Have you noticed all the products in grocery stores that contain chickpeas recently? Chickpeas, also known as garbanzo beans, can be adapted and modified in hundreds of different ways.
That’s why so many chickpea recipes can be found worldwide, changing with cultural flavors and ingredients. You’ll be in disbelief at how many ways this ingredient can be used for dinner and even dessert!Jump to Recipe
What’s so Special About Chickpeas?
The better question to ask the culinary world is, ‘What can’t chickpeas do?’ It’s very efficient in terms of water use–it’s grown as a rain-fed crop in most countries. Not only that, it enriches the soil it grows in by releasing nitrogen into the soil. Nutritionally, it provides plenty of benefits. They’re high in protein and fiber, just like lentils and other legumes, and tend to cause fewer allergic reactions than wheat or soy. They provide similar benefits to flours, extracts, and non-animal protein sources. They’re gluten-free, soy-free, and dairy-free, too!
You can find chickpeas across all kinds of cuisines, as many different regions have adapted it into their diets. Americans are no exception! According to the New York Times, between 2005 and 2014, American meat consumption dropped 19%. That means a protein-packed ingredient like chickpeas is prime to take center stage. Chickpeas are inexpensive, mildly flavored, broadly available. The global cuisines that use them de-emphasize meat–a practice Americans are starting to recognize as valuable as plant-based diets become more trendy.
If you decide to use chickpeas as a staple to your diet, their mild flavor allows them to adapt to any flavor you cook with. Chickpeas are pantry-friendly, meaning you can easily store them in cans or dried. Once you’ve used the chickpeas, you can also use the aquafaba, the juice that remains after cooking chickpeas (or store-bought from the can), as an egg white substitute.
How Do I Prepare Chickpeas?
You can purchase chickpeas already cooked in the can or purchase dried chickpeas in a bag. Which one you decide to use is entirely on how you want to use them.
When you cook chickpeas yourself, you have more control over the texture, and you have more options on how they’re prepared. But to all you non-chefs out there: don’t worry. Canned chickpeas are fine to use, especially if you plan to puree and use them in recipes like hummus. But a firmer texture is better for salads and main dishes.
Here are a few of the easiest ways to prep and enjoy your dried chickpeas:
- Long soak and simmer on the stovetop, which takes about 10 hours or overnight plus 2 hours simmering.
- Quick soak and simmer on the stove, which takes about 3 hours
- In a slow cooker, cook for 4 hours on high heat or 8 hours on low heat
- In a pressure cooker, cook on high for about 1 hour
- Roast in the oven. Completely dry them, toss with olive oil, and roast on a sheet pan at 425 degrees F for about 25-30 minutes (until crispy). For roasted and spiced chickpeas, add different combinations of spices to make them Moroccan, Indian, or Greek-inspired.
What Are Some Popular Dishes With Chickpeas?
We like hummus so much that we wrote a whole article about it. You could choose to go spicy with red pepper hummus. Or, you could choose sweet with chocolate chip cookie dough hummus. It is truly is the MVP of chickpea recipes.
Of course, if you’re more traditional in your tastes, try adding different spices like chili powder, za’atar, cumin, garlic, smoked paprika. Don’t forget to add Tahini or sesame oil for that crucial flavor. Or if you want to have a try Middle Eastern dip feast, have a sampler of hummus, baba ghanoush, and halva. Dip your favorite crackers or veggies into them for a crunchy and smooth snack. Halva would taste delicious with cut-up apples, too.
This spicy, one-skillet Indian-inspired dish is delicious served with brown rice, quinoa, or any grain you like. Perfect for vegans and dairy-free, too!
This is a deep-fried ball or fritter made from ground chickpeas or fava beans. Its origins are Middle-eastern and Mediterranean, and you can commonly find it sold as street food. This is a perfect choice for vegan or vegetarians who still crave that street food flavor.
Our Favorite Chickpea Recipes
Sweet Potato Chickpea and Spinach Coconut Curry
These ingredients are going on my shopping list right now. I’m always looking for new dinner ideas, and a one-pot meal will always take top priority. Sweet potatoes, chickpeas, and spinach have lots of vitamins, minerals, and nutrients essential for a well-balanced diet.
“Chana” means chickpea, and “masala” refers to a blend of spices used in Indian cooking. It’s a popular dish throughout India and Pakistan, with recipes varying by region. This tasty chickpea curry is made by cooking chickpeas in a spicy onion and tomato masala gravy. You’ll often find it served over naan, poori, or even flavored rice.
Harissa Roasted Sweet Potato and Chickpeas with Creamy Yogurt Tahini Sauce
Sweet potatoes, bell peppers, carrots, and chickpeas make this hearty meal one that you won’t be able to resist. The heat from the harissa combined with the yogurt tahini is the perfect balance of spicy and creamy.
I know what you’re thinking. “Chickpeas have the audacity to be in my pancakes? Is NOTHING sacred?” Hear me out. It’s a savory pancake that’s gluten-free and filled with protein. To make them, whisk 1/2 cup of chickpea flour and ½ cup plus 2 T cold water in a small bowl. Whisk in 1 T oil and a pinch of salt. Let sit for at least 10 minutes and up to 1 hour.
Oil a skillet and heat over medium-high. Ladle ¼ cup batter into the center of the skillet and swirl to form a thin pancake. Cook until well browned underneath and crispy around edges, about 2 minutes. Flip pancake and cook until the second side is lightly browned. Fill with all your favorite ingredients like roasted veggies, cheese, and meat.
Chickpea Recipes: Soups and Salads
This easy Middle Eastern-style salad consists of mostly beans, including chickpeas and black beans, tossed with diced tomatoes, cucumber, onion, garlic, parsley, and mint.
North African Chickpea Soup (Leblebi)
If you’re craving some African-inspired fare, this soup may just hit the spot. Try it served with couscous for a hearty meal! It’s typically served at breakfast in Tunisia. Its often accompanied by plenty of garnish: poached or hard-boiled eggs, a sprinkling of cumin or capers, a drizzle of olive oil or harissa, toasted bread, lemon, fish, or pickled vegetables.
This light and refreshing salad has delicious Mediterranean flavors. Toss your chickpeas with chopped cucumber, red onion, bell pepper, kalamata olives, crumbled feta, salt, and pepper. Then, dress it with your favorite Greek vinaigrette. Or instead, try a basil pesto! Make an Italian variation of chickpea salad with basil, parmesan cheese, parsley, lemon juice, olive oil, and garlic.
Lentil and Chickpea Soup
Nothing says fall or winter like a soup filled with flavor and protein. With spices like garlic, ginger, coriander, paprika, cumin, cinnamon, cilantro, and parsley, this Moroccan-spiced chickpea stew will keep you full.
Spiced Chickpea Frittata
- 12 large eggs
- 1-1/2 cups chopped tender herbs (such as basil, cilantro, and/or parsley)
- 3/4 cup sour cream
- 1/2 tsp crushed red pepper flakes
- 1 tsp kosher salt plus more
- 4 tbsp extra virgin olive oil divided
- 2 15.5-oz. cans chickpeas , rinsed, patted dry
- 2 tsp medium curry powder
- 1 medium onion finely chopped
- 6 garlic cloves 5 thinly sliced, 1 whole
- 1 small bunch hardy greens (such as mustard, kale, or Swiss chard) ribs and stems removed, leaves torn into 2″ pieces
- 2/3 cup mayonnaise
Spiced Chickpea Frittata
- Preheat oven to 350°F. Whisk eggs, herbs, sour cream, red pepper flakes, and 1 t. salt together in a bowl until fully combined.
- Heat 2 T of oil in an ovenproof skillet over medium-high heat. Add chickpeas and curry powder and season with salt. Tossing occasionally, cook for 6-8 minutes (until golden brown). Move 1 cup chickpeas to a bowl; set aside.
- Reduce the heat to medium. Add onion, sliced garlic, and remaining 2 T oil to chickpeas in skillet. Stir occasionally, until the onion begins to brown and soften ( about 7–9 minutes).
- Add a handful of greens and 2 T of water and cook until slightly wilted. Add greens in sections at a time. Let them slightly wilt before adding more, until all greens are wilted, about 5 minutes total. Season with salt. Let them cool for 3 minutes.
- Return pan to medium-low. Pour in egg mixture, and cook. Stir the eggs and swirl the pan often, until the edges are just set (texture should be like a very soft scramble), about 6 minutes.
- Transfer to the oven and bake until puffed slightly, and center is just set, 10–15 minutes. Remove from oven and let it cool for 5–10 minutes.
- Add mayonnaise to a small dish and add in the remaining grated garlic; mix well. Season to taste with salt.
- Serve with garlic mayo and leftover chickpeas.
Other Ways to Use Chickpeas
Ready to maximize your use of chickpeas? Here are a few more of our favorite chickpea ideas.
- Chickpea meatballs with spaghetti squash zoodles
- Chickpea chocolate pudding
- Caramel toffee chickpea brittle
- Roasted cauliflower and chickpeas with herb tahini
What Are Your Favorite Chickpeas Recipes?
Have we convinced you about the magic of chickpeas? Whether you opt for a fresh chickpea salad, dip your veggies in creamy red pepper hummus, or dry roast them with yummy spices, it’s hard to go wrong with this protein-packed ingredient. Share your favorite chickpea recipes with your people on FamilyApp!