November 11, 2017

Khoresh Gheymeh Kadoo Sabz - Iranian Lamb and Yellow Split Pea Stew with Zucchini

Khoresh Gheymeh with Zucchini

Here's my favorite خورش قیمه کدو سبز khoresh-e gheymeh kadoo sabz: a combination of the delicious and popular khoresh gheymeh and khoresh kadoo. Recently, I posted a picture of this dish on my Instagram, and I was asked for the recipe. So I made it again and this time I measured the ingredients instead of eyeballing everything and wrote a new blog post! Traditionally, gheymeh is made with small bite-sized lamb, yellow split peas, limoo amani, fried onion, tomato sauce, and topped with fries. Khoresh kadoo sabz is cooked with cubed lamb, lightly fried kadoo (gray squash/zucchini), fried onion, tomato sauce, and limoo amani (dried limes). Gray squash is lighter in color and more round at the bottom than zucchini. For this recipe, you can use gray squash or zucchini, or baby zucchini if available.

Baby Zucchini

Khoresh Gheymeh ba Kadoo Sabz

It's worth mentioning that the word کدو kadoo refers to both summer and winter squash such as pumpkin, butternut squash, zucchini, or gray squash. سبز Sabz means green in Persian/Farsi.

  کدو حلوایی/ کدو تنبل Kadoo Tanbal/Kadoo Halvaie (Pumpkin & Butternut Squash), Kadoo Sabz (Gray Squash & Zucchini)

Gheymeh Kadoo Sabz - Yellow Split Pea Zucchini Stew

Serves 4-6

1 pound boneless lamb or beef, trimmed and cut into small bite-sized cubes
1 1/2 pounds regular zucchini, peeled and cut lengthwise into thick slices or whole baby zucchini
1 cup yellow split peas
1 large onion, peeled and diced or thinly sliced
3 garlic cloves, peeled and minced
1 tablespoon tomato paste
1 can (15 oz) diced tomatoes or 4 small tomatoes, peeled and diced
4-5 limoo amani (dried limes) make 2-3 little holes in each of the dried limes with a fork or a knife
1 cinnamon stick (small)
1 teaspoon turmeric
Salt and pepper
Pinch of red pepper 
Juice of 1 lemon 
Vegetable oil or olive oil

  1. Rinse yellow split peas, place in a pot, add 3 cups of water, add a small stick of cinnamon and bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Reduce the heat, cook for 30 minutes over medium-low heat or until tender and remove foam as it cooks. Set aside. Remove the cinnamon stick.
  2. Heat 3 tablespoons of oil in a frying pan. Fry the zucchini until golden brown. Remove from pan and set aside.
  3. Heat 3 tablespoons of oil in a pan over medium-high heat. Add the sliced onion, saute until soft and transparent. Add a pinch of salt and the turmeric powder, stir. Add the minced garlic and saute for another couple of minutes.
  4. Add the meat and 1/2 teaspoon black pepper and thoroughly brown on all sides.
  5. Spoon in the tomato paste in the center of the pot, cook for 2-3 minutes until the tomato paste changes color.
  6. Add the diced tomatoes, yellow split peas, limoo amani, 1 teaspoon salt, a pinch of red pepper and enough water to cover the stew by a couple of inches. Bring to a boil, reduce heat, cover and cook for 30 minutes. 
  7. Layer zucchini slices or whole baby zucchini on top of the gheymeh. Add a little more water if needed. Cover and cook for another 30 minutes over low heat until the meat and the peas are fully cooked and the flavors come together. 
  8. Taste and adjust the seasoning. Stir in the juice of lime or lemon if you like.
Serve warm with rice, mast o khiar, salad shirazi, and sabzi khordan.



  1. This must be the most interesting khoresh recipe I now have - all my favourite ingredients are involved :) ! Just have to access my spice merchant who keeps dried limes because they so do make a difference . . . .thank you so much for posting . . . shall be passed along to friends . . .

  2. Looks and sounds lovely.
    What substitute I can use for dried limes?

    1. You can substitute fresh lime/lemon juice for them. Thank you.

  3. Wow this looks so yummy. Love the fresh veg. have to give it try

    1. Dear Nammi, I hope that all is well with you. Thank you!

  4. Your posting was passed on to me by one of your fans and I’m so glad she did. We love Middle Eastern, but rarely cook it for lack of availability of the various unique herb and spices usually required. But, your recipe is very doable. So perfect for the cold snowy days ahead.
    Question, in step 7 you say, “Layer zucchini slices or whole baby zucchini on top of the gheimeh”. Is gheimeh the yellow split peas?

    1. Ron, gheimeh in Persian/Farsi means small pieces of meat. It also refers to the stew with little cubes of lamb or beef. Thank you

  5. I am sooo happy I found your blog! It's marvelous!