20 Amazing, Surprising Ways to Eat Chickpeas

Whether you call them chickpeas or garbanzo beans, these beige, protein-packed legumes can be much more than just a creamy hummus.

20 Amazing, Surprising Ways to Eat Chickpeas

Whether you call them chickpeas or garbanzo beans, these beige, protein-packed legumes can be much more than just a creamy hummus.

While you might already know that hummus is one of the best vegetarian sources of muscle-building protein, you might not know much about the bean behind its source: chickpeas. Also known as garbanzo beans, chickpeas are some extremely versatile legumes with some amazing health benefits.

Not only are chickpeas high in lysine—the amino acid that blasts away cellulite by repairing tissue and collagen—but they’ve also been found to help control cravings: A study published in the journal Obesity found people who ate a single serving of chickpeas each day reported feeling 31 percent fuller than their bean-less counterparts. Packed with both soluble and insoluble satiating fibers, chickpeas have a low glycemic index, meaning they break down slowly and keep your cravings to a minimum. The heart-healthy soluble fiber can help lower LDL-cholesterol levels, and the insoluble kind feeds the helpful bacteria in our colon, keeping these cells filled with energy and you at a lower risk of colon cancer (the third most commonly diagnosed cancer).

To help you get more of these little beans into your diet, we rounded up these amazingly delicious and waist-friendly chickpea recipes to help you lose weight and stay healthy. Get inspired and then keep it going with these 40 Healthy Snack Ideas to Keep You Slim!

1

Slow Cooker Barley and Chickpea Risotto

Surprising Chickpea Recipes Slow Cooker Barley and Chickpea Risotto

Serves: 6
Nutrition: 441 calories, 7.7 g fat (1 g saturated fat), 500 mg sodium, 76 g carbs, 19.5 g fiber, 10.7 g sugar, 20 g protein

One of the 25 Best Carbs That Uncover Your Abs, barley’s health benefits perfectly complement those of chickpeas. While chickpeas’ fiber is mostly insoluble, barley’s is mostly soluble. These soluble fibers help “lower cholesterol, decrease blood sugars and increase satiety,” says Lisa Moskovitz, RD, CDN. And don’t let the word “risotto” scare you. This recipe makes tackling the time-consuming Italian dish easy by making it in a slow cooker.

Get the recipe from Foxes Love Lemons.

2

Baked Falafel with Tahini Dressing

Surprising Chickpea Recipes Baked Falafel

Serves: 4
Nutrition: 286 calories, 12.8 g fat (1.8 g saturated fat), 141 mg sodium, 28.9 g carbs, 7.7 g fiber, 2 g sugar, 10.7 g protein (calculated with dressing)

While many Middle Eastern restaurants deep-fry their falafel typically in omega-6-laden frying oils, this blogger chooses the healthy option of baking it. Which means you don’t have to feel guilty about layering on the delicious tahini dressing. While tahini—a creamy spread made from sesame seeds—has a skewed omega 3:6 ratio in favor of inflammatory omega-6’s, Willow Jarosh, MS, RD explains it’s still safe to eat: “The super high intake of omega-6s in the average American’s diet is mostly from consuming the majority of fats from fried foods and packaged snacks.” And because omega-6s are essential fatty acids, you still need them in your diet.

Get the recipe from My Name is Yeh.

3

Balsamic Kale & Chicken Sausage Pizza

Surprising Chickpea Recipes Balsamic Kale and Chicken Sausage Pizza

Serves: 8 slices
Nutrition: 226 calories, 7.9 g fat (3.8 g saturated fat), 521 mg sodium, 23.1 g carbs, 3.8 g fiber, 3.3 g sugar, 15.8 g protein

Your kids will never guess a slice of this balsamic kale & chicken sausage pizza is gluten free. It certainly doesn’t look it! Using a chickpea-yeast combo for the crust, this pizza is teeming with superfoods from vitamin-C-rich kale to energy-boosting coconut oil. And you thought getting superfoods into your diet would be hard.

Get the recipe from Real Food By Dad.

4

Chickpea Omelets with Mushrooms & Spinach

Surprising Chickpea Recipes Chickpea Omelets

Serves: 2
Nutrition: 212 calories, 3.4 g fat (0 g saturated fat), 654 mg sodium, 32.8 g carbs, 7 g fiber, 7.5 g sugar, 13.2 g protein (calculated without cheese)

If you need a break from eggs, whip up this vegan omelet option. Because the chickpea flour used in this recipe can taste rather chalky, this blogger boosts the flavor profile with sweet green onions and crunchy red bell peppers.

Get the recipe from One Ingredient Chef.

5

MUSHROOM & BROCCOLI PAKORAS

Surprising Chickpea Recipes MUSHROOM + BROCCOLI PAKORAS

Serves: 4
Nutrition (per 2 pakoras): 233 calories, 10 g fat (6.4 g saturated fat), 125 mg sodium, 27.4 g carbs, 5.7 g fiber, 4 g sugar, 11.5 g protein (calculated without sauce)

Because chickpeas are popular in vegetarian cuisines for their rich source of protein, Indian cultures have many recipes for the bean, including this one for pakoras. Pakoras are traditionally made with chopped potatoes and onions mixed with a spiced chickpea flour, but this recipe calls for mushrooms and broccoli. And also unlike the traditional version, these pakoras are baked rather than fried. Eat them as an afternoon snack to curb those bothersome hunger pangs, or pair them with a salad topped with sliced mango for dinner.

Get the recipe from To Her Core.

6

SPICY GUACAMOLE HUMMUS

Surprising Chickpea Recipes Spicy Guacamole Hummus

Serves: 8
Nutrition: 350 calories, 18.6 g fat (3.5 g saturated fat), 103 mg sodium, 39 g carbs, 14.5 g fiber, 6 g sugar, 12 g protein (calculated with ¼ tsp salt)

This dip may overtake the place Chipotle’s guac holds in your heart. Besides being a great source of heart-healthy monounsaturated fats from one of our favorite weight-loss foods, avocados, this hummus is the perfect way to up your protein levels. While chickpeas may be a great source of protein, they’re still not a complete protein, meaning they lack all essential amino acids. However, when you pair them with tahini like you do in this guacamole hummus, the pair create a complete protein.

Get the recipe from That Oven Feelin'.

7

Lentil-Chickpea Veggie Burgers with Avocado Green Harissa

Surprising Chickpea Recipes Lentil Chickpea Veggie Burgers

Serves: 6
Nutrition: 390 calories, 15.2 g fat (2.7 g saturated fat), 398 mg sodium, 50 g carbs, 10.7 g fiber, 7 g sugar, 14.4 g protein

If you’ve ever had a veggie burger before, you know they can be bland, boring, and just plain gross. Not this one. With middle-eastern-inspired flavors like mint, paprika, chili sauce, harissa, and cumin, you may have trouble going back to the meat version. While it may not have as much protein as a beef burger, it has almost a quarter less fat and one of our favorite seeds: lentils. Lentils are a form of resistant starch that can promote fat metabolism and quell appetite through the release of acetate—a molecule in the gut that tells the brain when to stop eating.

Get the recipe from Cookie and Kate.

8

Fudge Walnut Brownies

Surprising Chickpea Recipes Fudge Walnut Brownies

Serves: 16
Nutrition: 210 calories, 9 g fat (1.6 g saturated fat), 88 mg sodium, 25 g carbs, 6 g fiber, 8 g sugar, 9 g protein

If you thought these chickpea brownies look good, just wait until you taste them. Rich, decadent, and with a little nutty crunch, you not only won’t have to feel guilty about indulging in this sweet, but it also won’t derail your weight-loss goals. Why? Because the complex carbs, fiber, and protein in chickpeas help keep your blood glucose levels from spiking.

Get the recipe from Begin Within Nutrition.

9

Chickpea Chocolate Chip Cookies

Surprising Chickpea Recipes chickpea chocolate chip cookies

Yields: 24 cookies
Nutrition (per cookie): 121 calories, 4.4 g fat (1 g saturated fat), 59 mg sodium, 16.6 g carbs, 3.6 g fiber, 6.1 g sugar, 5 g protein

We know what you’re thinking: “Chickpeas? In cookies?” Yes. These beans might be perfect in savory foods like hummus, but they also make a great, protein-packed gluten-free substitute for flour. Just one of these cookies has five times the amount of protein than Udi’s gluten-free chocolate chip cookies, one of the healthiest cookies in America.

Get the recipe from Begin Within Nutrition.

10

CHICKPEA VEGAN MEATLOAF

Surprising Chickpea Recipes CHICKPEA VEGANLOAF

Serves: 8
Nutrition: 300 calories, 8.6 g fat (3.8 g saturated fat), 510 mg sodium, 44 g carbs, 6.9 g fiber, 8.2 g sugar, 9.8 g protein

How many times did you cheer when mom said she was making meatloaf? None? We thought so. Well, one bite of this recipe would certainly change your mind. It still has all that glistening, sweet tomato glaze on top, but it’s full of our man of the hour, chickpeas, along with celery, carrots, and a surprise addition, flax seeds. These little seeds are full of inflammatory-fighting omega-3s and have been shown to have cancer-fighting properties.

Get the recipe from Connoisseurus Veg.

11

CHICKPEA TACO SALAD WITH POMEGRANATE AND MANGO

Surprising Chickpea Recipes CHICKPEA TACO SALAD

Serves: 4
Nutrition: 365 calories, 12 g fat (2.3 g saturated fat), 225 mg sodium, 47 g carbs, 13 g fiber, 12 g sugar, 11 g protein (calculated with 20 oz chickpeas and no cashew cream)

Mexican restaurants’ deep-fried tortilla shell taco bowls will be a thing of the past after you try this chickpea taco salad. It’s not weighted down with things like sour cream, cheese, and heavy salsas. Rather, bright, acidic notes from pomegranate seeds and mango lift this salad into the health zone. As an added benefit, the ellagic acid in pomegranate seeds might help protect against cancer by suppressing estrogen production and preventing the growth of breast cancer cells, according to a study in Cancer Prevention Research.

Get the recipe from One Ingredient Chef.

12

Chickpea Thai Curry

Surprising Chickpea Recipes Chickpea Curry

Serves: 5
Nutrition: 485 calories, 17 g fat (9 g saturated fat), 658 mg sodium, 66 g carbs, 16.8 g fiber, 12.3 g sugar, 20 g protein (calculated with lite coconut milk, ¼ tsp salt, and no rice)

Thai curries, regardless of color, are based on coconut milk. While this milk is high in saturated fat, most of it comes from lauric acid, a fatty acid that’s been shown in more than 60 studies to decrease your risk of cardiovascular disease. With a lean protein like chickpeas to fill you up, this homemade option is much healthier than any greasy pad thai you might get from a restaurant.

Get the recipe from Creme De La Crumb.

13

Greek Feta Chickpea Pancake Fritters with Poached Eggs & Olive Tapenade

Surprising Chickpea Recipes Greek Feta Chickpea Pancake Fritters

Serves: 6
Nutrition: 402 calories, 22 g fat (7 g saturated fat), 563 mg sodium, 25 g carbs, 6 g fiber, 5 g sugar, 17 g protein (calculated with 6 eggs and 3 tbsp oil for the pancakes)

Start your day right with these savory pancakes and eggs. With half the sugar content of IHOP’s Harvest Grain Pancakes, this breakfast duo will lay the groundwork for a healthy day with minimal cravings due to the 17 grams of protein and extra energy from the egg’s vitamin B2. Also known as riboflavin, just one egg contains about 15 percent of your RDA of vitamin B2, the vitamin which helps your body produce energy.

Get the recipe from Half Baked Harvest.

14

Rainbow Power Salad with Roasted Chickpeas

Surprising Chickpea Recipes Rainbow power salad with roasted chickpeas

Serves: 2
Nutrition: 462 calories, 16.8 g fat (3 g saturated fat), 521 mg sodium, 40.1 g carbs, 13.6 g fiber, 11.6 g sugar, 12.1 g protein (calculated with ¼ cup of the green sauce)

Nutritionists always recommend you eat the rainbow because adding a spectrum of colors to your diet can help ensure that you're getting a variety of nutrients. (Just don’t try what Christina Aguilera did). This power bowl is full of zucchini, carrots, fresh herbs, and greens. We think we’ve found a nutritional pot of gold.

Get the recipe from Pinch of Yum.

15

Flourless Chickpea Pumpkin Blondies

Surprising Chickpea Recipes Flourless Chickpea Pumpkin Blondies

Serves: 16
Nutrition: 212 calories, 7.8 g fat (2.4 g saturated fat), 89 mg sodium, 29 g carbs, 6 g fiber, 11.5 g sugar, 7.4 g protein

These blondies are quite literally spiced up with a pumpkin spice makeover. This gourd is a natural appetite suppressant and adding anti-inflammatory spices like cinnamon and nutmeg boost its fat-burning properties.

Get the recipe from Begin Within Nutrition.

16

Roasted Carrot, Chickpea & Harissa Dip Recipe

Surprising Chickpea Recipes roasted carrot chickpea harissa dip recipe

Serves: 6
Nutrition: 259 calories, 14.8 g fat (2.1 g saturated fat), 45 mg sodium, 26.2 g carbs, 7.5 g fiber, 6 g sugar, 7.8 g protein (calculated with 4 carrots)

Hummus who? The original chickpea and tahini dip pales in comparison to this roasted carrot, chickpea and harissa dip. It’s spicy, roasty, nutty, and brimming with carotenoids, molecules that are converted into vitamin A when ingested. This powerful antioxidant contributes to immune health, improves communication between cells, and helps fight off cell-damaging free radicals.

Get the recipe from The First Mess.

17

Chickpea Spatzle with Shallots and Collard Greens

Surprising Chickpea Recipes Chickpea Spatzle with Shallots and Collard Greens

Serves: 4
Nutrition: 319 calories, 7.1 g fat (1.2 g saturated fat), 146 mg sodium, 48 g carbs, 13.5 g fiber, 8.3 g sugar, 17.9 g protein

This spatzle fall somewhere between pasta and dumplings and is naturally gluten free from using only chickpea flour. The options are endless to pair it with because of its mild flavor profile. By adding collared greens you up the nutrient intake and pack in some essential vitamins.

Get the recipe from My Name is Yeh.

18

CHICKPEA SOCCA WITH SPRING SALAD AND AVOCADO

Surprising Chickpea Recipes SOCCA

Serves: 5
Nutrition: 340 calories, 26 g fat (4.5 g saturated fat), 454 mg sodium, 17.5 g carbs, 6.2 g fiber, 3.2 g sugar, 7.1 g protein (calculated with 5 cups of mesclun salad, 4 tablespoons olive oil for socca, and no pistachios)

Socca’s are a traditional Greek dish that is a mix between a crepe and a pancake using chickpea flour to give them their lightness. The herbs and spices that are added to this recipes give it a perfectly savory bite without adding any unwanted fat and sugar! Along with a fresh green salad and avocado, it makes for the perfect savory breakfast, lunch, or dinner that is sure to fill you up.

Get the recipe from Sassy Kitchen.

19

Orange Hazelnut Biscotti

Surprising Chickpea Recipes Orange Hazelnut Biscotti

Serves: 20 cookies
Nutrition: 171 calories, 8.4 g fat (3 g saturated fat), 65 mg sodium, 22 g carbs, 1.5 g fiber, 10.4 g sugar, 2.4 g protein

When you think of biscottis, you might think of those fancy treats you pair with coffee and your pinky up, but with these there are no fancy ingredients necessary! The chickpea flour combines with the orange zest and orange extract to make the ideal tangy crunch. Hazelnuts are loaded with health beneficial nutrients that will give you that extra burst of energy you’re looking for. Don’t go overboard, though; nuts are amongst one of the highest calorie foods out there and should be eaten in moderation!

Get the recipe from My Darling Vegan.

20

Curry Cauliflower and Chickpea Tacos

Surprising Chickpea Recipes Curry Cauliflower and Chickpea Tacos

Serves: 6
Nutrition: 432 calories, 18.3 g fat (2.7 g saturated fat), 340 mg sodium, 54 g carbs, 14 g fiber 8 g sugar, 16 g protein (calculated with whole wheat tortillas)

You’ll lose your mind over the flavors of this vegetarian taco. Filled with chickpeas and cauliflower that are spiced to perfection. It doesn’t hurt that they’re also a way lighter version of any fast food joint taco out there! Drizzle over with the tahini sauce, it’s loaded with tons of healthy nutrients that maintain anti-inflammatory and antioxidant responses in the body like copper with 6 percent of the day’s calcium in just one tablespoon.

Get the recipe from Begin Within Nutrition.