I definitely have an affinity for crunchy snacks. If my adult body could handle it, I might eat a small bag of chips every day. Alas, the calories and fat do not help us age well. I have been really excited to experiment with healthy, crunchy snacks made in my air fryer.
I had an inexpensive air popcorn machine for a few years, until it finally died. I absolutely loved making popcorn in that little appliance. This was my first version of an air fryer. The popcorn flew around in the machine and popped mid-air with no added oil.
I did try to make popcorn in my air fryer. It was an epic fail because the corn kernels bounced around and went up into the heating element. Bring back those 1980s popcorn air machines! Putting popcorn aside, I now love making healthy snacks in my air fryer.
I roast nuts, dehydrate fruits and vegetables, and am experimenting with roasted legumes and peas. I hope to try making crackers in the future. In this post, I am sharing my recipes for crunchy, air fried chickpeas, also known as garbanzo beans. Air fryer roasted chickpeas have less oil than ones that are fried. These are great to nosh on or toss on top of salads and soups.
Chickpea Recipe Recommendations and Tips
Using canned chickpeas is really the way to go. They are already cooked and will save time. If you prefer to use dried chickpeas, it is best to soak them overnight and then boil them in unsalted water until soft, but not mushy.
Whichever you choose to use, rinse both very well to get rid of any can juices or cooking starch. After you rinse the chickpeas, drain well and then place them on clean towels or paper towels and pat dry. The dryer the beans, the better the crunch.
I found that seasoning the chickpeas both before air frying and after works best. My first batch, I placed all of the oil and seasoning on the beans. I lost a lot of that seasoning to the air fryer bucket. It works a little better to coat the beans in oil, then in 1/2 of the seasoning blend. Roast the chickpeas and then give them another sprinkling of the remaining seasoning while still hot.
It is really important to cool the air fried chickpeas and store them in an air-tight container to maintain the crunch. I left a bowl out on the counter just to test this theory. A couple of hours later I had semi-soft roasted chickpeas. They still tasted okay, but the texture wasn’t great. I just tossed them into a pot of soup I was making. They added some really nice flavor to the soup, so nothing was wasted.
To make things a little less complicated, there is one basic recipe here with a variety of seasoning blends that you can try using that recipe. I have added some ideas for how to use roasted chickpeas within the seasoning recipes.
Air Fryer Roasted Chickpea Recipe
- 1 (15.5 ounce) can of chickpeas
- 1 TBS extra virgin olive oil or grapeseed oil for sweet blends
- Seasoning blend or tamari from recipes above
Total time:15 min – Prep time:5 min – Cook time:10 min – Serves:4 people
1. Drain the chickpeas in a colander. Rinse then under cool water to remove the can juices or cooking liquid. Place the chickpeas on a clean towel or paper towels and pat them dry.
2. Preheat your air fryer to 390°F for 3 minutes.
3. In a small mixing bowl or glass jar, prepare your seasoning blend or tamari mix.
4. Place the chickpeas in a bowl. Coat and toss with oil. Shake or pour 1/2 of the seasoning mixture over the chickpeas and toss again to coat evenly.
5. Place the seasoned chickpeas in the air fryer basket or on the crisper plate. Set the bowl aside to reuse when the chickpeas are finished roasting. Shake the bucket so that they spread out evenly. Close the air fryer and cook for 5 minutes. Shake the bucket again to rotate the chickpeas and continue to cook until crispy, approximately 5 to 7 minutes.
6. Remove the hot, roasted chickpeas from the air fryer to the bowl. Add the remaining seasoning to the warm chickpeas and toss to coat again.
7. Enjoy as soon as they cool down or store in an air-tight container in your pantry. They should last for a few days.
Roasted Chickpea Seasoning Blends
Mix the ingredients together in a small bowl or glass jar with a lid that you can shake.
Curry Spice Blend
- 2 tsps curry powder
- 1/2 tsp sea salt
- 1/4 tsp freshly ground black pepper
- 1/4 tsp ground ginger
I happen to like curry a lot. I intended to use these curried chickpeas on my basmati rice with veggies and yogurt raita. I did and the texture was a great addition. However, I snacked on the leftovers for 2 days because they were that good all by themselves.
Herbes de Provence Seasoning
- 1/2 tsp dried thyme
- 1/2 tsp dried oregano
- 1/2 tsp dried rosemary
- 1/2 tsp dried basil
- 1/4 tsp Kosher salt
- 1/4 tsp freshly ground pepper
Roasted chickpeas with herbes de Provence are perfect on really fresh salads. They add crunch to Salade Niçoise. They can also be a substitute for croutons on Caesar salad.
Spicy Chili Seasoning
- 1 tsp chili powder
- 1/2 tsp sea salt
- 1/2 tsp. ground cumin
- 1/2 tsp. garlic powder
- 1/8 tsp cayenne pepper (more for added heat)
A little crispiness on top of your soft tortilla fillings is nice with these roasted chickpeas. They are also great as a garnish for chili con carne. I have a slight weakness for topping my chili with crumbled corn chips. These chickpeas offer a healthy alternative to Fritos.
Sweet and Salty Blend
- 1-1/2 tsps brown sugar
- 1 tsp ground cinnamon
- 1/4 tsp sea salt
If you are someone who avoids grains, such as oats, sweet and salty chickpeas are a great addition to granola. These are also good in trail mix. And of course, they are a good snack all by themselves.
- 1 TBS tamari or liquid aminos
- 1/2 tsp sea salt (optional)
While not a dry seasoning blend, like the others, it is worth adding this to the mix. Tamari dressed chickpeas are full of salty goodness. These are tasty snacks and a nice addition to stir fry dishes, seaweed salads, and ramen bowls.