Versatility of the Chickpea

I personally believe the chickpea is one of the most highly underrated plant-based foods out there. Most people associate this food group with hummus, but quite honestly, there are so many ways to enjoy this little legume. Dave and I really discovered the versatility of this food when we followed a vegan diet for the majority of last year. But we still use them all the time in meals because they taste so damn good. I’m sharing a few interesting facts about chickpeas, in addition to several ideas to incorporate them into your meals (including two awesome recipes, both savory and sweet). But literally, just do a quick google search, and you will find thousands of incredible recipes and even more great ideas.

  • They are one of the best sources of folate (vitamin B9), which is an essential micronutrient. Folate most notably is involved in the regeneration and growth of cells.
  • They are incredibly high in dietary fiber, which is essential in helping us regulate blood sugar levels and our digestion. In addition to fiber, they are an incredibly good source of essential minerals like phosphorus, iron, calcium, magnesium, potassium and selenium.
  • They are a good source of protein! With plant-based eating becoming more popular, these are a great source of high quality protein that is not found in animal products. 100g of chickpeas = 19.3g protein.
  • All you farmers or gardeners can use them to restore depleted soil! The chickpea plants roots actually enrich soil with nitrogen. In addition, they lower the chances of erosion because they help stabilize the earth around them.

Now, for the good stuff!

Chickpea Cookie Dough (Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip)
  • 1 can chickpeas, drained and rinsed (you can pat them dry)
  • 1/2c peanut butter (you could probably figure out some sort of PB2 replacement, but I haven’t done that yet..)
  • 2 1/2 TBSP maple syrup
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1 TBSP ground chia seeds
  • 1/3cup 60% cocoa choc chips, cocoa nibs or vegan choc chips (or just use regular milk chocolate chips)
  • Drain and rinse chickpeas and dry on paper towel. If some of skin starts to come off, peel them and discard that skin. As I’ve learned, it will help cookie dough not taste as gritty
  • Add everything but the choc chips & chia seeds in food processor until smooth and creamy. Add chia seeds and blend.
  • Remove and place in bowl, folding in chocolate chips.
  • Note, if you don’t like chia seeds, you can substitute 3 TBSP oat flour or almond flour in its place
Roasted Chickpeas

No special recipe here! Just rinse, drain and pat dry. Then add any spice of choice! Bake at 350 degrees for ~35-45 minutes or until they reach desired crisp level. Use in place of croutons or just as an added flavor in salad. Eat as a snack! Below are the spices I used on this most recent bake:

-Tumeric, garlic powder, pepper, onion salt, chilli powder, cumin, paprika

You’ll also notice that many vegetarian or vegan burgers include chickpeas as an ingredient. Dave and I make our own veggie burgers because they taste way better than store bought and we know what good quality ingredients are being used to make them! Below is a pic of the most recent burger we made! Recipe (tweaked a little by myself) can be found here –>

Enjoy! Tag us if you make these and let us know what you think!

Chels Ulmer

Chelsea Ulmer

Chelsea Ulmer

CrossFit IPA Owner & Trainer, ER Trauma Nurse
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