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Apricot Chickpea Curry

$3.05 Recipe/$1.53 Serving

Apricot chickpea curry is the perfect lunch or dinner recipe. So easy to make and packed with flavor, you are not going to believe how quickly this healthy meal comes together! No fancy equipment or ingredients needed for a simple, vegan, gluten free meal!

Apricot chickpea curry in large bowl with limes in background.

Why you will love this recipe

  • Sweet, salty and spicy, the perfect combo! This apricot chickpea curry is slightly sweet, slightly spicy, and simply delicious! The sweet apricots contrast the kick from the curry powder. You can adjust the heat depending on the curry you use and how much or how little you add to the recipe!
  • Ready in just minutes: It takes less than 10 minutes to make this recipe from start to finish, even if you don’t have the best chef skills! You quickly sauté the onions with the curry powder (to take that raw flavor from the spices) and combine everything in a bowl. So simple!
  • Great meal to impress family and friends with (bonus it’s so easy to make). This recipe is light but filling and so packed with flavor, making it perfect for family meals, get togethers or as a side dish for cookouts/potlucks. It’s vegan, gluten free and dairy free making it great for so many types of diets!
  • Great for meal prep: You can easily double or triple this recipe to have a simple but filling meal all week long for lunches or dinners! This will last in the fridge up to 5 days and is just as good on day 5 as day 1. It’s great hot or cold!
  • Filling and budget friendly! Serve as a meal over cauliflower rice, jasmine rice or over salad greens (arugula or baby spinach would be ideal).
Ingredients to make apricot chickpea curry.
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Ingredients for apricot curry

  • Dried apricots – you can use unsulfured or just Turkish apricots. The unsulfured tend to not be as bright and vibrant but are equally delicious in this recipe.
  • Hot water (for soaking the apricots in)
  • Olive oil – this is to help sauté the onions and to cook the curry powder a bit. The fat helps to mellow out the curry a bit when combined with the lime juice.
  • Red onion – I think the onion helps to heighten the flavor of this dish. You could use white onion as well!
  • Curry powder – every curry powder is slightly different and will bring a different level of heat (spice). If you are unsure, use a mild curry powder and you can add red pepper flakes for added heat if needed.
  • Salt – salt helps to elevate the flavors of the curry powder.
  • Garlic powder – this is not required but I think it helps to balance out the flavors and adds some umami to the dish.
  • Chickpeas – make sure they are rinsed and drained well if using canned chickpeas.
  • Lime juice – acid is important and helps to elevate the flavors in the dish. It also helps to cut through the spice of the curry powder.
  • Shredded carrots – adds veggies to the dish and adds some sweetness as well to the dish.
  • Cilantro – I love cilantro and curry powder together. The cilantro helps to elevate the overall flavor of the dish.

How to make apricot chickpea curry

  1. Heat water in a kettle, on the stove or in the microwave until boiling. Pour the boiling water over the dried apricots and allow them to sit while you make the rest of the dish.
  2. Preheat a skillet over medium heat.
  3. Chop the onion and add 1 tbsp of oil to the skillet before adding the onion.
  4. Add the spices: curry powder, salt and garlic powder to the onions and sauté everything for 3-4 minutes until the onions are softened. Turn off the heat.
  5. Drain the chickpeas and rinse them well. Add the chickpeas to a large bowl. Pour the onion mixture over the chickpeas along with the shredded carrots.
  6. Finely chop cilantro (leaves and stems) – the cilantro doesn’t need to be super finely chopped, just not large leaves. Add the cilantro to the bowl with the rest of the ingredients.
  7. Take the apricots from the hot water (I use a fork so I don’t burn my fingers or get extra water on the cutting board). Cut the apricots 1-2 at a time to 4-6 pieces each. Typically I cut the apricot in half, then two to three cuts down to get 4-6 pieces.
  8. Add the chopped apricots to the bowl with the rest of the ingredients and stir well.
  9. Serve over cauliflower rice, rice, quinoa or salad greens.
Directions on how to make apricot chickpea curry.

Top tips

  • Curry powder will turn wooden utensils yellow! Be careful with the spoons and towels you use when you are making curry. The turmeric in the curry powder can stain wooden utensils and towels you use during clean up. I tend to use silicone or metal utensils or the wooden spoon I’ve already stained when working with curry powder/turmeric.
  • Cooking the curry powder can help take the raw flavor out and mellow it out a bit. The original version of this recipe had raw curry powder (no cooking at all) and it had a slightly rancid flavor because the curry needed to be cooked a bit to take that raw spice out of the recipe. Even if you do not plan on using onions, cook the curry with a bit of fat, you could sauté the chickpeas or carrots with the curry powder if you don’t plan on using onions.
  • Make this with any bean you want or even make it with chicken! I have made this same recipe with cannellini beans, great northern white beans and chickpeas. You could also saute up chicken (using the method in this 10 minute skillet chicken) and use curry powder and lime juice instead of taco seasoning and red wine vinegar.
  • The flavor will be different based on the curry powder you use. Curry powders are typically a combination of many different spices. The type of curry powder you use will change the flavor as well as the level of spice in the recipe.  I use Muchi curry powder (that I got at Whole Foods) which tends to be a bit spicier but I love the flavor.
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What is the best way to serve this apricot chickpea curry

Apricot chickpea curry over cauliflower rice in bowl.

What else could you add to this chickpea curry dish

  • For crunch: Add toasted slivered almonds, pistachios, pumpkin seeds, sunflower seeds
  • To make it creamy: you could add 1-2 tbsp. tahini, 3-4 tbsp. yogurt or some coconut milk to the curry powder and onions to make the sauce creamier.
  • To make it spicier: Add in fresh ginger, red pepper flakes or more curry powder to increase the spice of the dish.
  • Add more veggies: Some other great veggies to add would be green peas, green beans (steamed), thinly sliced bell peppers, or zucchini.

Common Questions

What to do if the chickpea curry is too spicy

If you find that the curry powder you used is too spicy, you can double the chickpeas in the recipe and add one of the “make it creamy” options to help balance out some of the heat.

Can you serve this apricot chickpea curry hot or cold?

You can serve this curry dish hot or cold. If you want the dish to be hot when serving, combine all the ingredients in the skillet over medium low heat (vs. just cooking the onions and curry powder) there. Wait to add the cilantro till right before serving so it doesn’t wilt.

You can also reheat leftover apricot chickpea curry in the microwave (1:30) or so if you want to serve it hot as leftovers.

This apricot chickpea curry could also be made into a cold salad. Serve over your favorite salad greens and add a touch more lime juice and olive oil to dress the salad greens.

How long can you store leftover chickpea curry?

Fridge: This apricot chickpea curry will last about 5 days in the fridge in a well-sealed container.

Freezer: You could freeze this chickpea curry, however the cilantro might turn black with freezing. I would wait to add the cilantro until right before serving for the best flavor. Also the carrots could get a little soggy when reheating but they will taste fine!

Large bowl of apricot chickpea curry with fork in bowl.

Substitutions

  • Dried apricots: You could also use fresh apricots (remove the skin) or frozen apricots (defrosted). You could try this recipe with mango or even apples in place of the apricots for a similar sweet/spicy combo.
  • Olive oil: You could also use avocado oil or coconut oil in place of the olive oil.
  • Red onion: red onions are not required to make this dish pop, but I think they add so much flavor, so if you have them, be sure to add them. You could also use green onions, white onions or shallots for similar flavor. You could also omit the onion completely and simply heat up the chickpeas or carrots to cook with the curry powder.
  • Curry powder: You could try this recipe with a curry paste instead, maybe 1-2 tbsp. curry paste. If you don’t have any curry powder on hand, you could try a combo of smoked paprika (1/2 tsp), garam masala (1/2 -1 tsp), turmeric (1/2 tsp) and cayenne pepper (1/8-1/4 tsp) for similar flavor profile.
  • Salt: omit the salt if you are sensitive to salt. Buy unsalted chickpeas as well. Salt helps to elevate flavors so if you notice the flavor is flat, it’s likely because there is no salt. You could try more acid or fat to help balance this.
  • Garlic powder: You could add 1-2 cloves of garlic to the onion and curry mixture (be sure not to let the garlic burn though or it will taste acidic and rancid). I love garlic powder because it adds an umami flavor without having to peel and chop garlic!
  • Chickpeas: Use any white bean you have on hand, cannellini, great northern white beans or navy beans. You could also try this with chicken or shrimp as well.
  • Shredded carrots: Check out the other veggies you could add in place of the carrots.
  • Cilantro: Cilantro really adds so much flavor, so don’t skip it unless you hate it! You could try a mixture of fresh mint and flat leaf parsley in place of the cilantro.
Bowl of apricot chickpea curry with white napkin.
★ Did you make this recipe? Please give it a star rating below!
Apricot chickpea curry in a white bowl over cauliflower rice.

Apricot Chickpea Curry

$3.05 Recipe/$1.53 Serving
Apricot chickpea curry is the perfect lunch or dinner! Sweet and spicy and so easy to make! Ready in under 10 minutes.
5 from 2 votes
Print Pin Save Rate
Course: dinner
Cuisine: American, Indian
Keyword: apricot chickpea curry, apricot curry
Prep Time: 5 mins
Cook Time: 3 mins
Total Time: 8 mins
Servings: 2

Ingredients

  • 1/3 cup dried apricots, soaked in hot water - $0.73
  • 1 tbsp. olive oil - $0.22
  • 1/4 cup red onion, chopped - $0.17
  • 1.5 tsp. curry powder - $0.10
  • 1/2 tsp. salt - $0.03
  • 1/2 tsp. garlic powder - $0.05
  • 3 tbsp. cilantro, chopped - $0.48
  • 1 medium lime, juiced - $0.33
  • 15 oz. can chickpeas - $0.99
  • 1/2 cup shredded carrots - $0.38

Instructions

  • In a small bowl, pour boiling hot water over dried apricots and allow to sit for 5 minutes.
  • Preheat a medium skillet over medium heat.
  • Chop the red onion into small pieces.
  • Add 1 tbsp. olive oil to the skillet. Add red onion, curry powder, garlic powder and salt to the pan and saute for 3-4 minutes until onions are tender. Turn off heat.
  • Drain and rinse the chickpeas. Add the chickpeas to a large bowl.
  • Chop the cilantro (leaves and stems can both be used). Add to the bowl with the chickpeas
  • Add the shredded carrots and onion mixture to the bowl with the cilantro and chickpeas.
  • Carefully remove the apricots from the hot water (use a fork to reduce the water that comes with the apricots). Cut the apricots into 4-6 pieces.
  • Add the apricots to the bowl and stir well fully combining all the ingredients.
  • Serve warm, cold or hot. Best served with cauliflower rice, rice or quinoa.

Notes

What else could you add to this chickpea curry dish
  • For crunch: Add toasted slivered almonds, pistachios, pumpkin seeds, sunflower seeds
  • To make it creamy: you could add 1-2 tbsp. tahini, 3-4 tbsp. yogurt or some coconut milk to the curry powder and onions to make the sauce creamier.
  • To make it spicier: Add in fresh ginger, red pepper flakes or more curry powder to increase the spice of the dish.
  • Add more veggies: Some other great veggies to add would be green peas, green beans (steamed), thinly sliced bell peppers, or zucchini.
Can you serve this apricot chickpea curry hot or cold?
You can serve this curry dish hot or cold. If you want the dish to be hot when serving, combine all the ingredients in the skillet over medium low heat (vs. just cooking the onions and curry powder) there. Wait to add the cilantro till right before serving so it doesn’t wilt.
What to do if the chickpea curry is too spicy
If you find that the curry powder you used is too spicy, you can double the chickpeas in the recipe and add one of the “make it creamy” options to help balance out some of the heat.
Storage: 
Store in the fridge up to 5 days in a air tight container. 
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Nutrition Information

Nutrition Facts
Amount per Serving
Calories
357
Fat
 
12
g
Carbohydrates
 
55
g
Fiber
 
15
g
Sugar
 
15
g
Protein
 
13
g
Where does nutrition info come from? Nutrition facts are provided as a courtesy, sourced from the USDA Food Database.
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Recipe Rating




emma amoscato

Wednesday 18th of May 2016

These flavours sound lovely together. I always like chkpeas with spricot. #freefromfridays

Karly

Monday 16th of May 2016

This look delicious! Thanks for linking up with What's Cookin' Wednesday!

Ann

Thursday 12th of May 2016

So good. This is such a great recipe. Definitely something I'll try for our meatless monday!

Kristy @ Southern In Law

Tuesday 10th of May 2016

Oh yum! This looks absolutely deeeeelicious! What a clever combination!

Julie @ Running in a Skirt

Tuesday 10th of May 2016

This looks dreamy! I have done a few curry dishes, but it's never the first thing I think of. This might change that! I love some TJ's too.