Why Chickpeas are the Best Legume
Chickpeas are the best legume. I love the shape, texture and versatility of chickpeas. Toss them in a salad, use them in a stew, make veggie burgers out of them & (if using canned chickpeas) the aquafaba can be used as an egg substitute for vegan baking. Not only are chickpeas versatile - they are nutritious as well.
A one-cup serving of chickpeas contains 15 grams of protein & 13 grams of fiber. Plus, the one-cup serving contains 70% of the daily value (DV) of folate and 26% of DV of iron (Source: LiveStrong). Chickpeas play a large part in the plant-based lifestyle I follow. They are easy to digest and full of fiber to keep things moving. If you have an issue with getting gassy after eating any legume, a great tip is to soak them.
When using canned chickpeas, soak them in water overnight or during the day for at least 12 hours. Change the water half-way through. When using dried chickpeas, increase that time to 24 - 48 hours. Again changing the water half-way through. That helps to reduce the lectins, which is what causes gas in some people.
Chickpeas are very beneficial for supporting a health colon. Recent studies show that 65-75% of the fiber in chickpeas remains undigested until it gets to the colon. The colon then metabolizes the fiber to produce short chain fatty acids. The short chain fatty acids provide fuel to the cells of the intestinal wall, which is the energy needed to help reduce the risk of colon cancer (Source: World's Healthiest Foods).
Here are the recipes:
Whaaaattt? Chickpeas for breakfast? I kid you not! Look at some of the great recipes that use chickpeas for breakfast.
Avocado Chickpea Toast from Living Well Kitchen combines one of the hottest breakfast trends, avocado toast, and adds some flair & extra nutrients by adding in chickpeas! Well Done Living Well Kitchen! Click here for recipe.
Now here is a great idea: Chickpea Scrambled Vegan Eggs. The reason this is genius is the chickpea eggs can be combined with spinach, tomatoes, onions or whatever your go-to egg add-in is. Remember, 1 cup of chickpeas contains 15 grams of protein which will help you stay full until your mid-morning snack. Click here for the recipe from Nest and Glow.
Did you know chickpea flour is a thing? This Carrot Zucchini Breakfast Bread uses chickpea flour. Plus, the recipe can be made vegan by using flax eggs instead of chicken eggs. Click here for the recipe from Rachl Mansfield.
I love sweet potatoes and I eat them for breakfast. Especially during the work week. I eat overnight oats about 3-4 days a week. But to keep breakfast interesting, since I have to meal-prep on the weekends, I'll also make sweet potatoes in different recipes. This Chickpea Sweet Potato Hash from Simple Veganista is a great meal-prep recipe.
Plus, it is portable! Click here for the recipe.
Vegan Pancakes made with aquafaba from Serious Eats. If you are looking for a new way to make pancakes you have to try this recipe. While it uses white flour, you can substitute a gluten-free flour for those who need it. Click here for the recipe.
CHICKPEA LUNCH / DINNER
Now that I shared with you ways to eat chickpeas for breakfast, let's move onto lunch. Actually, these recipes could also work for dinner so I combined lunch & dinner recipes all into one. Simply click on the name of the recipe below to be brought to the full recipe. Don't forget - if you try one, tag me on Instagram as @heather_lee_donahue and use the #heathershealthhabits hashtag. I love seeing your takes on the recipes I share!
Roasted Broccoli Chickpea Quinoa bowls from Nourished The Blog
Chickpea Avocado Feta Salad from Homegrown in The Valley
Sweet & Sour Chickpeas with Peppers from Lord Byron's Kitchen
Crispy Chickpea Cutlet from Living Vegan
Chickpea Spinach Sweet Potato Brown Rice bowl from Green Evi
Chickpea Balls in Marinara Sauce from Ceara's Kitchen
Smoky Chickpea Lentil Soup from Dishing Out Health
CHICKPEAS FOR DESSERTS AND BAKING
Since I mentioned aquafaba at the beginning of the post, I added a few recipes so you can be inspired the next time you are making a dessert or are in the mood to bake.
Aquafaba Chocolate Mousse from A Saucy Kitchen is light, creamy and only uses 3 basic ingredients: aquafaba, dark chocolate and unsweetened cocoa powder. This is so easy anyone can make dessert! Top it with sliced fresh strawberries. YUM! Click here for the recipe.
Vegan Lemon Blueberry Muffins from Yup...It's Vegan, uses aquafaba instead of eggs. The muffins are perfect without them! Click here for the recipe.
Funfetti Vegan Cupcakes are a perfect birthday treat. Using aquafaba, no one will know you made them vegan! Click here for the recipe from Nora Cooks.
Vegan Carrot Cake from The Vegan Larder uses aquafaba and a combination of cinnamon, ginger and all spice for flavors that are more spicy than sweet. If you need this cake sweetened up, you can frost it with a Vegan Vanilla Frosting from Loving it Vegan. Click here for the Carrot Cake recipe.
I hope this post inspired you to use chickpeas as more than just a salad topping. Chickpeas are versatile enough to be eaten for breakfast, lunch and dinner. Happy Cooking!
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