If you have not tried roasted chickpeas, allow me to introduce you to this crispy, highly addictive snack. First let me assure you, this hard to resist treat is completely healthy with some fantastic nutritional components. Another bonus is, unlike other snacks that are filled with empty calories, these roasted chickpeas actually leave you feeling satisfied!
Chickpeas, also referred to as garbanzo beans, have long been valued for their fiber content. About 65-75% of this fiber is insoluble fiber which is fantastic for your large intestinal health. Two cups of chickpeas provides you with your entire daily value of fiber! Of course that's probably more than you would want to consume in one sitting, but you get the idea. Studies have shown that a diet consisting of chickpeas can contribute to better blood fat regulation and lower cholesterol.
Another bonus with these guys is they also provide us with some valuable antioxidants. In addition to vitamin C, vitamin E, and beta-carotene, chickpeas also contain more concentrated supplies of antioxidant phytonutrients. Studies clearly show the ability of chickpeas to reduce our risk of heart disease, and it is believed that an important part of this risk reduction is due to the fantastic antioxidant make-up of these legumes. They are low on the glycemic index chart and one cup of these nutritious legumes will only cost you 269 calories. That pretty good considering they are so satisfying.
You can definitely soak your own chickpeas if you prefer that method over using canned. If you use canned, stick to BPA free brands. You will want to rinse them thoroughly and pat them dry with either paper towels or a clean dish towel. This is an important step because if you try roasting them while they are still wet, they will not crisp up. Spread them out so they are not crowding each other on your baking sheet. I like to roast them for 15 minutes, remove them from the oven, toss them with the oil and remaining ingredients, then roast them for another 15-25 minutes. To determine if they are done, try one. If it is still soft in the middle, it needs more roasting. Try not to judge the flavor while they are piping hot. These are one of those things that need to cool a little before you can really taste the true flavor. Another tip, they are best enjoyed the day you make them. You can most definitely store them in an airtight container at room temperature, but don't be surprised if the next day they have lost a little of their crisp. They are still delicious, in my opinion, just not as crispy as the first day.
Feel free to play around with the spices. You can omit the chai flavors and go for some cayenne to make a spicy chocolate version. You can also omit the chocolate and just do a basic maple cinnamon version. I like to add some roasted coconut and raw cacao nibs in this recipe. There are so many possibilities of flavors and mix-ins that you can't go wrong. These are great for game days, parties, and make a perfect snack. They are easy to take with you to work or school as well.
2 cans organic chickpeas
2 Tbs coconut oil, melted
2 Tbs raw cacao powder
3 Tbs maple syrup
2 tsp cinnamon
2 tsp ginger
1 tsp cardamom
1/2 tsp cloves
1. Drain and rinse the chickpeas thoroughly. Pat the chickpeas dry with a paper towel. Some of the skins will fall off. That's okay.
2. Preheat oven to 400°F. Line a rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper. Once the chickpeas are dry, place them on the baking sheet. Make sure they are not crowding.
3. Roast the chickpeas for 15 minutes. While they are roasting, melt your coconut oil and place it in a small bowl. Then add the maple syrup, cacao powder, cinnamon, ginger, cardamom, and cloves. Mix well.
4. Remove the baking sheet from the oven when the 15 minutes is up. Place the chickpeas in a medium sized bowl. Then add the chocolate chai mixture to the chickpeas. Mix well. Then place the chickpeas back onto the baking sheet. Roast for an additional 15-25 minutes, turning the chickpeas occasionally. When the chickpeas are brown and crispy, turn the oven off. Leave the oven door cracked open to allow the chickpeas to slowly cool down for about 15 minutes.
5. Remove the baking sheet and finish cooling. Makes about 2 cups. Add in cacao nibs or unsweetened roasted coconut if desired. Store at room temperature in an airtight container.