Sweet ReMarks: Garbanzo Bean Flour, Part 2 of the Gluten Free Series

by | Desserts, In the Kitchen, Recipes

Stuffed Artichoke Bottoms

Garbanzo Bean Flour : Part 2 of Gluten Free Series

Garbanzo bean flour is made from yes, you guessed it, garbanzo beans. [Also known as chickpeas.] These little round legumes have been widely used in vegetarian cuisine for years. Not only do they lend a neutral earthy flavor to your recipes, but they also amp up the nutrition in your recipes. Garbanzo beans are high in fiber and protein while low in calories and fat. And when these little beauties are dried and pulverized they turn into a beautiful gluten free flour.


Use garbanzo bean flour or paste?

Garbanzo bean flour adds a new dimension to the bean’s already existing versatility. The beans can be pureed and turned into a dough for baked goods. There are many recipes that use this paste for gluten free doughnuts, cupcakes and pancakes. The bonus of the puree is that the flavor is much lighter than the flavor of the flour. The paste is also known for its ability to create lighter baked goods than the flour.

The flour has a very concentrated earthy flavor due to the removal of its moisture content. This profound flavor may be unappealing for some. You will want to be careful when using garbanzo bean flour since the increased bean flavor doesn’t always transition well into sweet recipes.

You want your baked goods to taste sweet, not like the hay from the barn out back. With that in mind, you may need to increase your sugar content by adding more granulated sugar, honey, agave or maple syrup. Don’t let this discourage you from experimenting with both applications though. Always write down what you did so you can adjust accordingly the next time.


Mixed with cocoa powder


My favorite way to use garbanzo bean flour is to mix it 1:1 ratio with cocoa powder. A quality cocoa powder is very intense and chocolatey in flavor which pairs extremely well with the earthiness of the garbanzo bean flour.




Other additions

Another ingredient you might see listed along garbanzo bean flour is potato starch or rice flour. These two are very common in vegan & gluten free recipes due to their binding qualities and bland flavor.


How to substitute for flour in a recipe

You will find that some people claim garbanzo bean flour can be a 1:1 substitution for all purpose flour. And then there are skeptics, like myself, who believe that in each recipe the garbanzo bean flour will react differently. Therefore, you may need to experiment with the best binders for the recipe like potato starch or rice flour, mashed bananas, vinegar or even xanthan gum.

If you are just going for a gluten free result then you will have an easier time with it since you don’t have to be as concerned about eggs & butter. These two ingredients will add moisture, richness and structure to whatever you are baking. If you plan to whisk your egg whites before folding them into your base, this will give you a fluffier end product.



“I just ate the brownie! OMG, it’s delicious!!”  — Pastry Chef Keli Marks


Try this Gluten Free Brownie Recipe

Add the different inclusions to make it your own. Go back to my first post on Buttercream Frosting and try it with frosting for a decadent cupcake!




Garbanzo Bean Flour Brownies


Dry Ingredients

Garbanzo Bean Flour             1 cup

Dark Cocoa Powder               1 cup

Arrowroot                                2 Tablespoons

Granulated Sugar                   1 cup

Baking Powder                       2 teaspoons

Baking Soda                           ¼ teaspoon

Xanthan gum                          ¼ teaspoon

Salt                                          1 teaspoon


Wet Ingredients

Mashed ripe banana               ½ banana

Unsweetened applesauce      ½ cup

Vanilla Paste                           1 teaspoon

Coconut oil, melted                 ½ cup

Hot Coffee                              ½ cup


Optional Inclusions

Chocolate chips                      ½ cup to 1 cup

Shredded coconut                  ½ cup to 1 cup

Chopped nuts                         ½ cup to 1 cup

Cinnamon                               ½ teaspoon



  1. Preheat your convection oven to 325F.
  2. Measure out the dry ingredients into a large mixing bowl.
  3. In a separate bowl, measure the wet ingredients.
  4. Using a wire whisk, mix the wet into the dry until completely combined.
  5. Prepare your pan with baking spray and then line with parchment paper. (Or you can line mini or regular sized cupcake pans with cupcake papers.)
  6. Bake for 15 minutes. Check doneness by sticking a skewer (or toothpick) down the center.  If it comes out wet add another 2 or 3 minutes. Check again.
  7. Once the batter is fully baked, remove from oven and allow to rest at room temperature for about 15 minutes.
  8. Remove from pan.
  9. Cut into portions and serve with a dusting of powdered sugar and a fresh berry.



Pastry Chef Keli Marks

Pastry Chef Keli Marks is a graduate of the Culinary Institute of America in Hyde Park, NY. She received a full year education at the French Pastry School in Chicago, IL in exchange for being the very first assistant to Jacquy Pfeiffer & Sebastien Canonne, MOF when they opened the school in 1996.

Keli has been on the Food Network on three separate occasions: Sugar Rush, Romance Novel Cake Challenge and The Holiday Baking Championships. In addition, she was on the Chicago chapter’s board for Les Dames d’Escoffier from 2009 – 2011 and was a guest pastry chef at the famed James Beard House in NYC in 2013.

As the pastry chef owner of Bakery 28, she incorporates local ingredients from farmers within the Carolinas and promises to only use natural ingredients.



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