Hot and Spicy Chickpeas with Cilantro

The beauty of a bicycle tour is that if you’re traveling in an area where you’re passing through towns every now and then, you don’t have to carry a week’s worth of food with you. Instead, you can keep a stock of basic cooking essentials—like spices, olive oil, honey, etc.—and then buy a few main ingredients on a more regular basis. That includes fresh herbs; a bunch of cilantro or basil can be chopped up and added to a variety of meals, and adds so much appreciated flavor that is hard to achieve with dried spices alone.

Inspired by a recipe for roasted chickpeas, this one is literally as easy as opening a can. Filling and full of protein, this dish can act as an appetizer or as a meal on its own when you can’t be bothered to cook anything else.

Hot and Spicy Chickpeas with Cilantro

Makes: about two servings, depending on how hungry you are


1 15-ounce can of chickpeas

1 clove garlic, finely chopped

2 tablespoons olive oil

2 to 3 teaspoons chili powder (more or less depending on your spice preference)

1 teaspoon cumin powder

A large handful cilantro leaves, chopped

Red pepper flakes


Pour off the chickpea liquid and dispose of appropriately.

Place the chopped garlic and olive oil in a pot and place over a medium/high heat. Sauté until the garlic is golden brown. Add the chili powder, cumin powder and chickpeas and stir regularly until the chickpeas are all covered in spices and start to get a dark golden brown color, about 5 to 10 minutes.

Remove from the heat and add in cilantro and as many red pepper flakes as your spice levels can handle. Mix together and serve immediately.

Anna Brones is a writer, producer and artist. She is the author of several books including Hello, Bicycle and Fika: The Art of the Swedish Coffee Break. Find more of her work at or on Instagram @annabrones.