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Lemony Chickpea Soup with Fennel & Sumac served over warm quinoa with flavorful Zhoug. A healthy vegan soup, full of flavor! #vegansoup #chickpeasoup #chickpeastew #veganrecipes #plantbased #cleaneating #eatclean #detoxsoup

Lemony Chickpea Soup with Fennel and Sumac

  • Author: Sylvia Fountaine
  • Prep Time: 15
  • Cook Time: 30
  • Total Time: 45 minutes
  • Yield: 4-6
  • Category: soup, vegan, stew
  • Method: stove top or instant pot
  • Cuisine: middle eastern


Lemony Chickpea Soup with Fennel & Sumac served over warm quinoa with flavorful Zhoug Sauce. A healthy vegan soup, full of flavor!


  • 1 cup dry chickpeas, soaked 8 hours (or sub 2 cans, drained)
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 white or yellow onion, thinly sliced
  • 1 extra large fennel bulb, thinly sliced
  • 4 garlic cloves, rough chopped
  • 5 cups water
  • 2 teaspoons kosher salt
  • 2 teaspoons cumin
  • 2 teaspoons coriander
  • 1 teaspoon sumac (optional)
  • 1 teaspoon dried dill (or use fresh as a garnish)
  • 24 tablespoons lemon juice
  •  optional: pinch of chili flakes, aleppo or Urfa Biber ( Turkish Chili Flakes)

Serve with crusty bread or serve over cooked grains (like quinoa). All optional.

Garnish with fresh dill or parsley, zhoug, olive oil, yogurt, avocado, or sour cream. I highly recommend making the zhoug,  you won’t be disappointed. 


If using dry beans, soak in cold water for 8 hours or overnight.

In a large dutch oven, or heavy bottomed pot, heat oil over medium high heat. Add fennel slices an cook for 5 minutes, stirring. Add onion, and continue cooking until tender, another 5 minutes. Add garlic, lower heat to medium and cook 2-3 more minutes until fragrant. Add water, chickpeas, salt, cumin, coriander, optional sumac and dill.  Cover, bring to a boil, then simmer on medium low for 15 minutes, or until chickpeas are tender.

Add lemon juice and taste. You want this pretty lemony.

Add optional  chili flakes, Aleppo chili flakes or try Urfa Biber chili flakes from Turkey.

Serve this its own, with crusty bread, or over a bowl of cooked grains ( like quinoa), and/or  topped with peppery greens like arugula or micro greens.

Drizzle with olive oil, zhoug, or yogurt.


You could make this in the instant pot, but make sure to soak the chickpeas first. My first attempt failed. I tried this with unsoaked dry chickpeas, 35 minutes on high pressure, but the fennel bulb turned out WAY overcooked. Soaked garbanzos took only 12 minutes in on high setting in the Instant Pot, and fennel kept its shape.

Keywords: chickpea soup, chickpea soup recipe, chickpea and fennel stew, chickpea and fennel soup, vegan soups, vegan chickpea soup, lemony chickpea soup,