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Whole Wheat Pasta with Chickpeas and Spinach

You can make this delicious whole wheat pasta with chickpeas and spinach in a cinch. It makes a perfect, balanced lunch, and nutritious, filling dinner.

Friends, you are in for a delicious dinner -or lunch if you’re feeling fancy!- that will satisfy all your cravings! We have the good kind of carbs, the nutritious and flavorful spinach, and the meaty chickpeas packed with protein.

I probably had this pasta dish too many times in the last few weeks. Last time I made it was on Good Friday, the last Friday of Lent. I was ravenous, and since we do not eat meat on Fridays during Lent, I am always in search of good protein-packed dishes. This one fits the bill.

You can make this delicious whole wheat pasta with chickpeas and spinach in a cinch. It makes a perfect, balanced lunch, and a nutritious, filling dinner.

When I made it just for me, these portions yielded one big plate that I ended up sharing with my 7-year-old. I can’t believe he approved! I adjusted the recipe card to prepare 4 to 6 servings.

You can make this delicious whole wheat pasta with chickpeas and spinach in a cinch. It makes a perfect, balanced lunch, and a nutritious, filling dinner.

Make It

Start by cooking the pasta according to package directions. I like to add salt to the pasta water, and for this dish, it’s highly recommended. You’ll see why!

This dish starts like every other Italian dish made in my home: sauteeing minced onions and garlic. This aroma makes me happy. How about you?

You can make this delicious whole wheat pasta with chickpeas and spinach in a cinch. It makes a perfect, balanced lunch, and a nutritious, filling dinner.

I like to add the onions first, wait a minute, and then add the garlic. Since the garlic cooks faster, you may want to keep the heat in medium-low so you don’t burn it. Golden garlic is delicious, though! Mine always tend to be on the golden side.

Once the onion and garlic are tender, add the (previously defrosted) chopped spinach. I like to use frozen chopped spinach, not only for the ease of use but because the added water makes a good sauce! So make sure to drain the defrosted spinach but do not squeeze out the juice. You want that juice for your sauce.

You can make this delicious whole wheat pasta with chickpeas and spinach in a cinch. It makes a perfect, balanced lunch, and a nutritious, filling dinner.

Add drained and rinsed chickpeas and season with salt, pepper, and garlic powder to taste. I add garlic powder to almost everything. Everything tastes better with garlic.

You can make this delicious whole wheat pasta with chickpeas and spinach in a cinch. It makes a perfect, balanced lunch, and a nutritious, filling dinner.

Now, here’s the trick: while your pasta is still boiling, scoop a ladle of starchy pasta water…

You can make this delicious whole wheat pasta with chickpeas and spinach in a cinch. It makes a perfect, balanced lunch, and a nutritious, filling dinner.

and add that ladle to your sauteed vegetables…

You can make this delicious whole wheat pasta with chickpeas and spinach in a cinch. It makes a perfect, balanced lunch, and a nutritious, filling dinner.

This is a trick my mom taught me early in life whenever we’re making pasta with something different than tomato sauce. The salted, starchy water, adds flavor and consistency to some pairings like this one. I use this method also when I make Pasta with Broccoli and Sausage, or Pasta with Ham and Peas.

As soon as you pour the water on the skillet, put a lid on and let it simmer for 5 more minutes. If you think you need more water or olive oil, go for it, it’s a matter of taste!

You can make this delicious whole wheat pasta with chickpeas and spinach in a cinch. It makes a perfect, balanced lunch, and a nutritious, filling dinner.

Once the pasta is ready, drain, and serve spinach and chickpeas mixture over it. Garnish with freshly shaved parmesan cheese and if you’d like, freshly ground black pepper brings this dish to a new level!

You can make this delicious whole wheat pasta with chickpeas and spinach in a cinch. It makes a perfect, balanced lunch, and a nutritious, filling dinner.

Pasta with Chickpeas and Spinach – Recipe Card

You can make this delicious whole wheat pasta with chickpeas and spinach in a cinch. It makes a perfect, balanced lunch, and a nutritious, filling dinner.

Whole Wheat Pasta with Chickpeas and Spinach

Yield: 4
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 15 minutes
Total Time: 30 minutes

Make this delicious whole wheat pasta with chickpeas and spinach in a cinch. It makes a perfect, balanced lunch, and a nutritious, filling dinner.

Ingredients

  • 1 – 16 oz box of whole wheat Penne pasta (or any other short pasta shape) 
  • 1 clove garlic finely minced
  •  1/2 large white onion finely chopped
  • 1 – 15.5 oz can of chickpeas drained 
  • 1/2 cup frozen chopped spinach defrost in microwave 
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  •  1/4 cup parmesan cheese shaved
  •  1 tsp garlic powder
  •  salt and pepper to taste

Instructions

    1. In a saucepan, start cooking pasta according to package instructions. I recommend adding salt to the water.
    2. In a medium-size skillet, start sauteeing the onions in the olive oil. Add the garlic exactly one minute later, and keep sauteeing in medium-low heat until transparent and tender.
    3. Slightly drain the defrosted chopped spinach and add to the skillet.

    4. Add the can of drained chickpeas.

    5. Season with salt, pepper, and garlic powder to taste.

    6. Once all vegetables are mixed and seasoned, add one full ladle of boiling pasta water. This adds flavor (if you salt the water) and more juice to your dish. 
    7. Cover the skillet with a lid, and reduce heat to low. Simmer for a few minutes, or until the pasta is ready.

    8. Serve over hot pasta and garnish with freshly shaved parmesan cheese.

    Notes

    Make sure you don’t squeeze the extra water from the defrosted spinach, you need this liquid to make it saucy.

    Did you make this recipe?

    Please leave a comment on the blog or share a photo on Pinterest

    You can make this delicious whole wheat pasta with chickpeas and spinach in a cinch. It makes a perfect, balanced lunch, and a nutritious, filling dinner.

    Enjoy!

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