If we could give a prize for the most versatile ingredient, we’ll give chickpeas numerous trophies and gold medals! Hear us out – It’s such a nutritious ingredient you can find in numerous cuisines and savory recipes. It must make you wonder, “what do chickpeas taste like?”
From salads, soups, pasta, and curries, there are so many things you can do with chickpeas. And oh, let’s not forget that chickpeas are a major component of hummus, a must-try with deliciously warm pita bread! Moreover, it’s grown in popularity worldwide and is now a staple food in various areas.
Alright, we don’t want to get ahead of ourselves and have you feeling like you’re missing out. If you’ve NEVER tried chickpeas before, you’re probably wondering why we’re blabbering so much about it! Does it taste that good?
Chickpeas taste earthy and a bit nutty with bean-like flavors that work so well in many recipes, no matter what diet you follow!
Come on, read on to find out more about this superfood!
What Do Chickpeas Taste Like?
Chickpeas, also called garbanzo beans, are legumes with a round shape and beige color, though you can find other varieties of different names.
What does chickpea taste like anyway? Some people might claim they taste bland and boring, but they probably didn’t cook them properly or appreciate chickpeas’ natural flavors.
Being a legume, you can expect a slightly beany flavor and nutty earthiness to it, completing many dishes.
Moreover, they have a creamy texture when cooked right, working excellently in soups and stews.
Alternatively, you can eat them on their own and expect a slight crunch and graininess, having a gentle firmness. Their texture is almost comparable to mashed potatoes.
Chickpeas were even used as a beverage back in the day when people drank this as a caffeine-free beverage if they wanted coffee. It’s probably because of the earthy and slightly nutty flavor, though we draw the line in drinking chickpea “tea.” We like our drinks sweeter or tangier, but chickpeas have a mild savory flavor.
Fun fact: The United Nations recognizes chickpeas as a superfood as they've got a ton of necessary nutrients like protein, dietary fiber, vitamins, and minerals!
Different Kinds of Chickpeas
Here are the different kinds of chickpeas with their flavors and textures:
- Dried chickpeas taste more like beans, having a nutty and earthy flavor. It’s perfect for those who want to add genuine chickpea flavor to their dishes. Just make sure you soak them before using them.
- Canned chickpeas are creamier than the dried variety and are the most sought-after since you can use them immediately. While they taste like dried chickpeas, there’s more saltiness as they’re stored in brine.
- Roasted chickpeas are a delicious snack with a smoky taste filled with other spices or seasonings. Either eat roasted chickpeas on their own or as a topping over meals!
In general, think of chickpeas as pinto beans with a similar flavor and texture. However, chickpeas aren’t as sweet or creamy. That isn’t a bad thing, though! It gives chickpeas more versatility in the kitchen for both sweet and savory dishes.
Frequently Asked Questions
If you’d like to know more about chickpeas and their many uses, keep on reading!
1. Where can you buy chickpeas?
You can find and purchase chickpeas in just about any supermarket or online store!
If you can’t find dried or fresh chickpeas in your supermarket, you’ll more likely find them canned. They are readily available in local supermarkets, so you won’t have to worry about their availability.
2. What can you do with chickpeas?
We usually find chickpeas in hummus and salads, but they are featured in even more recipes under Jewish, Italian, Philippine, Middle Eastern, and Mediterranean cuisines, among others! Here are some ideas to get you started with tasting chickpeas:
- Sandwich filling
- Soups or stews
- Paired with roasted chicken
- Tikka masala
- Chickpea pizza crust
- Meatless burgers
- Brownie cake (yes, even desserts!)
3. What are the health benefits of chickpeas?
We can’t enumerate all the health benefits chickpeas offer but here are the most notable ones: (*)
- Chickpeas help with weight control thanks to their high levels of dietary fiber, keeping you full for longer. The fiber can also help prevent constipation, maintaining excellent gut health.
- Chickpeas have low sodium and cholesterol levels, containing polyunsaturated fats to help control and reduce cholesterol. It can help decrease the risk of heart disease.
- Chickpeas are generally low on the glycemic index, so they don’t make blood sugar levels spike. It’s suitable for those who have diabetes.
- Chickpeas work for just about any diet, whether you’re vegan, vegetarian, or with a gluten sensitivity. You get the protein you need without meat or carbs without gluten! One cup of chickpeas has about 269 calories with almost 15 grams of protein and 45 grams of carbohydrates. (*)
Wrapping It Up
Some people assume chickpeas taste dull when that’s not the case! They have a flavor suiting just about any palate and will do wonders for your overall health. The next time someone asks you, “what do chickpeas taste like?” you now know what to answer!
Do you have more questions about what other foods taste like? Check out our other blog posts on this topic here at Nomspedia!