Chickpea fennel soup with basil pesto

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A meal in a soup! Filling and hearty, this tomato based chickpea fennel soup will leave you wanting more.


  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 small onion (finely chopped)
  • 1 tablespoon sage (finely chopped (optional))
  • 1 teaspoon thyme (finely chopped)
  • 1 tablespoon dried oregano
  • 1 tablespoon dried parsley
  • 14 ounce can chickpeas (rinsed and drained)
  • 14.5 ounce can whole plum tomatoes
  • 2 leaves bay
  • 1 teaspoon paprika
  • 1 bulb fennel (sliced into half moons)
  • 2 carrots (chopped bite size)
  • 2 stalks celery (chopped bite size)
  • 1 cup white wine
  • 4 cups vegetable broth

For the basil pesto:

  • 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 15 leaves basil
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 2 tablespoons freshly grated parmesan cheese


  1. In a large pot over high heat, add olive oil, onions, sage, thyme and cook for 3 minutes.
  2. Add fennel, chickpeas, carrots, celery, and cook for another 3 minutes.
  3. Add oregano, parsley, paprika and white wine, and cook for 2 minutes.
  4. Finally, add canned tomatoes, bay leaves, vegetable broth and bring to a boil. Lower the heat to low, cover and simmer for 30 minutes. Season with salt and pepper and serve with a dollop of basil pesto.

For the basil pesto:

  1. In a blender, add garlic, olive oil and basil. Blend until smooth. Put the mixture in a bowl, add parmesan and mix well.
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