Vegetarian Harira

Harira is a traditional Moroccan dish made with chickpeas.  This version has only vegetables, spices, and a little olive oil.  This recipe makes a lot, so if you prefer, you can cut it down and only make half of it.


Vegetarian Harira




  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 bunch fresh cilantro, chopped
  • 2 parsnips, peeled and diced
  • 2 turnips, peeled and diced
  • 3 carrots, peeled and sliced
  • 8 cups water
  • 1 cup dry lentils, picked over and rinsed
  • 15 ounces cooked or canned chickpeas, rinsed and drained
  • 28 ounces crushed tomatoes (canned or fresh)
  • 28 ounces tomato puree
  • 1/2 tablespoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 2 teaspoons ground turmeric
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 pinch cayenne pepper, optional



In a large stockpot, heat the oil over low heat and saute the garlic and cilantro for about 2 minutes.  Stir in the parsnips, turnips, and carrots and cook an additional 3 minutes.

Add the water and bring the mixture to a boil.  Stir in the lentils, cover, and simmer until the lentils are tender, about 25 minutes.

Stir in the chickpeas, both cans of tomatoes, season with salt, cumin, turmeric, pepper, and cayenne, if using.  Bring to a boil, cover, reduce heat, and simmer 15 to 20 minutes.

Serves 8.

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