Recipe Connection: Meatless Chickpea Wraps

When I decided that I was interested in finding a good meatless burger recipe, I found one based with chickpeas (garbanzo beans), and another based on lentils.  The lentil burger was pretty bland; you might be able to enjoy it with enough condiments, and the chickpea burger was just too mushy to be on a bun an inch thick.  Sorry, I can’t think of any better description than “mushy”!

But I fixed it.
Chickpea Wraps - Meatless Meal from Kitchen Stewardship

Using nearly the same recipe for the chickpea burgers from The Veggie Table, I fried them up very thin and put them in tortillas.  Talk to me, deli quality!

With a tangy dose of mustard and mayo or ranch dressing, the crunch of lettuce and some melted cheese, maybe some red onion for a truly delightful zip, you almost forget you’re sacrificing meat when you eat these nourishing, frugal wraps.

Find this recipe, updated and with even more frugal tips and transformation options, along with 29 other bean recipes and a ton of information on cooking dry beans, the health benefits of beans, and ideas for bean haters in The Everything Beans Book, available now at Kitchen Stewardship!

Recipe Connection: Meatless Chickpea Wraps
 
Author:
Recipe type: Meatless Entrees
Ingredients
  • 2 Tbs. olive oil ($0.25)
  • 1½ c. onions, minced ($1.00)
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced ($0.10)
  • 1 tsp. ground cumin
  • 1 c. carrot, finely chopped or shredded ($0.75)
  • 1¾ c. cooked and drained chickpeas (about 1 can) ($0.65)
  • 1½ Tbs. tahini or peanut butter
  • ¼ c. parsley, minced
  • ⅓ c. white flour*
  • ½ tsp. baking soda
  • 1 tsp. salt
Instructions
  1. If you have a food processor, make it work for you.
  2. Process the onions just enough to get them chopped, then sauté them in oil for about five minutes.
  3. Meanwhile, shred carrots to fill one cup in your food processor and mince the garlic.  Garlic’s health benefits are best five minutes after mincing, so try chopping them first, then the carrots.
  4. Add the carrots and cumin to the onions for a minute, then the garlic for one last minute, stirring frequently.
  5. Process the cooked chickpeas (garbanzo beans) into a paste, add the sauteed vegetables and process briefly.
  6. Stir in peanut butter/tahini and parsley.  (If using fresh parsley, process it before the chickpeas.)
  7. No food processor?  You can use a hand blender or even a potato masher to smash the chickpeas and simply stir in the remaining ingredients.  Be sure to finely chop the onions and shred or very finely chop the carrots if you don’t have a tool to blend them into the mixture.  I love my Pampered Chef hand chopper for jobs like that!
  8. Combine the flour, baking soda, and salt in a small bowl, then stir into chickpeas.
  9. Fry small, thin patties in oil over medium-low heat for 1-2 minutes, until just beginning to brown.
  10. Turn over and fry the other side until browned, crispy is optimal.
Notes
Not sure what kind of fat/oil to use for sauteeing or frying?  See this comprehensive list of fats and oils and how to use them.
*Any flour will work, including brown rice flour or 1 Tbs. coconut flour for gluten-free. To stay GF, use a GF tortilla or a corn tortilla, or serve over lettuce or corn chips.
Total cost: about $3, plus <$1 for tortillas = 75 cents per person

Healthy Upgrades: You could easily sneak a few more veggies in, like gently steamed spinach or fresh red peppers. Once you’re putting dinner into a food processor anyway, it’s a great time to hide some nutrient-packed extras!

Optional: Start with dried chickpeas/garbanzo beans, cook and measure at least 1½ cups chickpeas instead of the canned version. Leftover garbanzo beans may be frozen for future use.

chickpea wraps (1)See how nice and thin they are?  Don’t worry about beautiful shapes for presentation since they’ll be all wrapped up anyway.  A well-seasoned cast iron pan gives super results.

added bonus KSAdded bonus: The recipe makes a lot more than you’d expect for one little can of beans, and it actually freezes great!  Freeze some along with extra homemade tortillas, then thaw the filling and fry up for a super simple meal later.

We like to serve with homemade chicken rice-a-roni or cheesy rice and tomatoes, steamed vegetables and a salad.  To complete the Mediterranean undertones in the meal, try homemade Greek dressing.

timesaverTimesaver: If you use your food processor to shred cheese and then freeze it, before this recipe is a great time to double up and save on dishes.

Never cooked dry beans before?  Check out this easy dry bean tutorial and start saving money now!

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Kitchen Stewardship is dedicated to balancing God’s gifts of time, health, earth and money.  If you feel called to such a mission, read more at Mission, Method, and Mary and Martha Moments.

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44 Bites of Conversation So Far

  1. says

    Do you think these would be good as appetizers you can dip into a sauce???
    .-= Candi @ Family Stamping and FOOD!´s last blog ..In The Kitchen: Homemade Chicken Stock =-.

    [Reply to this comment]

    Katie Reply:

    Candi,
    I don’t know that they’re very handy to pick up like an appetizer – the filling would actually make a pretty decent dip itself for chips or pitas or veggies! Does that make sense?
    :) Katie

    [Reply to this comment]

  2. says

    I lament the fact that I live with two men who would cut off their right arms and eat them just to have meat. Because this looks really good to me!

    Thanks for sharing!

    [Reply to this comment]

    Katie Reply:

    Mrs Jen,
    Maybe put a chicken breast on the side! 😉 My husband is a happy meat eater, too, but maybe not right-arm-edible caliber. :) Katie

    [Reply to this comment]

  3. says

    Katie, thanks for joining my carnival!

    These look fabulous! When I worked for a nonprofit in Philly, I used to have falafel at a local Israeli restaurant for lunch. These are reminiscent of them, particularly if one uses tahini.

    Do you freeze the recipe before or after frying? I suspect you’ll say before because the fried ones might be soggy if frozen.
    .-= Barb@My Daily Round´s last blog ..tomorrow: meatless meals lenten carnival =-.

    [Reply to this comment]

    Katie Reply:

    Barb,
    Yes, I freeze the chickpea spread before frying – it’s just less work that way b/c you would want to re-fry a bit to crisp them up and warm them anyway.
    :) Katie

    [Reply to this comment]

  4. says

    I just found your blog through Progressive Pioneer, and I love it! I started my family on the healthy eating path when my oldest was a baby, I knew that if I wanted them to eat healthy the easiest thing would be to make that our “normal” from the very beginning. I love the topic of nutrition, and try to learn as much as I can.
    I have a question about margarine. I can not eat dairy so I use Smart Balance Non-Hydrogenated margarine in place of butter, when healthy oils are not appropriate (when solid fats are needed in the recipe/dish). Is this a poor substitute? What do you suggest instead?
    .-= Banana´s last blog ..The Ultrasound says… =-.

    [Reply to this comment]

    Katie Reply:

    Banana,

    So glad to have you around! You are dead on about the philosophy of starting your kids off right.

    I wrote about butter vs. margarine vs. Smart Balance here: http://www.kitchenstewardship.com/2009/10/10/butter-vs-margarine-vs-spreads-how-do-they-stack-up/

    In my opinion, the Smart Balance is probably better than margarine. However, I think there are also other non-dairy alternatives. I love <a href="http://www.kitchenstewardship.com/2009/11/03/faqs-on-coconut-oil-and-how-to-use-it/"coconut oil for any recipe that calls for butter – it has worked as a substitution every time. For putting on toast and stuff like that, ghee is a possibility – it’s butter that has all the milk solids taken out of it, so it’s supposed to be safe for non-dairy folks. You can purchase it or make homemade ghee.

    I hope that helps give you some info to chew on!
    :) Katie

    [Reply to this comment]

  5. says

    Hi! I have never commented before….but just wanted to say:
    I made this tonight……YUM! I added spinach but did everything else like you instructed. My meat-lover hubby loved them as well. Thank you for this wonderful, healthy meal!

    [Reply to this comment]

    Katie Reply:

    Becky,
    Awesome! Thanks for commenting; it’s always great to hear about a success! :) Katie

    [Reply to this comment]

  6. Evelina says

    Make lettuce wraps – just wrap them up in lettuce, then you can dunk to your heart’s content. I would make them small and oval for small dainty one dip bites, (saw something on TV about double dipping, why tempt anyone! *laughter*). Or, you could spoon a bit of sauce on the patty in the lettuce wrap.

    [Reply to this comment]

    Evelina Reply:

    Sorry, I hit the wrong reply button, the above was in reply to Candi’s question.

    Thinking about dipping, that Asian Toasted Sesame Dressing Katie posted sounds like a delicious dip idea.

    [Reply to this comment]

  7. says

    YAY- I made these tonight and they were big hit!! A bit of work but super yummy and I would definitely make again.

    I served them with gluten free pitas (made with Bob’s red mill all purpose flour instead of the flours in this recipe)

    http://www.grouprecipes.com/61081/gluten-free-pita.html

    and vegan (we are not vegan, but this recipe looked interesting) ranch dressing- very nutritious!! I tweeked it a bit- no dill.

    http://www.vegan-weight-loss.com/ranch-dressing-recipe.html

    and I added spinach very successfully and served on top of raw spinach.

    thanks

    jen

    [Reply to this comment]

  8. Kathy says

    Katie, these were so, so good! Next time I make them, I will definitely make extra to freeze. I am LOVING adding some meatless meals to our rotation on a regular basis. Thanks for sharing your recipes!

    [Reply to this comment]

    Katie Reply:

    Kathy,
    So glad your family is enjoying the recipes as much as mine does! 😉 Katie

    [Reply to this comment]

  9. says

    We made these last month and again last week, and they were great!!! We like them with tomato and cucumber.

    The second time, we cooked them on the George Foreman grill. It’s nice because it doesn’t heat up the room as much as cooking in a pan. Not only were they less greasy this way, but they actually held together better.

    I’m planning a round-up of the best homemade veggie burger recipes soon, and you can be sure this one will be included!

    [Reply to this comment]

  10. Heather says

    I was pretty excited to try these, but they were too wet to form. I ended up scooping them into the pan and then pat-flip-pat-flipping them until they were thin. They fell apart unless they were cooled off, but the flavor was better if they were warm. I liked them hot off the skillet, but I was the only one in my family. Might try the leftovers with cucumber and tomato in a pita.

    Another night of “I’m so excited to try this new, healthy recipe” that no one likes. Sigh.

    [Reply to this comment]

    Katie Reply:

    Heather,
    Well, if the family didn’t like the flavor, you probably won’t want to try them again, but if you do, just add some more flour to the mixture before forming patties. Sorry it was a bust – sad! :( Katie

    [Reply to this comment]

  11. Jill says

    When I made these, they didn’t stay together well, and didn’t fry up – they just remained mush. Do you know what I did wrong? I only have a stainless steel pan so that’s what I used, and I used olive oil. Were those my problems? Thanks for any help you can give. They had a good flavor, even if they were mush.

    [Reply to this comment]

    Katie Kimball @ Kitchen Stewardship Reply:

    Jill,
    Hmmm, they are a little mushy, it’s the frying that makes the outside brown that makes them stick together. Once I used arrowroot starch and it was a disaster, so if you used alternative flours, that might have been a problem. Also, did they turn brown at all? Maybe your heat wasn’t high enough, or maybe the browned part stuck to the pan (that happens to me a lot with certain pans and things like eggs or fried potatoes). Maybe? Glad you could still salvage the meal! Sometimes you just go with a new way to have refried bean quesadillas, right? 😉 Katie

    [Reply to this comment]

  12. says

    Okay, this recipe is proving to be my Waterloo. I’ve always thought it looked good, and tried it a while ago – except once I got everything into my food processor, the food processor didn’t work. It was somehow broken, for that night only – the next morning, it worked fine! So we had a chickpea mixture that didn’t work well at all.

    I tried it again tonight, and got about halfway through before I realized I’d seriously misread it – and added 1 1/2 CUPS of peanut butter instead of tablespoons! They were still fine, just a little peanutty! One of these days I’ll get it right, I swear!

    [Reply to this comment]

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