Vegan Slow Cooker Stew With Chickpeas and Spinach
On chilly days — or any day, really — there’s nothing quite like tucking into a comforting bowl of this Vegan Slow Cooker Stew.
Even better, it takes about 15 minutes to prep and it’s ready by the time you get home from work.
This simple recipe is packed with colorful veggies, like bell peppers, tomatoes, cauliflower, and spinach in a savory coconut curry broth.
In fact, each serving is so hearty and has so much flavor, you might not notice that this recipe is completely vegan.
Simmering the vegetable stew in a slow cooker with garlic, ginger, and spices allows the flavors to meld together for hours.
The result: a fragrant, flavorful broth that takes very little work to achieve.
Simply sauté the onions, pepper, and garlic; then toss everything into a slow cooker and let it do its thing.
The spices are one of the most important components of this Vegan Slow Cooker Stew recipe — you’ll need curry powder, fresh ginger, salt and pepper, and cayenne.
Coconut milk gives a creamy texture and balances out the mild heat from the cayenne powder. And because this soup is meat-free, chickpeas boost the protein in this healthy plant-based dish.
We recommend stirring the spinach in right before serving – it literally takes seconds to wilt.
If you don’t have a slow cooker at home, a big soup pot will work, too. Just cook over very low heat, reduce the cooking time, and watch over your stew as it bubbles away.
Pro tip: In a rush? Make this recipe in an Instant Pot — check out the instructions in the Recipe Notes!
Slow Cooker Vegetable Stew
This vegan Slow Cooker Vegetable Stew is packed with chickpeas, cauliflower, spinach, and other yummy veggies.
- 1 tsp. olive oil
- 1 medium onion, chopped
- 1 medium green bell pepper, chopped
- 1 medium red bell pepper, chopped
- 2 cloves garlic, coarsely chopped
- 2 cups low-sodium organic vegetable broth
- 1 (14.5-oz.) can diced tomatoes, no added salt
- 2 15-oz. cans chickpeas (garbanzo beans), drained, rinsed
- 1 Tbsp. curry powder
- 1 Tbsp. pure maple syrup
- 1 Tbsp. fresh ginger, finely chopped
- ½ tsp. sea salt (or Himalayan salt)
- ½ tsp. ground black pepper
- 1 dash ground cayenne pepper (optional)
- 1 medium head cauliflower, cut into florets
- 1 (10-oz.) bag raw baby spinach
- 1 cup lite coconut milk
Heat oil in medium nonstick skillet over high heat.
Add onion and bell peppers; cook, stirring frequently, for 4 to 5 minutes, or until onion is translucent.
Add garlic; cook, stirring frequently, for 1 minute.
Place onion mixture in 3-quart slow cooker.
Add broth, tomatoes (with juice), chickpeas, curry powder, maple syrup, ginger, salt, black pepper, and cayenne pepper. Mix well; cover. Cook on high for 3 hours.
Add cauliflower. Mix well; cover. Cook on high for 1 hour.
Add spinach and coconut milk. Mix well; cover. Cook on high for 10 minutes, or until spinach wilts.
To make this recipe in an Instant Pot (programmable pressure cooker), follow these instructions:
- Turn 6-quart Instant Pot to high sauté setting.
- Heat oil to hot.
- Add onion and bell peppers; cook, stirring frequently, for 4 to 5 minutes, or until onion is translucent.
- Add garlic; cook, stirring frequently, for 1 minute.
- Add broth, tomatoes, chickpeas, curry powder, maple syrup, ginger, salt, black pepper, cayenne pepper (if desired), and cauliflower. Follow manufacturer’s guidelines for locking lid and preparing to cook. Set to pressure cook on high for 12 minutes.
- Follow manufacturer’s guide for natural release, and wait until cycle is complete. Carefully unlock and remove lid, taking care that there is no remaining steam.
- Add spinach and coconut milk; mix well. Cover and wait for spinach to wilt, approximately 5 minutes.
- Serve immediately.
The Nutrition Facts box below provides estimated nutritional information for this recipe.
*Vegan Container Equivalents
2B Mindset Plate It!
Divide the recipe into 3 servings (instead of 6) to make a great vegan dinner. For a non-vegan lunch, add a protein and divide into 6 servings.
Photographs by Anguel Dimov and Brianne B of Natural Girl Modern World