Chickpeas, also known as garbanzo beans, are a high-protein, high-fiber, and high-complex-carbohydrate legume. They’re nutrient-dense, which means they’re high in beneficial nutrients yet low in calories. Chickpeas are a flexible plant-based protein source that may be found in many Mediterranean and Indian recipes.
Nutritional Values of Chickpeas
The USDA provides the following nutritional information for 1 cup (152g) of drained and rinsed canned chickpeas.
- 210 calories
- 3.8 g fat
- 322 mg sodium
- 35 g carbohydrate
- 9.6 g fiber
- 6 g sugar
- 10.7 g protein
Carbohydrate accounts for the majority of the calories in chickpeas. A 1-cup serving contains around 35 grams of carbohydrates. Chickpeas contain the majority of their carbohydrate in the form of fiber and starch, with a tiny amount of naturally occurring sugar.
A 1-cup serving of chickpeas is estimated to have a glycemic load of 23.
Chickpeas contain a modest amount of fat. The majority of it is polyunsaturated fat, which is a better type of fat. Chickpeas also contain tiny levels of saturated and monounsaturated fat.
Chickpeas provide roughly 11 grams of plant-based protein per 1-cup serving. Protein aids in the maintenance of a healthy immune system. It is also utilized to help grow muscle tissue and is a component of hair, skin, and nails.
Minerals and vitamins
Chickpeas are a significant source of folate and vitamin B6 (they provide about 14 percent of your daily needs of each in a 1-cup serving). Thiamin, riboflavin, niacin, and pantothenic acid are all B vitamins.
Manganese, phosphorus, copper, iron, magnesium, and lower levels of potassium, selenium, and calcium are all beneficial minerals found in chickpeas.
Chickpeas provide a lot of health benefits because of all of the vitamins, minerals, protein, and fiber they contain.
Promotes the health of the heart
Chickpeas are high in fiber, with one half-cup meal providing 16 percent of your daily requirements. Chickpeas contain about one-third soluble fiber, making them heart-healthy food. People who eat fiber-rich diets have a lower risk of heart disease, according to studies.
Some Cancers May Be Prevented
Chickpeas include a number of minerals and chemicals that may protect against some types of cancer.
Fiber can help prevent colorectal cancer.
Butyrate can help prevent colorectal cancer.
Saponins are anti-cancer agents that protect against a variety of cancers.
B vitamins are anti-cancer vitamins that protect against breast and lung cancer.
Controls Blood Sugar
Chickpeas, like other legumes, contain resistant starch, which slows carbohydrate absorption. In certain cases, resistant starch is not digested at all in the small intestine.
In persons with diabetes, replacing more quickly digested carbohydrates with legumes improves glycemic control by boosting insulin sensitivity, according to at least one research.
Colon Health Is Improved
Chickpeas, for example, are high in resistant starch, which may help to enhance digestive health by promoting healthy intestinal flora.
Helps with Weight Loss
Fiber and protein-rich foods can help you feel fuller for longer and consume fewer calories overall. Chickpeas provided superior glycemic control and decreased hunger and calorie intake, according to research that compared chickpeas to white bread.
Pulses (certain legumes, including chickpeas) in the diet result in weight loss even when diets are not designed to restrict calories, according to a review of the literature.
Chickpeas, like soybeans and peanuts, are legumes (both of which are top allergens). Chickpea allergy is most commonly detected as a cross-reaction in those who have previously tested positive for soy, peas, lentils, or hazelnuts. If you have allergies to any of these foods, especially peas or lentils, or if you have any symptoms after eating chickpeas, talk to your doctor about what you should eat.
Chickpeas, like other beans and high-fiber foods, can induce digestive issues like flatulence. Fiber can be progressively added to your diet to help prevent these symptoms. Chickpeas, on the other hand, should be avoided if you’re on a low-FODMAP diet to treat irritable bowel syndrome or another digestive disease.
Chickpeas come in two varieties: “blond” chickpeas, which are typically offered in the Middle East and North America, and “black” chickpeas (also known as desi) found in India, Pakistan, and Ethiopia.
You can also buy chickpea flour (besan), which is commonly used as a thickening in Indian curries. This flour is fiber-rich and gluten-free, with half the carbs of wheat flour.
The split kernel of the desi, or Bengal gram, chickpea is known as chana. It has a sweet, earthy flavor and is about the size and shape of a maize kernel when cooked. It’s one of the numerous legumes that go into making dal, the staple of Indian food.
Chickpeas are available in both dried and canned forms. While canned goods are generally more convenient, they contain more sodium than dried goods. A can of chickpeas might have as much as 622mg of salt in it. Drain and rinse the chickpeas thoroughly in water to remove up to 40% of the extra sodium.
Food Storage and Safety
Dried chickpeas should be kept in a cold, dark place. Place them in a tightly closed container once they’ve been opened. Canned chickpeas can be kept in the cupboard or cabinet until the expiration date.
How to Get Ready
If you’re going to use dried chickpeas, soak them first:
- Remove any dirt, pebbles, or debris by picking through the packaging.
- Fill a dish halfway with cold water and rinse the beans, discarding any skins or other debris that float to the top.
- Rinse beans under cold running water after draining them in a strainer.
- Return the beans to a dish and cover with 3 cups of cold water for each cup of beans.
- Soak the beans in water overnight.
- Drain the beans in a colander and remove the water before using.
Use a rapid soaking procedure to save time:
- Rinse the beans and sort them.
- Fill a saucepan with enough cool water to cover the beans by about 2 inches.
- Bring the water to a boil and then reduce to low heat for about 2 minutes.
- Remove from the heat, cover, and leave to soak for 1 hour.
- Before using, drain the beans and discard the water.
- It’s worth noting that 1/4 cup dried beans provides 3/4 cup cooked beans. If using canned beans, drain and rinse them before using.
Chickpeas are a versatile ingredient that may be used in salads, soups, stews, chilis, casseroles, greens, and grain meals. Hummus is made by combining pureed chickpeas with tahini. Use hummus as a vegetable dip for a protein- and fiber-rich snack, or use it instead of high-fat dressings (like mayonnaise) in tuna or chicken salad.