Chickpea flour is one of my favorite gluten-free flours to experiment with in the kitchen. Made from finely ground chickpeas (garbanzo beans), the flour is packed with protein and fiber. It has just a slight chickpea flavor that can be either complimented or hidden with other flavors, depending on your end goal.
So far, we’ve made pancakes, socca, and the world’s creamiest and smoothest hummus with chickpea flour. Seriously, it is worth buying a bag of the stuff just for the hummus. You can normally find it in the gluten-free baking section of your grocery store. We buy Bob’s Red Mill brand.
Besides the hummus, my favorite thing to come out of the discovery of chickpea flour is homemade pasta. The beauty of this pasta dough is in its total simplicity. Just a handful of ingredients– and one happens to be water. It doesn’t get much easier than that.
The end result is a soft pasta with a slightly nutty flavor from the flaxseed. You won’t be fooling any die-hard white/refined pasta fans, but if you tend to like more hearty carbs, this is a pasta for you. We paired it with some vegan roasted red pepper pesto, and it was an amazing combo.
My favorite pasta-making method is 100% (wo)man-powered. I pile up the flour on a board, make a well, and then dump in the egg (or in this case, flax egg). Then I slowly incorporate the flour with the wet ingredients until it forms into a nice solid dough. At first, it always seems like there is way too much flour, but I promise it’ll all combine nicely if you just keep working it. Be patient.
If you have a pasta roller and cutter, awesome blossom! Go ahead and use those to your liking. I do not. So I used my good ol’ rolling pin and pizza cutter. The key to good pasta is rolling it out very, very thin. Thinner than you think it should be. The pasta will double or triple (or even more) in thickness from absorbing the cooking water.
If you are going the rustic simple method, like I did, try to stick with pasta shapes that can accept some imperfection. Farfalle (bow tie pasta) is perfect for those of us without a pasta cutter. Just cut into squares and pinch, and you have some adorable, rustic bow ties. Pappardelle—which are big, long, wide noodles like the ones pictured here—work perfectly, too!
When I first made this recipe, I did it with just three ingredients—flaxseed, chickpea flour, and water—and the end result was manageable, but was a bit tricky to work with when forming into pasta.
After a bit of retesting, we figured out that adding some fat (in the form of olive oil) and some stickiness (in the form of tapioca flour) really helps to make the pasta a lot easier to work with. We’ve updated the recipe below with the new measurements, but if you liked the old version, you can download that recipe in the header of the recipe card or right here.