Give yourself a midday energy boost by swapping out a traditional cold cut sandwich for these bright, flavorful chickpea and avocado wraps.
Many sandwiches leave you feeling lethargic and weighed down. The refined carbohydrates in white bread break down quickly in your body, leading to a temporary rise in blood glucose (sugar), followed by a quick crash. This crash is apt to leave you tired and lethargic – the last thing that is going to help you power through the rest of your day. Additionally, most sandwiches are made with cured meats, which may lead to increased cancer risk.
I love these chickpea avocado wraps as an alternative because they are tasty and satisfying without weighing you down.
Garbanzo beans are a good source of plant-based protein and soluble fiber (beans are also one of AICR’s Foods that Fight Cancer). When you eat foods that combine fiber, protein and heart healthy fats (found in avocado), your body takes longer to digest the food. You can still feel satisfied – despite each lettuce wrap containing fewer than 300 calories.
The prep time for this recipe is only about 10 minutes, so it’s easy to make these wraps on the go. Start by mashing up your chickpeas and avocado to desired consistency (I prefer leaving a few larger bits of chickpea for a little added texture).
Add the lemon juice right away to the garbanzo mixture; the ascorbic acid in citrus fruits reacts with oxygen in the air before it reaches the avocado, helping to prevent browning.
Try out different spices and add a pinch of red chili flakes for a little extra kick. In addition to the flavor they add, research has shown that bio-active components in cumin and other spices have health benefits, including the potential to reduce cancer risk.
Finally, build the lettuce cups with toppings of your choice – cucumber, peppers or sprouts would also go well with this recipe. You can also make a heartier version by serving this on whole grain bread.
Here’s the full recipe: Smashed Chickpea Avocado Wraps.
Sonja Goedkoop, MSPH, RD, is the lead registered dietitian at Zesty, Inc. She is passionate about helping others improve their health through diet and physical activity and believes eating nutritious food should be easy and taste great. You can follow her on Twitter @SonjaGoedkoopRD.