I totally made this on a night when I couldn’t go to the store. I mean, that is most nights lately, but you know what I mean. I perused the pantry and freezer and realized I could make something with what I had on hand. What a concept?! Lol!
Use those pantry staples!
If there were ever a time when you needed to be creative with what you already have in the house, it’s now! Maybe your store is out of everything or maybe you don’t want to risk your health going to the store. Whatever the case may be, we want to help you with some simple recipes using pantry staples. We consider pantry staples to be, for example, canned goods, shelf stable veggies (potatoes, onion, garlic, carrots, etc.), soups and stocks, oils, spices, spreads, crackers, etc. And I also consider pantry staples to be things that you always tend to have in the fridge/freezer too, i.e. butter, condiments, eggs, frozen veggies, frozen pre-cooked meats, etc. But we know that everyone’s different and may keep different essentials on hand.
For this meal, we used the following key pantry items: can of chickpeas, pasta, tomato paste & seasonings.
THIS IS SERIOUSLY DELICIOUS
My goal was simply to make an easy, quick dish using pantry staples. But this far exceeded my expectations. The reviews from my life are in. Lol!
- 7/7 adults 👍
- 3/4 kids 👍
I will say that both the carnivores and vegans in my life loved this, even my chef boyfriend who is hard to please. My kids loved it, my 6 yo even having a third helping of it at dinner. It’s so simple that you don’t imagine it could be this tasty. While the dish needs no topping, we chose to add chives from our garden. [Pictured below: our beloved kids Kuhn Rikon kids snippers]
Grated or shredded parmesan is also so delicious as a topping. Of course, with the cheese, the dish instantly becomes non-vegan. So, it’s up to you and your dietary preferences.
COOK THE ONION & GARLIC:
ADD CHICKPEAS, TOMATO PASTE & SEASONINGS. COOK FOR 1 MINUTE:
ADD BROTH, PASTA & FROZEN VEGGIES. BOIL & SIMMER 10 MINUTES:
REMOVE FROM HEAT & STIR:
have a family cooking session
The longer we hunker down at home, the more it seems like a perfect time to invite kids to help out in the kitchen (assuming everyone is healthy and properly washing their hands!). Not only will cooking together help pass the time, but cooking with your kids has some real educational benefits. For example, cooking with kids can boost self-esteem and foster healthy eating habits.
How kids can help make this PASTA WITH CHICKPEAS
This dish involves many kid-friendly tasks. Here are some ways for your lil’ sous chefs to help out:
- Cut the onion using one of our fave kid knives.
- Measure ingredients. This is a great opportunity to explain the difference between teaspoons, tablespoons, cups and ounces. I’m a big fan of this Joseph Joseph colorful bowl set, and the tried-and-true Pyrex measuring cup.
- Open up the can of chickpeas and rinse the beans in a colander. Kids might need help/supervision with this task.
- Snip the chives! We really love these kids’ snippers.
Note: This post contains affiliate links.
Final Tips FOR THIS PASTA WITH CHICKPEAS:
Mimi’s Cooking Tips:
Check out these tricks and shortcuts from our in-house expert/Mom:
🍅 Watch your red pepper flakes! Even with 1/8 teaspoon of red pepper flakes, the result was a bit spicy. BUT we were using fresh pepper flakes, so the flavor was more potent. I would start with as little as possible and do some taste testing as the dish cooks.
🍅Manage your liquid! Pretty much, when you follow our instructions, your pasta will have absorbed most of the liquid. But if you want your pasta more soup-y or if you want to be able to dip bread into the pasta dish, here are some tips. You can simmer the pasta for less time, so it ends up more liquid-y. Or you can add extra broth while cooking.
OUR “kidify” Tips:
Have picky eaters? Check out these tips:
🍅Kids pick the pasta! We used small shell pasta with chickpeas, but almost any pasta will work fine in this dish! Let kids choose their favorite.
🍅Kids choose the frozen veggies! We used french cut green beans, but kids can choose the veggies they like best. Good ideas: peas, broccoli florets, mixed veggie pack, spinach, and kale.
🍅Add a side dish! We have lots of suggestions 😜 My sister served grilled cheese on the side for her kids, and a veggie burger patty on the side for herself and her husband. Even though this is a vegan dish, our family is not vegan. So, we had cut up hot dogs on the side, and the kids loved that. Garlic bread, a side salad, cut-up cucumber slices, or toast would also be great additions to this meal.
Other PANTRY Dishes you might like
- 2 T olive oil
- 1 yellow onion (diced or chopped)
- 2 cloves garlic (minced)
- 15 oz can chickpeas (drained & rinsed)
- 3 T tomato paste
- 1 t salt
- 1/2 t black pepper
- 1/8 t red pepper flakes (or less)
- 4 cups vegetable stock/broth
- 2 cups small shells pasta
- 1 cup frozen cut green beans
- fresh chives, chopped (optional)
Heat pan on medium, add olive oil, onion, and garlic. Cook 3 minutes (or until onion is translucent), stirring frequently. Add chickpeas, tomato paste, salt, pepper and red pepper flakes, and cook for 1 minute more.
Add broth, pasta and frozen veggies. Bring to a boil. Then reduce heat and simmer for 10 minutes, stirring frequently. Remove from heat and stir. If you like, you can sprinkle fresh chives atop and serve.
Serve pasta on plate or in bowl, with fresh chives sprinkled atop.
We recommend all meals for children be served with milk.