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The Real MVP: The Chickpea

With the stresses of schoolwork, midterms, and internships in mind, I am always in a hurry. This means, unfortunately, that sometimes it’s very tempting to crash at home after a long day and binge on fatty, processed foods. For a while, I struggled with the internal battle of whether or not to sacrifice taste and “soul-satisfaction” for health and well-being. Vegetables fuel and help maintain the body with high fiber and vitamin contents, but taste so incredibly boring.

Thankfully, I recently discovered a way to get the best of both worlds, allowing me to enjoy unbelievably tasty food, all the while benefitting from the natural and wholesome nutrients of veggies. I found the real MVP that changed my world: the chickpea.

Without further ado, here are some delicious, easy, and heart-healthy chickpea-inspired dishes, made for the girl on the go.

1. Chickpea Chocolate Chip Cookie Dip

http://www.barneybutter.com/2013/04/healthy-cookie-dough-dip/

What if I told you that you could have an entire bowl of chocolate chip cookie goodness without ingesting a thousand calories? The chickpea is a shockingly great substitute for flour and butter. It cuts out the carbs and fats, replacing them with protein and fiber. The incredible part is, the taste of the chickpea is completely undetectable.

2. Chickpea Brownies

http://www.theroastedroot.net/garbanzo-bean-brownies/

For those who claim to prefer brownies over cookies. Or just can’t get enough of both.

3. Hummus

 http://www.cookingclassy.com/2014/03/hummus/

Do you have a stock of veggies in the bottom drawer of your fridge, just waiting to die? Don’t waste them, eat them with your hummus! It’ll taste a hundred times better than just eating the sad veggies alone. A famous woman once said, “Hummus is a gateway food to eating everything else in your refrigerator.”

4. Chickpea Stew

https://www.pinterest.com/

I’m not personally a fan of stew (especially one that contains only vegetables), but damn. The richness and savory flavor of the chickpeas makes one hearty, warm meal on a cold winter night.

5. Chickpea Panzanella

https://www.pinterest.com/This Mediterranean-based salad features the chickpea with support from cherry tomatoes, lemon zest, feta cheese, bread chunks, and cucumbers. If you have more stuff you’d like to add, just throw it in this flexible kitchen sink salad. It’s crunchy, refreshing, and totally energizing. Even if you’re not really a salad person (like myself), I urge you to try this dish. It will blow. Your. Mind.

Photo Sources:

1. http://www.barneybutter.com/2013/04/healthy-cookie-dough-dip/

2. http://www.theroastedroot.net/wp-content/uploads/2012/12/IMG_2426.jpg

3. http://www.cookingclassy.com/2014/03/hummus/

4. https://s-media-cache-ak0.pinimg.com/736x/ea/55/ba/ea55bae145af89a1a768d84cf98fb123.jpg

5. https://s-media-cache-ak0.pinimg.com/736x/94/59/a5/9459a5026972d0b09fb507c466e8556d.jpg

I'm a student at Carnegie Mellon University, pursuing a Bachelor of Humanities and Fine Arts in Professional Writing and Fine Art, with a minor in Design.
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