Chickpeas, also named garbanzo beans, are a legume very high in protein.  They can be used raw, soaked and sprouted.  They can be cooked and used in salads, added to stews and also made into flour.

Hummus is the most common use for chickpeas.  The legume is ground into a smooth paste with the addition of sesame tahini, garlic, lemon, olive oil and cumin.  (there are variations on this ingredient list when making hummus).  Hummus is great with crudites, crackers, pita bread or used as a sandwich spread.  As a vegan, one of my favorite sandwiches is hummus spread on wholesome bread or healthy wrap and topped with thinly sliced raw red or yellow peppers, sliced tomato, avocado, sprouts, onion or whatever fresh veggies I have in my refrigerator.  My sweetie, who use to be a beef man, loves this sandwich.  It is yummy and extremely nutritious.  Try it!

I love chickpeas tossed with a bit of extra-virgin olive oil and Himalayan salt and roasted in the oven until crunchy.  This makes an awesome snack.  Who needs fatty peanuts when you have healthy chickpeas to munch on.

Chickpeas contain protein, zinc, folate, high dietary fiber, healthy carbohydrates and low fat.  Chickpeas contain minerals such as calcium, magnesium, phosphorous and potassium to name a few.

Nutrition facts:  1/2  cup of chickpeas are 110 calories with 2 grams of polyunsaturated fat, 189 grams carbohydrates, 5 grams of fiber and 6 grams of protein, with no cholesterol.

Another great way to make a vegan sandwich using chickpeas is:

2 cups cooked chickpeas, drained, rinsed

1 stalk of celery, chopped

1/2 medium red onion, chopped  OR 1/2 cup chopped scallions

1/2 cup chopped red or yellow or orange pepper

2 tablespoons vegan mayonnaise or if you aren’t vegan… any mayo will do

1 tablespoon of fresh dill weed or 1 teaspoon dried dill weed

Salt and pepper to taste.

Mash the chickpeas in a bowl and add the rest of the ingredients. Mix it all up well and spread onto your favorite grainy bread.  Throw on some greens, lettuce or sprouts.  Add the top slice of grainy bread.   If you are using a wrap or collard leaf spread it in the center and roll it all up.  Either way you have yourself an extremely satisfying and nutrient dense sandwich or wrap.  (the mixture will keep in your refrigerator for 3 days)

You can add so many different things to this mixture.  Try chopped sun-dried tomatoes, corn kernels, shredded carrot, shredded zuccini.  The possibilities are endless.



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