Roasted Chickpeas

I first found roasted chickpeas (aka garbanzo beans) last year and, although I really enjoyed them, after a couple of batches, I forgot about them….until a few months ago.  I was reading the newest issue of “Whole Living” magazine, and ran across a recipe for honey-sesame candied chickpeas.  Needless to say, my mouth was immediately watering.  A combination of the little honey- sesame stick candies with the crunchy wholesomeness of chickpeas– I’ll take it.

It took me a couple of batches and adjustments to make this recipe work, but when it did, the results were great.  These are a great alternative to chips or nuts at a party (especially if you have guests with nut allergies on the invite list) and they are healthy to boot.  The chickpeas are high in protein and fiber and at 270 calories per cup, you can have quite a few before worrying about the caloric impact. Note: these make a cute hostess gift when wrapped in a decorative tin and tied in a pretty kitchen towel or with cute twine.

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When I finally got to the point where I was happy with the honey-sesame flavored chickpea results, I got to work on other flavor combinations to make this crunchy snack more versatile.  I’ll list some of the alternative flavors at the bottom of this post, but feel free to be creative… or perhaps create a healthier version of your favorite potato chip flavor.

Honey-Sesame Candied Chickpeas

Ingredients:

2  15 oz cans chickpeas, drained and rinsed well (a good rinsing reduces the sodium in canned beans by half)

1 tablespoon coconut oil, melted (can substitute for mild olive oil)

1/4 cup honey

1/4 cup sesame seeds

freshly ground pepper and coarse salt to taste

Directions:

1.  Preheat oven to 350º. Thoroughly rinse garbanzo beans and drain well.

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2.  Place drained beans in a single layer on lined baking sheet and bake for approximately 30 minutes, or dried out, but not browned.VLUU L210  / Samsung L210

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3.  Remove from oven.VLUU L210  / Samsung L210

3.  Meanwhile, in a bowl, mix remaining ingredients together except sesame seeds.  Toss to coat and return to baking sheet. Sprinkle with sesame seeds and return to oven.VLUU L210  / Samsung L210

4.  Continue cooking, stirring occasionally, for about 15-20 minutes, or until honey begins to brown slightly and carmelize.VLUU L210  / Samsung L210

5.  Remove from oven and transfer immediately to wax paper or tin foil lightly coated in oil.VLUU L210  / Samsung L210

6.  Separate beans to avoid them hardening in clumps.

7.After completely cooled, store in an oil-proof container for up to 1 week.

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Alternative flavor ideas:

  • chili, cumin and lime seasonings with some cayenne pepper for added heat
  • sesame-soy glazed chickpeas with perhaps a bit of wasabi paste or siracha for spice
  • cinnamon- maple syrup (I use half maple syrup and half maple syrup vingear) with a dash of salt
  • Organic dry ranch dressing mix (the traditional style has msg so organic is important here)
  • sea salt and vinegar

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