Cook perfectly tender, creamy chickpeas in an instant pot!
In the past four months, my sweet but mischievous three-year-old has: broken a brand new tv (SquareTrade doesn’t cover that), locked us out of our powder room (we actually still can’t get in… that’s a longer story), and drawn all over one of our white walls (downstairs!) during the 3 minutes that my back was turned to load the dishwasher (“BUT IT’S SO BEAUTIFUL, MOM”). I am tired. And you know what’s quite possibly the last thing on my mind? Remembering to soak chickpeas the night before I want to cook them.
Anyone with me?
If you’re in the same (hey, is this ship sinking?) boat, I’m going to tell you how you can cook chickpeas quickly and easily, without any sort of preparation. I’ll also tell you how to cook soaked chickpeas. We’ll work with wherever you are in your chickpea situation.
AND THERE’S MORE! A NEW CHICKPEA SERIES!
In the next few weeks (months if there’s interest?), I’m going to go overboard (get it? sinking ship reference above?) by sharing a bunch of really simple recipes that call for cooked chickpeas. So make a batch and stay tuned for plenty of delicious ways to use them. I’ll add the list of recipes right above the recipe card, so next time you visit this page, you can just hit the “jump to recipe” button to see them.
But first, let’s talk about why you might want to consider using dried chickpeas vs canned chickpeas.
WHY ARE DRIED CHICKPEAS BETTER THAN CANNED CHICKPEAS?
- Dried chickpeas have a strong chickpea flavor, whereas canned chickpeas are… well, bland in comparison.
- Dried chickpeas absorb flavors better.
- Dried beans are more economical than canned chickpeas.
- They take up less pantry space than the equivalent amount of canned beans (crucial for those of us with little pantry space to spare).
Just so you know, dried chickpeas usually triple in size when cooked.
- 1 cup dried chickpeas = about 3 cups of cooked chickpeas.
- 1 (15 oz) can of chickpeas = 1.5 cups cooked chickpeas
ON COOKING CHICKPEAS THE WAY YOU LIKE THEM
Some people like creamy chickpeas (me). Some prefer them “al dente” with a bit of bite for salads or stir-fries (I strongly feel that chickpeas should never be “al dente” but I suppose some people enjoy undercooked food 🤷🏽♀️). I suggest trying my recipe (for creamy chickpeas) as written, then adjusting the cook time to what you prefer.
I realize that my recipe calls for a much longer cook time than others out there (the IP company suggests a 35-40 minute cook time for unsoaked chickpeas, which does not work for me). I’ve tried cooking chickpeas for many different lengths of time and my recipe will get you the texture that I think is best.
Here’s what I think when it comes to unsoaked chickpeas: anything less than 50 minutes is too hard. 1 hour is good but 1 hour and 10 minutes with a natural release is ideal for tender, creamy chickpeas.
Something to keep in mind – cook times can vary as garbanzo beans range in size and freshness. Older beans have less moisture and seem to take longer to cook.
ON STORING CHICKPEAS
You can store chickpeas in the fridge for 3-4 days or in the freezer for several months. Just let the rinsed beans cool down and dry, then put them in an airtight container or ziplock bag.
I like to freeze 3 cups of chickpeas per container. Again, 3 cups is equal to 2 cans of chickpeas – this will be good to know when using other recipes. You can also freeze the chickpeas in 1.5 cup portions (equal to 1 can) if that’s easier to remember.
WHAT CAN I DO WITH COOKED CHICKPEAS?
I’ve come up with some simple and flavorful recipes that call for cooked chickpeas, so you can make a batch of chickpeas and enjoy these easy recipes below! I’ll continue to update this list as I come up with more recipes 🙂
- chickpea sundal
- mango chickpea curry
- spicy Indian chickpea stir-fry
- chickpea cauliflower curry
- cabbage salad with chickpeas and potatoes
- will update this list with more recipes as I come up with them 🙂
You can also:
- make hummus!
- add to a soup or salad or pasta salad
- add them to a grain bowl with quinoa and greens
- use them as a plant-based taco filling!
- serve ’em as a filling for pani puri or in chaat
- add to veggie biryani for extra protein
- add to saag to make chana saag
What’s your favorite way to use chickpeas? Would love to hear how you plan to use them.
- 2 cups dried chickpeas OR 2 cups soaked chickpeas
- 6 cups water
- If soaking the chickpeas overnight: place 2 cups dried chickpeas in a large bowl and cover with 2 inches of cold water. The chickpeas will absorb water and expand in size, so make sure to use a large bowl. Drain and rinse the beans.
- Add the dried or soaked chickpeas and 6 cups of water to the instant pot.
- Secure the lid, close the pressure valve, and cook at high pressure for 20 minutes if soaked overnight or 1 hour and 10 minutes if unsoaked.
- Naturally release pressure.
- Drain the water, rinse chickpeas and use in recipes!
- To store in the fridge/freezer: drain the chickpeas in a colander and rinse them well, then allow them to dry. Once room temperature and dry, place the drained chickpeas into an airtight container or ziplock bag and store in the fridge for 3-4 days or in the freezer for several months.