This nourishing, one-pot meal in a bowl is just the thing to fuel you during these cold days when your to-do list is longer than the number of hours of sunlight.
The stew is composed of a fragrant, spice-infused tomato sauce, tender bites of chicken thigh, meaty chickpeas and ribbons of just-wilted spinach. Its spices — earthy cumin, citrusy coriander, sweet-savory cinnamon and a hint of heat from crushed red pepper — will warm you on a chilly day.
And although it tastes like a complex, long-cooked dish, it is quite simple to make and ready in about a half-hour. Bonus: This stew, like many others, tastes even better the next day or two. So whip up a pot, doubling the recipe as needed, for a nourishing, belly-warming meal at your fingertips through much of the week.
Aromatic chicken and chickpea stew
Make ahead: The stew tastes even better with a day or two’s refrigeration.
1 pound boneless, skinless chicken thighs cut into 1-inch pieces (excess fat trimmed)
¾ teaspoon kosher salt
½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1 medium onion, diced (about 1 cup)
3 cloves garlic, minced
½ teaspoon ground cumin
½ teaspoon ground coriander
¼ teaspoon ground cinnamon
Pinch crushed red pepper flakes, or more as needed
1 can (14.5 ounces) no-salt-added diced tomatoes, with their juices
1 can (8 ounces) no-salt-added tomato sauce
1 can (15 ounces) low-sodium chickpeas, drained and rinsed
½ cup water
3 packed cups fresh baby spinach, coarsely chopped
Season the chicken all over with ¼ teaspoon each of the salt and pepper.
Heat 2 tablespoons of the oil in a large, wide-bottomed pot over medium-high heat. Once the oil shimmers, add the chicken and cook for about 4 minutes total, stirring once or twice until it has browned, then transfer it to a plate.
Add the remaining tablespoon of oil to the pot and reduce the heat to medium. Add the onion and cook for 5 minutes, stirring, until it has softened. Add the garlic and cook for 30 seconds, then stir in the cumin, coriander, cinnamon, crushed red pepper flakes and the remaining ½ teaspoon of salt and ¼ teaspoon of pepper.
Add the diced tomatoes with their juices, the tomato sauce, chickpeas and water. Bring to a boil, then reduce the heat to medium-low, cover and cook for 10 minutes.
Return the chicken with any accumulated juices to the pot; cover and cook for 8 to 10 minutes, until the chicken is tender and cooked through. Stir in the spinach and cook until it is wilted, 1 minute more. Taste, and add more crushed red pepper flakes, as needed.
Makes 4 servings (makes 4 cups). Nutrition per serving: 390 calories, 30 grams protein, 29 grams carbohydrates, 18 grams fat, 3 grams saturated fat, 105 milligrams cholesterol, 530 milligrams sodium, 9 grams dietary fiber, 10 grams sugar.
Ellie Krieger is a registered dietitian, nutritionist and author.