Crispy air fryer chickpeas are ready in less than 15 minutes. Garbanzo beans are seasoned with a sprinkling of nutritional yeast flakes, granulated onion, and a pinch of salt. Eat them on their own or as a salad topping. Vegan & gluten-free.
Crispy fried chickpeas are a tasty, protein-packed snack. They’re great warm, eaten by the handful, like a beany alternative to popcorn. They’re also a satiating kale salad topper.
I started roasting chickpeas a million years ago when I first went vegan. I regularly made roasted chickpeas in the oven on a baking sheet.
But once I got an air fryer, I realized I could make the same snack in less time with even better results.
(Want more air fryer ideas? Here are 30 vegan air fryer recipes I know you’ll love!)
No fuss cooking
When I roast them in the oven, I always recommend drying them first on a clean kitchen towel. However, when you’re cooking in the air fryer, you don’t need to dry them first.
Instead, let the first few minutes of cooking time do the drying for you while the machine blows hot air around the beans.
Also, when cooking in the oven, I use parchment to make sure the chickpeas wouldn’t stick. But in the air fryer, that’s not necessary.
Finally, the beans cook more quickly than they do in the oven & no preheating is required.
Use homemade or canned beans
You can use cooked-from-scratch chickpeas or the canned variety for this recipe. One thing to keep in mind, though, is that chickpeas vary in their softness. Softer chickpeas will take longer to get crispy.
I’ve found that Trader Joe’s chickpeas are on the denser side. So they will get very crispy in the amount of time listed here. Field Day brand chickpeas are softer. So in the time listed, the beans will be crispy on the outside and creamy on the inside.
Depending on how crispy you like them, you may want to decrease or increase the cooking time a bit.
How to air fry chickpeas
Drain a can of chickpeas in a colander. Then pour them into the air fryer.
Set the timer to 12 minutes & 400 degrees.
After five minutes, open the air fryer basket. Spritz the chickpeas with oil. Then season them with nutritional yeast flakes, granulated onion, and a pinch of salt.
Close the basket & let them finish cooking.
Make them your own
You can make these chickpeas your own by varying your seasonings.
If you don’t have nutritional yeast flakes (which add a cheesy taste) or granulated onion, simply leave them off. Add the spices you prefer instead.
Start with just a sprinkle. Then work your way up to your desired intensity.
Keep in mind that the chickpeas will shrink a little, intensifying the flavor.
Flavorings that work well include:
- Garlic powder
- Dried parsley
- Dried oregano
- Chili powder
- Paprika or smoked paprika
- Curry powder
Ways to use air fryer chickpeas
- Eat them by the handful as a snack
- Pour them over a salad with creamy cashew salad dressing
- Add them to a dinner of artichoke pesto pasta
- Use them as a bowl topper with pesto rice
- Enjoy them in bowtie pasta salad
Fried chickpeas in the air fryer
- Put the drained chickpeas into the air fryer basket. Set the air fryer for 400 degrees and 12 minutes.
- Cook the plain chickpeas for the first 5 minutes. This will dry them out.
- Then open the basket, spritz the chickpeas with oil, give a shake, and spritz them again. Sprinkle on nutritional yeast flakes, granulated onion, and a pinch of salt.
- Return the basket to the air fryer and cook for the remaining 7 minutes.
- Test a chickpea to see if it's done enough for you. Depending on your air fryer, the softness of your chickpeas, and your personal preferences, you may want to cook them an additional 3 to 5 minutes. If desired, add another pinch of salt before serving.
Content, recipe, and photos updated May 2020. Originally posted January 2017.