Balsamic Roasted Chickpeas (Garbanzo Beans)

 

I call them Chickpeas because I think it sounds cuter… but whether you know them as Chickpeas or Garbanzo Beans they are nutrient rich & have a wide range of healthy benefits. In addition to being high in Fiber & a great source of vegetarian protein they are also a low glycemic food which helps promote weight loss by controlling your appetite.

This week I made Oven Roasted Chickpeas as part of my afternoon snacks & I wanted to share with you how easy they are to make. What I love about chickpeas is that they have a relatively neutral, almost nutty, flavor that goes well with all kinds of ingredients. It is super rare that I use the same seasonings twice in a row so this recipe is the base to most of my creations & can easily be tweak it to fit your taste.

[Attn: You will have to let the Chickpeas marinade for at least 2 hours so either plan to start these early or, like me, you can mix them up & let them sit in the fridge overnight.]

 

For this recipe you will need the following ingredients:

  • 2 Cans of Chickpeas (I used low-sodium)
  • ¼ Cup Balsamic Vinegar
  • 2 Tbsp Extra Virgin Olive Oil
  • Salt & Pepper to taste

You can also add ½ tsp of one or more of the following: Garlic Powder, Italian Seasoning, Dill Weed, Rosemary, or just about anything else.

Other things that will be helpful:

Instructions:

  1. Drain & rinse canned Chickpeas
  2. In a Medium bowl, mix rinsed Chickpeas with Balsamic Vinegar
  3. Cover & refrigerate for 2-8 hours
  4. Pre-heat Oven to 375 degrees F
  5. (also make sure your rack is placed in the middle of your oven)
  6. Cover a sheet pan with Aluminum Foil & spritz with Cooking Spray
  7. Drain the excess Balsamic Vinegar from the Chickpeas, then mix in olive oil & any seasonings you choose to add.
  8. Spread the Chickpeas in a single layer on your sheet pan, then sprinkle with salt & pepper. (I use fresh ground sea salt & pepper)
  9. Bake the Chickpeas for 25-30 minutes, making sure you “stir” them every 10-15 minutes so they brown evenly.
  10. Once they are cooked to your liking, remove them from the oven & allow them to cool slightly before serving.

This recipe makes 5-6, 2 oz. servings which is how I packaged them for my snacks. You can also make these using dried chickpeas prepared according to the package… about 3 Cups prepared should be a similar substitute for the canned beans.

There are so many different ways to make Baked Chickpeas so if you have tried a different recipe that you absolutely love, please share it with us in the comments below!

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Strawberry Banana Protein Smoothie

Today’s post is less a recipe and more a snapshot of my meal plan. It is a quick smoothie I have been using for my first and second meals this week. If you need an easy way to get your morning protein, smoothies are a great option!

Ingredients:
2 Cups Water
1 Cup Frozen Strawberries
½ Frozen Banana
2 Scoops Vanilla Whey Protein Powder
1 Tbsp Chia Seeds

Directions:
>> Place all ingredients (except chia seeds) in the blender.
>> Blend until desired consistency.
>> Mix in Chia Seeds.
>> Drink & Enjoy!

Tip1: To save time in the mornings, I went ahead and measured out my fruit for the week.

Tip2: I split my smoothie into 2 blender bottles, that way I can mix them up again later.

I used Bob’s Red Mill Chia Seeds, Cellucor Whipped Vanilla Protein Powder, and Season’s Choice Sliced Frozen Strawberries. I split the smoothie in to two servings to cover my first and second meals for the day. Each serving is (403)Calories, (8g)Fat, (39g)Carbs, & (55g)Protein. 

If you like smoothies, what are some of your favorite ingredients?