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Sautéed chickpeas are practically in life-hack territory. Transform canned beans into something special in a few quick and easy steps.

sauteed chickpeas in a frying pan
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Why we love this recipe

Canned beans are an absolute pantry staple in our household, and likely also in yours. They’re perfectly good as-is, but with just a few minutes of time and effort, you can turn them into something great. Sautéed chickpeas are:

  • A little bit browned and crisped outside, and meltingly tender inside
  • Extra-savory and flavorful
  • An amenable component of a wide variety of meals, from grain bowls to salads to tacos
  • A naturally vegan and gluten-free source of satisfying protein and complex carbs
  • Adaptable — I’ve suggested lots of seasoning options below

What you’ll need

Here’s a glance at the ingredients you’ll need to make this recipe.

ingredients in bowls
  • You can make this dish with canned chickpeas (also called garbanzo beans) or ones you’ve cooked yourself. The two cans called for in this recipe equal about 3 ½ cups of cooked beans, from one heaping cup dried. Although most chickpeas sold in the U.S. are of the same variety, they vary pretty substantially in size and moisture content. Some will brown faster than others, so keep an eye on things and adjust timing as necessary.
  • Safflower oil is my high-smoke-point, neutral-tasting vegetable oil of choice. You can substitute another oil that has similar properties, such as canola, sunflower, peanut, corn, or vegetable oil blend.
  • This version of sautéed chickpeas has a low-key savory ranch vibe, with onion powder, garlic powder, and dried dill. This flavor combo works beautifully with the beans themselves and also a wide variety of meals. But don’t feel hemmed in by this version — I’ve suggested several equally fabulous variations below.

How to make it

Here’s an overview of what you’ll do to make a fabulous batch of sautéed chickpeas. You can see the steps in action in the video that accompanies this post, and get all the details in the recipe card below.

step by step
  1. First you’ll heat the oil, then add the chickpeas in a single layer.
  2. Cook undisturbed for about five minutes, until browned on the underside.
  3. Stir well and repeat.
  4. Sprinkle in the seasonings and cook, stirring, for a minute or two. That’s it!

Suggested seasoning variations

You can vary the herbs and spices depending on how you’ll be using the sautéed chickpeas. Here are some of our favorite combinations — and I bet you can think of many more. If your seasoning blend does not already include salt and pepper, add it as indicated in the original recipe.

  • Mexican-inspired: 1 teaspoon chili powder blend + 1 teaspoon ground cumin + 1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika + 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano OR 1 tablespoon of your favorite prepared taco seasoning
  • Easy Italian: 1 tablespoon Italian seasoning
  • Don’t be a chicken: 1 tablespoon poultry seasoning
  • Smoky garlic: 1 teaspoon smoked paprika + 1 teaspoon sweet paprika + 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • BBQ: 1 tablespoon rib rub

Expert tips and FAQs

Can I make this recipe in advance? What about leftovers?

Sautéed chickpeas are at their absolute best shortly after emerging from the pan. That said, they keep very well too, and make a great element of meal prep if that’s your thing. Once cooled, store in an airtight container in the fridge for up to a week. You can reheat them in the microwave or with a quick spin in the toaster oven if you prefer them a bit crispier on the outside.

More quick & easy chickpea recipes

sauteed chickpeas in a frying pan

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sauteed chickpeas in a frying pan
5 from 1 vote

Sautéed Chickpeas

By Carolyn Gratzer Cope
Sautéed chickpeas are practically in life-hack territory. Transform canned beans into something special in a few quick and easy steps.
Prep: 5 minutes
Cook: 12 minutes
Total: 17 minutes
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Ingredients 

  • 2 tablespoons (30 ml) safflower oil
  • 2 15.5- ounce 439-gram cans chickpeas
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1 teaspoon dried dill
  • ½ teaspoon fine sea salt
  • ¼ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

Instructions 

  • Warm the oil over medium-high heat in a 12-inch nonstick skillet. 
  • Drain and rinse chickpeas and pat dry with paper towels.
  • Add chickpeas to skillet in a single layer and leave undisturbed for about five minutes to brown.
  • Give them a good stir and leave undisturbed for another five minutes to brown on another side.
  • Reduce heat to medium. Sprinkle in the onion powder, garlic powder, dill, salt, and pepper. Stir well to coat evenly.
  • Cook, stirring occasionally, for another minute or two.

Notes

  1. Safflower oil is my high-smoke-point, neutral-tasting vegetable oil of choice. You can substitute another oil that has similar properties, such as canola, sunflower, peanut, corn, or vegetable oil blend.
  2. You can make this dish with canned chickpeas (also called garbanzo beans) or ones you've cooked yourself. The two cans called for in this recipe equal about 3 ½ cups of cooked beans, from one heaping cup dried. Although most chickpeas sold in the U.S. are of the same variety, they vary pretty substantially in size and moisture content. Some will brown faster than others, so keep an eye on things and adjust timing as necessary.
  3. Sautéed chickpeas are at their absolute best shortly after emerging from the pan. That said, they keep very well too, and make a great element of meal prep if that's your thing. Once cooled, store in an airtight container in the fridge for up to a week. You can reheat them in the microwave or with a quick spin in the toaster oven if you prefer them a bit crispier on the outside.

Suggested seasoning variations

You can vary the herbs and spices depending on how you'll be using the sautéed chickpeas. Here are some of our favorite combinations — and I bet you can think of many more. If your seasoning blend does not already include salt and pepper, add it as indicated in the original recipe.
  • Mexican-inspired: 1 teaspoon chili powder blend + 1 teaspoon ground cumin + 1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika + 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano OR 1 tablespoon of your favorite prepared taco seasoning
  • Easy Italian: 1 tablespoon Italian seasoning
  • Don't be a chicken: 1 tablespoon poultry seasoning
  • Smoky garlic: 1 teaspoon smoked paprika + 1 teaspoon sweet paprika + 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • BBQ: 1 tablespoon rib rub

Nutrition

Serving: 1/4 of recipe, Calories: 258kcal, Carbohydrates: 30.9g, Protein: 11.1g, Fat: 11.1g, Fiber: 9.9g, Sugar: 0.1g

Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.

Additional Info

Course: Beans + Lentils
Cuisine: American
Tried this recipe?Mention @umamigirl or tag #umamigirl!

Hungry for more?

Subscribe to Umami Girl’s email updates, and follow along on Instagram.

Hungry for More?
Subscribe to Umami Girl's email updates, and follow along on Instagram.
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About Carolyn Gratzer Cope

Hi there, I'm Carolyn Gratzer Cope, founder and publisher of Umami Girl. Join me in savoring life, one recipe at a time. I'm a professional recipe developer with training from the French Culinary Institute (now ICE) and a lifetime of studying, appreciating, and sharing food.

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