DakotaMB (Milling and Blending) Custom milling, blending and toasting for the baking and food industries

Ingredient Spotlight: Chickpeas

White bowl with chickpea flour

One of the hottest ingredient trends in the United States, chickpea flour is made from ground chickpeas and can be used as a gluten-free alternative to wheat flour in baking and cooking. 

In addition to performing exceptionally in gluten free formulations, chickpea flour also provides a high in protein, fibrous addition to health-conscious recipes. Chickpeas are round and beige and used in countless food applications, either as a whole ingredient or milled into a flour or cuts. The flavor of chickpeas can be described as:

  • Nutty: Chickpeas have a pronounced nutty flavor that is one of their defining characteristics. This nuttiness adds a pleasant richness to their taste.
  • Earthy: Like many legumes, chickpeas possess an earthy undertone.
  • Mildly Beany: Chickpeas have a mild bean-like flavor, which is less overpowering compared to some other legumes. This mildness makes them a versatile ingredient in a wide range of applications.
  • Subtle Sweetness: Chickpeas carry a delicate natural sweetness that balances their nutty and earthy notes.
  • Slightly Peppery: Some varieties of chickpeas may exhibit a hint of peppery taste.

DakotaMB produces chickpea flour that can be used in a variety of dishes including pancakes, flatbreads and falafel, but thanks to the explosion of chickpea products at Natural Products Expo West, we have a host of new, innovative ways developers can use DakotaMB’s value-added chickpea flour.

Everything’s coming up chickpeas

A 2019 article in The Atlantic said: “In the Future, Everything will be Made of Chickpeas.” Just  a few years later, the chickpea demand is hotter than ever to the point it is becoming a mainstream ingredient. Even Frito-Lay is getting in on the chickpea trend with its Off the Beaten Path brand, which currently offers chickpeas in its portfolio.

We’re seeing the most innovation in the following categories:

  • Dried Pasta: Gluten-free pasta with chickpea flour delivers a nutritious and high-protein alternative to traditional wheat-based pasta. 
  • Snacking: Roasted chickpeas and chickpea chips have become popular snack options for those looking for a healthier alternative to traditional potato chips.
  • Dairy: Got chickpeas? Chickpea milk is a dairy-free milk alternative that is high in protein and nutrients. It can be used in smoothies, coffee, and other recipes.
  • Meat Alternative: Chickpeas are a popular ingredient in plant-based meat alternatives, such as vegan burgers and sausages.

There’s no better time than now to think outside of the box with chickpea flour. It’s versatile, convenient, functional, nutritious and tasty. Contact us to learn more about ways chickpeas can be used in your next formula.

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