Growing up in an Arab household, chickpeas were included in most of our recipes. They are one of the most popular legumes in the Middle East and such a basic part of our diet that my family even named a restaurant after it! I add chickpeas to most of my meals: salads, soups, hot dishes, roasted snacks - you name it!
Chickpeas are nutrient-rich legumes as they provide a great source of plant-based protein along with vital vitamins and minerals such as iron, zinc, phosphorus, and B-vitamins. They are high in fiber and low in carb which makes them great to regulate blood sugar levels, enhance metabolism and improve digestion.
Most importantly, I use chickpeas as the main ingredient to make our classic dish “hummus” which is eaten almost every day. Hummus is actually the Arabic term for “chickpeas”. We flavor hummus often and add delicious foods like avocados and beetroot for example to make it more nutritious.
Below is a modern and healthy recipe for hummus: avocado hummus! It is vegan, gluten-free and dairy-free.
- 1 cup of organic chickpeas (soaked overnight)
- 2 medium ripe organic avocados
- 1 large garlic clove
- 1-2 Tbsp of organic Tahini
- 1-2 Tbsp of extra virgin olive oil
- 1 whole freshly squeezed lemon
- 1 tsp Himalayan salt (to taste)
- Drain the soaked chickpeas and place them in a pot with water. Bring to boil for a minute then reduce to medium heat and allow to cook for approximately an hour until the chickpeas are soft.
- In a food processor, combine the avocados, minced/pressed garlic, tahini, olive oil, lemon and salt and mix until smooth.
- Add the cooked chickpeas to the mixed ingredients in the processor and puree for 30 seconds. Scrape the sides of the bowl and puree for another 2-3 minutes until the hummus gets a thick creamy smooth texture. If you require a thinner feel, then add a bit of water and mix until it is your desired texture.
- Transfer to a serving bowl and garnish with olive oil and paprika!
- Enjoy this delicious plate with mixed veggies, seed crackers (flax crackers) or gluten-free bread.
Tip: if you can’t have sesame, you can replace Tahini with unsweetened almond or peanut butter and it will still taste delicious!
Recipe written by Dina Abdullah, B.Sc, R.H.N
Dina graduated from CSNN as a Registered Holistic Nutritionist and received a certificate of merit, being awarded the highest achiever. She also has a Bachelor’s Degree in Food Science and Nutrition from Carleton University. Dina has always had a passion for nutrition and her love for healthy food stemmed from contributing to her family’s vegan restaurant in Ottawa.
Her overall approach to nutrition focuses on whole-foods diet and a balanced lifestyle. She strongly believes that food plays a huge role in disease management and prevention, and that an unhealthy gut is the root cause of many diseases. Her main focus is working with gut related issues such as IBS, leaky guy, indigestion, imbalanced microflora, difficulty losing weight, digestive discomfort (bloating, gases, heartburn, constipation, diarrhea, etc.) and more. Her interests also revolve around supporting heart health, improving energy levels and regulating blood sugar levels.
Dina’s goal is to develop unique nutrition, supplement protocols and lifestyle recommendations that can help reset the body to optimal health. Her greatest accomplishment is to help her clients achieve their health goals and fulfill their nutritional needs, taking into consideration biochemical individuality.