25 Healthy Chickpea Recipes That Can Help You Lose Weight
Additional reporting by Abby Reisner.
Chickpeas—otherwise known as garbanzo beans—are probably the most versatile beans out there. Chickpea recipes range from salads, side dishes, or vegetarian mains, all the way to desserts and other baked goods. Truly, there really isn't anything a chickpea can't do.
Besides being versatile and flavorful, chickpeas also have a laundry list of health benefits. As far as beans go, they're high in protein, as well as the amino acid lysine, which helps repair tissue. And, with all that naturally occurring fiber, they'll keep you full, whether you're adding them to breakfast or incorporating them into dessert.
From popping up in veggie burgers to making their way into a batch of chocolate chip cookies, you could actually build your whole day around chickpea-based meals and snacks. Get started with this collection of 29 healthy chickpea recipes:
Creamy Homemade Hummus
In a Family Feud-style game of chickpea word association, chances are high that "hummus" is the winner. With an ingredient list as simple as the one here, there's no need to go the store-bought route. A spin in the food processor and one secret weapon later, and you've got silky, authentic, homemade hummus. (And while you're at it, try making your own tahini too.)
Get our recipe for Homemade Hummus.
Beans, Salmon, and Kale Salad
Nutrition: 369 calories, 20 g fat (3 g saturated fat), 347 mg sodium, 11 g fiber, 8 g sugar, 24 g protein
Get a leg up on meal prepping for the week by filling your refrigerator with jars of salad. The combination of garbanzo beans, salmon, grapefruit, and lemon-tahini dressing will add a refreshing twist to your daily lunch break.
Get our recipe for Bean, Salmon, and Kale Salad.
Slow Cooker Pumpkin Chicken Chili
Nutrition: 282 calories, 6 g fat (1 g saturated fat), 444 mg sodium, 6 g fiber, 7 g sugar, 28 g protein
You can throw away all your fall-scented candles, because making a batch of this cozy chili will have the same fragrant effect on your house—and, as a bonus, it's something you can eat.
Get our recipe for Slow Cooker Pumpkin Chicken Chili.
Nutrition: 440 calories, 25 g fat (10 g saturated fat), 460 mg sodium
Chickpeas are excellent candidates for slow cooker recipes, as they keep their structural integrity despite the long cooking times. Here, they join forces with lamb, golden raisins, and spices for a tender final product that'll warm you from the inside out.
Get our recipe for Lamb Tagine.
Slow Cooker Barley and Chickpea Risotto
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 best carbs that uncovers your abs, barley's health benefits perfectly complement those of chickpeas. While the chickpea 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 simplifies the time-consuming Italian dish by way of a slow cooker.
Get the recipe from Foxes Love Lemons.
Baked Falafel with Tahini Dressing
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 recipe calls for the healthier option of baking it. Meaning: 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.
Balsamic Kale & 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 suspect anything amiss with this pizza crust, which is made with chickpea flour instead of the regular white flour. But it certainly doesn't look it! This pizza is filled with other superfoods, too, 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.
Chickpea Omelets with Mushrooms and Spinach
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. The chickpea flour used in this recipe can taste rather chalky, but the flavor is punched up with sweet green onions and crunchy red bell peppers.
Get the recipe from One Ingredient Chef.
Mushroom and Broccoli Pakoras
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)
Indian pakoras are traditionally made with chopped potatoes and onions mixed with a spiced chickpea flour, but this recipe calls for mushrooms and broccoli. Also, unlike the traditional version, these pakoras are baked rather than fried. Eat them as an afternoon snack to curb your hunger pangs, or pair them with a salad topped with sliced mango for a fresh, new dinner.
Get the recipe from To Her Core.
Lentil-Chickpea Veggie Burgers with Avocado Green Harissa
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 legumes: 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.
Chickpea Vegan Meatloaf
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 the sweet tomato glaze on top, but it's full of chickpeas along with celery, carrots, and a surprise addition: Flax seeds.
Get the recipe from Connoisseurus Veg.
Chickpea Taco Salad with Pomegranate and Mango
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)
This light bowl isn't loaded with things like sour cream, cheese, and salsas. Instead, 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.
Chickpea Thai Curry
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 usually have a base of coconut milk. While this milk is high in saturated fat, most of it comes from lauric acid, a fatty acid that's scientifically been shown 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.
Greek Feta-Chickpea Fritters with Poached Eggs and Olive Tapenade
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.
Rainbow Power Salad with Roasted Chickpeas
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 (and no, Skittles don't count). 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.
Roasted Carrot, Chickpea, and Harissa Dip
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 chockful of 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.
Chickpea Spätzle with Shallots and Collard Greens
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
Spätzle falls somewhere between pasta and dumplings and is naturally gluten-free thanks to 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 too.
Get the recipe from My Name is Yeh.
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, but this recipe assures no fancy ingredients are necessary. The chickpea flour combined with the orange zest and orange extract makes the ideal tangy crunch. Hazelnuts are also. loaded with healthy nutrients that will give you an extra burst of energy. Don't go overboard, though; nuts are among the highest calorie foods out there and should be eaten in moderation.
Get the recipe from My Darling Vegan.
Roasted Chickpea Snack Mix
Serves: 4-5 people
Nutrition: 234 calories, 10 g fat (4 g saturated fat), 203 mg sodium, 34 g carbs, 7 g fiber 13 g sugar, 7 g protein
Raise your hand if you only go hiking for the bags of trail mix that are typically par for the course. This version balances the chocolate chips with a hearty measure of chickpeas, which turn into crunchy, highly snackable bits when roasted.
Get the recipe from Well Plated.
Vegetarian Sheet Pan Dinner with Tofu, Chickpeas, and Butternut Squash
Nutrition: 518 calories, 25 g fat, 56 g carbs, 12 g fiber 10 g sugar, 22 g protein
Sheet pan dinners are a home cook's dream. This mostly hands-off effort has a double dose of protein from the chickpeas and maple-marinated tofu. Win-win.
Get the recipe from Eating Bird Food.
Mediterranean 7-Layer Dip
Forget black beans, guacamole, and cheddar cheese: Chickpeas, tzatziki, and feta are stealing the show. Following a Mediterranean-inspired diet is reported to have a heaping handful of health benefits, so you might as well follow suit—especially when multi-layer dips are involved.
Get the recipe from The Girl Who Ate Everything.
Vegan Avocado Chickpea Salad
Add "acts as chicken salad" to the long list of things chickpeas can do. Whether you scoop the lemony garbanzo-avocado mixture into radicchio leaf cups or layer it between two slices of bread, you'll forget a meat version of the picnic classic ever existed.
Get the recipe from The First Mess.
Catalan Chickpeas and Spinach
Take a virtual trip to Barcelona with this classic tapas plate. The ingredients are simple yet satisfying and come together in just 15 minutes for a dish that's just as good when it's the centerpiece of a meal.
Get the recipe from Gimme Some Oven.
Chickpea Chocolate Cupcakes
Nutrition: 217 calories, 18 g fat, 7 g carbs, 6 g protein
If we can sneak zucchini into a quick bread and carrots into a cake, we can definitely make room for chickpeas in chocolate cupcakes. The versatile pulse adds protein to the batter, which comes together like magic in your blender or food processor.
Get the recipe from I Breathe I'm Hungry.
Chocolate Coconut Chickpea Granola
Nutrition: 297 calories, 17 g fat, 108 mg sodium, 33 g carbs, 5 g fiber 15 g sugar, 7 g protein
When you wake up with a big bowl of chickpeas, almonds, oats, and coconut, you're hitting all your major macro needs. Plus, there's chocolate involved, which is always a good thing as far as we're concerned.
Get the recipe from Fit Foodie Finds.