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mediterranean pasta

pasta with sumac chickpeas, spinach, tomatoes and creamy mint-tahini sauce

  • Author: Jackie Newgent
  • Yield: 4 servings 1x
  • Category: Main Dish, One-Dish-Meal
  • Cuisine: Pasta, Mediterranean, Comfort Food
  • Diet: Vegan


My newest, really tasty, sorta messy, totally comforting obsession is this pasta with sumac chickpeas, spinach, tomatoes and creamy mint-tahini sauce! It’s got plenty of creaminess with a variety of colors and textures. And it’s full of Mediterranean flavors. I find it kind of addictive (in a healthy way, of course)!



Mint-tahini sauce

  • 1/3 cup (85 grams) tahini
  • 1/3 cup (78 milliliters) unsweetened peppermint tea or green tea
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • 1/4 cup packed (5 grams) fresh mint leaves
  • 1/2 teaspoon sea salt



  • 8 ounces (227 grams) dry pasta of choice (ideally whole grain or organic)


Sautéed chickpeas and veggies

  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 (15-ounce/425 gram) can low-sodium chickpeas, well-drained and patted dry
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • 3/4 teaspoon ground sumac or paprika
  • 6 1/2 ounces (185 grams) small cherry or grape tomatoes (about 20)
  • 3/4 teaspoon sea salt, divided
  • 5 ounces (142 grams) fresh baby spinach (about 5 cups packed)


Optional toppings

  • 2 tablespoons harissa sauce
  • 2 tablespoons small fresh mint leaves
  • 2 tablespoons pine nuts, pan-toasted
  • 2 teaspoons grated lemon zest or lemon wedges


  1. Make the minty tahini sauce: Add all ingredients to a blender and purée until the sauce is velvety smooth, about 5 minutes on high speed. Set aside. (Makes about 3/4 cup sauce.)
  2. Make the pasta: Prepare the pasta in (salted) water per package directions until al dente. Alternatively, lid-cook* the pasta.
  3. Make the sautéed chickpeas and veggies: While the pasta is cooking, heat the oil in an extra-large cast iron or other stick-resistant skillet over medium-high heat. Add the chickpeas and sauté until golden brown, about 5 minutes. Add the garlic and sumac and cook while stirring until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Add the tomatoes and 1/4 teaspoon of the salt and sauté until the tomatoes begin to burst, about 1 1/2 minutes. Remove from the heat and stir in the spinach and remaining 1/2 teaspoon salt.
  4. Complete the recipe: Drain the pasta, reserving 3/4 cup of the cooking liquid. Transfer the pasta back into the dry pot over medium heat. Add the minty tahini sauce and desired amount of reserved pasta cooking liquid and toss to coat and heat the sauce, about 1 minute. Transfer the saucy pasta to a serving bowl or platter and top with the sautéed chickpeas and veggies and optional toppings of choice (I recommend all of them!).


*How to lid-cook pasta to save energy: Stir pasta into pot of boiling (salted) water. Bring back to a boil. Cover with lid and remove from heat. Let “lid-cook” (cook without energy) for the exact time suggested on the package. That’s it!


  • Serving Size: about 2 cups
  • Calories: 530
  • Sugar: 6g includes 0g added sugars
  • Sodium: 910mg
  • Fat: 25g
  • Saturated Fat: 3g
  • Trans Fat: 0g
  • Carbohydrates: 67g
  • Fiber: 9g
  • Protein: 16g
  • Cholesterol: 0mg

Keywords: pasta, mediterranean pasta, vegan pasta, plant-based pasta, vegetarian pasta, chickpeas, tahini, plant-based bowls