My favorite childhood snack mixed with my favorite adult-life snack. This is really happening!!
Friends, my love of Cheez-Its ran deep when I was a kid. Heck, even into my college years I adored the things!
It was not uncommon that I devoured a half a box of Cheez-Its in between the time I came home from school and the time we ate dinner. *facepalm*
I craved that cheesy, crunchy goodness pretty much every day. White cheddar and the reduced-fat varieties were my favorite. White cheddar for obvious reasons (YUM), and the reduced-fat version was so much crunchier and saltier than the regular version. But I really didn’t discriminate when push came to shove. I loved each and every little cheesy square.
BUT by filling up on these crackers, I was filling up on empty calories. There was a reason why I was hungry for dinner an hour after I inhaled my “snack.” I was basically just inhaling refined flour, preservatives, and cheese. Yum…?
Enter: Cheez-it Roasted Chickpeas.
All of the flavors of my favorite childhood snack in one tidy, protein-packed treat.
Friends, I’m crazy about these things.
And would you believe that you can have them right in front of you in a half hour? IT’S TRUE. It’ll probably take you less time to make this healthier snack than it would if you drove all the way to the store to pick up a box of the original. Can I get a “woot woot”?!
Roasting chickpeas could not be easier. You dry the chickpeas, you season the chickpeas, you roast the chickpeas. It really is as simple as that. A tip for you though: removing the chickpea skins. I’ll be the first to admit that removing those pesky skins is annoying as heck. I know. It sucks. BUT it really does make a world of difference. Chickpeas without their skins are much crunchier than chickpeas with their skins.
That was a weird sentence, but you get my point.
AND! We’re using a mere four seasonings to make our chickpeas taste like those addictive cheese square crackers. Nutritional yeast is at the forefront, due to its naturally [vegan!] cheesy flavor. We’ll also use some salt, pepper, and a teeny tiny dash of cayenne. Because everything in life should have a teeny tiny dash of cayenne.
Because these are so simple, I was a little apprehensive about them actually tasting like those crackers I loved oh-so much as a kid.
But guys, they really do. And Mark, a self-proclaimed nutritional yeast hater, agrees!
These roasted chickpeas are the perfect protein-filled snack, and I know you’re gonna love ’em. Enjoy, friends!
Cheez-It Roasted Chickpeas
|Yield: 1 cup
A healthy, protein-packed snack that tastes like a classic Cheez-it!
- 1 15-oz. can chickpeas, drained and rinsed
- 1 tsp. olive oil
- 1 Tbsp. nutritional yeast
- salt + pepper
- tiny pinch cayenne
- After rinsing your chickpeas, dry them very well. I let mine sit out on a paper towel for a couple of hours. You can also remove the skins from the chickpeas. It's tedious for sure, but removing the skins seriously does make these so much crunchier. Rubbing them between some paper towels works well!
- Once your chickpeas are virtually dry, preheat your oven to 425 degrees F.
- Place chickpeas in a medium bowl. Pour olive oil over top, and toss to coat. Season with nutritional yeast, salt, pepper, and cayenne. Mix to combine.
- Pour seasoned chickpeas directly onto a baking sheet, and bake for 15 minutes. After 15 minutes, toss the chickpeas and bake for an additional 15 minutes, or until the chickpeas are golden and crunchy. The chickpeas will harden a bit after you remove them from the oven.
- Store in an air-tight container.
Chickpea roasting method from one of the best bosses ever, Jessica @ How Sweet It Is