Pilaf with chickpeas + vegan tzatziki | v + gf

Vegan Pilaf with chickpeas | The Nordic Kitchen
Vegan Pilaf with chickpeas | The Nordic Kitchen

If there is one thing I really like, it’s a simple recipe with tons of flavor. Like when you look at the ingredient list of a recipe and think to yourself: meh, this can’t be anything special, and then you cook it anyway and you’re completely blown away by all the flavors? That feeling, or experience, is my goal when I create a recipe. Well, it’s nice if you get excited when you read the ingredient list too of course, but on the other hand, there’s a reason a recipe always comes with a picture.

Right now, when there are only a couple of weeks left before the summer vacation, simple recipes are more than welcome. I love all things food and baking, but right now, just the thought of baking a cake makes me tired. Maybe a simple ice cream recipe could work, but most of all I want to create savory recipes. Share what we eat for dinner these days. I think that’s a sign that I need my vacation. And right now, that’s just what I’m getting ready for. I’ll have a 3-week break from the blog in July, but I’ll schedule blog posts so that the blog will be updated even though I’m on vacation. I’ll still be updating Instagram of course, because you can’t really schedule your posts there. And to be honest, I’d miss you too much if I didn’t get to connect with you at all for three weeks.

Vegan Pilaf with chickpeas | The Nordic Kitchen
Vegan Pilaf with chickpeas | The Nordic Kitchen

Now, let’s talk about today’s recipe. A simple one, but filled with flavors. I always use a lot of herbs, spices, garlic, and onion when I cook and this recipe is no exception. I decided to call it a pilaf, even though the rice isn’t cooked in vegetable broth. I did, however, add tons of spices afterward, so I thought it was close enough. Anyway, the flavors come from tamari soy, onion, fresh herbs (homegrown!), chili flakes, cumin, and cayenne. The soy doesn’t only give the pilaf a nice taste, it also adds a beautiful brownish color which I love. The roasted chickpeas add a lot of crisp and the tzatziki is what makes the dish complete. Flavors from Asia/the Middle East and the Mediterranean combined to something super delicious!

Just a short note before we start cooking: the tzatziki only gets better if you leave it in the fridge for about an hour, so my advice is to prepare the tzatziki before you start with the pilaf.

Vegan Pilaf with chickpeas | The Nordic Kitchen
Vegan Pilaf with chickpeas | The Nordic Kitchen
Vegan Pilaf with chickpeas | The Nordic Kitchen
Vegan Pilaf with chickpeas | The Nordic Kitchen

Pilaf with chickpeas

serves 2

250 g pre-cooked chickpeas
150 g brown rice
1-2 tbsp tamari soy
juice from 1/2 a lemon
2 shallots
1 yellow onion
2 stems mint
5-10 stems parsley
1 tsp garlic powder
1/4 tsp cayenne
1 tsp chili flakes
1/2 tsp ground cumin
black pepper


  1. Heat the oven to 200°C.
  2. Spread the chickpeas on a baking tray, covered with parchment paper.
  3. Bake in the middle of the oven for about 20 minutes, or until crispy and golden.
  4. Cook the rice according to the instructions on the package.
  5. When the rice is done, add the tamari soy and lemon juice and stir together.
  6. Finely chop shallots and the yellow onion.
  7. Heat up some unflavored coconut oil in a frying pan and fry the onions over medium heat for a few minutes until soft.
  8. Chop the fresh mint and parsley and add to the frying pan together with the rest of the spices. Stir together.
  9. Finally, add the roasted chickpeas and the onion mix to the rice and stir to combine.
  10. Serve immediately with tzatziki and fresh bread if you like.
Vegan Pilaf with chickpeas | The Nordic Kitchen
Vegan Pilaf with chickpeas | The Nordic Kitchen

Vegan tzatziki

1/2 a cucumber
150 g Oatly Fraiche
2-3 cloves garlic
1 tbsp lemon juice
salt and black pepper to taste


  1. Grate the cucumber, then use your hands to press out as much water as possible. Leave to dry on a piece of paper.
  2. Meanwhile, crush the garlic cloves using a garlic press (crusher) and mix together with the Oatly Fraiche.
  3. Add lemon juice, salt & pepper and stir together.
  4. Add the grated cucumber to the Fraiche and stir together so that everything’s well combined. Now it’s ready to be served.

Happy cooking!


More dinner inspiration right here:

Creamy pesto pasta
Vegan Mac-no-Cheese
Midsummer salad with potatoes, asparagus, and ramson


  • Tobbe

    6 juli, 2018 at 17:49

    Thanks for the recipe! I used cauliflower rice instead of the regular rice (400 g), didn’t have any shallots, so I used half a red onion and 10 cm leek instead. The rest of my family doesn’t care much for mint, so I left that out. And didn’t have any flat leaf parsley, so I used regular parsley instead that I had in the freezer (1 – 1.5 tbsp finely chopped). Turned out great!
    Thanks again for a great recipe 🙂

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