I love hummus. It's a great go to snack that has some protein in it. I love the different variations you can do with hummus. My ultimate favorite is the basic garlic hummus. Why make it yourself? Well you can control the quality of the ingredients. You can control the sodium levels. Plus you can make small batches if you only snack on it like me. It is cheaper in the long run too. Which is great if you are a big hummus eater. Hummus is a very easy and fast dish to make. All you really need is a food processor. You don't even need a big fancy one either!
Did you know that chickpeas are not only yummy but they have some awesome health benefits.
Health Benefits of Chickpeas
Fiber Advantage and Weight Loss: Like other beans, Chickpeas, are rich in both soluble and insoluble dietary fiber. Soluble fiber forms a gel-like substance in the digestive tract that snares bile (which contains cholesterol) and ferries it out of the body. Research studies have shown that insoluble fiber not only helps to increase stool bulk and prevent constipation, but also helps prevent digestive disorders.
Protein for Vegetarians: Chickpeas are a good source of protein. Combined with a whole grain such as whole-wheat protein, they provide amount of protein comparable to that of meat or dairy foods without the high calories or saturated fats.
Manganese for Energy Production: Garbanzos are an excellent source of the trace mineral manganese, which is an essential co-factor in a number of enzymes important in energy production and antioxidant defenses. Just one cup of garbanzo beans supplies 84.5% of the daily value for this mineral.
Iron Boost: Garbanzos can boost your energy because of their high iron content. This is particularly important for menstruating women, pregnant or lactating women and growing children. Iron is an integral component of hemoglobin, which transports oxygen from the lungs to all body cells, and is part of key enzyme systems for energy production and metabolism.
Stabilizing Blood Sugar and Low Glycaemic Index (GI): Soluble fiber helps stabilize blood sugar levels. If you have insulin resistance, hypoglycemia or diabetes, beans like garbanzos can help you balance blood sugar levels while providing steady, slow-burning energy. They have low GI value of 28 – 32 means the carbohydrate in them is broken down and digested slowly. This is helpful for weight loss as it controls appetite.
Heart Healthy: Regular intake of Chickpeas can lower LDL (bad) and total cholesterol. Garbanzos contain the significant amounts of folate and magnesium. Folate lowers the levels of the amino acid, homocysteine and strengthens the blood vessels. Studies have found chickpeas lower the risk of heart attack
For Women: Garbanzo contain phytochemicals called saponins, which can act as antioxidants. It could lower the risk of breast cancer, protect against osteoporosis and minimizes hot flushes in post-menopausal women.
Weight Loss: Due to high fiber content and low GI, chickpeas are excellent for weight loss diets. Salad with chickpeas are tasty and can keep you full longer, controlling the appetite.
Here is the basic recipe I followed:
1 cup chickpeas
a clove of garlic
½ tsp salt
2 tbsp olive oil
1. Soak chickpeas for 6 hours or more.
2. Cook for 60 - 90 minutes until it softens.
3. Put the cooked chickpeas into a food processor. add garlic, salt and olive oil then blend well. add chickpea juice as needed.
And that is that. Add to a sandwich in lieu of mayo. Cut up some veggies and use as a dipping sauce. Or just eat it as is!
Here are some other great recipes for making your own hummus.
Are you a fan of hummus? What ways have you incorporated it into your diet? Let me know in the comments below!