Chickpea Poppers: Back to School Snack #1

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Makes 3 1/2 cups


As Seen In Giada Digital WeeklyThese has been one of the most popular snack recipes from The Mom 100 Coobook for sure.  My son’s friend actually had the caterer make them for his bar mitzvah party.  “Ben,” I said, “Are those the Chickpea Poppers from my book?”  “Of course,” said Ben.  I apparently had asked a stupid question.

Naturally your kids like chips. Of course they do. And of course they’d like it if you sat them down with a big bowl of potato chips every day and said, “Hey, Johnny (or Wendy), go head, munch up!” Frankly, when my kids whine about not being able to eat chips with impunity, I feel like shouting, “Don’t you think I want to eat chips all day long, too?” Of course chips are fantastic (I’ve grown weary of the word moderation, though of course it’s all true, what they say), however, the ramifications of lots of chips are not fantastic.

So, what to give your kids to crunch on that you can feel good about? And I’m not talking about veggies — as Charlie said the other day, after I handed him a bowl of carrot sticks, looking at me unsettlingly with that level gaze, “Mom, this wasn’t exactly what I had in mind when I asked for a snack.”

Chick peas! But not straight from the can, toasted up in the oven, with just the right amount of salt, and possibly some light seasonings. In fact, these are an interesting and smart way to wiggle touch of a new spice into your kids’ palate.   High in fiber, full of protein, low in fat, a little chewy, a little crispy this is a snack that a mother could love.

Chickpea Poppers: Back to School Snack #1


  • 1 15-ounce can chickpeas, drained and rinsed
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • ¾ teaspoon kosher or coarse salt, plus more to taste

1. Preheat the oven to 375°F. Lightly spray a baking sheet with sides with nonstick spray.

2. Pat the chickpeas lightly with paper towels.  Toss the chickpeas on the baking sheet with the olive oil and salt. Add any of the fork-in-the-road seasoning combinations you wish (see Fork in the Road), and toss to evenly coat the chickpeas.

3. Bake until they have turned golden brown and shrink slightly, 35 to 40 minutes. They will harden slightly and crisp up as they cool, so do not overbake, or they will get too tough and hard. Taste and add more salt if needed. Serve warm or at room temp.

Fork in the Road

Here are two seasoning combos. These make enough for one 15-ounce can of chickpeas. When you want to use one of the seasonings, separate the opiled and salted chickpeas into two batches on the baking sheet. You can keep the chickpeas on one side as is and toss those on the other side wioth your choice of seasoning. Double the amounts if you want to season the full recipe. -a mixture of 1/4 teaspoon chili powder and 1/4 teaspoon ground cumin -a mixture of 1 teaspoon minced fresh rosemary and 1/2 teaspoon finely minced garlic
Make Ahead

You can store the chickpeas in a tightly sealed container for up to five days, although if you use fresh garlic you’ll need to keep them in the refrigerator.

What the Kids Can Do

Let the kids toss the chickpeas with the olive oil and salt along with any of the Fork in the Road seasonings.

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