Cilantro Chicken and Chickpea 'Chili' 6.000

Tracy A. Woodward/The Washington Post

Nourish Feb 23, 2011

The dish has the look of a white chili and the flavors of the Middle East. It’s a nice change from the long-cooked, chili-pepper-flavored versions.

Ground white-meat chicken is available at Whole Foods and many other supermarkets. If you can’t find it, use a food processor to grind your own from boneless, skinless chicken breasts. Ground white-meat turkey can be substituted.

Serve over white rice or on its own, with pita chips on the side.

Make Ahead: This can be made a day in advance and refrigerated.

Servings: 6 - 7
  • 2 to 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 1/2 pounds ground white-meat chicken (see headnote)
  • 1 small onion, cut into 1/4-inch dice (3/4 cup)
  • 1/2 large red, orange or yellow bell pepper, seeded and cut into 1/4-inch dice (1 cup)
  • Salt
  • 1 tablespoon ground cumin, or to taste
  • 2 teaspoons ground coriander, or to taste
  • 1 1/2 cups cooked no-salt-added chickpeas, drained
  • 3 cups no-salt-added or low-sodium chicken broth
  • 2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice (from 1/2 to 1 lemon)
  • 1 tablespoon cornstarch
  • 3 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro


Heat 1 tablespoon of the oil in a a 4-quart pot, preferably nonstick, over medium-high heat. Add half of the chicken; cook for 4 to 5 minutes, stirring, until the chicken loses its raw look. Use a slotted spoon to transfer the chicken to a clean bowl. Repeat with the remaining chicken, adding a tablespoon of oil as needed.

When all of the chicken is cooked, add the remaining tablespoon of the oil to the pot. When it is hot, add the onion and bell pepper. Season with salt to taste. Reduce the heat to medium; cook for 8 minutes, stirring occasionally, or until the vegetables have softened.

Stir in the cumin and coriander; cook for 1 minute, then return the chicken to the pot. Add the chickpeas and broth, stirring to combine. Cover; once you hear the mixture bubbling, immediately reduce the heat to medium-low so the mixture is barely bubbling at the edges. Partially cover and cook for 15 minutes.

Combine the lemon juice and cornstarch in a measuring cup, then stir it into the pot. Increase the heat to medium-high; once the mixture begins to boil and thicken, remove from the heat.

Stir in the cilantro. Taste and adjust seasoning as needed.

Divide among individual bowls; serve hot.

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Recipe Source

From Nourish columnist Stephanie Witt Sedgwick.

Tested by Stephanie Witt Sedgwick.

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