TIP OF THE DAY: Banza Chickpea Pasta
Enjoy your favorite pasta dishes with more protein and fiber, fewer carbs, and no gluten!  Penne Bolognese.  Mac and Cheese.  A box of rotini, one of five Banza pasta shapes (all photos courtesy Banza).  Fresh chickpeas in the pod (photo courtesy Melissa’s).
Toward the end of 2016, we went on a gluten-free pasta-thon, tasting every type of GF pasta we could find.
We love rice noodles: gluten free, but they don’t complement European pasta sauces and other noodle dishes.
So we tried pasta made from brown rice, brown rice-kale blends, corn, farro, lentils, soybeans, even quinoa. (We found the last, which we like as an earthy grain, undesirable as pasta.)
The winner by far: chickpea pasta, which looks, cooks, and tastes like regular pasta.
Yes, the same lovely legume that gives us hummus makes the best pasta!
The pasta has a slight chickpea flavor if you eat it plain; but covered with sauce, cheese and perhaps meatballs, sausage or anchovies (or sausage and anchovies, for surf and turf), most people aren’t likely to notice a difference.
Bonus: Chickpea pasta has double the protein, four times the fiber and almost half the net carbs.
Interestingly, Banza was not developed because the founder sought a GF pasta, but because he wanted more nutrition from pasta, one of his favorite foods.
He achieved just that: The nutrient-dense pasta boasts 25 grams of protein, 13 grams of fiber and just and C43 grams of carbs in each serving.
It has been embraced by athletes and vegans looking for more protein in their diets, by the gluten-sensitivite community, by parents trying to sneak more “good stuff” into the family’s diet via their favorite carbs.
The line includes:
Even if you aren’t looking for gluten-free pasta, how about some high-nutrition pasta—for hot dishes, cold pasta salads, even a sweet noodle pudding, made with elbows, ricotta and raisins?
The brand is certified kosher by OU.