GF: Chickpea Fries

Oh yea- these are the ones!

Last week, while away at a conference, my colleagues and I visited a Tom Douglas restaurant called “Lola”. On the menu were chickpea fries – something that appeared too good to resist. I was skeptical when the fries arrived as they had a coating on the outside, but I was assured that the coating was “polenta flour” (fine corn meal, I was told upon clarification).

My veg-friend and I were intrigued. While the rest of the crew ordered a million dishes to share, he and I ordered from the gluten-free, no meat options. To be honest, our orders received the biggest raves. Bwahaha – gluten-free wins again! Gotta love it!

After some prodding, the waiter told me a few tips about the fries. The creamy, light texture of the inside of the fry was made possible thanks to the milk.

The hint of seasoning? That was the dash of sea salt and the garlic.

And how hard is this to make? Easier than you’d think, he replied.

Well, that’s all it took. I made some of Sunday. These WERE easy to make! And I will be making them again and again – with the million variations that are possible.

Just for starters, however, here is the basic idea: TO make chickpea fries, you first make a pan of panisse – or a chickpea polenta. This is then chilled. Once it’s chilled (I left mine in the fridge for a few hours), you then cut it into the “fries”. The fries can then be coated (like I did below) or fried as is and then tossed with parmesan & garlic seasoning. So easy!

The recipe below makes enough fries to serve 5 easily as a side dish. We served ours with a spicy ketchup (recipe below) that really enhanced the flavor as we made a mild version for our first batch.

I would love to know what your ideas are for the variety of possibilities here. It’s great to have yet another option in the kitchen! The more ideas we have to vary it, the better! The ideas were flowing about what we could do with these fries while we munched away. While my love had a million ideas a minute, my brain got stuck on a few. Here are the ideas that I have been fixated on:

  • Curried Chickpea Fries (include some curry either with the panisse or the coating)
  • Rosemary and Garlic Chickpea Fries (with roasted garlic in the panisse)
  • Sea Salt and Cumin Chickpea Fries
  • Parmesan Chickpea Fries

Oh yea- this recipe has potential!

So, dear GF Eaters (and my veggie-friends), here is the recipe you’ve been waiting for:

GF Chickpea Fries
Makes 60 fries (cut into logs that are 3” long and 1/2 “ square)

Fry ingredients:
1 1/4 cup chickpea (besan) or garbanzo (NOT garfava) flour
2 3/4 cup milk (or water if you need to make a dairy free version)
2 garlic cloves, minced finely
1/2 teaspoon sea salt
1 Tablespoon olive oil

Coating Ingredients:
FIRST COATING (the one photographed)
In one bowl combine:
3/4 cup medium-grind corn meal (not coarse)
2 teaspoons ground pepper
1 teaspoon garlic powder
1 teaspoon onion powder
In a separate bowl:
1 egg, beaten

SECOND COATING: (Mix together in one bowl)
2/3 cup finely grated parmesan cheese
2 Tablespoons garlic powder


  1. Line a 9 by 13 pan with lightly oiled parchment paper.
  2. In a medium saucepan, combine all of the fry ingredients.
  3. Bring to a slow simmer while stirring constantly.
  4. Continue to simmer slowly while stirring (don’t stop stirring or it will burn and stick) for 3-4 minutes or until the mixture thickens to the consistency of a thick pudding – not quite as thick as oatmeal.
  5. Pour quickly into the prepared pan and smooth to distribute to an even thickness.
  6. Cover with another lightly oil piece of parchment paper (stick it to the top of the panisse so it is not exposed to the air).
  7. Refrigerate until set/cooled – at least 2 hours.
  8. Once cooled, pull parchment paper out of pan carefully so as not to break the panisse.
  9. Cut into “fries”.
  10. Prepare your coating. If you choose the first coating, use a separate bowl for the dry ingredients and a different bowl for the egg.
  11. Preheat fryer or 1 inch of oil in a deep pan to 350F.


    1. Roll each “fry” into the beaten egg then allow excess to drip off.
    2. Roll the coated fries into the dry ingredients and shake off excess.
    3. Drop fries into the fryer six or so at a time (depending upon the room in your pan).
    4. Fry for 3-4 minutes until golden brown.
    5. Drain on paper towels.
    6. Fry in batches and maintain an even frying temperature.
    7. Store the completed fries in a warm oven to keep them warm until serving.


    1. Drop fries into the fryer six or so at a time (depending upon the room in your pan).
    2. Fry for 3-4 minutes until golden brown.
    3. Fry in batches and maintain an even frying temperature.
    4. Drain each batch on paper towels briefly and then roll in the parmesan and garlic mixture.
    5. Store the completed fries in a warm oven to keep them warm until serving.

Serve with your choice of accompaniments. We ate ours with Spiced Ketchup (recipe below). But since this first munching, we have loved them wrapped with ham, dipped in honey-mustard or ranch, etc. Really!

GF Spiced Ketchup
Mix together thoroughly:

  • 2/3 cup GF ketchup
  • 1/4 cup dijon mustard
  • 2 teaspoons (+ depending on personal preference) horseradish
  • 1/2 teaspoon agave nectar

Happy Chickpea Fry making & eating!


  1. J. Stahl says:

    These sound so interesting. I have heaps of chickpea flour, I guess this is one way to make use of it! LOL! Will definitely try them out! :)

  2. I’ve never heard of chickpea fries. Hmmm, sounds pretty good actually since I I love hummus. I’m printing this one:)

  3. Ah, the chick pea fries recipe appears! I love this idea, and must try the quinoa/millet bread too. I can always count on you to give me yummy ideas to cook. Both the fries and bread look delicious.

  4. i bet those are really good! I love falafels so I bet these would be similar! I love that you double “crusted” them! Yummy!!

  5. What a great recipe! I reckon I’ll have to have a go at these – they look sooo good!

  6. conviviality says:

    These look awesome! Chickpeas and I are becoming better friends so this is going on my list of recipes to try soon.

    And thanks for writing about your experience with Natalie’s bread. I’m going to try making it tomorrow…i have all my dry ingredients ready to go. I’ve been sick for 2 weeks and unable to bake for myself so now i’m back in business.

  7. These look so good! You are one of a kind, Kate! I am also looking forward to trying the spicy ketchup. Thanks!

  8. These look wonderful! Thanks for a great recipe

  9. Are most ketchup’s GF?

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