Muhammara Chickpea Skillet takes everything you love about the classic Middle Eastern dip in a 20-minute skillet meal. Serve with crusty bread or warm pita for a crowd-pleasing, vegetarian entree or appetizer. In case you’re not familiar, Muhammara is a Middle Eastern red pepper and walnut spread. It’s often made with chili paste and pomegranate molasses, however we’re streamlining the ingredients today to hopefully suite what you have in your pantry.
This skillet meal boasts bright, umami-rich flavor with garlicky undertones and a smoky backbone. You won’t believe how complex the flavor caliber is for the 20 minute cook time. I love serving it with crusty bread or warm pita, however you can also spoon it over rice, farro, or quinoa.
Either way, it’s a pantry recipe you absolutely must try!
Muhammara Chickpea Skillet: Ingredients and Substitutions
This recipe leans heavily on pantry staples like canned chickpeas, tomato paste, and a jar of roasted red peppers. Here’s the full lineup of what you need:
- Chickpeas: The recipe calls for one can of chickpeas, however you can easily double it if serving more.
- Tomato paste: The key to achieving deep, umami-rich flavor lies in just 3 Tbsp of tomato paste.
- Roasted red peppers: Feel free to roast them yourself in the oven or over an open flame, however I just use the jarred stuff!
- Walnuts: Rich in heart-healthy fats, walnuts are the quintessential nut in Muhammara. However if you don’t have any on hand, use almonds or pine nuts instead.
- Smoked paprika: One of my favorite spices for adding bright, smoky flavor, this spice does some serious heavy lifting. However if you only have classic sweet paprika on hand, that’ll do the job just fine.
- Chili flakes: If you like spicy, use 1/2 tsp (or more). If not, just use 1/4 tsp. You can also Aleppo chili, if you have it on hand.
- Garlic: Use fresh, minced garlic (my preference), or granulated in a pinch.
- Vegetable broth: Really any broth will work here: bone broth, chicken broth, or beef broth.
- Fresh parsley: Any type of herb garnish adds a lovely fresh finish here: parsley, basil, or chives, to name a few.
How to Make Muhammara Chickpea Skillet
If you have 20 minutes to spare, you have time to make this flavorful skillet. Here’s how it’s done:
Step 1: Sauté the Chickpeas
Heat some olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Next, add the chickpeas and cook for about 5 minutes–just until they’re slightly golden and crisp.
Step 2: Cook the Garlic and Tomato Paste
Add the garlic, tomato paste, chili flakes, and smoked paprika, and stir to coat the chickpeas. Cook for about 3 minutes, until the tomato paste turns brick red. This helps unlock the full flavor potential of the tomato paste, which adds layers of umami.
Step 3: Blend the Roasted Red Peppers
Combine the roasted red peppers and walnuts in a blender or food processor and blend until smooth. Next, pour them into the skillet, along with the broth.
Step 4: Simmer until Thickened
Simmer the mixture until the liquid reduces by about one-third, about 5 minutes. Lastly, season to taste with salt and pepper, and remove from heat.
Step 5: Serve with Bread or Pita
Garnish the Muhammara Chickpea Skillet with fresh parsley and dig in! I also love drizzling some tahini overtop as a finishing touch.
What to Serve with Muhammara Chickpea Skillet:
Enjoy this simple skillet as an appetizer, side dish, or main entree. I love serving it with crusty bread, warm pita, or naan to scoop up the sauce. However you can also spoon it over rice, quinoa, farro, or your grain or choice.
To round out a full meal, enjoy it alongside a crisp salad with a creamy tahini dressing. Or, try my quick and easy Shaved Brussels Salad with Whole-Grain Mustard Dressing. If you give this recipe a try, be sure to snap a pic and tag #dishingouthealth on Instagram so I can see your creations. Also, follow along on Facebook and Pinterest for the latest recipe updates!
More Vegetarian Chickpea Recipes to Try:
Muhammara Chickpea Skillet
- Small Blender or Food Processor
- Medium or Large Skillet
- 3 Tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil
- 1 (15-oz.) can chickpeas, rinsed and drained
- 3 Tbsp. tomato paste
- 3 garlic cloves, minced
- 1 tsp. smoked paprika (sub regular paprika)
- 1/4-1/2 tsp. crushed chili flakes (use more or less depending on desired level of heat)
- 1 (12-oz.) jar roasted red peppers, drained
- 1/3 cup walnuts
- 1 cup vegetable broth (sub chicken broth or bone broth)
- 3/4 tsp. kosher salt
- 1/2 tsp. black pepper
- Fresh parsley for garnish
- Crusty bread, warm pita or naan for serving
- Heat oil in a medium or large skillet over medium-high. Once hot, add chickpeas and cook 5 minutes, stirring occasionally, until golden and slightly crisp.
- Add tomato paste, garlic, smoked paprika, and chili flakes; stir to coat chickpeas. Cook 3 minutes, or until tomato paste turns brick red and aromatic.
- Meanwhile, combine roasted red peppers and walnuts in a small blender or food processor; blend until smooth. Pour into skillet with chickpeas, along with vegetable broth, salt, and pepper. Simmer mixture for about 5 minutes, or until liquid reduces and mixture thickens.
- Remove from heat and garnish with fresh parsley. Serve with bread, pita, or naan.