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Pumpkin Kibbeh

Vegan Pumpkin kibbeh with a chickpea walnut filling

Course Main Course
Cuisine Lebanese
Keyword Healthy, vegan, Vegetarian
Prep Time 1 hour
Cook Time 40 minutes
Servings 8
Author Zaatar and Zaytoun


For the pumpkin filling

  • 4 onions sliced into strips
  • 1/4 cup regular olive oil
  • 250 g cooked chickpeas drained
  • 1 tsp dried coriander
  • 1/2 tsp turmeric
  • 1/2 tsp black pepper
  • 1 tsp kamouneh spice blend
  • 1 tsp 7 spice
  • 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 2 tbsp sumac
  • 3 tbsp pomegranate molasses
  • 100 g walnuts coarsely crushed
  • 1/2 cup of kamouneh mix see full recipe on blog
  • 1/2 tbsp salt approx

For the pumpkin casing

  • 1.5 kg of pumpkin peeled into chunks
  • 2.5 cups of fine bulgur wheat
  • 1/2 cup chopped cilantro fresh coriander
  • 2 tbsp plain all purpose flour
  • 1 cup kamouneh mix
  • 1 tbsp salt approx
  • Small bowl of vegetable oil


To make the filling

  1. Cut the onion in half, then slice into thin strips. In a wide deep pan, add 1/4 cup of regular olive oil and sauté until golden for at least 20 minutes, stirring every so often to avoid sticking to the bottom of the pan
  2. Add the drained cooked chickpeas, dried coriander, turmeric, black pepper, 7 spice, and 1/2 tbsp of salt and sauté for another 10 minutes or so on low heat
  3. Add the walnuts, sumac, pomegranate molasses and 1/2 cup of kamouneh mix. Sauté for another few minutes then taste and adjust the seasoning if necessary before turning off the heat. Cover and set aside

To make the pumpkin casing

  1. Peel the pumpkin and chop roughly into 2 inch chunks. Transfer to a large pot and cover with water. Bring to the boil, then reduce the heat to medium and boil for around 45 minutes
  2. Drain the pumpkin in a colander and transfer to a large bowl with the bulgur wheat, along with a cup of the kamouneh mix, chopped cilantro (fresh coriander) and just under a tablespoon of salt
  3. Mash all the ingredients together using a potato masher until there are no large pumpkin lumps. Taste a bit and adjust the seasoning if necessary

To assemble the pumpkin kibbeh

  1. Add some vegetable oil to a small bowl (for dipping your hands into to avoid sticking) and position on the table. Preheat the oven to 200C (390F)
  2. Brush the bottom of a wide baking dish with some vegetable oil, then take a good handful of pumpkin casing and using your hands flatten into approximately 1/2 cm layer and add to the bottom of the dish
  3. When you finish the first layer of pumpkin casing, use your hands to compress it down firmly but gently and smooth it out
  4. Then add a layer of filling and smooth out using a spoon as much as possible
  5. Repeat the layer of pumpkin casing, dipping your hand occasionally into the oil to avoid sticking and smooth out the top layer
  6. Using a sharp knife cut into squares. Then drizzle a thin film of vegetable oil on top and tilt to make sure all is coated
  7. Bake for around 40 minutes until golden, turning if you have to 3/4 of the way to get an even bake.
  8. Serve with a green salad or yoghurt and cucumber .

Recipe Notes

For the kamouneh mix and kamouneh spice blend, see the full recipe on the Zaatar and Zaytoun blog