Chickpeas really are a fantastic source of protein, fibre and manganese and they are often under used. Protein provides energy and is essential for growth, repair and maintenance of the tissues in the body. Fibre aids digestion and manganese is needed for bone formation and releasing energy from food.
When to give to your baby +6 months
Chickpeas are great to introduce form early on in the journey as soon as first tastes have been accepted. If you are planning on raising your baby vegetarian then they are a super ingredient to get all the protein your little one needs. Even if not, they are still a super ingredient to have in your cupboard. We recommend to introduce them from around +6 months, however every baby is different so follow your instinct or consult your health visitor if you are not sure. For more information on weaning visit our weaning section in ‘your journey’. If you find chickpeas gives your little one gas, don’t be put off. Try leaving it for a few weeks before introducing it again as it can take a little while for your little ones digestive system to manage with digesting, and like we said, every baby is different! Its worth persisting with as these are very nutritious, just like broccoli, and you really don’t want to your baby to miss out on them.
The perfect chickpeas
Wherever possible we like to use organic chickpeas, which means that they have not been sprayed or treated with any nasties. We understand that this isn't always possible, so buy the best available to you at the time. You can use either canned or dried chickpeas in your baby’s food recipes. We prefer dried chickpeas to be soaked overnight but if using canned, make sure that you buy ones that don’t contain any added salt! Store your chickpeas in a cool and dry place.
Best way to cook them for your baby
If using dried, you need to soak them over night before cooking. The next day, drain and rinse the chick peas before placing in fresh water and cooking until soft (which can vary from chick pea to chick pea but usually around 30-40 mins). They are perfect added to a light coconut curry for a protein boost or turned into a delightful hummus perfect for when your little one is eating finger food.
What goes well with chickpeas
Pumpkins, tomato, coconut cream, carrot, rice, quinoa