Spicy Coconut Cabbage Chickpeas Subzi

Coconut and Cabbage are a marriage made in heaven since the coconut’s sweetness compliments the cabbage really well.  Usually in South Indian cooking, coconut is used in pretty much every dish .  I wanted to make a quick-lunch for myself and something sumptuous enough that could satisfy as a good lunch and not make me feel sleepy. That’s right sleepy… how many times has it happened to you that you eat a good lunch and after that the clock starts moving really slow  and  things take twice as long to do Smile .  Happens to me every Friday and Friday’s are worst because right at 3 pm  on a Friday when I think… my work weekend is done, someone will wake up with an issue and considering that I work in Professional services, everything has to be done at that moment and then Friday is gone.

But recently I have changed my lifestyle a lot and give work and home a 50:50 attention so neither of them get ignored to the worst extent as I used to do it before and give work 100% attention. I have realized in the years to come, that we have to work smart within the 8 hours in the day and  if things are not completed , they  can be done the next day always and is not worth taking too much stress about it. However that does not mean that you wait until the last-minute to do something.

Alright enough about work and now onto how I ended up with cabbage being cooked every week at home Smile

I never used to like cabbage as a kid because I thought it used to  smell nasty and later in years to come, I realized that my mom’s cook used to over cook it always and it used to end up smelly weird.  Later on , as I went to study for my undergrad and stayed in a hostel, I started hating cabbage because of the way , cabbage was cooked in my hostel canteen and at one point , there was a stage where I would run if I saw a cabbage and  the few months that I stayed at home after my under graduation , my mom never cooked cabbage understanding my hatred for it.

Then I came to US as a student and one of my grad friends invited me to  lunch and served me some store brought coleslaw and to my amaze, I really loved it.  After that, I would regularly eat coleslaw  when I could find it.  I don’t know what it was , whether it was the overload of mayonnaise or sugar but it was truly tasty. So I just stuck to eating cabbage in coleslaw  and never ventured out of that comfort zone until I got married.

What an irony !!!!. Favorite Vegetable of DH is Cabbage.. Oh my God… Forgot to ask that question during the arrange marriage questionnaire round. Well still would have chosen DH regardless as my better half always. DH needs to eat cabbage once a week so I must have a cabbage dish.  So now that I have actively started cooking cabbage for hubby, I have accepted and starting eating it in all different ways , it can be prepared.

So for lunch , I wanted to make a dish that has some protein in it and I has some brown chickpeas on hand already boiled and ready to go , so decided to make a quick cabbage, brown chickpeas , coconut subzi to eat with roti’s. DH loved it and I liked it because of the brown chickpeas in it. It is a quick recipe and can be done within 15 minutes.

Cabbage Coconut Chickpeas StirFry
Serves 4
Delicious protein rich Cabbage, chickpea side dish.
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Prep Time
10 min
Cook Time
15 min
Total Time
25 min
Prep Time
10 min
Cook Time
15 min
Total Time
25 min
359 calories
57 g
0 g
9 g
16 g
3 g
202 g
369 g
14 g
0 g
4 g
Nutrition Facts
Serving Size
Amount Per Serving
Calories 359
Calories from Fat 75
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 9g
Saturated Fat 3g
Trans Fat 0g
Polyunsaturated Fat 2g
Monounsaturated Fat 2g
Cholesterol 0mg
Sodium 369mg
Total Carbohydrates 57g
Dietary Fiber 16g
Sugars 14g
Protein 16g
Vitamin A
Vitamin C
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your Daily Values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.
  1. 2 cups finely chopped cabbage.
  2. 1 1/2 cups boiled brown chickpeas
  3. 1/2 cup frozen grated coconut – thawed
  4. 3 green chilies
  5. 1 garlic clove – chopped finely
  6. 4-5 curry leaves
  7. 1/4 tsp. turmeric powder
  8. 1/2 tsp. salt
  9. 1/4 cup water for grinding the coconut paste
  10. 1/2 cup water.
  11. 1 tsp. oil
  1. Heat a pan on medium heat and put the 1 tsp. oil in it.
  2. Add the chopped garlic, curry leaves and sauté for a few seconds.
  3. Add the chopped cabbage, boiled brown chickpeas to the pan and sauté.
  4. Add the turmeric powder and sauté for a minute.
  5. Grind the coconut, green chilies, 1/4 cup water into a smooth paste.
  6. Add the coconut paste to the cabbage mixture and sauté it again for a minute.
  7. Add the remaining 1/2 cup of water and salt. Mix well and sauté it for 5 minutes.
  8. Cook until the water evaporates and all the cabbage/ chickpeas have the coconut paste on it. Usually takes around 5 minutes on high heat.
  9. Serve it hot with roti's.
  1. Replace with chickpeas with any other cooked beans if you have on hand.
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About Ashwini

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  • Priti

    I had a love-hate relationship with cabbage too so I could totally relate to your post. I usually make it with chana dal, I will give black chana a try. A neighbour used to add overnight-soaked whole peanuts and that used to taste nice too. I also add a tsp of freshly ground fennel powder at the very end, try it sometime, it really compliments cabbage.

    • Thanks! Fennel Powder that’s a really great idea. I have never eaten peanuts and cabbage together. Thanks for the tips, will try them next time i make cabbage.

  • Love the delicious flavors in there! Coconut, beans and cabbage make a hearty bite:)