Pasta e ceci (pasta with chickpeas) is a quick, cheap, filling, and highly adaptable pantry recipe we begin revisiting as soon as fresh tomato season is over. This Roman classic is quite thick and stewy as written, but can be thinned to a lighter, brothier consistency. We’ll often stir in handfuls of leafy herbs or hearty greens (kale, escarole, and so on) to turn this simple pasta into a main course.

While this is one of the few recipes in which canned chickpeas perform just as well as home-cooked ones, we like to make this pasta dish whenever we have a fresh batch of chickpeas, as their cooking liquid makes a great substitute for water or stock.

Photo: Lauren V. Allen

Recipe: One-Skillet Pasta with Chickpeas (Pasta e Ceci)

Yield: 4 servings



Pour the olive oil into a No.10 Field Skillet and set over low heat. Add the garlic and pepper flakes and cook, stirring occasionally, until the garlic is light brown, about 5 minutes.


Stir in the tomato paste, 1 teaspoon salt, and water. Increase the heat to high and bring the liquid to a boil, then add the pasta and chickpeas. Bring the liquid to a steady simmer and cook, stirring occasionally, until the pasta is al dente, 10 to 15 minutes. The pasta will absorb most of the liquid; if you want a brothier pasta, add more to reach your desired consistency. Add the butter and stir until melted. Season the sauce to taste with salt and pepper.


Divide the pasta among bowls and grate a generous amount of cheese over each serving. Drizzle with olive oil and serve.

Seasoning Rating: Safe

While the tomato paste-based sauce is slightly acidic, you’re not cooking it in your skillet long enough to do any damage to your seasoning. However, it’s best not to let the finished pasta sit for too long in the pan. Clean promptly.

Seasoning Ratings:

Best—These dishes are the best options for building resilient seasoning, and surefire choices for getting tricky pans back on track.

Better—The best way to keep your skillet in great shape is to cook frequently, and cast iron-friendly dishes like these are your bread and butter.

Safe—These recipes won't strip seasoning away from your pan, but won't really add any, either.

OK—Be sure to clean up promptly. Recipes with this rating might feature acidic ingredients which can affect seasoning if not washed soon after cooking.