Recipe: Garlic & Olive Oil Pasta with Toasted Chickpeas

Recipe: Garlic & Olive Oil Pasta with Toasted Chickpeas

There’s nothing quite like a fresh bowl of pasta, amiright?

This light, garlicky olive oil pasta recipe is perfect for carb-loading before an hours-long pole training session, and the toasted chickpeas add some extra protein and a welcome crunch.

I adapted this recipe from Vegetarian Gastronomy’s Garlic, Olive Oil & Herb Spaghetti dish. The sauce base is just about the same as the original recipe, made with a few simple ingredients:

½ cup olive oil

8 cloves garlic, minced (4 tsp. if you’re using minced garlic from a container)

1 tsp red pepper flakes

Here’s what else you’ll need for the rest of the recipe, which yields quite a few servings:

For pasta:

1 box veggie or wheat elbow macaroni (or sub pasta of your choice, but nothing too thick)

1/3 cup chopped fresh basil

1 ½ tbsp. dried parsley (or ¼ cup fresh and minced, if preferred)

1/3 cup four-ingredient vegan parm cheese

¼ tbsp. of salt, plus more to taste

pepper to taste

1/2 cup pasta water

For chickpeas:

1 can chickpeas

¼ tsp garlic powder

¼ tsp onion powder

1 tsp lemon juice

Step One:

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit. Drain and rinse your chickpeas and mix in a bowl with lemon juice, onion powder and garlic powder. Transfer to a baking sheet with or without parchment paper. Pop in the oven for 20 minutes (they’ll need about 40 minutes in all, this is just to start).

When the chickpeas are cooking, chop your basil and prepare a pot of water to boil the pasta in. Place the olive oil, minced garlic, and red pepper flakes into the saucepan. Hold off on turning up the heat for anything, as the chickpeas still need time to toast in the oven.

This is a good time to bust out your food processor and prepare the vegan parmesan cheese. (Food processors are essential to vegan cooks. You can get them as cheap as $30 on Amazon. I have this one and highly recommend it.)

Step Two:

When you’re about 10 minutes into cooking the chickpeas, start boiling the water and add the pasta when ready (elbow macaroni takes about ten minutes to cook).

Once the chickpeas have cooked for 20 minutes, turn the oven temperature down to 375 degrees Fahrenheit. Briefly remove the chickpeas from oven to toss or mix around for even cooking. Set back in the oven and cook for another 15-20 minutes (check after 10 minutes to make sure they don’t burn. You want them crispy but there shouldn’t be more than a few that actually look burnt. You can discard those when it comes time to use them, if you wish, but I just leave them).

Step Three:

While you’re boiling the pasta, heat the saucepan with olive oil on low to medium-low heat for about 10 minutes, stirring occasionally so you don’t burn the garlic. When the pasta is ready, reserve ½ cup of pasta water before draining. Set pasta back in pot.

The olive oil sauce should be ready around the same time. Transfer it to the pot, along with the pasta water (¼ cup at a time), parsley, and fresh basil. Stir to combine.

When the chickpeas are ready, add them to the pot of pasta, along with the vegan parm cheese and salt. Stir to further combine, adding more salt and/or pepper to taste. You can also add in more red pepper if you want an additional kick.

Step Four:

Serve yourself a bowl and top with more parm cheese, if desired, and enjoy.

Tip: If you crave more vegetables, this pasta would pair nicely with some asparagus, either roasted or sautéed with just a bit of olive oil, minced garlic, and lemon.

Check out my Pinterest page for more delicious vegan recipes from around the web.