag it #101cookbooks on Instagram!

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This sounds really good and I can't wait to make it. I really love spicy foods, any suggestions on how to spice up this yummy soup?


A pot 'o hot goodness is exactly what I need on this rainy day! I've been enjoying your fantastic recipes that feature just a few ingredients. You've been a welcome addition to my 'favorites.' Thank you!


mmm i find the addition of orange juice very interesting!


I hate to be the party pooper, but this sounds really bland to me. I love chickpeas, but orange juice and onions really aren't enough to soak into the rather fiberful legume. I felt the same about the splitpea recipe, seemed like a waste of split peas (especially pureeing them!)


Obviously, Google is reading my mind. I'm going vegan for a while as of March 1, and I've been wanting to find good vegan recipes. Today when I opened my Gmail, Google showed this as a link in an area at the very top of my mail window (where they circulate a variety of links). This is a very happy coincidence for me; it's exactly the kind of recipe I want to eat!

Nicole Gustas

Hi Heidi, i've been following your website for quite a while - the pictures are enough to keep me checking for updates! I made this hotpot for my sick-with-a-cold husband today and he gobbled it down and even took a picture of it, he loved it so much! I thought it tasted incredible too. By the way, my husband is from Limerick, Ireland, and can't get enough of your recipe for Irish brown bread. I think it was the Kerrygold butter that gave it that stamp of authenticity for him! Thanks for the great ideas and lovely images to boot.


Forgot to mention (and this is the wrong place for this, but the Lively Up Yourself Lentil Soup page is closed for comments) I added a couple of tablespoons toasted cumin seeds to the lentil soup recipe you posted and replaced the water with some stock (chicken, but veggie would be just as nice) I had in the freezer. So delicious!!! The leftovers are even more yummy! Thanks again Heidi~


This looks delicious - and completely seasonal. Hurrah! I'll definitely be trying this one.


Heidi, I love your recipes and I have this one simmering right now. One request -- would you please include the nutritional information, for those of us who pay attention to such things?


Oh I know about those half cups of things. They occupy the jar that wants the new batch but what to do with them.... This is a good inspiration recipe. Thanks for creating this.


This recipe sounds tasty! You have such a lovely blog.


Bulgur is a grain i first started eating about 9 years ago and I really wish I was introduced to it earlier. I grew up with rice and noodles as the primary starch and our family never ventured into any other types of grains. Wish we did. I love this flavorful dish, especially with the protein packed chickpeas. It's so complete with the chickpeas!

white on rice couple

i love recipes and love to fix lots of different things from time to time


it was delicious and i loved it i am going to say thank you so much for the recipe and again awesome!!!!!!!!


I made this for dinner last night and both my husband and I loved it, which must mean it's really good since he never loves vegetarian dishes. The orange juice is a good touch.

Ivy Mae

Looks great heidi! we make this pretty often at home, though I add a bit of tomato puree and garlic:) I love chickpeas!!


Looks wonderful, I love chickpeas and I think I have all this stuff now...I won't have to go to the store today.

noble pig

Oh...I have a spot in my pantry just like that!!! II try to keep it contained to a basket but that never works. I have to try this to help get rid of some of it! There will definitely be some substitutions based on what I have but it sounds so good!


Yep, you're right. They are indeed 1/4 qt. Couldn't help but laugh, as I have 3/4 of a cup of "Forbidden" purple rice, 3/4 a cup of whole wheat couscous and a large plastic bag with a small corner of bulgur wheat in a corner of the pantry exactly as described in this recipe. Maybe 3/4 was on my brain. :)


Looks like it's 1/4-quart to me, but thanks for the reference, DragonStar.


The stragglers! I know them well. Great idea, and beautiful photo. I didn't think chickpeas could look so gorgeous.


The pots look like Staub Mini Round 3/4-Quart Cocottes, which frequently go on sale as a "gateway drug" to collecting Staub cookware.


Oh! Thank you! I have had a stragly bit of bulgur hanging out in my pantry for ages and I feel so guilty every time I see it! I'll make this tonight.


I just happened to have all of the ingredients on hand (cauliflower, kale and onions all came in my organic box delivery yesterday) so I made it for lunch today. Boy, was that delicious! I added a little (1/2 teaspoon?) of ras el hanout for interest, but it wouldn't have really needed it especially when starting with a good veg stock.


Once again you've made magic out of morsels! This one is right up my alley. Can't wait to try it. For more fun with chickpeas and pantry staples check out my curried chickpeas with spinach in coconut broth at This was a big hit a at recent cooking demo where some people where leary of the ingredients but LOVED the creamy and light final outcome. Amd because the main ingredients came from the pantry it's a great "winter" dish when fresh produce isn't always at its peak. Keep it coming Heidi! Your posts are the highlight of many of my days. -- Asata, Life Chef

Life Chef

Que maravilha. Este blog é dos deuses.


Heidi, I've been lurking, but have yet to comment. You have a beautiful blog. (And I'm happy to see you've stepped up the vegan recipes.) This looks wonderful. And boy can I relate to the little bags of stragglers. Right now I've got bulgar, red lentils, green lentils, and Israeli couscous, all in quantities too small to do anything with. Jane of


If I'm looking at the picture correctly, judging by the size of the chickpeas it seems like the pots are miniature sized. They're very cool...may I ask where you bought them from?


This looks delicious!! My house is full of your foods right now. I've got the big sur power bars in the pantry, the lentil soup in the freezer, and the yeast raised cornbread in the fridge (and some in the freezer to!) I'll have to make this hot pot for lunch tomorrow. I've only got a little bit of bulgar left in the bag!


Just made this for dinner. Yum! I added some cumin, crushed red pepper, and white wine vinegar at the very end, and wow-- it was SO good.


Looking forward to trying this one. This week we have cooked all "Heidi" meals, I kid you not. Tonight we had your Garam Masala Tofu (to die for... We rolled the scramble up in warmed multi-grain tortillas), last night it was your Lively Up Yourself Lentil Soup (that saffron yogurt sauce really brought it together. I'm a sucker for greek yogurt. yum!), and the night before it was Best School Lunch. What we we do without you????!!!!! You rock!!!!! And you look incredible too... loved the video of your trip to Big Sur and those yummy power bars. Xoxoxoxo


I admit, never have prepared bulgur before, but this recipe includes a few of my favorite ingredients..the kale & will give it a go!


The soup looks amazing...the addition of bulgur is a great idea. I've made garbanzo soup with Israeli cous cous, but this might be even better. Thanks for sharing!


This looks like a wonderful way to put some Rancho Gordo chickpeas to use along with my little bit of bulgur hanging out all lonely at the bottom of a bag. Also, I am really enjoying what's happening over at Mighty Foods.


Mind if I ask where you the pots themselves? There are times when like you I have various partials lying around and a small pot or two like that would be exactly what I need.


I've only used bulgur before in tabouli, which doesn't get into heavy rotation until summer comes and there are real tomatoes to add. Thanks for a great cold weather idea! Plus any excuse for more chickpeas in my life makes me a happy girl...


Chickpeas and cauliflower do marry well, they bring out the best in each other I think. I once concocted a dish with these two and called it 'Chola Gobi' [Indian terms for Chickpeas and Cauliflower] , a twist off the more traditional Aloo Gobi and it turned out very very tasty.


Nice idea Heidi. Bulgur is a great 'sponge' grain for soaking up flavours - I always cook it in stock rather than water these days. This might be good for using up odd ends of leek too (I love leek and orange together!)


This warm pot of goodness has so many of my favorite ingredients in one place, and who happens to have cauliflower in her fridge right now and will be making this for dinner tonight, I wonder? Me, me, me! Thanks, Heidi.


Heidi, thanks for posting this. I like the idea of a "spice rack" dish, improvising the ingredients and flavoring with what's around the kitchen. I also enjoy chickpeas, and your recipe gives inspiration for the nearly-forgotten quinoa and bulgar in my house.


I love soups and make them at least once a week for my brown bag lunches. I especially love that I don't have to pre-plan them - there's always something in the pantry that needs to be used up. Usually, I have lentils or other canned beans, some kind of veg, and a whole grain like quinoa or barley. I have half a tub of bulgur that I need to use up, so this will probably make it into the rotation for next week in one form or another :)


yum - i have all these ingredients in my house right now including the quinoa, which i've been looking for a way to use other than in veggie salads. i've totally been on a chard kick, and i love the use of OJ. plus, "hot pot" sounds so comforting and fun. -- Michelle @ Us vs. Food


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