Chickpeas are a great source of sustainable protein for your family. Here are 29 different ways to serve chickpeas to your kids.
(This post is NOT sponsored, but I did receive samples of Biena snacks, which inspired this post because we loved them!)
Welcome to my new series, “Let’s Try!”
I’ll be featuring different healthy foods and all kinds of kid-friendly ways to serve them. First up: Chickpeas!
Are Chickpeas Beans?
Yes! Chickpeas are also called garbanzo beans, and people have been eating them since ancient times.
Are Chickpeas Healthy?
Absolutely. Chickpeas are a great source of lean, sustainable protein and fiber. A one-half cup serving of chickpeas has six grams of fiber, about a quarter of what kids need in a day. Chickpeas contain iron and zinc, two minerals kids need for growth. And like all “pulses”–peas, lentils, beans–they’re also linked to health benefits such as a lower cholesterol and blood pressure, and perhaps even less risk for some kinds of cancers.
What About Packaged Chickpea Snacks?
There are lots of new bean-based snacks on the market–and I’m all for it! Chickpea “puffs” and even chocolate-covered chickpeas are a nice baby step toward the whole food, especially for reluctant kids (and grown-ups). Are puffs the same as eating the whole chickpea? No, but they may help chickpeas seem less intimidating and more acceptable when they’re presented this way, like a bridge toward the real deal.
Are Dry or Canned Chickpeas Better?
Though both dry and canned beans are pretty economical–and a downright cheap source of protein compared to meat–dry typically costs less. But canned are ready to be tossed into recipes ASAP, with no extra time needed to cook them. And according to Bon Appetit, canned chickpeas are actually the best canned bean around.
How Do I Cook Chickpeas?
Canned chickpeas are cooked and ready to go. If you decide to opt for dry chickpeas, here’s a guide to cooking them on the stove, in the slow cooker, and in the Instant Pot.
What If My Kid Doesn’t Like Chickpeas?
If plain chickpeas haven’t gone over well with your gang, here are some other ways you can introduce them to your kids:
- Roasted chickpeas (see recipes below)
- Falafel (a Middle Eastern “fritter” made with ground chickpeas)
- Hummus (here’s the simple hummus recipe I make)
- Chocolate-covered chickpeas (we like the ones from Biena)
- Chickpea Puffs (ditto on Biena!)
- Chickpea bars & brownies (see recipes below)
If you’re looking for some healthy chickpeas recipes, I’ve collected a bunch. Some of these come from my dietitian friends. I also asked Real Mom readers on Facebook for their kids’ fave chickpea recipes, and those are marked with an asterisk.
Roasted Chickpeas Recipes
Chickpea Bars, Cookies & Brownies Recipes
Chickpea Dinner Recipes
Misc. Chickpea Recipes