Andalusian-style chickpeas and spinach

Andalusian-styled chickpeas and spinach recipe |
I never get tired of this recipe. Perhaps because this is comfort food at its best. An earthy, filling, warm and flavoursome veggie stew that if eaten at lunchtime will make you feel like having a siesta straight after you’re done with it.

As Spaniards would say, this dish is ‘bueno, bonito y barato’, which translates as ‘good, beautiful and cheap’. It couldn’t more true. Like many other peasant recipes from Southern Spain, this chickpeas and spinach are a fine example of how to make the most of simple and humble ingredients.

Yes, it has an unquestionable Middle East influence. In fact, there were the Persians who brought spinach and Phoenicians who first imported chickpeas to Spain. Yet after so many centuries, we can truly say that this is now a very traditional Andalusian dish.

You can find this recipe in tapas bars all over Andalusia. Although in all honesty, we’ve never had a better version of it than during our trips to Seville, and more specifically to some corner bars in the stunning working class neighbourhood of Triana.

Give it a go and we guarantee you that it won’t be the last time you cook it. And in the very remote case you’re still not 100% convinced about it, just read this wonderful article about the science-back health benefits of spinach by Helen Nichols and we promise you’ll be cooking this recipe straight away!


Andalusian chickpeas & spinach
Serves: people Print recipe
Preparation time: 10 minutes
Cooking time: 15 minutes
Passive time: -
Difficulty: Easy



  1. Wash the spinach thoroughly and cook in boiling water for 3 minutes. Drain well and reserve.
  2. Coat a hot saucepan with olive oil and fry the garlic until golden brown. Reserve.
  3. Fry the bread in the same oil until golden brown and crunchy. Reserve.
  4. Use a mortar and pestle to grind the cumin seeds until you get a fine powder. Then incorporate the salt, pepper, cayenne, bread and garlic. Pestle it all together.
  5. Once you have a paste, lose it a bit by adding the Sherry vinegar and also a bit of liquid from the chickpeas tin. Mix well and reserve.
  6. Using always the same saucepan, sauté the spinach for a minute or so before adding the Pimenton, the mortar paste and the chickpeas.
  7. Stir well under a low temperature for 5 minutes so that all the flavours mix well and come nicely together. If it gets too dry or the consistency is too thick, add some water.
  8. This is now ready to be served. You can optionally sprinkle some extra Pimenton on top or serve with some fried toasts to accompany this food.

Of course you can also use a food processor or even a hand mixer instead of the mortar and pestle. I must admit though that I much prefer the texture obtained by using the mortar.