These Chickpeas Recipes are filling, hearty, packed with flavor, and the easiest answer for vegetarian dinner ideas. From creamy soups to flavorful curries, these are some of the best ways to use canned chickpeas.
Garbanzo beans, also known as chickpeas, are a pantry essential that I consistently keep stocked. Not only are they an excellent plant-based protein source, but their versatility offers endless options for creating satisfying meals or snacks.
I absolutely love the versatility of canned chickepas. Whether used in curries, as crispy roasted snacks, in tacos, or even incorporated into sweet treats, there's a fantastic recipe for every occasion. With their delightful flavor, texture, and protein content, these legumes are an essential addition to any pantry!
They are a powerhouse ingredient that comes handy when you don't have meat thawed or can't run to the store. Toss them salads, make into sandwiches, tacos or burrito bowl.
What are Chickpeas?
Chickpeas, also known as garbanzo beans, are legumes that are a part of the plant family Fabaceae, subfamily Faboideae. They are a popular ingredient in various cuisines around the world, particularly in Mediterranean, Middle Eastern, and Indian dishes.
They are high in protein and fiber and rich in nutrients. They can be creamy when cooked and soft or crunchy when roasted and it's neutral flavor makes it great to be transformed into almost any dish, from soups, salads, curries and dips to desserts.
Types of chickpeas
Although there are several types of chickpeas, the two most commonly varieties are kabuli chickpeas and black or desi chickpeas.
Also known as Kabuli chana in Hindi, Kabuli chickpeas are the larger, lighter-colored garbanzo beans that are commonly found around the Mediterranean and Western markets. They have a smooth, creamy texture and a mild, nutty flavor and are often used in dishes like salads, soups, and hummus.
Desi chickpeas are smaller, darker-colored beans commonly found in South Asian and Middle Eastern cuisines. They have a slightly rougher texture with a dark brown skin and a more pronounced, earthy flavor compared to Kabuli variety. They hold their shape well when cooked and are often used in dishes like curries, stews, and roasted snacks.
How do I cook chickpeas from dried?
To cook dried chickpeas, begin rinsing the dried garbanzo beans under cold water to remove any dirt or debris. Place them in a large bowl and cover with several inches of water. Let them soak overnight or for at least 8 hours.
Drain and rinse the soaked chickpeas and you can cook using any of the following methods:
- Stovetop method - Place the soaked chickpeas in a large pot and cover with fresh water. Bring to a boil, then reduce the heat to a simmer, cook partially covered for one to two hours, or until tender.
- Instant pot method - Add them to the pressure cooker or Instant Pot along with water. The ratio to use is about 3 cups of water for every cup of dried chickpeas. Cook on high pressure for about 35-40 minutes. Allow natural pressure release for about 10 minutes before quick releasing any remaining pressure.
- Slow cooker method - Add them to a slow cooker along with water. Use about 3 cups pf water for one cup of dried chickpeas. Cook on low for 6-8 hours or on high for 3-4 hours, or until tender.
What are canned chickpeas?
Canned chickpeas are cooked chickpeas, which means they are soft and ready to eat straight out of the can after draining and rinsing. They are garbanzo beans that are preserved and packaged in cans with water and sometimes salt.
The liquid left in the can, commonly known as aquafaba, is either the water used to cook the chickpeas or the water in which they were canned. Aquafaba is a versatile ingredient that can serve as a vegan-friendly substitute for egg whites in recipes like meringues, macarons, and mayonnaise. Thanks to its ability to mimic the texture and properties of egg whites, aquafaba can also be whipped into a foam.
Canned garbanzo beans are convenient and readily available solution for incorporating chickpeas into recipes, eliminating the need for soaking and cooking dried chickpeas from scratch.
Should I cook canned chickpeas?
They are already cooked during the canning process so they can eat straight out of the can without further cooking. So you only need to heat them through or boil them briefly to achieve your desired texture, like roasting them in the oven or air fryer for a crispy and crunchy texture or simmering them in soups for a creamy texture.
I prefer to drain off the cloudy, starchy liquid, known as aquafaba, and rinse the chickpeas thoroughly in cold water before adding them into any recipe. This step helps remove excess salt and also makes them easier to digest.
Ways to use canned chickpeas
Canned chickpeas are one of the versatile pantry staples. There are countless delicious ways to use them and the possibilities are endless. Here are some ideas:
- Puree them along with tahini, lemon juice, garlic and olive oil too make hummus at home.
- Toss them to salads for added protein and texture. They pair well with vegetables like cucumbers, tomatoes, bell peppers, and red onions.
- Simmer them in your favorite vegetarian curries for a hearty texture. They soak up all the flavors and add a satifying texture to the dish.
- Make a crunchy guilt free snack. Toss them with olive oil and spices, then roast them in the oven or air fryer.
- Add canned chickpeas to soups and stews to add protein.
- Stir into pasta dishes like with arrabbiata sauce or penne pasta recipe or instant pot spaghetti aglio e olio for added texture and protein.
- Mash them with mayo, Greek yogurt or avoacdo to make a chickpea salad sandwich or fold them into wraps. Add chopped red onion, cucumber and spices for extra flavor.
- Toss them with spices and use as a base for vegan burrito bowls along with grains like cooked quinoa or brown rice, roasted vegetables, greens, and a flavorful sauce.
- Stir fry them with taco seasoning and use as a filling to make vegan tacos.
Hope you found a chickpeas recipe for vegan dinner idea for your next weeknight. If you are looking for more ideas, please check out weeknight dinner recipes for inspiration.
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