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Playing Budget-Friendly Chickpea Fried Rice

This is what Danielle Kartes — author of the blog and cookbook Rustic Joyful Food — calls a "rent week dinner." Basically, it's a budget-friendly meal that's perfect for that time of the month when you don't have much money left because rent is due (or anytime you need something quick, cheap and tasty!).


  • 1 can chickpeas (15-ounce), drained
  • 2-3 teaspoons light oil, for frying
  • ½ onion, medium diced
  • 2 cups diced vegetables such as zucchini, carrots, mushrooms, bell pepper, celery
  • 3 cloves garlic, smashed
  • 2-3 tablespoons tamari or soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon rice vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon chili paste, like sambal oelek
  • Brown sugar
  • 2 cups rice, cooked
  • Salt and pepper, to taste
  • 1 egg
  • Fresh herbs, diced green onions, or sesame seeds, for sprinkling
  • Fried eggs, for serving (optional)
  • Chopped greens, toasted chopped peanuts or cashews, or sesame seeds, for serving


Serves: 4


In a large nonstick skillet, heat the oil over medium-high heat. Add the chickpeas, onion, and vegetables and saute for 2 minutes, then stir in the garlic, tamari or soy sauce, vinegar, chili paste and brown sugar. When the sauce begins to bubble, add the rice. Fry, folding the rice in on itself until hot, about 3 minutes. Make a well in the center of the rice and crack the egg into the well. Scramble, then fold in the rice. Serve with fried eggs, chopped greens, toasted chopped peanuts or cashews, or sesame seeds.