baked chickpeas with pita chips and yogurt (2023)

Nothing against barbecue-style baked beans, all tangy sauced and full of smoky burnt end drippings — hi summer, get here quick please — but I hardly see why navy beans get to have all of the fun. Where are the baked kidney beans, black-eyed peas and gigantes? Baking is a phenomenal way to cook dried beans and a great way to make something more complex of canned ones; when you start considering flavors, the sky, nay, the globe is the limit. I want these red beans slow-baked in a big casserole, scooped with tortilla chips. I want baked black beans heaped over tostones, braised white beans over Catalan-style tomato bread and I want what we had for dinner last night for the first time all over again, because it was perfect.

In an attempt to wean myself from my ongoing obsessive fixation on all things Tex-Mex — taco, tortilla, fajita and quesadilla — I didn’t get as far as it may seem. Sure, I spiked my baked chickpeas with Middle Eastern spices, but once I’d scooped them onto oven-crisped pita chips, dolloped it with lemon-tahini yogurt sauce, a finely chopped tomato-cucumber salad, well-toasted pine nuts, hot sauce and a fistful of chopped parsley, I realized I’d basically made Middle Eastern nachos. And I’m not even a little sorry.

Because this was one of our best dinners in ages — I’m struggling to control my gushing here, to be honest — and I’m so glad I made a full pound of beans, so we can have more for tonight. It was the kind of vegetarian meal (and vegan, too, if you omit the yogurt) that you totally forgot was, because it was incidental. It’s playful and fun to lay out many elements and let everyone pile them on as they see fit. And, because it was crunchy and fresh but also warm, fragrant and insanely filling, it felt like the perfect meal to bridge the heavy foods of winter and the brighter ones to come. More of this, please.

One year ago:Whole-Grain Cinnamon Swirl Bread
Two years ago:Chocolate Hazelnut Macaroon Torte
Three years ago:Soft Eggs with Buttery Herb Gruyere Toasts
Four years ago:Oat and Maple Syrup Scones
Five years ago:Bakewell Tart
Six years ago:Cream Cheese Pound Cake and Strawberry Coulis
Seven years ago:Caramel Walnut Upside-Down Banana Cake
Eight years ago:Bulgur Salad with Chickpeas and Red Peppers

And for the other side of the world:
Six Months Ago:Latke Waffles
1.5 Years Ago:Frico Grilled Cheese Sandwiches
2.5 Years Ago:Crackly Banana Bread
3.5 Years Ago:Roasted Tomato Soup with Broiled Cheddar

Baked Chickpeas with Pita Chips and Yogurt

My baked chickpea curiousity began many years ago, when Amanda Hesser shared a recipe in the New York Times from a Basque cookbook for baked garbanzos in 1999 (yes, I’m old). I’d forgotten about it until the Times relaunched their Cooking section last fall, but I was thrown by the need for saffron threads, which are expensive to procure and likely meant that most people wouldn’t make it. So, I got to thinking about what other cultures and flavors could be applied, and landed in the Middle East. In short, it’s not the first time I’ve gone all the way around to realize later I was making something that already existed, a dish known as fatteh.

Note: To make this gluten-free, make your chips from gluten-free wraps or pitas. To make this vegan or dairy-free, make a lemon-tahini sauce, minus the yogurt. (It can be thinned with water, once you get the lemon level where you like it.)

Serves 6 generously, if eaten nacho-style

For the chickpeas
1 pound dried chickpeas (garbanzo beans) or 4 15-ounce cans cooked chickpeas
1/4 cup olive oil
2 medium yellow onions, halved and thinly sliced
3 cloves of garlic, peeled and minced
2 teaspoons ground cumin
2 teaspoons ground coriander
1 teaspoon paprika or sumac
1/2 teaspoon cayenne, spoonful of harissa or a couple shakes of your favorite hot sauce (all adjusted to your heat preference)
Few gratings fresh lemon zest
2 teaspoons coarse sea or kosher salt (what I used for lightly salted broth, use more for unsalted, less for salted or canned beans)
4 cups vegetable broth (for dried but soaked chickpeas), 1 1/2 cups vegetable broth (for cooked chickpeas)
1 cup or more of water (will likely only need if beans weren’t pre-soaked)

Fixings (all instructions below)
Fresh pitas for pita chips
Big handful of parsley (or a mix of parsley, cilantro and mint would be good too)
1/4 cup pine nuts
Tomato-cucumber “relish” salad
Lemon-tahini yogurt or plain yogurt
Additional paprika or sumac for sprinkling

Soak dried chickpeas: Do you have to soak beans before you cook them? Nope, no, nope. But it will save a lot of cooking time, making this more of a one-hour weeknight meal. So, if you can plan ahead, soak them in an ample amount of water at room temperature for 24 hours. Don’t have 24 hours? I soaked mine for 3. I will make final cooking time estimations based on soaking times. Using canned beans? Skip this step entirely.

Prepare your chickpeas: Heat oven to 375°F (190°C). In a large, heavy pot such as a Dutch oven (mine was 4 quarts, an ideal size), heat olive oil in the bottom of the pan over medium-high heat. Add onions and cook for 5 minutes, until they begin to soften. Add garlic and saute garlic and onions together for 3 to 4 minutes more, until everything is wilted. Add spices, zest and salt and cook with onions and garlic for one minute. Add drained soaked or canned chickpeas and:

  • for already cooked or canned chickpeas: 1 1/2 cups broth
  • for dried chickpeas that have been soaked: 4 cups broth
  • for dried chickpeas that have not been soaked: 4 cups broth and 1 cup water to start

Bring mixture to a boil and boil for one full minute. Place a lid on the pot and transfer it carefully to the oven.

Bake your chickpeas: Please keep in mind that cooking beans isn’t a perfect science, and the amount absorbed if pre-soaked or not, the age and freshness of the chickpeas and even the softness of ones from a can are going to affect how much cooking time and liquid is needed. But, these estimates are fairly solid from my experience:

  • for already cooked or canned chickpeas: bake for 15 minutes
  • for dried chickpeas that had been soaked: bake for 45 minutes (estimate for 24 hours soaking) to 75 minutes (estimate for 2 to 3 hours soaking)
  • for dried chickpeas that had not been soaked: bake for 1 hour 30 minutes, but start checking in every 10 to 15 minutes from 50 minutes on to see if more liquid or cooking time will be needed

Chickpeas are done when they’re firm-tender.

Meanwhile, prep your fixings: While the chickpeas bake, prepare any fixings that caught your eye:

To make pita chips from store-bought pitas: Separate the layers of pitas and cut into wedges. Arrange on a large baking sheet and brush lightly with 2 tablespoons olive oil and sprinkle with salt. Bake alongside chickpeas for 10 to 15 minutes, tossing occasionally to ensure that they toast evenly. Let cool.

To toast pine nuts: Spread the nuts on a baking sheet and toast them in the oven while the chickpeas bake for 5 minutes, tossing once or twice as they like to toast unevenly. Let cool.

To make a tomato-cucumber “relish” salad: Chop a handful of whatever decent-looking tomatoes you can find in March, and 1 large or a few smaller cucumbers into very small pieces. Finely chop 1/4 a small red onion. Mix vegetables and onion in a bowl and dress to taste with olive oil, fresh lemon juice, salt and pepper.

To make lemon-tahini yogurt: Whisk 6 tablespoons well-stirred tahini in the bottom of a bowl. Whisk in the juice of a whole lemon, 1 minced garlic clove and 4 tablespoons water until smooth. Whisk in 1 cup plain yogurt, about 1/4 at a time, until smooth. Season with salt. Adjust all levels to taste.

Serve and let everyone assemble: We started with a handful of pita chips on our plan, then heaped on the baked chickpeas, dolloped on the yogurt sauce, tomato-cucumber “relish” salad, sprinkled everything with parsley and pine nuts and then a couple of us also shook on some hot sauce. Dig in.

See also: The Middle Eastern food blog Desert Candy, which I’ve been reading for years but apparently missed the wrong month to fall behind, shared a recipe last week for “Nile Nachos” which use roasted instead of baked/braised chickpeas. I love this idea (and the fresh radishes on top); it feels snackier/lighter and a great fit for a party. I recommend patting canned chickpeas dry very well on paper towels before roasting them or they don’t get very crisp. I find that freshly-cooked beans, which tend to be firmer, crisp up better in the oven.



Why are my chickpeas not crispy? ›

To get chickpeas crispy, and stay that way, the single secret is to make sure they're really dry. This is especially important if you use canned chickpeas, since they're exposed to liquid in the can for much longer than when you cook them from dried. Therefore you need to pre-dry them in the oven before adding any oil.

Do I need to soak chickpeas before roasting? ›

You do not have to cook the dried chickpeas before you roast them.
  1. Soak the chickpeas in plenty of water for about 24 hours. ...
  2. After they have soaked, drain and dry them well.
  3. Toss them with oil and salt, then bake the chickpeas on a large sheet pan at 400°F until they are nice and crispy (about 20 to 35 minutes).
Oct 27, 2022

How do you soften crispy chickpeas? ›

I soak dried garbanzo beans/chickpeas overnight, rinse well, then cook beans in Instant Pot. Beans come out tender. Then I dry beans on towel, toss with olive oil, roast at 375 degrees on jelly roll pan for 60 minutes, stirring every 15 minutes.

How long should chickpeas soak? ›

Place the chickpeas in a large bowl and cover them with water by a good few inches then leave them overnight (8 to 24 hours). Quick soaking method. This takes only 1 hour before cooking.

How to make the crispiest roasted chickpeas with an Audible Crunch? ›

Be patient — up to a point.

As Joe points out, he likes to do a low, slow roast for one hour at 300 degrees to generate the ultimate crunch. A further two-hour rest in the turned-off oven is key, as well.

Why add baking soda when cooking chickpeas? ›

The alkaline environment created by the baking soda helps break down the pectin in the beans, softening the beans' skins so well that they disintegrate during cooking and are easily rinsed away.

Why are my roasted chickpeas chewy? ›

In order to achieve the crunchy texture you are after, you have to remove the outer skin from the chickpea, first. Otherwise, it is too easy for water to get trapped in there and create a steaming affect when roasting. This results in chewy chickpeas, not crunchy.

Why are my chickpeas popping in the oven? ›

FAQS. Why did my chickpeas pop / explode in the oven? They weren't dry enough before you started to roast them. You must dry them properly.

How healthy are roasted chickpeas? ›

Crispy roasted chickpeas have protein, fiber and healthy carbs – making them totally good for you! Is eating chickpeas good for weight loss? Roasted chickpeas can be good for weight loss. They're lower in calories/carbs than bread and higher in protein and fiber.

Why are my chickpeas foaming while soaking? ›

It's Called Aquafaba

While soaking pulses like peas, chickpeas, and white beans, some of their starches, protein, B-vitamins, zinc, and iron leach into the water creating aquafaba,” explains Toby Amidor, MS, RD, food safety expert and Wall Street Journal best-selling cookbook author.

Are chickpeas and garbanzo beans the same thing? ›

The name chickpea comes from the Latin word cicer, referring to the plant family of legumes, Fabaceae. It is also known by its popular Spanish-derived name, the garbanzo bean.

Why are my chickpeas still hard after cooking? ›

If you've been cooking for hours on end and the chickpeas are still hard, it could simply be that they're very old. If you're really struggling, you could try adding ¼ teaspoon of baking soda to the cooking water. This helps to break the chickpeas down, but might affect the final taste.

What happens if you don't soak chickpeas before cooking? ›

If you forget, you can simply start the cooking process, but expect them to take longer to cook than if you had soaked them first. It can take up to twice the time if you don't soak them first. The reason most people prefer to soak beans is: Soaking makes the beans cook faster.

Why are my chickpeas not soft after soaking? ›

The minerals in hard water can leave deposits on the beans, preventing them from softening . Solution: Use store-bought vegetable broth or bottled water. Acid. Never add anything acidic to the water when soaking or cooking chickpeas.

What is the trick to soaking chickpeas? ›

Slow soaking dried chickpeas: Tip them into a bowl and cover with cold water, and use plenty of water as they will swell as they soak. Leave overnight or for 8-12 hours to absorb water and swell. Adding bicarbonate of soda can help the soaking process, especially if you live in a hard water area.

What's the difference between chickpeas and roasted chickpeas? ›

There is no difference! The only reason they are referred to by different names is that chickpeas are the English name while garbanzo is the Spanish name. They are legumes, part of the pea family, and packed with both fiber and protein.

What makes chickpeas taste better? ›

Fresh garlic: In a pinch you can ¼ teaspoon garlic powder. But fresh garlic is the best way to instant flavor. Smoked paprika: The smoked Spanish variety of paprika adds just the right smoky undertone (and you can use it in lots of other recipes).

How do you get chickpeas to absorb flavor? ›

Mix the olive oil, red wine vinegar, garlic, parsley, dried oregano, salt and pepper together in a large mixing bowl. Drain the chickpeas then add the chickpeas and mix. Let the chickpeas sit in the marinade for at least 1 hour to absorb flavour.

Why did my chickpeas turn black? ›

Rinse the chickpeas before adding them into a pot. Fill the pot with water to slightly above the chickpeas. Some add baking soda at this point instead of during the soaking time, however, do not do this with an aluminum pot. Baking soda will react with the aluminum and cause your chickpeas to turn a dark/black color.

What happens if you put too much baking soda in beans? ›

Along with brining and soaking, baking soda can work wonders on beans, saving you up to an hour of cooking time. Just be sure not to add more than a pinch—too much and the beans can end up tasting soapy and unpleasant.

How do you get rid of gas from chickpeas? ›

The best way to secure the release of oligosaccharides from chickpeas is to soak the legumes overnight. This significantly reduces the components of the sugar, thus reducing the discomforting and gas-causing effect of oligosaccharides.

Why do I feel weird after eating chickpeas? ›

As with other food allergies, chickpea allergy symptoms most commonly occur on the skin, according to the University of Manchester. These include redness, rashes, and hives. You may also notice inflammation. More serious symptoms of a food allergy include a decrease in blood pressure, diarrhea, and vomiting.

Can you eat too many roasted chickpeas? ›

You can eat at least one serving (28 grams) of chickpeas per day. However, don't eat more than 70 grams a day since that can cause adverse side effects. If you consume too many chickpeas, some side effects you may get include bloating, nausea, and gas. It's important to remember that chickpeas should not be eaten raw.

Why every time I eat chickpeas my stomach bloats? ›

Legumes (beans, peas, lentils, chickpeas, broad beans) are at the top of the list of foods that cause bloating. The reason for this is raffinose, a complex carbohydrate composed of glucose, fructose, and galactose.

What is the gelatinous stuff in a chickpea can? ›

Aquafaba is the thick liquid that results from soaking or cooking legumes, such as chickpeas, in water for an extended period of time. It's the translucent viscous goop you probably rinse down the drain when you open a can of chickpeas.

Do you cook chickpeas covered or uncovered? ›

Method for Stovetop, Uncovered

Cover by a few inches with water, and add 1/2 teaspoon salt. Bring to a boil, reduce heat, and cook at a simmer until tender, about 90 minutes to 2 hours.

What is the white foam on top of chickpeas? ›

The white foam is a 'scum' that is formed as protein is released from the chickpeas. Yes, that is the term that is used. Scum. This can be skimmed for aesthetic reasons - it sticks to the pot, or overboils, etc...

What is the healthiest way to eat chickpeas? ›

"Chickpeas are wonderful to add directly to your dish—like salad, pasta, or soup—for extra protein and fiber," Cannon told us. If you're craving a satisfying crunch, she recommends roasting them with avocado oil and plain ol' sea salt. To help spruce up the flavor, though, Cording likes to add fresh seasoning.

Are chickpeas anti inflammatory? ›

Rich in protein and fiber, chickpeas are also low-glycemic carbohydrates and full of inflammation-fighting nutrients.

Are chickpeas carbs or protein? ›

Chickpeas boast an impressive nutritional profile. They contain a moderate number of calories, providing 269 per cup (164 grams). Approximately 67% of these calories come from carbs, while the rest comes from protein and fat ( 1 ).

Should you rinse chickpeas after soaking? ›

Whether you use the long soak or the quick soak to rehydrate your beans, you will still need to cook them. After the beans have soaked, drain and rinse them well. To cook the soaked beans, add them to a large pot, cover the beans with several inches of water, and bring everything to a boil.

Should you always drain chickpeas? ›

If you are using canned chickpeas, drain and rinse them with water to cut the sodium (salt) content by almost a half. Rinse well in cold water to make them easier to digest and less gas-producing.

Can you leave chickpeas to soak for too long? ›

If your beans are left soaking for too long they begin to ferment. This starts happening around 48 hours at room temperature. If you soak your beans in the refrigerator, it will take three or four days before fermentation begins.

What do Mexicans call chickpeas? ›

Guasanas are green chickpeas.

Are chickpeas a vegetable or protein? ›

They come from a plant — in fact, Lane notes they're one of the earliest cultivated vegetables in history — and grow two to three to a pod. However, chickpeas are considered to be both a vegetable and a protein because they're so nutritious. Some people even consider them a superfood.

Can you overcook chickpeas? ›

Can you overcook chickpeas? Absolutely. The more you cook them, the softer they will get. While soft chickpeas are great for certain recipes, for others it will not give you the end result you are looking for.

Are dried chickpeas better than canned? ›

They are the basis for foods like hummus and falafel and, while it is convenient to use canned chickpeas, dried chickpeas really are a better option. Dried chickpeas are much more economical and they tend to have a more natural flavor because they aren't soaked in preservatives.

Can you eat raw chickpeas? ›

Risks. People should not eat raw chickpeas or other raw pulses, as they can contain toxins and substances that are difficult to digest. Even cooked chickpeas have complex sugars that can be difficult to digest and lead to intestinal gas and discomfort.

Are canned chickpeas healthy? ›

Great news! Both canned and dried varieties of chickpeas are nutritious! When purchasing canned varieties, look for those labeled "no salt added" or "low in sodium." Overall, beans are budget-friendly, but dried can often be less expensive and also more flavorful than canned.

Why do you rinse canned chickpeas? ›

Unless the recipe tells you to keep the canned beans in their liquid, you should drain your can and give the beans a good rinse before using. This will improve the flavor and texture of your finished dish.

How do you tell if chickpeas have soaked long enough? ›

In an insulated casserole, the chickpeas should soak in an hour. In any other container, it may take about 2-3 hours. You'll know that the chickpeas are soaked well, when you try to pinch one between your nails and it goes right through without too much trouble. That's it!

Should I put soaking chickpeas in the fridge? ›

But, what if you soaked them and aren't ready to use them in your cooking just yet? That's easy. To store soaked chickpeas, simply drain the water, let the chickpeas dry, and store in an airtight container for up to 4 days in the fridge.

Do you cover chickpeas when soaking? ›

You can soak them overnight, if you have the time. Place them in a large bowl and cover with cold water. The chickpeas will expand to over double their size, so make sure you cover by several inches of water to allow for expansion. Cover the bowl with a clean towel and let them soak overnight.

What does baking soda do when soaking chickpeas? ›

Bicarbonate of soda (baking soda) can be added to the soaking water (after boiling, if using the quick method) as it helps to soften the skins of the pulses, making it easier for the dried pulses to absorb some of the soaking water and helping them to rehydrate and soften.

Is 4 hours enough to soak chickpeas? ›

Place the chickpeas in a large bowl and cover them with water by a good few inches then leave them overnight (8 to 24 hours). Quick soaking method. This takes only 1 hour before cooking. Put the chickpeas in a large pot and cover them with plenty of water, bring to a boil and cook for 2 minutes.

Why are my chickpeas mushy? ›

A few factors determine whether they'll turn mushy when roasted: the type of chickpeas (dried and soaked overnight or dried), how well they are dried before roasting and how much oil is used (you need only a little). You can soak your own chickpeas or use the ones in a can.

Should chickpeas be soft or crunchy? ›

Keep in mind that depending on how you plan to use the beans you may want them to be firmer or softer. If you are cooking chickpeas for hummus, you'll want the beans to be soft. On the other hand, if you plan to add the beans to a salad or stew, you may want them on the firmer side.

Why are my chickpeas still crunchy after soaking? ›

If you've been cooking for hours on end and the chickpeas are still hard, it could simply be that they're very old. If you're really struggling, you could try adding ¼ teaspoon of baking soda to the cooking water. This helps to break the chickpeas down, but might affect the final taste.

Can you overcook chickpea? ›

Can you overcook chickpeas? Absolutely. The more you cook them, the softer they will get. While soft chickpeas are great for certain recipes, for others it will not give you the end result you are looking for.

Are chickpeas the same as garbanzo beans? ›

The name chickpea comes from the Latin word cicer, referring to the plant family of legumes, Fabaceae. It is also known by its popular Spanish-derived name, the garbanzo bean.

Why are my chickpeas foaming? ›

As a legume, chickpeas are coated in an organic, soapy substance known as saponins that get released as they cook. When mixed with the bean's proteins and carbs, this substance thickens even more, creating a layer of foam that will quickly overflow if the right precautions aren't taken (via Veg FAQs).

What is the white stuff on top of soaked chickpeas? ›

What Is It? Aquafaba is the thick liquid that results from soaking or cooking legumes, such as chickpeas, in water for an extended period of time. It's the translucent viscous goop you probably rinse down the drain when you open a can of chickpeas.

Is it OK to eat crunchy chickpeas? ›

And there's only one rule for eating chickpeas: Make sure they're fully cooked beforehand! Aside from being too hard to eat when they're dry, uncooked chickpeas contain toxins like lectins which can cause food poisoning. Plus, cooking cooked chickpeas again will only make them better.


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