Lablabi (Tunisian Chickpea Soup)

Lablabi (Leb-LEB-ee) is a chickpea soup originating on the North African side of the Mediterranean in Tunisia. The broth is souped up with garlic, cilantro, and paprika. Swirl in harissa if you want some heat. It's commonly topped with a poached egg and served with stale bread to sop up every last bit of the fragrant broth.

Lablabi (Tunisian Chickpea Soup) in white bowl with poached egg and cilantro
Photo: Jason Donnelly
Cook Time:
1 hr 15 mins
Hands On Time:
30 mins
Total Time:
1 hr 45 mins
9 cups soup


  • 2 ¼ cup dried chickpeas

  • 2 tablespoon olive oil

  • 2 cup finely chopped onions

  • ¼ cup chopped fresh cilantro

  • 3 cloves garlic, minced

  • 1 ½ teaspoon salt

  • 1 ½ teaspoon ground cumin

  • 1 teaspoon paprika

  • 1 15 ounce can crushed tomatoes

  • 2 tablespoon lemon juice

  • Black pepper

  • 4 poached eggs (optional)

  • Harissa paste (optional)

  • 2 whole wheat pita flatbreads, warmed (optional)


  1. Rinse chickpeas; drain. In a 5- to 6-qt. Dutch oven combine chickpeas and 8 cups water. Cover and let stand in a cool place overnight.

  2. Drain and rinse chickpeas. Return chickpeas to Dutch oven and add enough fresh water to cover chickpeas by 3 inches. Bring to boiling; reduce heat. Simmer, covered, 50 minutes or until tender. Drain chickpeas, reserving cooking liquid.

  3. In Dutch oven heat oil over medium. Add onions; cook 5 minutes or until nearly tender, stirring occasionally. Add cilantro, garlic, salt, cumin, and paprika; cook and stir 2 minutes more. Stir in tomatoes. Bring to boiling; reduce heat. Simmer 5 minutes. Stir in chickpeas and 4 cups of the cooking liquid. Bring to boiling; reduce heat. Simmer, covered, 20 minutes.

  4. Transfer 2 cups of the chickpea mixture to a blender; cool slightly. Cover and blend until nearly smooth. Stir blended mixture into remaining mixture in Dutch oven. Add additional cooking water if needed to reach desired consistency. Stir in lemon juice and season to taste with pepper and additional salt. If desired, top servings with poached eggs and serve with harissa paste and flatbreads.

Nutrition Facts (per serving)

374 Calories
9g Fat
59g Carbs
17g Protein
Nutrition Facts
Servings Per Recipe 6
Calories 374
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 9g 12%
Saturated Fat 1g 5%
Sodium 735mg 32%
Total Carbohydrate 59g 21%
Total Sugars 14g
Protein 17g
Vitamin C 16.3mg 82%
Calcium 89mg 7%
Iron 4.8mg 27%
Potassium 857mg 18%
Folate, total 439mcg
Vitamin B-6 0.6mg

*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.

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