Couscous Casserole

This dish won't just make your stomach happy — it'll help keep your hair and skin healthy, too.

Besides iron, folate, and other nutrients, chickpeas have that terrific high-protein, high-fiber combo that helps you feel fuller longer. As for butternut squash, 1 cup serves up more heart-healthy potassium than a banana. Packed with vitamins A and C, it keeps hair and skin healthy, and it could help lower cancer and diabetes risks.

Total Time:
Level: Easy
Serves: 8


For the Filling
  • 2 tbsp. olive oil
  • 1 red onion, sliced lengthwise
  • 1 tsp. ground cumin
  • 1 tsp. ground coriander
  • 6 carrots, peeled and cut into 1-inch chunks
  • 1 (20 oz.) container peeled and cubed butternut squash
  • 1 (8 oz.) zucchini, quartered lengthwise and sliced into 1-inch chunks
  • 1 tsp. coarse salt
  • pepper
  • 2 c. canned crushed tomatoes
  • 3 tsp. harissa, plus more for serving (optional)
  • 2 2/3 c. low-sodium chicken broth, heated in microwave
  • 1 c. whole wheat Israeli or pearl couscous
For the Topping
  • 3 (14 oz.) cans chickpeas
  • juice of 1/2 lemon
  • 1/4 c. packed parsley leaves, plus more, chopped, for garnish


  1. Make the filling: Heat oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit. Heat 1 Tbsp oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add onion; cook, stirring occasionally, until softened, about 8 min. Stir in 1/2 tsp cumin and 1/2 tsp coriander. Add carrots, zucchini, squash, salt, and some pepper. Cook, stirring occasionally, 6 min. Add tomatoes, 2 tsp harissa, and 2 cups broth. Raise heat and bring to a boil, then reduce to a simmer and cook until liquid has thickened and vegetables have softened slightly, about 20 min.
  2. Make the topping: Drain chickpeas, reserving liquid. Set aside 1 cup chickpeas. Purée remaining chickpeas in a food processor, whirring in 3/4 cup reserved liquid, until smooth. Add lemon juice and parsley, and pulse to combine. In a small bowl, toss reserved cup chickpeas with remaining Tbsp olive oil, 1/2 tsp cumin, 1/2 tsp coriander, and tsp harissa. Set aside.
  3. Assemble filling and topping: Add couscous to a 3-quart baking dish. Ladle in remaining 2/3 cup broth, then vegetable mixture, taking care to keep couscous submerged. Spread chickpea puree evenly across the top, then scatter spiced chickpeas over the topping.
  4. Bake until golden brown and bubbling, about 40 min. Let cool 10 min. Garnish with chopped parsley. Serve with harissa on the side, if you like.

315 cal, 7 g fat (1 g saturated), 13 g protein, 55 g carb, 10 g sugar, 11 g fiber, 689 mg sodium, 0 mg cholesterol per serving

This recipe originally appeared in the December 2016 issue of Dr. Oz The Good Life.

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