Have you hopped aboard the aquafaba train yet? If you’ve never heard of it, aquafaba is the name given to the liquid from a can of chickpeas. Instead of pouring aquafaba down the drain, you can actually use it in recipes! You can cut back on waste by using aquafaba as a binder, emulsifier, leavening agent, and foaming agent in all your recipes that would typically call for egg whites like macarons and mousse. There’s also no need for boxed egg replacers because you can use aquafaba to replace eggs in waffles, brownies, cakes. Aquafaba can be used in savory recipes, such as using it instead of eggs as a binder for keeping breading on your tofu cutlets. Check out our vegan aquafaba recipes to see all the different ways you can use aquafaba in your kitchen.
Of course, if you’re stocking up on canned chickpeas for aquafaba, you’ll want to find ways to use the actual chickpeas. “Waste not, want not,” right? So, consider this your one-stop shop on how to use the chickpeas and then use the aquafaba — and we’ve given you a mix of both sweet and savory for both because variety is the spice of life
1. Wild Rice Burgers With Grilled Avocado and Heirloom Tomato Salsa
In this recipe for Wild Rice Burgers, grains and chickpeas are mashed into hearty patties held together with aquafaba and then topped with grilled avocado and a salsa made from roasted heirloom tomatoes infused with jalapeño. The result is a tangy and slightly spicy burger with tons of flavor. Pair these burgers with a sweet and creamy coleslaw.
2. Fudgy Cinnamon Chai Protein Bars
These Fudgy Cinnamon Chai Protein Bars are a great source of healthy fats, as well as completely free of refined sugar. They’ll be your new favorite mid-day snack without the sugar rush and they taste like fudge straight from the candy shop. They’re made from chickpeas and dates that are infused with chai tea leaves. Store these in the freezer to keep them from melting, so they’re a sweet and satisfying treat on a hot day.
3. Pimento Cheese
This Pimento Cheese is so quick and easy to make, you can literally make it for a party mere minutes before you guests arrive. It’s cheesy, spicy, and comforting, which are pretty much all the characteristics of a good dip. And since it’s primarily made from chickpeas, you can feel good about munching out!
4. Creamy Turtle Chocolate Squares
These Creamy Turtle Chocolate Squares are the perfect balance of refreshing matcha and sweet, creamy chocolate. Chickpeas give these treats their soft texture, while the dates provide their rich flavor. Enjoy these with a cold glass of almond milk.
5. Fettuccine With Garlicky Purple Cabbage and Cheesy Chickpea Sauce
Looking for an easy anytime dinner? Try this Fettuccine With Garlicky Purple Cabbage and Cheesy Chickpea Sauce! This pasta dish comes packed with nutrients from the cheesy chickpea sauce, crunchy cabbage, and walnut topping. Its easy steps make it especially great for weekday cooking.
6. Cinnamon Chickpea Blondies
These Cinnamon Chickpea Blondies will be your new go-to treat! They are moist and tender in the center with just a bit of a crackly crust on top. They are perfectly sweet, healthier than your average blondie recipe and, oh, so addictive! While these do contain a good amount of sugar, they are also packed with protein, fiber, folate, and iron, so you can feel good about your new afternoon treat! Oh, and guess what? They are dairy-free, gluten-free, and oil-free, too!
7. Grilled Hummus Burgers With Sweet Potato Slices
You don’t need a lot of ingredients to make a great burger, nor do you need to spend a lot to make them. You don’t even need to spend a lot of time! These Grilled Hummus Burgers require only five ingredients to make, not including the grilled sweet potato slices on the side. They’re soft, but crispy on the outside and they cook in just 10 minutes!
8. Frosty Passionfruit Pear Cheesecake
These Frosty Passionfruit Pear Cheesecakes are perfect for when that sweet craving hits but you’re looking for something more than empty calories. With a spicy corn crust, chickpea and pear filling, and passion fruit topping, this is a unique dessert in both ingredient and nutrition. This is a freezer treat, not a soft cheesecake, so treat it like an ice cream of sorts!
9. Meringue Macarons
Aquafaba, or the brine from a can of chickpeas, has been making a big splash in the vegan baking community for its ability to simulate meringue, usually made from eggs. These Meringue Macarons are proof! Filled with chocolate cacao cream, these fluffy meringue macarons taste as beautiful as they look. Think of these next time you’re tempted to drain that chickpea can.
10. Cauliflower Flatbreads
Cauliflower Flatbreads may sound far-fetched, but they’re totally possible! A combination of chickpea flour and aquafaba help hold these savory flatbreads together, Flourless, easy-to-make, and a good staple to keep in the house, these flatbreads are great at keeping you full on the go.
11. Iced Lemon Doughnuts
These Iced Lemon Doughnuts are moist, citrus-y, and topped with a sweet, lemon icing — and they use aquafaba as the binder instead of eggs! As these doughnuts bake, the scent of warm, lemony baked goods will fill your home. These are best served fresh, with a cup of coffee, but they also make a great breakfast. If you’re serving these to guests, garnish with lemon zest for some extra zing and for presentation.
12. Crispy Breaded Chickpea Cutlets in Mushroom Gravy
These Crispy Breaded Chickpea Cutlets are served with a savory homemade mushroom gravy — and the “breading” is gluten-free. It uses both chickpeas and aquafaba, making this recipe a waste-free win-win! Serve this alongside some fresh greens or any vegetable of your choosing.
13. Banoffee Ice Cream Bars
These Banoffee Ice Cream Bars are like a deconstructed ice cream version of the original pie. Meringue made with aquafaba is combined with a “pie crust” mixture of oats, graham cracker crust, and dates, along with sliced bananas. It’s baked in the oven to let the meringue set and while it’s tempting to try it right out of the oven, when frozen it’s transformed into a unique ice cream treat like no other.
14. Oil-Free Cinnamon Rolls With Creamy Lemon Glaze
These flaky Oil-Free Cinnamon Rolls are sweetened with coconut sugar and maple syrup, coated in a lemony glaze, and dusted with cinnamon. Aquafaba and almond milk give the inside of the rolls a nice fluffiness. Enjoy them with a hot cup of coffee for a sweet start to your morning or as an afternoon treat.
15. Soft-Batch Tahini Snickerdoodles
If you’re wondering how to add more plant-based protein into your life, protein can be found in lots of unexpected places … like these Soft-Batch Tahini Snickerdoodles! They’re made with chickpeas and tahini, but you’d never know. Using both chickpeas and aquafaba in place of eggs, these cookies are delightfully nutty, sweet, cinnamon-y, and absolutely packed with protein to keep you bright-eyed and bushy-tailed all day long.
Don’t forget to recycle or repurpose that can once you’re done with it! You can decorate old cans and use them to hold office supplies and utensils, or try turning them into vases or lanerns!
Lead image source: Meringue Macarons