Crispy (Fried) Chickpeas

By Ileana Morales Valentine
March 31, 2014
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Author Notes: Crispy chickpeas are the new popcorn. I'd seen countless recipes calling to roast them , but it was summer and I didn't want to mess with the oven. The answer was to fry them. It's much faster and the resulting chickpeas are more crisp. With a high-walled Dutch oven, frying is easy and I no longer have to cower behind a splatter guard.

Smoky paprika is a go-to spice with chickpeas, but I also love a batch infused with lemon zest and thyme. The recipe below gives you a bit of both to try. And then play! Let me know what flavor combinations you try out.

These are best served immediately and are ideal for your next happy hour at home.
Ileana Morales Valentine

Serves: 2 to 3

  • olive oil
  • 2 cups chickpeas
  • 1/2 teaspoon sea salt, divided
  • 1/4 teaspoon smoked paprika
  • zest of 1 lemon
  • 3 or 4 thyme sprigs
  1. Heat about ½ inch of olive oil over medium-high heat in a Dutch oven or large wide skillet.
  2. Meanwhile, dry drained chickpeas with paper towels.
  3. When the oil is hot, use a strainer to carefully place half of the chickpeas in the oil. Fry until crispy and golden, about 5 minutes, stirring frequently.
  4. Use a strainer or slotted spoon to transfer the hot chickpeas to a plate lined with paper towels. Transfer to a small owl and season and toss with ¼ teaspoon salt and paprika.
  5. Fry the remaining half of the chickpeas with the thyme, stirring frequently, and drain them on paper towels. Toss this batch in a small bowl with ¼ teaspoon salt and lemon zest. Serve immediately.

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