Sunday, November 24, 2013

Spicy Roast Chickpeas

Spicy Roast Chickpeas in small ramekin with cocktail in background

A healthy vegan snack that’s tasty enough for meat lovers

With party season around the corner, it’s time to start searching for snacks and nibbles to serve. If you’re in the US, the first big holiday happens this Thursday: Thanksgiving.

So here’s a handy appetizer idea. These Spicy Roast Chickpeas (a/k/a garbanzo beans) make the perfect starter. Their zing helps stimulate appetites, but their low-fat profile keeps things light and healthy. 

They’re also easy to make. Which leaves you more time to wrestle with that turkey.


Spicy Roast Chickpeas

Recipe: Spicy Roast Chickpeas

Chickpeas go by many names. Not just garbanzo beans, but ceci beans, channa, and a host of other monikers. Which seems fitting for a legume that packs so many nutrients—and so much flavor. It’s also one food that most people with dietary restrictions can eat.

This recipe requires cooked chickpeas. You can soak and cook dried ones if you want. Or you can just use canned, already-cooked chickpeas. For this recipe, I generally use the canned ones, which tend to be high quality and inexpensive.

This dish may remind you of our post on Spiced Party Nuts. As is the case with that recipe, exact spice quantities aren’t critical—change things up to suit your own taste. You can even omit some ingredients if they don’t appeal to you.

You’ll get best results if you rinse and drain the canned chickpeas, then let them dry for 3 hours or more before making this recipe (though if you’re pressed for time, you can skip the drying time and just roast the chickpeas a bit longer). Active prep time for this dish is about 5 minutes or so; roasting time is 30 to 40 minutes; and post-oven resting time is an hour or so (they’re ready to eat hot out of the oven, but their flavor improves if they sit and absorb the spices for a while).

This recipe yields 3+ cups of roast chickpeas. You can easily cut it in half. Or you can double this recipe—though you might have to use two baking sheets.

These roast chickpeas are best eaten soon after you make them. They will keep in an airtight container for a few days, or even up to a week, but they tend to lose their crispness. I guess you could freeze them, too. But trust me, leftovers won’t be a problem.

Ingredients
  • 2 15-ounce cans of chickpeas, drained and rinsed
  • ½ teaspoon ground cumin
  • ½ teaspoon ground chipotle chile powder (can substitute another chile powder, or commercial chili powder; see Notes)
  • 1 teaspoon curry powder
  • ½ teaspoon garlic powder
  • ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • ½ teaspoon ground coriander
  • ½ teaspoon ground cayenne pepper (or to taste; optional)
  • 2 teaspoons Kosher salt (or 1 teaspoon table salt; optional)
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil or neutral oil (I generally use pure olive oil—i.e., the cheap stuff)
Procedure
  1. Empty the cans of chickpeas into a strainer or colander and rinse off the packing liquid. Then spread the chickpeas out on paper towels to dry (I generally dry them on a rimmed baking sheet that’s lined with a couple layers of paper towels; this keeps the chickpeas from scattering everywhere). Allow the chickpeas to dry for at least 3 hours, or even overnight. (You can skip the drying if you’re in a real hurry, but you get better results if you do this.)
  2. When ready to roast the chickpeas, preheat oven to 400 degrees F.
  3. Mix all the spices and salt in a small bowl.
  4. Add the oil to a large nonstick skillet and heat it on medium. When the oil is hot, add the mixed spices and stir well, then turn the stovetop heat down to low. Cook the spices for a minute, then add the chickpeas. Cook the mixture for another 2 or 3 minutes, stirring fairly frequently (I generally use a heat-proof silicone spatula, but a wooden spoon works just as well). You want to coat all of the chickpeas evenly with the spice mixture.
  5. While the spices and chickpeas are getting to know each other in the skillet, line a rimmed baking sheet with aluminum foil (this makes cleanup a snap). 
  6. When the chickpeas are ready (2 or 3 minutes—timing isn’t hugely important) take them off the stove and spread them out on the baking sheet in a single layer. Roast the chickpeas for 20 minutes.
  7. At the 20-minute mark, stir or shake the chickpeas to turn them over (so they cook more evenly). Continue cooking until the chickpeas are nicely browned and crispy—usually 30 to 40 minutes total time.
  8. When the chickpeas are done, remove them from the oven. Taste, and add a sprinkle more salt if necessary (it never is for me). Let the chickpeas cool for an hour, then serve or store in an airtight container.
Spicy Roast Chickpeas in white ramekin, black background

Notes
  • This dish has a fair amount of spiciness. It’s not overwhelming, but you’ll notice a bit of heat. If you want less spice, feel free to reduce the amount of cayenne and/or chipotle chile pepper—or even omit them altogether.
  • I like to use chile (with an “e”) powder in this recipe. Chile powder contains dried ground chilies, with nothing else added.
  • Chipotle chile powder has a nice smoky note, though some people find it too spicy. Ancho chile powder also has good flavor (and less heat), so it makes a great substitute. Many supermarkets carry both types of chile powder. If they don’t, just bug your grocery manager until they do (in my experience, grocers are pretty open to adding items if someone requests them).
  • You can also make this recipe using chili (with an “i”) powder. Chili powder contains chile powder, along with flavorings such as salt, oregano, cumin, and coriander. Every supermarket carries chili powder—and most also carry chile powder these days. More about the difference between the two in our post on Chili Basics
  • When sautéing or roasting, I generally don’t use extra virgin olive oil because its volatile flavors dissipate easily in the heat. Instead, I use pure olive oil, which is much cheaper. 
  • The spices in this recipe will overwhelm the flavor of most oils in any case. So you can use something with a neutral flavor if you like. Canola oil would be a good choice. 
  • For this dish, almost any combination of spices that sounds good to you probably will be. So feel free to experiment. If you don’t like curry, for example, drop it and add more chile powder. 
  • I often change up spices in recipes like this one. For example, I sometimes add minced fresh rosemary or dried thyme (I don’t like dried rosemary, so I never use it). 
  • BTW, quantities need not be exact for either the spices or the chickpeas in this recipe. Just get in the ball park, and you’ll be fine.
Spicy Roast Chickpeas in small ramekin, with napkin in background

Appetizers All Around

“Wowzer!” said Mrs. Kitchen Riffs. “Are these good or what?”

“Um huh,” was all I could say, my mouth full of Spicy Roast Chickpeas.

“I like these even better than Spiced Party Nuts,” she added.

“Me too,” I said. “Love the texture. Though Homemade Chex Mix still might be my favorite snack.”

“But don't forget Candied Bacon," said Mrs K R. “And Pimento Cheese—I totally love that on crackers or party rye.”

“Or in a sandwich,” I said. “Though speaking of cheese snacks, it’s pretty hard to beat our Easy Cheese Straws.”

“Yep,” said Mrs K R. “We do have a solid repertoire of appetizers. So which ones should we make for Thanksgiving?”

“How about all of them?” I replied—true to form.

“That might be a bit much, even for us,” said Mrs K R.

“Yes,” I said. “But remember, leftovers are the best part of Thanksgiving.”

“Indeed they are,” said Mrs K R, scooping a handful of Spicy Roast Chickpeas. “I’ll eat to that!”

You may also enjoy reading about:
Shrimp Toast Dip
Spiced Party Nuts
Homemade Chex Mix
Candied Bacon
Pimento Cheese
Easy Cheese Straws
Or check out the index for more

116 comments:

  1. What a great snack to go with a cocktail or two! The snacks and appetizers are some of my favorite holiday foods. Happy early Thanksgiving!

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    1. Hi Lisa, this is really a wonderful snack - tons of flavor and (relatively!) healthy. Happy early Thanksgiving to you! And thanks for the comment.

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  2. I love roasted Ceci, John. When I was a kid we use to go Katz's Delicatessen in the city. They use to have barrels of raw chick peas. My sister and I were "allowed" to take a handful whenever we went. Boy, were those things hard to bite, lol...They actually tasted like nuts once you conquered them, lol...Now you got me to thinking, I may just make us some Pasta e ceci for dinner tonight and save a can for roasting too! Thanks for the tip about letting them dry before roasting them. I usually put them right in the oven. Makes sense to let them sit for a while.

    Thanks so much for sharing, John...

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    1. Hi Louise, they do roast OK right out of the can, but it takes longer. And I think drying might make for slightly better texture. Past e ceci sounds great for dinner! What time should I come over? ;-) Thanks for the comment.

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  3. What a great snack! I love your recipe and I appreciate your instructions! I've tried making roasted chick peas a couple of times with absolutely no success, but the recipes I used just said to coat and bake. I think your method of cooking them in a skillet and letting the spices and chickpeas get to know each other first :), might just be the key to a successful batch. Thank you so much for this post!

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    1. Hi MJ, I've made them by just coating and roasting too, with OK results. But I really do get better results when I do a quick pan fry first. Have fun making these! Thanks for the comment.

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  4. The cool thing about Barcelona is, that I can actually buy a cooked chickpea over here :D Cool, isn't it. I love chickpea and will try this recipe for sure.

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    1. Hi Marta, Barcelona sounds like such a fun place. I've never been, but would love to make it there sometime. I envy you your extended visit there! Thanks for the comment.

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  5. Always a hit! I love appetizers and often they are my most favorite part of the meal! Have a hand full for me.With a scoop of pimento cheese on the side, please.

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    1. Hi Abbe, our current batch is almost gone! Just have to make some more. ;-) And Pimento cheese, of course. ;-) Thanks for the comment.

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  6. I love the sound of these to snack on.

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    1. Hi Caroline, these are great! Totally tasty. ;-) Thanks for the comment.

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    1. Hi Arthur, they are, they are! ;-) Thanks for the comment.

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  8. Roast chickpeas are my next month's Something From Nothing recipe. My daughter loves them and convinced me to give them a try and I soon became hooked. Now that you have done your delicious version I think I'm going to have to up my game, especially with the photography. As usual your photos are mouthwatering.

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    1. Hi Karen, these aren't the easiest thing to photograph! Now that I've done it, I kind wish I could do it again - I have some ideas for making these look much more appealing. Anyway, aren't these great? Look forward to seeing your recipe! Thanks for the comment.

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  9. I've seen a lot of people do this but have never given it a try...I'm thinking your spice mix is the first that has made me want to! Wish I had some now. Like RIGHT NOW!!

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    1. Hi Barb, these are really worth doing. I like my spice mix, but it's the sort of think that's so easy to tinker with to suit your own taste. Wish you had some RIGHT NOW too. ;-) Thanks for the comment.

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  10. Such an informative post, and a great recipe John. I've been writing about food since 1993, but it has only just dawned on me (reading this) that chickpeas are garbanzo beans!

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    1. Hi Lizzy, chickpeas, garbanzo beans, whatever - loads of different names for them, aren't there? But whatever you call them, they're great! Thanks for the comment.

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  11. Hi John, love chick peas and this recipe is own for the holidays , what a great and wonderful appetizer they will make , something yummy and different , thanks for sharing :)

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    1. Hi Nee, this really is a fun recipe - and quite, quite tasty! Thanks for the comment.

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  12. Spicy chickpeas are the best! I've had Indian flavoured ones before but never thought of making them myself. Love your version with the chile powder. I have a problem with snacking though, I don't know when to stop and end up filling up on them instead. How well, at least these are healthy ;)

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    1. Hi Nazneen, I know all too well what you mean about it being too easy to fill up on things like this! And these are indeed reasonably healthy. Thanks for the comment.

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  13. These look amazing John and I love all the spices you got combined in the coating. I can see how these would be very enticing!

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    1. Hi Chris, isn't that a nice spice mixture? Loads of flavor! Thanks for the comment.

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  14. I have a feeling these would be very addictive. I'll look forward to making them. These would be excellent with a pre-dinner drink. And I love your pretty scotch glass xx

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    1. Hi Charlie, they really are addictive. And they're wonderful with a drink! Thanks for the comment.

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  15. I adore chickpeas! Sometimes, I eat them straight from the can!!! But these roasted ones you have made seem like such a wonderful alternative to eating it straight up from the can! Thanks so much for sharing!

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    1. Hi Shashi, chickpeas are pretty good, aren't they? I haven't actually eaten them straight form the can, but that makes sense to me! These are better, though. ;-) Thanks for the comment.

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  16. I just saw these posted someplace the other day and thought wow I need to try these. I was just taking a break from making my list out of what I need to get at the store tomorrow for Thanksgiving and I'm definitely adding these. I make my candied pecans which everyone always wants but now these will be a new addition. They should be fine if I make them on Tuesday and put them in an air tight container won't they?

    I'll be sure to post them and give you credit. Thanks for sharing.

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    1. Hi Vicki, they'll be fine if you make them on Tuesday. They'll likely soften up a bit so they won't be as crisp, but they'll still be delish. Candied pecans sound wonderful! Thanks for the comment.

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  17. This looks like it would be the ultimate treat for me as a lover of crunch and spices, yum!

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    1. Hi Pamela, these definitely deliver a bit of spice! I think they're really good - hope you agree. Thanks for the comment.

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  18. These chickpeas sound nice and spicy. They would go nicely as an appetizer. Yum!

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    1. Hi Dawn, these really are great - we love them! Thanks for the comment.

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  19. I have a bunch of vegan friends, but I know we'd all agree that these were winners. These look so good. What a delicious end to a good weekend. Thank you for sharing! I hope you have a wonderful week!

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    1. Hi Monet, these have got a ton of flavor! A lot of people think vegan = no flavor. Hah! Some of the best dishes I know are vegan! Thanks for the comment, and I hope you have a great week too.

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  20. Delicious chickpeas, so spicy and lovely! I could snack on these all days :D

    Cheers
    CCU

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    1. Hi Uru, they really are tasty! I love spicy stuff! Thanks for the comment.

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  21. I'm not ready for Thanksgiving!! All I've accomplished so far is to put the turkey in to thaw. Talk about behind!

    I wonder if I had some of these to eat I'd get into high gear? They look so good and they're inviting me into the screen.

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    1. Hi Maureen, Mrs K R and I have Thanksgiving down to a science - although there are a lot of dishes, it's a pretty easy meal for us. We split the chores up which helps a lot! Anyway, glad you like these - they're terrific!

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  22. An addictive and healthy snack! A wonderful combination of spices.

    Cheers,

    Rosa

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    1. Hi Rosa, that spice combo really is nice. And these are all too addictive! Thanks for the comment.

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  23. these spicy,tongue tickling chickpeas are one of the best snacks to have on hand....fit for all occasions...we can only imagine having them with tea...absolutely scrumptious appetizers :-)

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    1. Hi Kumar, I haven't had these with tea but that would be a nice combo! Thanks for the comment.

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  24. Pass the chipotle powder when I make these.

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    1. Hi Debra, these are really great! And you can play with the spice blend to come up with a mix that's most pleasing to you. Thanks for the comment.

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  25. Hi John, this chickpea sure look addictive and I'm sure it taste heavenly. Thanks for sharing the wonderful recipe. I do love chickpea cook in curry or boil it and eat as snack. Hard to stop eating... :))

    Best regards.

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    1. Hi Amelia, chickpeas make such a great snack, don't they? Love this spicy version! Thanks for the comment.

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  26. I simply have to make these! I've seen this idea in a number of places and it's been on my to-do list far too long. Thanks for one more reminder to get on it!

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    1. Hi Judy, these are worth making. I've seen quite a few versions of these around too. I do love my spice mix for roast nuts, so just adapted it to the chickpeas - works well! Thanks for the comment.

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  27. Love roasted chickpeas! Your comment about leftovers is funny...these things are so addictive the entire batch gets eaten pretty quickly (make extras).

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    1. Hi Pamela, these do get eaten in a hurry, don't they? Alas, even when I make extras, we end up eating them! Thanks for the comment.

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  28. Muy tentadores sus snack para picar me encantan,abrazos.

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    1. Hi Rosita, this is indeed a great snack! Tons of flavor. Thanks for the comment.

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  29. Mmmm I love making those.
    It's been a while since I've made them.
    Cheers!

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    1. Hi Dawn, aren't they great? So much flavor! Thanks for the comment.

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  30. Thank you for sharing this wonderful recipe!
    It looks delicous

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    1. Hi Sketched Chef, these really have so much flavor - I just love them! Thanks for the comment.

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  31. I love that you love pimento cheese. Where I grew up we pronounced puh-men-ah cheese. GREG

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    1. Hi Greg, pimento cheese is wonderful, isn't it? I like mine with a bit of spice to it. Thanks for the comment.

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  32. I love roasted crunchy garbanzo beans and I like your spicy version. I love to use them as a crunchy topping for me salads as it really gives them a nice kick. Have a super holiday week. Take care, BAM

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    1. Hi Bam, aren't roasted garbanzo beans great? Anything with some spice is interesting to me. Thanks for the comment.

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  33. How deliciously lovely these look!! So spicy and yumm. I could snack on these 24/7

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    1. Hi Minnie, I could snack on these 24/7 too. Is that a good or bad thing? ;-) Thanks for the comment.

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  34. These look like the perfect party nosh to go along with a cocktail. Can't wait to put a couple of bowls out for my guests. I bet the chickpeas disappear in a flash. ;)

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    1. Hi Carolyn, these really do disappear in a hurry. Such good stuff! And wonderful with a cocktail. Thanks for the comment.

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  35. These look scrumptious.. I am definitely trying this :) beautiful clicks

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    1. Hi Sowmya, scrumptious is exactly the word for these! Really good stuff. Thanks for the comment.

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  36. These are something I've been wanting to make for a while now -- I don't know what's taking me so long - yours look terrific! Spicy and addictive!

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    1. Hi Amy, it took me quite some time to get around to making these too. Had I known what great flavor I was getting, I'd have been all over these much sooner! Definitely worth trying. Thanks for the comment.

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  37. I once tried this, but didn't yield the expected results, they seemed to be very dry. The recipe was totally different with less oil. I have to try your recipe, it looks perfect and I cannot wait to make this for evening snack. Thanks for sharing!!!

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    1. Hi Shibi, I've seen various variations out there and kinda took bits and pieces of a bunch of recipes. Then I said heck with it, and just adapted my recipe for spiced nuts! These are on the dry side, but I wouldn't call them dry. But I'd be curious to see how you think they compare to others that you've had. Thanks for the comment.

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  38. I love chickpeas and I think this will make a great snacking. Love all the flavor that is added. Thanks, John!

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    1. Hi Holly, this really is a great snack. It's become a real favorite! Thanks for the comment.

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  39. In Iran, I used to eat roasted chickpeas as a snack all the time. It was just salted and oh, so good! They tend to be dry, but that's what water is for! I need to introduce them to my kids, since they love salty snacks like corn nuts and peanuts. And I need to spice them up for me!

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    1. Hi Laura, don't you just love these? I haven't tried them just salted, but that sounds good. But I can't resist spicy, so it might be awhile before I try that variation! I've also seen version where you boil them briefly in vinegar, drain and salt them, and then roast, which sounds interesting. Thanks for the comment.

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  40. I'm always looking for a easy and delicious nosh to put out before dinner when we have guests. This is a great recipe to keep for those times. I love chickpeas in any form, but I've never tried roasted ones. Can't wait to try them this holiday season. Thanks!

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    1. Hi Bill, roasting them is easy, fun, and tasty! Can't beat that. ;-) Thanks for the comment.

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  41. I have been looking for a recipe like this! Love chickpeas! Thanks for sharing :) Hope you have a great Thanksgiving!

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    1. Hi Ashley, welcome back from your vacation! And isn't this a nice recipe? I love this little guys! Thanks for the comment.

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  42. I did not know that chickpeas have so many names...I only knew about garbanzo...anyway, these roasted chickpeas look and sound delicious, with all the nutrition that they have this just make a perfect snack..and I love all the spices that you have...
    Have a great week John :D

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    1. Hi Juliana, too many names to keep track of! And these really do make a great snack. Thanks for the comment.

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  43. I love roasted chickpeas, it's a popular Indian snack with spices. I am pretty sure they flavor is with all those spices and mango powder which adds a bit of sourness. Gorgeous photos btw.

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    1. Hi Honey, I like the idea of the mango powder a lot - I should try that. Thanks for the comment.

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  44. I've made a version of this before and loved them. They were terrific tossed into a salad the next day too! Have a wonderful Thanksgiving! :)

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    1. Hi Kristi, I love simple, tasty dishes like this. And I really love the idea of using these in a salad! I'll definitely try that. I hope you have a great Thanksgiving too! And thanks for the comment.

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  45. love roasted chickpeas...healthy evening snack to munch with tea..

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    1. Hi Gayathri, aren't they such a nice snack? Tea sounds like a great pairing. Thanks for the comment.

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  46. This sounds so tasty! and a healthy snack/appetizer to serve too!

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    1. Hi Peachy, healthy and tasty? Sounds like a winner, doesn't it? ;-) Thanks for the comment.

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  47. Oh yum!!!!! I don't know why we don't usually have roasted chickpeas around here. I simply must must must try this recipe.

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    1. Hi Alex, this is so easy and so worth making - I think you'll enjoy it. Thanks for the comment.

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  48. Wow, this looks like a great healthy snack! Thanks John! Happy early Thanksgiving!! :)

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    1. Hi Kristi, these really are tasty and pretty healthy. Loads of fun to eat. ;-) Thanks for the comment, and happy early Thanksgiving to you, too!

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  49. Add me to the list of those who love roasted chickpeas, John. Truth is I've never made 'em. Plenty of my friends did, though, and I did enjoy them. Maybe i should make your recipe and start paying them all back for the many garbanzos I've eaten at their homes, or, I could send them your recipe and ask that they make them. Do you think they'd mind? :)

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    1. Hi John, lol! Once they taste this recipe, they wouldn't mind making them at all! Althugh eventually you do need to make some to pay 'em back, you know. ;-) Thanks for the comment.

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  50. I've tried roasting chickpeas once, but without much success. I'll have to try your recipe next time for a party. Happy coming Thanksgiving to you!

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    1. Hi Gintare, this recipe is pretty foolproof. I think! Worth trying, and thanks for the holiday greetings, and comment.

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  51. These look delicious John! I make something similar quite regularly, both for a snack and to add to recipes or salads... I do think that they're a healthy alternative to other snackfoods when the 'munchies' hits :) Thanks for sharing your recipe. Yum!

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    1. Hi Laura, you're the second person to mention using them in a salad - an idea that never occurred to me. Sounds like a terrific idea, though. Thanks for the comment.

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  52. Great idea! Gorgeous and looks really yummy!

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    1. Hi Candy, aren't these nice? So incredibly tasty! Thanks for the comment.

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  53. Despite the fact that I can't eat chickpeas, these look amazing and I am sure Adriano and Dario would love them.

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    1. Hi Suzanne, they really are good. Too bad that chickpeas don't agree with you, but Adriano and Dario deserve these! ;-) Thanks for the comment.

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  54. I love how you spiced these chickpeas up John. I can snack on these all day! Delicious!

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    1. Hi Anne, aren't these nice? Really a tasty snack. Thanks for the comment.

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  55. I've never really been a great fan of chickpeas, but I think you could convince me with this recipe!

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    1. Hi Amanda, these are definitely worth trying - nice and spicy! Thanks for the comment.

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  56. Yum. Yum. Yum.

    You're giving me too many delicious things to make.

    Crunch. Snack. Feast. TV. Cold Coke. Munch!

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    1. Hi Kitchen Butterfly, these are deadly addictive! Put a bowl of these out while you're watching TV, and you'll soon find they're all gone!. ;-) Thanks for the comment.

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  57. I adore roasted chickpeas, John! Yours are loaded with spice and I can see why they are addictive. I appreciate you sharing so many other delicious nibbles ideas, too...'tis the season!

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    1. Hi Hannah, aren't roasted chickpeas so good? Particularly when they're spiced up like this! Thanks for the comment.

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