Chickpea (Garbanzo Bean) Soup | Turkish Eats

This is one of the oldest soups of the Ottoman kitchen dating back to 15th century. We have first come across this recipe in Marianna Yerasimos's "Osmanli Mutfağı - Ottoman Kitchen". Probably because it is not easy to cook chickpeas in a short time (they need to be soaked in water overnight) the soup was abondened in modern times for easier, quicker soups such as the lentil soup, which has a similar consistency.


  • Two 15 oz. cans cooked chick peas (drained) or
  • 1 cup uncooked chick peas soaked in water overnight
  • 4 cups chicken broth
  • 4 tablespoons olive oil or butter
  • 4 tablespoons flour
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 - 1 teaspoon salt


  1. If you are using cooked chick peas skip to step 3
  2. We recommend cooking the chickpeas in a pressure cooker but if you do not have one, you can use a heavy pot suitable for low-heat, long-time cooking. We will provide the directions for both.
    • Rinse the chickpeas in plenty of running water and put them in the pressure cooker, add sufficient water to cover them and bring the water to a boil without closing the lid of the pressure cooker. Boil the chickpeas for about five minutes, then drain and discard the water. The purpose of this initial cooking is to reduce the stomach gas produced by the chickpeas.
    • Put the chickpeas back in the pressure cooker, add just enough water to cover them. Close the lid and turn on the heat. Cook for 35 minutes after the pressure cooker reaches the optimum pressure. At the end of the cooking period, turn off the heat and let the pressure cooker cool down to the room temperature. Note that we did not add any salt during this step - this is to avoid hardening of the proteins in the chickpeas.
    • If you prefer to cook the chickpeas in a regular pot, follow the same procedure except that you have to let the chickpeas simmer for 1.5 - 2 hours or until they are tender.
    • We strongly recommend removing the skins of the chickpeas one by one if you have the patience. We believe this is a must to achieve the best consistency although we have to admit that it is a tedious task, hence, it is never done in restaurants. Do not discard the water the chickpeas were cooked in - you may wish to add some of this chickpea juice to your humus to reach the desired consistency.
  3. Remove the skins of the chickpeas if you have the patience.
  4. Heat the olive oil or butter in a non-stick soup pan. 
  5. Add the flour and cook over medium heat for a few minutes. 
  6. Gradually add the chicken broth as you keep stirring the mixture. Be patient during this step not to end up with clumps of flour. 
  7. Once all the broth is mixed in, add the chickpeas, cumin, cinnamon and salt. 
  8. Simmer at low heat for 10-15 minutes.
  9. Pour the mixture into a food processor and turn at low speed for a minute or less.

© Mehmet Ozturk 2017