Warmly spiced Moroccan chickpea and butternut squash soup for those nights when you need something to cozy up to.
moroccan chickpea and butternut squash soup

I am living in a war zone.

You might have thought the days of trench warfare ended with World War I, but au contraire, my friends. The.Boy and I have been waging an all-out black ops mission.

From our couch.


It seems that the mouse problem that we thought we were done with when we found and filled the hole three weeks ago is back and in full force.

I mean, really full force.

We have killed three mice in 24 hours. At least one more is still at large.

If the wedding hadn’t already driven me to day drinking, then this would have sealed the deal.

Saturday night saw us stranded on the living room couch, watching one of the hopefully-now-dead mice running back and forth across the room, casually sniffing at the trap we laid out for him, but not actually entering it. It would have been hysterical had it not been so terrifying.

Our current working hypothesis is that they are coming from behind the radiator. We sealed off the bottom with foam sealant and then I saw one trying to jump through one of the vents. If you think I’m going into that room unattended ever again, then you are probably delusional.

Our superintendent is going to get a super fun phone call from us tomorrow. I know you wish you were him.


It’s a good thing I can emotionally eat like a pro. Enter this soup, which is all sorts of warm Moroccan spice comfort with a whole lot of healthy packed into every bite. Sweet butternut, hearty chickpea soup for the soul.

Bonus points for making pounds and pounds of it last week when I still felt comfortable standing in my kitchen without a security detail. Leftovers FTW!

Moroccan Chickpea and Butternut Squash Soup
Warmly spiced Moroccan chickpea and butternut squash soup for those nights when you need something to cozy up to.
Yield: 5-6 servings
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 3 cups cooked chickpeas
  • 1 tsp ground cumin
  • ½ tsp cinnamon
  • ¼ tsp cayenne pepper
  • 3 cups peeled, cubed butternut squash
  • 2 tbsp tomato paste
  • 4 cups vegetable broth
  • ⅓ cup Israeli couscous
  • ¾ tsp kosher salt
  • 1 zucchini, quartered lengthwise and then sliced
  1. Heat the oil in a large pot over medium heat. Add the onion to the pot and cook until translucent, about 4-5 minutes. Stir in the chickpeas, cumin, cinnamon, and cayenne pepper. Cook for 30 seconds, or until fragrant, stirring constantly.
  2. To the pot, add the butternut squash, tomato paste, and vegetable broth. Bring to a boil. Lower the heat to a simmer and cook for 8 minutes. Stir in the couscous, salt, and zucchini. Cook for 5 minutes, or until squash is tender. Remove the pan from the heat and season to taste with salt and black pepper. Serve warm.
Adapted from Cooking Light
Nutrition Information
Serving size: 1 bowl

For more cozy soups, check out these:

curried red lentil kale and sweet potato soup

Curried Red Lentil, Kale and Sweet Potato Soup

carrot soup with tangled collard greens and dukkah from Eats Well With Others

Carrot Soup with Tangled Collard Greens and Dukkah

fire-roasted tomato orange soup

Fire-Roasted Tomato Orange Soup

From Around the Web:

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Chunky Root Vegetable Soup with Gruyere and Herb Croutons from The Clever Carrot

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61 Responses to Moroccan Chickpea and Butternut Squash Soup

  1. Sune Moolman says:

    I’m a sucker for these Moroccan flavours. It looks delicious – I love the brightness of it.

  2. I love Moroccan soups with chickpeas! This one with all the veggies (especially the butternut) looks super yummy.

  3. UGH to the mouse problem!! So sorry. Hope it’s resolved soon.
    In the meantime, glad you can save your sanity with awesome recipes like this!!

  4. I’ve never had to emotionally eat over a mouse before (only stupid things like boys, etc.) but this soups seems like the perfect pick me up!

  5. Brian says:

    Yikes! That is not fun at all! We only had a couple of mice in our old place, but, then, Boston apartments are quite different from NYC buildings. 🙂 Sorry you have to deal with that along with all the wedding planning.

    But yay for this soup! Looks hearty and totally comforting.

  6. This looks like just the kind of healthy stew I need this week!

  7. Crushing on this soup in a big way. I love how simple it is!!

  8. Ugh..I’m having a mouse attack on my pantry currently too. It’s eating EVERYTHING. Sunflower seeds included.

    This soup looks awesome though!

  9. Joanne, oh my gawd. . you guys have killed 3 mice in the last 24 hrs. . ok, I’m sorry dude. Normally, this would gross me out but now that I live in Wisconsin, with an open field behind our house and heading into a freaking cold winter, I feel your pain yo. I’ve only seen ONE mouse in our garage in the year that we’ve lived here but I totally get it. It’s freaking cold outside and they are just trying to get warm. ok by me, just don’t come into my house! Gorgeous gorgeous soup and beautifully shot! love the Moroccan spice with the butternut squash and chickpeas. Delicious!!

  10. I am so sorry to hear about your mouse woes. That happened to me once and I was paranoid. Nothing was safe! The mice would eat through my plastic containers! They apparently loved the mustard seeds!!! It was not long after that I switched to mason jars although not for my spices. I hope you get rid of them soon enough!

  11. Von says:

    We’ve only ever had mice in our house once or twice in a period of around 10 years but that was mentally scarring enough……3 mice in 24 hours is crazy! :O Hope you can get rid of them quickly!! The soup looks amazing though 😉

  12. SallyBR says:

    Three mice in 24 hours is reason to emigrate. I could advice Brazil, but there are huge cockroaches in there, which is the main reason I left.

    good luck… you poor thing

  13. Sues says:

    It was trying to jump through the vents?? omg I would die and I have so much sympathy for you!! I hope curling up with this soup is helping?? It looks delicious!!

  14. How comforting does this look? I am loving all the Moroccan flavours as well. I would love to go to Morocco one day, it looks incredible.

  15. Oh no! i’m sorry for hear the mice debacle is continuing! That’s the worst!!!

  16. Heather says:

    I hope you get the mouse problem taken care of – they can be frustrating and persistent. In the first place I lived when I moved out, I could hear mice in the wall right behind my bed. Thankfully, though, my cat eventually got it. 😉

  17. NO! That is horrifying I hope that gets taken care of! My neighbour’s cat who thinks she lives in my house (yes) dealt with ours when we had a problem (…caused by my neighbour’s garbage actually). I would be loading up on tons of this gorgeous soup too for mental and emotional and tastebud comfort. Good luck!!

  18. Mmmmmm….this soup looks absolutely delicious! It’s still freaking freezing here so anything to warm up the tookus is currently on rotation!

  19. Julia says:

    You make warring on mice sound like a blast! Can I day drink with you on your couch while we slingshot hard objects at your furry frenemies?! And stop only to slurp down heaping bowls of this tasty soup?! Let’s do!

  20. Soup looks amazing! I know it sounds silly, but when I had my mouse problem I got one of those things you plug into the wall that emits a sound that keeps the mice away. I never heard it and it didn’t bother my dog – highly recommend!

  21. This looks like the perfect bowl of comfort food for such a trying time.

  22. Uhhh, three mice in one day?! That would freak me out. I wouldn’t want to walk around at all for fear of stepping on a little critter. My thoughts go out to you two in the trenches.
    Meanwhile, this soup looks like a great way to distract you from all those Stuart Littles.

  23. Oh noooooo! A similar problem happened to my man-friend when we were living in DC. The mice were coming out of the radiator in their apartment, too, but I think they later discovered it was also coming from behind the refrigerator. I think they’re attracted to all warm spots around the house. Fingers crossed that your problems are resolved soon!!

  24. Soup looks warm and wonderful – love all of those spices. And “the mouse being ‘at large'” lol!

  25. Pam says:

    No fun to the mice problem! Cold weather brings them inside – ugh! The soup looks comforting and full of flavor!

  26. Oh – mice – we used to have a problem at our previous house! But this soup looks fab.

  27. Right now I’m in full soup mode.. it’s all I want! Can’t wait to try this! Pretty pictures!

  28. I heard mice are attracted by butternut squash…

    All kidding aside, sorry for your mouse problem! This soup looks delicious, and the addition of pearl couscous sounds amazing.

  29. What a fantastic idea combining the 2!! Chickpeas is an excellent way to add protein to make this a filling stoup- that is a stew and soup mash-up!

  30. Hotly Spiced says:

    That’s a very comforting bowl of soup and I’m glad there’s plenty for leftovers. Oh dear. What a situ. They must be breeding. Or inviting their friends and relatives over. I so wish I could listen in on that conversation with your super. Do record it for us. xx

  31. Trisha says:

    I would totally be freaking out over the mice too. I hope they get it fixed soon! In the meantime, I’d be chowing down on this yummy and healthy soup too! Why do crazy things always happen as the wedding day approaches?

  32. I can also attest to emotional eating like a pro! ; ) Yikes with the mice. I grew up in a farmhouse, there was definitely a time or two, I spotted a mouse running across the room out of the corner of my eye, eek! This soup looks amazing, so healthy and hearty at the same time! : )

  33. Sounds a little nutty, so good thing you have awesome soups like these to warm you up!

  34. dumb mice! this soup looks wonderful. so many great flavors in there!

  35. Kate says:

    So poor Tucker mouse doesn’t come home one night. His little family is so worried. They keep sending out family to go find him. And the mice never come back. It’s like an awful mouse horror movie for them.

  36. Hi Joanne ! Soup sounds delicious.

    Here is a good tip that will work to get rid of your mice problem. Place a teaspoon of peanut butter into the back of each mouse trap. In the morning you see that it worked !
    Xo Anna

  37. We have an on-going ant problem. Trade you?

  38. cheri says:

    Hi Joanne, I feel for you, hope this mouse adventure ends soon, lovely soup!

  39. I want to cozy up with a bowl of this soup and forget about all troubles. 😉

  40. I just read an article which said there are 2 million rats in New York. Don’t think I will be visiting anytime soon. Love the soup recipe 🙂

  41. Jessie says:

    Oh man, sorry about the mice, Joanne 🙁 It seems to be something about the cold that makes mice move en masse into warm homes that smell of delicious spices – like this amazing Moroccan soup! The colors and flavors remind me so much of the dishes I had in Morocco this past summer – I miss those flavors. This soup is perfect for this time of year!

  42. Mice in your apartment??? Gosh…that’s just awful.
    The soup looks comforting and warming!

  43. OMG the mouse situation sounds so stressful Joanne! I really hope it gets resolved ASAP so you can focus on your wedding details!

  44. I relate. We have a rat. I just about died at discovering this. Rats (and mice) are just not a thing in Australian neighborhoods, but it seems that living in London brings this discrete challenge. I have made it my husband’s challenge, but sadly am still affected by the extreme anxiety of knowing a rat might decide to pop out somewhere near me unexpectedly. All in all, I think I’ll join you with this soup!

  45. Johanna GGG says:

    you definitely need a good comfort soup – I’ve had mice in a few places and never pleasant (and what use is a cat who just turns up her nose at them) but never as aggressive as ones at my friends’ place who chewed through a plastic jar to nibble the contents. And there is no pleasant way to get rid of them though I did like having a housemate who liberated them in a nearby park – good luck with the little vermin!

  46. Tash says:

    Joanne I have been dying at all of your recent delicious recipes, especially those on IG! I can’t even keep up. They all look so mouth watering too. I love the idea of a ‘Moroccan squash’ soup too – hearty isn’t even the word! <3

  47. Beth says:

    Oh, Joanne, I hate mice. Hate them. It’s not fair that you’re having to deal with this!!

  48. CakeSpy says:

    This is IT. The soup, that is. The mice though…oof! I am sorry to hear about that. I have had to deal with mice in the past and it’s horrifying to kill them.

  49. Zainab says:

    NOOOOO! It’s not back. Boooo!

  50. Susan says:

    I hate mices to pieces! With the cold weather, this is the time they try to get warm and cozy too. Hope you get some help with them!

    That soup could take my mind off of them. It looks delicious, Joanne!

  51. Oh no! Mice? T’is the season. I should send over my cat- he’ll get that place in order in no time. As for your soup- It looks wonderful and effortless. Thanks for including my Root Vegetable soup in your round-up! So sweet. I hope the rest of your week turns out to be a good one, Joanne. Enjoy the wine! 🙂

  52. Reeni says:

    That is a LOT of mice! I hope you caught the last rascal! I’d have the entire pot of soup in my lap and the ladle would be my spoon. This is the best kind of comfort food!

  53. Lynn says:

    That soup looks marvelous! Mice – uggghhhh.

  54. grace says:

    i’m definitely a fan of moroccan food, probably mostly because they use cinnamon in just about everything. this sounds great!

  55. Kelly says:

    Yikes, 3 mice in 24 hours? That is insane. I’m hoping they are gone for good from you update! In the meantime this comforting soup is hopefully keeping you warm! It looks wonderfully hearty and I love the Moroccan flavors!

  56. […] her Moroccan chickpea and butternut squash soup is probably one of the tastiest bowls of fall soup I’ve laid eyes […]

  57. Laura says:

    Made this last night and it was great! I left out the cinnamon because I just can’t do cinnamon in savory foods for some reason and subbed a sweet potato for the squash because mine had gone bad, but it turned out great! Thanks for the recipe!

  58. Heidi says:

    How is Israeli couscous different from other couscous? Is it important?

  59. Pat says:

    I know I’m late responding to this but hopefully you’ll see it. I have mice too, I haven’t seen them but I sure have seen/smelled evidence of them. YucK. So, I read somewhere on line that even if you kill a few more move in. Plus I live alone and cannot fathom dealing with dead mice bodies, also the cats are just not interested apparently. I also read on line that peppermint repels them so I bought peppermint oil, sprinkled it on strategically placed cotton balls. I don’t know if it got rid of them, and you do have to keep refreshing the cotton balls but I absolutely haven’t seen or smelled mice or any other evidence for three months now. I also decided to make my own cleaning so,union with a few drops of peppermint oil, water and castille soap and this seems to work too. So hopefully they won’t be back or, at least evident. Peppermint may be an old wives tale but it’s worked for me.

  60. Erin says:

    I made this last night and it was so yummy! Good recipe – just enough cayenne to have a little heat and not too much cinnamon to overpower the dish. It was perfectly balanced and filling.

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