Chickpeas are also known as garbanzo beans. Chickpeas are very versatile and have been present for millennia in the dishes of the Middle Eastern regions. You can get canned chickpeas from convenience stores but making them from dried chickpeas is better and inexpensive. Buying chickpeas in bulk is always a wise decision as it has a high nutritional value and is inexpensive. But, if you lack the space to store it in the pantry and then you turn to your freezer.
Can you freeze chickpeas? Yes, you can. Freezing chickpeas can keep them safe to eat for up to 3 months. Chickpeas freeze well but they split during the freezing process. However, split chickpeas will not compromise most of the recipes you want to use them in.
Most people prefer to buy canned chickpeas than to cook them themselves. Because the process involved in the cooking of chickpeas is lengthy. But, canned chickpeas have been filled with preservatives and they tend to have a high sodium content (salt). Homemade chickpeas are healthier because they are fresh and you have more control over the salt content. There are various ways you can freeze chickpeas. Here’s how to go about it.
How to Freeze Chickpeas
There are two ways to freeze chickpeas:
- Freezing fully cooked chickpeas.
- Freezing soaked chickpeas.
Either way of freezing will not affect the quality of your chickpeas. The only observation that comes with freezing chickpeas is that they split.
Freezing Fully Cooked Chickpeas
Cooked chickpeas are great in any recipe that they would be used in. But, for dishes like falafel, you don’t need to cook the chickpeas. In short easy steps, here’s how to freeze your cooked chickpeas.
Step 1: Cooling and Storage
Cooked chickpeas can be frozen in two ways. With or without the cooking liquid. The cooking liquid, also known as aquafaba is the water in which the chickpeas were cooked. This cooking liquid can be used in some other recipes.
After cooking the chickpeas, if you want to freeze without the cooking liquid, drain the water and keep it for storage somewhere else. Allow the chickpeas to cool down to room temperature. After it has cooled scoop the chickpeas into Ziploc bags or airtight freezer bags. Press out excess air and press the bag flat before freezing.
If you do not want the chickpeas to clump together, you can pre-freeze them. This is done by spreading the chickpeas individually on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. You can then place it in the freezer to freeze for a few hours. Then put the half-frozen chickpeas into airtight freezer bags for storage.
Mark the bags with a sharpie labeling them with the date of storage. This is to ensure that you remember to use them before the quality starts to reduce greatly.
Step 2: Freezing
After the chickpeas have been stored and bagged. All that is left is to put it in the freezer to freeze. Do not freeze for too long to prevent freezer burn.
Freezing Soaked Chickpeas
Soaked chickpeas are required in recipes for falafel. In some soup dishes that require long cooking time, soaked chickpeas are best. This is because they will still be firm from the long cooking time.
Step 1: Rinse and Soak
There are different ways to soak chickpeas. You can soak in cold water overnight or do a quick soak. For a quick soak, you put the dried chickpeas in the pot with a 3 to 1 ratio (3 cups of water to 1 cup of chickpeas). Boil for 5 minutes, kill the heat and let it soak for 1 – 1½ hour(s). After soaking, drain the water, rinse and drain again.
Step 2: Storage and Freezing
After draining the water from the soaked chickpeas, you can leave it out to dry or pat it down with a dry towel. You can also decide to pre-freeze if you do not want the chickpeas to clump together. Pack the chickpeas into Ziploc bags or airtight freezer bags. Don’t forget to label.
How to Thaw Frozen Chickpeas
To thaw frozen chickpeas, bring them out of the freezer and put them into a bowl to thaw overnight in the freezer. As easy as that. You can also reheat in a pot or microwave.
Can You Freeze Canned Chickpeas?
Yes, you can. Just transfer the canned chickpeas from the can into Ziploc bags or airtight freezer bags, remove all the air and freeze that way. The chickpeas will freeze normally as though they were fresh.
Can You Freeze Pureed Chickpeas?
Yes, you can freeze pureed chickpeas. Chickpeas can be pureed with a blender or food processor. They should be consumed under 24 hours to prevent spoiling. Pureed chickpeas can be frozen by spooning it into ice cube trays and freezing until it is solid. The frozen cubes can then be transferred into Ziploc bags and kept in the freezer for storage.