Garbanzo Beans

How to Select Garbanzo Beans

  • Garbanzo beans or chickpeas are often available canned. Pay attention to the expiration date when purchasing.
  • Garbanzo beans are also available pre-cooked and ready to eat in pouches from Bare Beans.
  • When selecting dried garbanzo beans, avoid packages containing broken, shriveled, or crushed beans. Avoid any beans that contain tiny pinholes, as these may indicate a bug infestation.
  • Ensure the package you choose is intact and tightly sealed. Avoid any packages with holes or tears.
  • Dried beans are a raw agricultural product and should be washed and cooked according to package directions. There is always a chance for small rocks or dirt to be inside bean packaging.

When Are Garbanzo Beans in Season?

Garbanzo beans, also known as chickpeas, are in season from late spring through the summer. As the harvest season ends, the beans can begin to dry in their pods. They then become dried chickpeas. When harvesting the best garbanzo beans, look for green pods (without too much browning or wilting) that are stiff and fuzzy.   

Varieties of Garbanzo Beans

Garbanzo beans (chickpeas) fall into two distinct types: 

Desi chickpeas are small and dark with rough coats. They are tastier and more appealing than the other type but slightly less nutritious.

Kabuli chickpeas are larger, lighter, and have smoother coats. They have more calories than Desi chickpeas but less fiber. 

Green chickpeas are popular and seen in many recipes. They’re the size of little green peas (although irregular) and a little sweeter.   

Black chickpeas are the result of being left to dry in the sun. They have a nutty flavor and are also called Kala Chana. Black chickpeas are used in many recipes because they hold their shape well and can be ground into flour or used in hummus. These are nutrient-rich and beneficial to your health. 

Some chickpeas have been cultivated to have specific qualities. Here are a few:

Within the Desi varieties, there is the Kyabra cultivar. These have a high yield and mature a little earlier than other varieties. This helps to avoid summer storms and other potential dangers to the harvest. 

Within the Kabuli varieties, there are the Macarena chickpeas. Often found in markets, this kind is large but sensitive to frost. They must be protected from extreme temperatures and too much rain at harvesting time. 

Garbanzo Beans Nutrition Facts & Benefits

One cup (152 grams) of canned garbanzo beans (rinsed and drained) provides,  

  • approx 210 calories
  • 3.8 grams of fat
  • 10.7 grams of protein
  • 35 grams of carbohydrates
  • 6 grams of natural sugar
  • 9.6 grams of fiber

Here are just a few of the many ways that garbanzo beans can benefit your health:

1) Garbanzo beans are a fiber-rich food, with about a third of the fiber being soluble. Soluble fiber is associated with heart health and the prevention of heart disease. 

2) Garbanzo beans have several nutrients that may prevent certain cancers – fiber, butyrate, B vitamins, and saponins

3) Garbanzo beans are high in resistant starch, which can improve your gut health by promoting the growth of good gut bacteria. 

4) The fiber and protein in garbanzo beans can help you with weight management because they make you feel fuller for longer, so you eat less.

How to Store Garbanzo Beans

How To Store Dried Garbanzo Beans: Store dried garbanzo beans in an airtight container like a jar or sealable plastic bag. Remove any broken beans or rocks before storage. Keep them in a cool, dry place away from sunlight, like your pantry. Dried garbanzo beans are best if used within 1 year.

How To Store Canned Garbanzo Beans: Keep canned beans in a cool, dry place away from sunlight. Canned garbanzo beans will keep for up to 1 year.

How To Store Bare Beans Garbanzo Bean Pouches: Use or freeze by the date on the pouch. Use within 5 days of opening. Always keep refrigerated.

How To Store Cooked Garbanzo Beans: Pat dry and store leftover garbanzo beans in an airtight container in your refrigerator. Cooked garbanzo beans will keep in the refrigerator for about 3 days.

How to Prepare Garbanzo Beans

To use dried beans, soak them overnight:

  • Remove pebbles, grit, or other debris from your beans
  • Put beans in a bowl and cover them with cool water
  • Drain the beans in a sieve and rinse them under running water
  • Cover them a second time with cold water in the bowl
  • Soak the beans overnight
  • The next day, just drain the beans and discard the water

Here’s a quick soaking method:

  • Rinse your beans and clear them of any debris
  • Put them in a saucepan covered with cool water by two inches
  • Bring water to a boil and let simmer for another couple of minutes
  • Remove from pan heat, cover, and let soak for an hour
  • Now drain the beans and discard the water

Of course, if you’re using canned beans, drain and rinse them thoroughly. 

You can add garbanzo beans to salads, stews, chillis, soups, greens, casseroles, and other dishes. Pureed garbanzo beans may be blended with tahini to make hummus.

How to Serve Garbanzo Beans