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Pasta With Eggplant and Chickpeas

This plant-based, vegetable-heavy meal from Chef José Andrés can be modified with a variety of spices depending on what you have in your pantry.
A pasta and veggie dish by chef Jose Andres

My daughters and I came up with this pasta dish with eggplants and chickpeas and dedicated it to all of the first responders who are still going to work every day during the pandemic, making sure all of us are safe as we go about our daily lives.

  • Makes 4 servings
  • Prep Time 10 minutes
  • Cook Time 15 minutes


  • 2 15-oz. cans chickpeas
  • 1 15-oz. can tomato sauce
  • 1 eggplant, peeled and chopped
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 1 garlic clove, peeled and chopped
  • Spices (recommended: cumin, pimentón, or sumac)
  • 12 oz. pasta, fine egg noodles or pasta of choice
  • Olive oil
  • Salt
  • Pepper
  • Sour cream (optional)
  • Mozzarella (optional)


Fill a medium saucepan with water to boil — just enough to cover the pasta. Using less water will also cook your pasta faster.
Open your chickpeas (if using canned) and tomato sauce.
Chop a whole, peeled eggplant, an onion, garlic clove, and some cheese, if using. Set aside some spices: I like cumin, pimentón, and sumac, but whatever is in your pantry will work.
Get the pasta boiling; you can add some of the chickpea water into the pasta water for extra texture and flavor. Sauté the garlic and onion in olive oil. Add the eggplant to the onions and garlic, sauté, and sing along — maybe some opera!
When the eggplant is a little cooked and the onion is a little translucent, about 4 to 5 minutes, add the spices, as much as you want, tasting as you incorporate. Then add the chickpeas, some tomato sauce (either canned or pre-made marinara sauce, up to you). Carefully toss the cooked pasta (with all the water!) into the chickpea mixture. Add some salt to taste, some olive oil, and some more sumac. Top with some sour cream and cheese, if using, and serve.

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José Andrés

Chef José Andrés is founder of World Central Kitchen, the 2018 James Beard Humanitarian of the Year, and author of the New York Times bestseller We Fed an Island: The True Story of Rebuilding Puerto Rico, One Meal at a Time. Reprinted with permission from and ThinkFoodGroup.


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