Can you eat garbanzo beans out of the can?

In this article, we will answer the question “Can you eat garbanzo beans out of the can?”, and how to use canned chickpeas?

Read on if you want to know how to incorporate canned chickpeas into your diet. The article also includes a brief nutritional introduction to garbanzo beans.

Can you eat garbanzo beans out of the can?

Yes, you can eat garbanzo beans out of the can. Canned chickpea s are pre-cooked so they do not need to go through an additional cooking process. 

Cooking and thermal treatments in general usually cause losses in food product nutritional quality and phytochemical contents. However, they can also inactivate heat labile antinutritional factors such as pulse antitrypsin factors that adversely affect protein bioavailability, decrease pulse content in unwanted factors such as phytates, or modulate pulse amino acid composition and protein digestibility The process of canning legumes. Studies show that canning chickpeas led to a significant decrease in the amount of some nutrients, such as proteins, fibers and minerals. These losses were higher than those observed for household cooking (which includes soaking for 18-24 h and cooking for ~25 min at ~95°C) (2).

Make sure to drain the canning liquid to remove the excess sodium. Canned chickpea can be used in a variety of dishes like curries, soups, sauces, pasta, sandwiches, wraps, etc. Conversely to household cooking, the canning process requires the addition of salt (2).

Chickpea (Cicer arietinum L.) is one of the largest produced food legumes in South Asia and the third largest produced food legume globally, after common bean (Phaseolus vulgaris L.). Chickpea is grown in more than 50 countries (89.7% area in Asia, 4.3% in Africa, 2.6% in Oceania, 2.9% in Americas and 0.4% in Europe). India is the largest chickpea producing country accounting for 64% of the global chickpea production (1).

Ways to use a can of chickpeas

Canned chickpeas are a great candidate for making vegan tuna sandwiches. The taste of this vegan sandwich is strikingly similar to a tuna sandwich. You can wrap your sandwich in buns or lattice leaves.

Chickpeas have a pretty neutral taste. This makes them very desirable for salads. Wash the canned chickpeas and toss them in your salad to get a boost of fiber, protein, and other nutrients.

You can combine the richness of the avocado and the fullness of chickpeas by making a smashed chickpea avocado sandwich. This creamy vegan sandwich is perfect has a lot of potentials to become your next go-to meal.

This might come as a surprise to you but you can use chickpeas as a pizza topping. Simply toss the canned chickpeas in bbq sauce and spread them over the pizza.

Cooked chickpeas blend to a very fine and creamy consistency. That is why you should be using cooked and blended chickpeas to make a vegetable curry.

Hummus may sound very non-inventive and a thing of the past but you can always jazz things up. Make spicy roasted red pepper hummus for an exciting flavor.

When added to soups or broths, chickpeas add a fair share of protein and act as a carrier of flavor. Coconut chickpea curry is another delicious, gluten-free, and vegan curry recipe that uses chickpeas as a base ingredient.

Roasted chickpeas tossed in bbq sauce and slathered in ranch dressing is a perfect filling for making lunch or dinner wraps. You could use the same chickpeas as a taco filling along with kale cabbage slaw.

Make vegan meatloaf using chickpeas and lentils to fulfill your protein requirements and satisfy your meaty cravings. The slices of this vegan meatloaf could be utilized in a variety of creative ways. 

I don’t know about you but crispy roasted chickpeas have become my favorite go-to snack. They are spicy, crispy, delicious and a powerhouse of protein and fiber.

You can add bbq tossed or plain cooked chickpeas to your buddha bowl. Moreover, chickpeas go great in vegan meatballs. Curried chickpea salad is a great way to veganise a basic chicken salad 


According to the USDA, a cup of chickpeas provides the following nutrients. 

Nutrients Amount in 1 cup of chickpeasTrusted Source (164 g)RequirementsTrusted Source
Energy (calories)2671,800–3,200
Protein (g)14.446–56
Fat (g)4.220–35% of daily calories should be fat
Carbohydrate (g) 44.7, including 7.8 g of sugar130
Fiber (g)12.522.4–33.6
Calcium (mg)80.41,000–1,300
Iron (mg)4.78-18
Magnesium (mg) 78.7310–420
Phosphorus (mg)274700–1,250
Potassium (mg)4744700
Zinc (mg)2.58–11
Copper (mcg)0.6890–900
Selenium (mcg)6.155
Vitamin C (mg)2.175-90
Folate (mcg)280400
Choline (mg)69.7425–550
Beta carotene (mcg)26.2700-900
Vitamin E (mg) 0.615
Vitamin K (mcg)6.675–120

Can you eat garbanzo beans raw?

No, you cannot eat garbanzo beans raw unless they are tinned or canned. Raw garbanzo beans are rich in indigestible sugars known as oligosaccharides. Such sugars can lead to stomach discomfort if consumed in sufficient amounts. The intake of high amounts of oligosaccharides and fructans should be avoided in irritative bowel syndrome patients. However, oligosaccharides in beans are soluble in water and can be eliminated by adequate presoaking (6). 

Moreover, raw garbanzo beans contain Lectin. This toxin causes diarrhea, stomach pain, and nausea.  Moreover, many members of the lectinic protein family agglutinate (clump together) red blood cells (3). Soaking and cooking chickpeas reduce the number of indigestible sugars and the amount of lectin (4).

Pulses’ high tannin and phytate contents may constitute a nutritional issue in unbalanced diets, providing reduced quantities of minerals such as iron or zinc. Methods to reduce pulse phytate content such as soaking, germination, or sourdough fermentation are thus recommended, especially in vegetarian diets (2).

Eating raw garbanzo beans, due to their rich fiber content, can cause constipation, gas, and blockages in the gut, all of which make for a super unpleasant experience (6). 

Last but not least, eating the rock-hard raw garbanzo beans could potentially damage your teeth, dislodge your jaw joint or wear down the tooth enamel (5).

Other FAQs about Beans  that you may be interested in.

What happens if you eat expired jelly beans?

How long can you keep refried beans in the fridge?

Can pinto beans go bad?


In this article, we answered the question “Can you eat garbanzo beans out of the can?”, and how to use canned chickpeas?


  1. Parca, Filiz, Yakup Onur Koca, and U. N. A. Y. Aydın. Nutritional and antinutritional factors of some pulses seed and their effects on human health. Int J Second Metab, 2018, 5, 331-342.
  2. Margier, Marielle, et al. Nutritional composition and bioactive content of legumes: Characterization of pulses frequently consumed in France and effect of the cooking method. Nutrients, 2018, 10, 1668.  
  3. Parca, Filiz, Yakup Onur Koca, and U. N. A. Y. Aydın. Nutritional and antinutritional factors of some pulses seed and their effects on human health. Int J Second Metab, 2018, 5, 331-342.
  4. Bujang, Aishah, and Nurul Akmal Taib. Changes on amino acids content in soybean, garbanzo bean and groundnut during pre-treatments and tempe making. Sains Malays, 2014, 43, 551-557.
  5. Constantino, Paul Joseph, Oscar Borrero‐Lopez, and Brian R. Lawn. Mechanisms of tooth damage and Paranthropus dietary reconstruction. Biosurf Biotribol, 2018, 4, 73-78.
  6. Ho, Kok-Sun, et al. Stopping or reducing dietary fiber intake reduces constipation and its associated symptoms. World J Gastroenterol WJG, 2012, 18, 4593.