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Mushroom and Chickpea Makhlama

A traditional Iraqi breakfast is made with flavorful stewed meat and eggs, but this vegetarian makhlama is a delicious mushroom and chickpea makhlama.
3.67 from 3 votes
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Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 40 minutes
Total Time: 50 minutes
Servings: 4
Calories: 294kcal


  • Wide pot


  • 2 tablespoons avocado oil
  • 1 yellow onion peeled and diced
  • 1 pound mixed mushrooms such as oyster, maitake, shiitake, or baby bella; small-diced
  • 1 tablespoon curry powder or Baharat, if you can find it
  • 2 teaspoons cumin powder
  • ½ teaspoon cayenne powder more or less to taste
  • ½ teaspoon crushed red pepper more or less to taste
  • 15- ounce can chickpeas drained and rinsed
  • 3 ripe tomatoes chopped
  • ½ cup loosely packed fresh parsley chopped (a pinch reserved for garnish)
  • 1 cup water or stock
  • Salt and pepper to taste

For serving:

  • 4 eggs
  • Toasted bread
  • A pinch of sumac
  • Aleppo pepper


Cook the onion:

  • Heat the avocado oil in a wide pot over medium heat. Add the onion and cook, stirring occasionally, for 6-7 minutes until it softens.

Cook the mushrooms:

  • Add the mushrooms, in two batches, and cook for 10 minutes until they begin to soften and brown. Season with salt and pepper.

Bloom the spices:

  • Add the curry powder, cumin, cayenne powder, and crushed red pepper to the mushrooms and stir to coat the vegetables in the spices. Cook for 45 seconds until fragrant.

Add the chickpeas:

  • Add the chickpeas, tomatoes, and all but a pinch or two of the parsley and stir to combine. Taste and season lightly with salt and pepper once more.

Simmer the makhlama:

  • Add 1 cup of water or stock and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer over very low heat, uncovered, for 30 minutes. If the liquid evaporates too quickly, add more water in 1/4 cup increments as needed. Once the makhlama is very thick, turn off the heat.

Prepare the eggs:

  • During the last 10 minutes of the makhlama simmer, prepare the eggs how you like. Try this recipe with poached or sunny side up. You may also make four wells in the makhlama and crack the eggs into them and cover and cook for 5 minutes.
  • If poaching, bring a small pot of water to a boil. Add distilled vinegar along with salt. Reduce heat to a simmer that is just barely bubbling. Strain off excess whites through a sieve and use the back of a wooden spoon to create a whirlpool. Drop the egg into the whirlpool and continue on with three more eggs. Cook for 3-5 minutes until the whites are set but the yolks are still soft. Carefully remove with a slotted spoon and set aside.

To serve:

  • Divide the makhlama between bowls and place an egg on top. Garnish with more parsley and a pinch of sumac and Aleppo red pepper flakes. Enjoy!


Calories: 294kcal | Carbohydrates: 30g | Protein: 15g | Fat: 14g | Sodium: 381mg | Fiber: 10g | Sugar: 7g | Vitamin C: 15mg
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