Bacon & Tomato Chickpea Stew with Pesto (Instant Pot)

Chickpea stew with bacon and pesto

Summer has arrived! We’ve been loving 80 degree sunny days, but I haven’t been loving doing anything related to turning on the oven or stove.

This recipe is sooo easy and besides soaking the chickpeas overnight, you’re under 30 minutes away from dinner (and most of that is hands off).

Feel free to omit the bacon and use vegetable stock to go veg!

Start by soaking your chickpeas.

(If you’re using canned chickpeas, you won’t need the kosher salt and water listed at the beginning of the ingredient list. You can skip this step.)

In a large bowl, add in your dried chickpeas and cover with water. Add the tablespoon of kosher salt and let soak for at least 8 hours or up to 24 hours.

When you’re ready, drain the chickpeas and rinse them with cold water.

In your Instant Pot, set it to Sauté. If using bacon, add it now and sauté until crispy. Remove the bacon with a slotted spoon and set aside. Add your chopped onion along with the dried basil, oregano and red pepper flakes, and sauté in the bacon fat (or 2 tablespoons olive oil) for about 5 minutes.

To the sautéed onions, add: canned/soaked chickpeas, carrots, celery, tomatoes, and stock.

Place the lid onto the Instant Pot and set to Manual and 10 minutes. Make sure the lid is set to Sealing. Once completed, let natural release for 10 minutes and then release any extra pressure before removing the lid.

Scoop your stew into bowls.

To serve:

I like to loosen the store-bought pesto (and jazz it up a bit), by adding some fresh lemon zest and juice and a splash of hot water to help thin it a bit. Drizzle the pesto onto the stew.

Finish it off with your reserved bacon, grated Parmesan, and some toasted panko if you’re feeling fancy!

Chickpea stew with bacon and pesto (instant pot)


Adapted from: Epicurious

Makes: 4-6 entree servings

Prep: 15 minutes, Cook: 20 minutes, Total: 35 minutes (plus overnight soak for dried chickpeas)

  • 1 tablespoon kosher salt
  • 1 quart water
  • 12 ounces dried chickpeas (or 3 cans of cooked chickpeas, drained)
  • 6-8 slices bacon, chopped (optional, sub 2 tablespoons olive oil if you’re skipping)
  • 1 cup onion (about 1 medium onion), chopped
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon dried basil
  • 1/4 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • 1 cup carrots (about 2 medium carrots) peeled and chopped
  • 1/2 cup celery (about 2 stalks), chopped
  • 14 oz diced tomatoes, undrained
  • 4 cups chicken or vegetable stock
  • For topping: Store-bought pesto, lemon zest and juice, grated Parmesan, toasted panko breadcrumbs or croutons

Start by soaking your chickpeas.

(If you’re using canned chickpeas, you won’t need the kosher salt and water listed at the beginning of the ingredient list. You can skip this step.)

In a large bowl, add in your dried chickpeas and cover with water. Add the tablespoon of kosher salt and let soak for at least 8 hours or up to 24 hours.

When you’re ready, drain the chickpeas and rinse them with cold water.

In your Instant Pot, set it to Sauté. If using bacon, add it now and sauté until crispy. Remove the bacon with a slotted spoon and set aside. Add your chopped onion along with the dried basil, oregano and red pepper flakes, and sauté in the bacon fat (or 2 tablespoons olive oil) for about 5 minutes.

To the sautéed onions, add: canned/soaked chickpeas, carrots, celery, tomatoes, and stock.

Place the lid onto the Instant Pot and set to Manual and 10 minutes. Make sure the lid is set to Sealing. Once completed, let natural release for 10 minutes and then release any extra pressure before removing the lid.

Scoop your stew into bowls.

To serve:

I like to loosen the store-bought pesto (and jazz it up a bit), by adding some fresh lemon zest and juice and a splash of hot water to help thin it a bit. Drizzle the pesto onto the stew.

Finish it off with your reserved bacon, grated Parmesan, and some toasted panko if you’re feeling fancy!


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