Beans are an ideal source of vegetable protein. If you correctly compile a daily diet, your body will get all the essential amino acids. In this article, we will learn the most popular types of beans, why they are healthy and what can you cook using them.
“Where from do you get protein?” – Probably the most popular question vegetarians are usually asked and, especially, vegans. Many people used to think that meat is the only possible source of protein, and they don’t notice the whole variety of products.
Chickpea is one of the most popular ingredients for vegetarian food. But if you want a substitute for chickpea, what are the best options? One of the most simple choices is cannellini beans, but also you can choose lentils, peas, soybeans, and even some nuts. Surprised? Then find out what is a perfect ingredient that can substitute chickpeas!
Chickpeas as a king of vegan cuisine. Not so many bean products can compete with him in protein content: almost 100 grams of protein is hidden in 100 grams of chickpea. This, by the way, is almost as in a chicken egg!
Also, chickpeas contain a large number of B vitamins, as well as potassium, magnesium, and calcium. All this has a beneficial effect on the functioning of the heart and helps the normal course of redox reactions. The amino acid lysine is involved in building muscles without accumulating unnecessary fat. That is why you can find chickpeas in the diet of athletes and all those people who care about their health.
Substitute For Chickpeas
What’s the most common meal that we can make from chickpeas? Hummus and falafel. These two are great as a dip or as a standalone dish by itself.
Although chickpeas are the authentic choice, there’s no point in using them if you don’t like them. And what to do if you can’t find chickpeas or you are allergic to it? Should you forget about everything these meals? Not really, because you can substitute any other beans as a chickpea alternative!
The best thing about beans – they are versatile. One type of bean can be substituted for another in a wide variety of recipes – especially soups, stews, and salads.
Can you use something instead of chickpeas? Of course yes, it will just depend on what other ingredients are in your recipe but if you’re using them for a soup or stew or hummus, you can select equal amounts of any of these substitutes that we are going to discuss today.
The most popular chickpea dishes are falafel and hummus. But what beans can be used to replace chickpeas in these meals? Let’s take a
If by substitute you mean to come up with something that will be undetectable in terms of taste and texture, you’re fighting a losing battle. But who told you that your substitution won’t be even better? The best way to find a perfect matching substitute – experimenting once you understand the characteristics of each type of bean.
1. Green pea
Is it possible to replace chickpeas with ordinary peas? Green peas will be an excellent alternative in a meat, fish dish. It’s suitable for use in fresh, canned, and frozen form. It is also important to add it to salads or make porridge from it.
If you are making soup, green peas will be the best alternative to chickpeas. Also, this product is considered dietary and has many useful properties. However, you need to remember that peas have a specific taste that will differ from chickpeas.
2. Cannellini beans
100 grams of these beans contain 25 grams of easily digestible protein. This is comparable to red meat! The potassium, magnesium, and calcium components are responsible for the normal functioning of the heart and blood vessels, so regular consumption of red beans in food regulates blood pressure. Iron inhibits anemia and supplies oxygen to the cells of the body.
Due to its neutral taste, beans can be used to prepare a variety of dishes. Its extremely nutritious, suitable for cooking vegetables, fish, and meat meals. There are many recipes where you can use beans. It will be a good alternative if chickpeas cannot be used for some reason.
3. Black beans
Black beans are also known as turtle beans. They are common in Mexican and Caribbean cooking, but still, you can find them in many supermarkets all over the world. They have a mild, earthy flavor, which is also a bit sweet, has a smooth texture, making them suitable for chili, soups, salsas, and dips.
These two types of beans are interchangeable. Maybe your dish will taste a little bit different but why not try? While cooking keeps in memory that black beans are often seasoned with cumin, chili peppers, cilantro, oregano, and garlic. Chickpeas go well with cardamom, ginger, curry, cumin, and garlic, plus many different herbs including mint, parsley, and rosemary.
Green lentils are a champion of insoluble fiber. Soluble fiber not only cleanses the intestines but also creates a favorable microflora. Green lentils in combination with cereals (rice, bulgur) will provide the body with all the necessary amino acids.
Red lentils are high in iron and folic acid. It lowers blood sugar and cholesterol, supports heart and digestive health. This product, as well as beans, has a lot of different varieties. This kind of beans has a lot of useful properties and gentle, thin taste. Some varieties can be already spicy and you need to remember that when adding spices. The lentil can act as a substitute for most products, including the chickpea. The red lentil is quickly operated, so doesn’t need to be pre-soaked.
The lentil is suitable for use in a boiled form. Depending on the variety, the process of cooking this product takes from 15 to 40 minutes. The lentils can be used for soups, salads, puree. Sometimes it is included in the baking.
Soy also refers to beans and can act as an alternative instead of chickpeas.
Soy also has a lot of protein: 15 grams per 100 grams of the product. It’s more than in pork! Soy protein digests very well, and the absence of cholesterol has a good effect on the heart and vessels. Soybeans are rich in vitamins (B1, B2, B3, B5, B6, B9, C), minerals (calcium, phosphorus, iron, magnesium, potassium, and zinc), indispensable fatty acids Omega-3 and omega-6.
If you soak the soybeans for the night, you can prepare homemade soy milk. It’s a raw material for tofu and vegan cheese. However, it is necessary to take into account that this product has many negative qualities and with the wrong use of soybean, it can seriously harm the health, provoke a lot of serious diseases that can increase the load on the functioning of the whole body.
Tofu can be a great replacement in many different dishes. It tends to work with all flavors and cuisines, also you can dice it, bake it, crumble it, etc. You’ll have plenty of variations on how to cook something new.
6. Mung beans
Mung, or mung bean, is another popular vegetarian product. Maash contains a lot of protein, vegetable fats, slow carbohydrates, B vitamins, and fiber. And people love and appreciate Mung for a large amount of iron.
Bean products aren’t recommended for germination, but Mung in this case is a great exception. Maash seedlings will restore strength after an illness, fill the body with vitamins, and give a boost of living energy.
Mung goes well with rice – this is how it is cooked in many countries. Of course, everyone adds their own spices, and the taste of the dish turns out to be original and unique. Mung is well-digested and serves as the basis for a nutritious vegetarian soup. It’ll be a perfect replacement for the chickpeas!
Beans and…PEANUTS? It seems to be a weird choice but did you know that peanuts aren’t nuts at all! They belong to the family of legumes.
Peanuts almost on the half consist of useful fatty acids, they also have a lot of melt-protected protein and antioxidants. Peanuts improve memory and attention, it is also useful for the normal functioning of the nervous system, heart, liver, and other internal organs. They stimulate blood coagulation and enhance the formation of platelets.
Thanks to the high nutritional value, the peanuts quarrel quickly and for a long time. But be careful – peanuts can cause allergy!
Have you ever thought that chickpeas can be replaced with hazelnuts? Sounds unbelievable but in some cases, it can be a good replacement for chickpeas, since it has a similar taste. Low-fat sweetly taste and high nutrition make the hazelnut the most popular nut.
The taste qualities and appearance of these nuts are quite similar to chickpeas, so it can be used as an alternative. However, if possible, it’s better to replace it with another option, despite all the useful properties of the hazelnut. Since it is still different from the chickpeas because of the taste and the flavor, which will affect the meal.
By the way, if you have a nut allergy – use sunflower seeds!
A positive mindset is key to figuring out your best substitute. You know what you like so you can figure out what will work best for your taste buds, just trust your taste and feelings.
Find A Balance
All vegetarians and those who care about their health should add beans to their ration. However, it should be remembered that they need to be pre-soaked. Do not eat them for breakfast or dinner. The digestive tract takes time to digest them, so the perfect time for the meals will be lunch.