When it comes to chickpea recipes, hummus is the first that comes to mind. That said, it might not be your thing. But that doesn’t mean chickpeas should be overlooked. The little legume is a windfall of nutrients for endurance athletes, and there are ways to prep it beyond the dip.
Sure, you can toss the canned kind onto a salad and call it a day. But there’s a lot you can do with chickpeas and chickpea flour, transforming them into side dishes and main courses—even pizza crust. To prove it, four chefs shared recipes celebrating them.
This Omani dish is a mainstay at Maydan restaurant Opens in New Windowin Washington, D.C. Chefs Chris Morgan and Gerald Addison serve it with flatbread alongside Middle Eastern hummus Opens in New Windowand muhammara, a walnut-pepper-pomegranate dip.
Serves 4 to 6
- 1⁄2 cup butter
- 1⁄2 cup olive oil
- 10 cloves garlic, minced
- 2 tbsp aleppo chili or red chili flakes
- 1 tbsp freshly ground black pepper
- 2 15-oz cans chickpeas, drained and rinsed, reserving liquid
- Juice of 5 limes
- Roughly chopped parsley
- Roti bread (optional)
In a large pot over medium heat, melt butter with oil. Add garlic and cook, stirring constantly, 2 minutes. Add chili and black pepper, then chickpeas, reserved liquid, and salt to taste; cook until chickpeas start to fall apart, 5 minutes. Turn off heat, add juice and additional salt, sprinkle with parsley, and serve with roti.
2. Chickpea Panisse
When Michelin-starred chef John Fraser serves these at Terrace and Outdoor Gardens Opens in New Windowin Times Square, New York City, they’re paired with a roasted cauliflower puree, but you can eat them with whatever dips you like. They’re also great at breakfast along with eggs over easy and stir-fried vegetables. Make a big batch, and set some aside for after a workout—their balance of carbs and protein make them a great post-gym snack Opens in New Window.
Serves 4 to 6
- 4 cups 2 percent milk
- 1 cup chickpea flour
- 1⁄4 cup canned chickpeas, drained
- Olive oil
- 1 tbsp ras el hanout spice mixture
- Mint and parsley leaves
In a medium pot over high heat, boil together milk, flour, chickpeas, and a pinch of salt until thick, 5 minutes, then use an immersion blender to puree. Cook and blend until mixture is batterlike, 2 minutes. Pour mixture onto a 13- by 18-inch sheet pan lined with a Silpat nonstick baking sheet or parchment. Cover with parchment and use a flat rolling pin to even out the top. Refrigerate tray until batter is completely cooled, around 2 hours. Heat oven to 400°. Flip chickpea mixture onto a cutting board. Using a 4-inch ring mold, biscuit cutter, or a paring knife, cut circular disks. Brush disks with olive oil and bake until top is golden, about 10 minutes. Remove from oven, flip disks, brush with more olive oil and season with salt, and continue baking until golden brown on both sides, 10 minutes. Remove from oven. Meanwhile, in a small bowl, stir together ras el hanout and 2 tbsp olive oil. Drizzle herb mixture onto disks, and serve garnished with mint and parsley.
Call it this if you’re in Italy. In France, it’s socca. Either way, this large chickpea pancake is great drizzled with olive oil and sprinkled with fresh herbs and good salt. But that’s just the start. Chef Hillary Sterling at Vic’s Opens in New Windowin New York City uses it as the base for healthy flatbread.
Serves 3 to 4
In a large bowl, stir together 2 cups chickpea flour, 1 tbsp salt, and 4 cups water. Ferment at room temperature for 3 hours. When batter begins to bubble, cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate, 3 hours and up to a day. In a large olive oil–coated cast-iron pan over high heat, cook a large, golden, and crispy chickpea pancake. (Depending on pan size, you may get two.) Transfer to a baking sheet, dress with pizza toppings, and bake until toppings are hot.
4. Crunchy Spiced Chickpeas
In a large bowl, toss canned, drained, and paper towel–dried chickpeas with olive oil. Spread chickpeas across a parchment-lined baking sheet and bake at 375° until golden and crispy, 35 to 45 minutes, shaking tray halfway through. Spice it however you like. We like this concoction from chef Robert McCormick of True Food Kitchen Opens in New Window: fennel pollen, fresh lemon zest, and sea salt.