Sweet Chilli Chickpeas

One thing really does lead to another in this world of bloggery. A few tit-bits seem to lead to the inevitable deluge of information. However, one might well suppose that it is always best to leave one’s readers wanting more – you shan’t get too much out of me, avid followers. If you wish to know more about what instrument I play you may visit the ‘about me’ section – sleuths you lot are not. In reply to the other questions asked: I am spending time with my girlfriend, Katherine, next week and; if I could be any superhero I would be Desperate Dan, since he gets to eat all the pie. As you can see, I intend not to wash away any carefully formed imaginations about myself quite yet – intrigue is rather underrated. More tit-bits will follow, but you shall be forced to practice restraint.

I realise that I had promised to post this recipe yesterday; one does not always feel capable of blogging after making 200-300 rolls for their place of work. However, this being a jolly good use of my sweet chilli sauce, the wait has not been in vain. This dish is perfect as both a side dish and a main course; it being fairly light but also rather nourishing. The flavour also happens to be second to none, with the taste of the sweet chilli sauce really breaking through the subtly dark tones offered by the soy sauce. The fish sauce is optional since not everyone likes it, mothers for instance, or can eat it, largely due to dietary choices. If you make this please enjoy the sense of satisfaction that comes from having made the main ingredient from scratch – I certainly did.

Sweet Chilli Chickpeas

Serves 2 as a main course


• 2 bell peppers, finely sliced

• 2 tbsp dark soy sauce

• A few drops of fish sauce

• A knob of fresh ginger, grated

• 400g tin of chickpeas

• Ground black pepper, to taste

• Sesame oil

• 2-3 tbsp homemade sweet chilli sauce, to taste

• A handful of fresh coriander leaves

• The juice of 1 lime


1. Begin by frying the peppers in a generous glug of sesame oil. After 2 minutes add the soy sauce, fish sauce, ginger and a little ground black pepper. Cook for around 10 minutes, this allows time for the peppers to cook through and for the soy sauce to thicken.

2. Tip in the drained and rinsed chickpeas, followed by the sweet chilli sauce. Cook for a further 5 minutes, this will allow the chickpeas to cook through. Serve in an oven dish, sprinkle over the juice of 1 lime and a handful of fresh coriander leaves, save the coriander stalks for a curry. One may like a little Greek yoghurt.

Cost: As you have seen, the sweet chilli sauce is seriously inexpensive – this dish refuses to buck that trend, as one might imagine. This dish, which will happily serve two, should set back a frugal shopper no more than around £1.10.

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104 comments on “Sweet Chilli Chickpeas

  1. Purely.. Kay
    March 16, 2012 at 5:13 pm

    I love an inexpensive dish that has a lot of flavor. Usually, your dishes always have amazing flavor :). And this looks so wonderful.. great recipe as always 🙂

  2. Baker Bettie
    March 16, 2012 at 5:14 pm

    Mmmmm. I’m making this sometime this week! That looks so good!

  3. Christina Hunter
    March 16, 2012 at 5:15 pm

    This looks so good, I’m literally inviting my friend round so I can make this for us (ps, can’t believe how easy it is to make sweet chilli sauce, thanks for the recipe!)


    • frugalfeeding
      March 22, 2012 at 8:24 am

      Thanks, Christina. I hope you and your friend enjoyed it!

  4. KitchenKraftInc
    March 16, 2012 at 5:15 pm

    I had sluethed already, and I played 1 year of the same instrument in high school. Loved it, but never went further. My dream is to some day take lessons again. My teacher said I had a great ear for tone, and well, nothing made me happier than expressing my feelings with music!

    OK, now to the topic of your recipe. Rather, about your sweet chilli sauce. What type of red chilli do you use, and is it spicy? I cannot tolerate spicy things, unfortunately.

    I love chickpeas, love cilantro (sorry, coriander), and will love your recipe (minus fish sauce)!

    • frugalfeeding
      March 21, 2012 at 11:15 pm

      Kudos to you :D. you ought to give it another go, it’s wonderful – good for the mind and soul. Use whatever chilli you like – adapt it to your own taste. Mine was very hot, but yours needn’t be.

  5. artistrybyadele
    March 16, 2012 at 5:36 pm

    Yum! I need to try this!

  6. cookinginsens
    March 16, 2012 at 5:39 pm

    Nice one Frugal!

  7. Grace@ FoodFitnessFreshAir
    March 16, 2012 at 5:50 pm

    Yum! This looks perfect and so flavorful. I love chickpeas, even all on there own. A little chili sauce makes them even better.

  8. Corina
    March 16, 2012 at 6:07 pm

    It looks delicious. I’m not usually keen on sweet chilli sauce as I find it too sweet and a bit bland but reading your earlier post about it makes me think I should have a go at making it myself.

    • frugalfeeding
      March 21, 2012 at 11:13 pm

      Oh you should, it really does bring it to life!

  9. Shira
    March 16, 2012 at 6:07 pm

    Hot dang those look delicious!! Wow – yum! Cilantro is my favorite – makes everything taste somehow better 🙂

    • frugalfeeding
      March 21, 2012 at 11:12 pm

      Thanks, shira. It is one of my favourites too, though nothing can beat rosemary!

      • Shira
        March 22, 2012 at 1:25 am

        Hmmmm……you might be right…you just might! At least they rival each other very well and couldn’t more different. Had a fritatta today at my favorite local lunch spot with fennel rosemary sundried tomatoes and gruyere – it was ridiculous!

        • frugalfeeding
          March 22, 2012 at 8:19 am

          Well, yes, they are very different, but they are both “herbs”. That sounds delicious 😀

  10. baconbiscuit212
    March 16, 2012 at 6:08 pm

    Looks delicious! What beautiful colors!

    And I hope that the concert went well!

  11. The Disorganized Perfectionist
    March 16, 2012 at 6:21 pm

    Hi, there. I actually manage the blog for Evergreen’s Big Chili Cook-Off, so we’ve met there (sort of). I love your recipes. You’re creative and have a wonderful sense for food. I always look forward to seeing what you’ve posted. Cheers!

  12. An Unrefined Vegan
    March 16, 2012 at 6:24 pm

    That is one fine looking dish of chickpeas!

  13. Brianne
    March 16, 2012 at 6:43 pm

    These chickpeas sound delicious. And that chili sauce–I don’t think I’ve had it before! That’s one more condiment to add to my overflowing refrigerator shelves. Also, fish sauce, no matter how smelly it may be, RULES.

    Hope the concert went well. I played violin for 6 years as a kid, but then I decided to be a scientist and had to do away with my musical studies.

    • frugalfeeding
      March 21, 2012 at 11:10 pm

      Oh you must attempt both the sauce and the dish. Perhaps I shall post another use for it… Fish sauce really is incredible once cooked. Why did science make you do away with music?

      • Brianne
        March 22, 2012 at 6:25 pm

        Haha…I had to choose between taking honors biology and orchestra in 9th grade. It was not an easy decision; I wish most days that I had continued to study music. I’d love to get back into it someday…

        • frugalfeeding
          March 24, 2012 at 8:15 am

          Ahha. Is orchestra not an extra curricular thing over there? You should get back into it!

  14. Shu Han
    March 16, 2012 at 6:52 pm

    that looks simply gorgeous! I love the flavours that you used, the spices especially! the colours! a plus that it’s so cheap too. if you’re a student, and as greedy as me , and want to eat healthy wholesome food at a budget, finding ways to make things stretch is important. I typically manage to keep all my meals under £1, but am needing new ideas! (have to come here more;)

    • frugalfeeding
      March 22, 2012 at 8:23 am

      Thanks! I was exactly the same as you last year, when I was a student – it’s the whole reason this blog was started.

  15. thekalechronicles
    March 16, 2012 at 7:03 pm

    What a good idea!

  16. countrywoodsmoke
    March 16, 2012 at 7:53 pm

    Looks great, would make a lovely BBQ side dish. I love Linghams sweet garlic chilli sauce, would go great here.

    • frugalfeeding
      March 21, 2012 at 11:09 pm

      Or perhaps my own sweet chilli sauce, Marcus? Haha! Thanks!

  17. ceciliag
    March 16, 2012 at 8:13 pm

    I have that sweet chilli sauce on my list to make this summer, then I will be back!! I have to grow the chilli first. lucky I am a patient person.. c

    • frugalfeeding
      March 21, 2012 at 11:09 pm

      Oh you must, Cecilia! I’m planting my own chili plant VERY soon. I have the seeds, the pot and the soil.

  18. Celia @ Fig Jam and Lime Cordial
    March 16, 2012 at 9:20 pm

    Adore chickpeas, and this seems a great way to eat them – even more frugal if you buy dried and soak them, then boil them, although that is quite a palaver. Did you know you can buy and soak chickpeas, then freeze them and boil them at a later time?

    Also, viola, God bless you, I think it takes a special sort of brain to play an instrument written in its own clef. 🙂

    • frugalfeeding
      March 21, 2012 at 11:08 pm

      Thanks, Celia. I did indeed, but we had a few tins spare and wasting them is very un-frugal. Thanks for the attempted tip though :D. I agree, it does – especially since I can also read the treble clef and bass clef (to a certain extent for the latter). Haha!

  19. Michelle
    March 17, 2012 at 12:46 am

    Ha, ha, ha. These chickpeas look wonderful. Funny, though, the thing I remember from the first visit to your site is the music. My husband and I both played cello (one of us better than the other!). So impressed, then and now, that somebody is playing viola!

    • frugalfeeding
      March 21, 2012 at 11:07 pm

      Haha, we are few and far between! Which is better, colour me intrigued.

  20. Rhoda Kirwan
    March 17, 2012 at 7:53 am

    This looks delicious!! I love coriander. In fact this dish has most of my favourite ingredients. Rx

  21. myfangalicious
    March 17, 2012 at 7:56 am

    this looks delish!

  22. Kaitlyn
    March 17, 2012 at 2:16 pm

    I’m crazy about chick peas! What a perfect way to spice them up

  23. justafrugalfoodie
    March 17, 2012 at 3:00 pm


  24. Eva kitcheninspirations.wordpress.com
    March 17, 2012 at 3:13 pm

    What a great looking dish, and I absolutely love the chick peas and cilantro (in Canada we call the seeds coriander and the leaves cilantro!). A great tip I saw on a Canadian TV show, was to store your fresh ginger in the freezer in a plastic container or bag, then you can grate it into what ever you need using a microplane grater. You need not peel it, either. I have fresh ginger on hand whenever I need it.

    • KitchenKraftInc
      March 19, 2012 at 1:08 pm

      I bought a small piece of ginger this past weekend, just to make this awesome dish. I’d never had fresh before, only powdered. I’m glad you posted that tip on freezing. Thanks Eva!

      • frugalfeeding
        March 21, 2012 at 11:00 pm

        Hehe, awesome. Fresh ginger is the way forward, for sure.

    • frugalfeeding
      March 21, 2012 at 11:06 pm

      Thanks, Eva. It turned out just the way I had visualised it – I was very pleased 😀 Great tip.

  25. Chica Andaluza
    March 17, 2012 at 3:28 pm

    Great idea for using that sweet chilli sauce. Hope the concert goes well!

  26. tanyamhudson
    March 17, 2012 at 4:02 pm

    Looks and sounds delicious!

  27. Just A Smidgen
    March 17, 2012 at 4:09 pm

    So that’s what the “About” section is for 😉 Sleuth I am not, but lazy I am.. but I have finally read through and have noticed there was no mention of your place of employment in there.. and the need for so many buns??
    Great recipe today… xo Smidge the Aspiring Cellist…Good luck with your concert!

    • frugalfeeding
      March 21, 2012 at 11:02 pm

      Haha. Probably because my work doesn’t satisfy me in any way – cant wait to start my masters. The concert went brilliantly! Thanks, Smidge.

      • Just A Smidgen
        March 22, 2012 at 4:20 am

        That’s such great news!! Congratulations! And a Masters… that would be the best!!

        • frugalfeeding
          March 22, 2012 at 8:18 am

          Indeed! I have a place at m chosen university on the course I want, just need to secure the funding – LOTS of funding…

          • Just A Smidgen
            March 22, 2012 at 1:26 pm

            Isn’t it crazy how expensive?? Will it be a Masters in something to do with music??

          • frugalfeeding
            March 24, 2012 at 8:16 am

            Yes, VERY. No, history – another of my passions.

  28. spree
    March 17, 2012 at 5:54 pm

    Utterly fantastic and pictures to prove it! Must try this Nick!

  29. annashortcakes
    March 17, 2012 at 7:27 pm

    I really like the idea of this, especially with that gorgeous homemade chili sauce previously posted… Chickpeas are so good for you. It’s a shame they aren’t more utilized!

    • frugalfeeding
      March 22, 2012 at 12:00 am

      Thanks, Anna! It is a shame since they are so very versatile.

  30. Rufus' Food and Spirits Guide
    March 17, 2012 at 11:20 pm

    Hee, hee. You said tidbit wrong again. Kidding. Man does this look amazing.

  31. Korena in the Kitchen
    March 19, 2012 at 2:33 am

    Chickpeas are my favorite. This looks like a great way to eat them. Thanks for the recipe!

    • frugalfeeding
      March 21, 2012 at 11:01 pm

      They are so versatile and delicious :D. I use them in all their forms.

  32. Young Wifey
    March 19, 2012 at 1:27 pm

    Looks delcious! Now, if only I could get HUbster to eat this as the main dish!

  33. Smedette
    March 19, 2012 at 5:19 pm

    Looks delicious; I love chickpeas and cilantro!

  34. foodblogandthedog
    March 21, 2012 at 5:37 pm

    They sound really lovely! I make my own sweet chilli sauce too and am always looking for new ways to use it. Chickpeas are my favourite thing too so I am all over this, thanks!!

    • frugalfeeding
      March 21, 2012 at 10:58 pm

      Thanks :D. Give it a go, please let me know how it turns out.

  35. Cara
    March 21, 2012 at 11:36 pm

    Stop saying tit, it’s pissing me off! And I love how all of those questions were mine yet you kept it universal, as if MANY people asked you what super hero you would be. Go ahead and say it, call me a non-sleuth to my face. Yeah, yeah, I read your About Me but it was like, years ago. Okay, more like almost *A* year ago. And who the hell is Desperate Dan? I bet he’s British and says Tit Bits also… You smug foreigners, how I heart thee! Tell Katherine Hello from me and tell her that I think she is a saint 🙂 xo <–that means hugs and slugs from America 🙂 Enjoy a well-deserved visit with your lover girl!

    • frugalfeeding
      March 21, 2012 at 11:39 pm

      Haha, you are funny Cara – you swore on my blog! Oh well. Have you never heard of google? I’m at her house as we type – though she is asleep. I’m drinking gin and elderflower… alone.

  36. Cara
    March 21, 2012 at 11:43 pm

    What did I say that was a swear word?? Great, here comes the language barrier…

    • frugalfeeding
      March 21, 2012 at 11:47 pm

      ‘Pissing’ would be considered a little crude and perhaps rude here… though it doesn’t bother me in the slightest.

  37. latetedelegumes
    March 22, 2012 at 12:09 am

    Hello! I just wanted to let you know that I really enjoy your blog and I have nominated you for the Versatile Blogger Award & the Very Inspiring Blogger award: http://latetedelegumes.wordpress.com/2012/03/21/the-versatile-blogger-award-very-inspiring-blogger-award/

    :] Merci,

  38. Frances antoinette
    March 22, 2012 at 5:42 am

    Great recipe! Legumes are important for my protein intake being a vegetarian…so I definitely would like to try out your recipe variation on the garbanzo bean =)

    • frugalfeeding
      March 22, 2012 at 8:22 am

      Thanks! I find them very important too since I try not to eat very much meat at all.

  39. cityhippyfarmgirl
    March 25, 2012 at 8:53 am

    I was just scanning the kitchen for inspiration for tomorrow… thank goodness for blogs I say, this looks like tomorrow indeed.

  40. Richa@HobbyandMore
    March 27, 2012 at 4:38 am

    i like all those peppers and the sweet chili sauce! yummm

  41. Anastasia
    March 28, 2012 at 8:25 am

    Love the ingredients! Love the photos! Love the post! Pinteresting the recipe!

  42. Choc Chip Uru
    March 28, 2012 at 5:54 pm

    This looks seriously delicious! Definitely want to devour it 😀

    Choc Chip Uru
    Latest: Double Jaffa Nutella Fudge Cookie + More

  43. theplumpalate
    March 29, 2012 at 7:29 pm

    Okay, must MUST check out your homemade chili sauce. This looks delicious!

  44. Lysa
    April 2, 2012 at 1:54 am

    this looks so delicious!…what a great way to eat chickpeas

  45. karencooking
    April 5, 2012 at 12:29 am

    This sounds like my kind of dish – I will have to try it!