What’s the Deal with Chickpea Water?

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SHUTTERSTOCK

The health food world loves a good trend—there’s been the never-ending kale wave, the love affair with Brussels sprouts, and the ill-advised obsession with juice cleanses and teatoxes. Now, there’s a new trend in town we think you’re going to see a lot more of: chickpea water. (Psst…Have you tried our

Chickpeas—aka garbanzo beans—are a vegan favorite. “They’re an ample source of protein, fiber, and complex carbs,” says Amanda Goldfarb, R.D., and holistic health coach. (They’re also what makes up the love of our lives, hummus, but we digress.) Chickpea water, more formally known in the culinary world as aquafaba, isn’t the type of water you’d pour in a glass and down on a hot day. It’s the actual juice left in the can of the beans that you buy from the store. (Could you imagine chugging that?)

What’s more is that chickpea water—or, um, aquafaba—is making its way into the vegan spotlight. “The water retains some of the protein and starch, making it an excellent stabilizer,” says Goldfarb. “Everyone is always looking for the perfect egg replacement—like mixing flax with water—and chefs seem to think this is a good candidate.”

But besides its potential culinary use, is it a health food? “No, probably not,” says Goldfarb. “Ultimately, the nutrients in aquafaba are negligible. Nothing wrong with being creative, though!”

So you’re not drinking it anytime soon, guys, but if you’re vegan, it may be worth looking into when it comes to whipping up your next big baking project. You can also try these

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