Cooking dried beans instead of purchasing them canned gives you less sodium per serving, more flavor and better control over the texture of the finished beans. However, you can cook chickpeas without soaking them first.
Most recipes call for dried beans to be soaked in cold water overnight before cooking. Dried chickpeas — also known as garbanzo beans — can be cooked without presoaking in anywhere from 40 minutes to eight hours, depending on the method that best suits your needs.
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However, cooking garbanzo beans without soaking first can increase risk of digestive side effects including gas and bloating. To reduce unwanted side effects, consider presoaking chickpeas and discarding the soaking water, as advised by the Cleveland Clinic.
Read more: The Protein in Chickpeas
Cook in the Stockpot
If you forgot to soak chickpeas overnight, don't worry. You need nothing more than water and a stockpot or large saucepan. Put rinsed chickpeas in the pot, add 3 cups of water for every 1 cup of beans, and bring the mixture to a boil over high heat.
Use a spoon to remove any foam that rises to the surface. Lower the heat so that the water is at a simmer and cook the beans, stirring them occasionally and adding in more water, if needed, until they're at your desired level of tenderness.
For chickpeas, this may take around 60 to 90 minutes, according to Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health. But if you do choose to presoak the beans, then it would reduce cooking time up to 25 percent.
Make Chickpeas in the Oven
Cook dry beans in the oven along with water and your choice of seasonings, such as garlic or bay leaves. For 1 pound of dried chickpeas — approximately 4 cups of beans — use a Dutch oven or large pot with a tight-fitting lid.
Cover the beans with about 1 inch of water, put the lid in place and bake at 375 degrees Fahrenheit. After 75 minutes, stir the chickpeas and check their tenderness. If they're not yet soft enough, return them to the oven for 15 minutes and check again.
Most dried beans, including chickpeas, will be done in 90 minutes to two hours when using this method.
Cooking Chickpeas in Slow Cookers
Cooking chickpeas in a slow cooker is a simple method if you forgot to soak chickpeas overnight. Some slow cooker recipes begin with dry beans, as described by Utah State University.
Pour the cleaned, dried chickpeas into the cooker's insert and add enough water to cover the beans by at least 1 inch, though check to be certain that the surface of the water is a few inches below the top of the insert.
Cook the chickpeas for four hours on the slow cooker's high setting or between six and eight hours on the low setting. To help you estimate how long the beans should remain in the cooker, consider how you'll be using the finished beans.
Try a shorter cooking time for firmer beans that you want to use in soups, stews or casseroles and the longer times for cooking chickpeas for hummus.
Read more: Are Chickpeas Good for Weight Loss?
Use a Pressure Cooker
Dried, unsoaked chickpeas can cook in approximately half the time is you use a pressure cooker, according to North Dakota State University. However, they might not soak up flavor as well as cooking chickpeas in a slow cooker.
Put the beans into the cooker, pour in enough water to cover them, add in any aromatics you may want — garlic or onions, for instance — and stir in a tablespoon of oil for every pound of dried chickpeas.
The oil will decrease the foam that may accumulate in the cooker and interfere with the pressure valve while the beans are cooking. Turn the cooker to the high pressure setting; reduce it to medium pressure and allow the chickpeas to cook for the recommended time.
Check the beans after you've turned off the heat and the pressure has decreased. If the beans are not tender enough, repeat the process for five- to 10-minute intervals.
- Cleveland Clinic: "What You Should Know About Beans and the (Embarrassing) Gas They Cause"
- Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health: "Chickpeas (Garbanzo Beans)"
- North Dakota State University: "All About Beans Nutrition, Health Benefits, Preparation and Use in Menus"
- Utah State University: "Cooking With Food Storage Ingredients: Dry Beans"