Cooking with Chickpea Flour (Besan)

Author: Michelle Scott   Date Posted:22 March 2021 

The benefits of using chickpea flour

Besan is a gluten-free pulse flour that is used extensively in the Indian subcontinent. It’s a staple in my pantry and I use it when I am making pakora, pancakes and the most delicious of all, Socca (chickpea flour flatbread).

Besan is rich in vitamins and minerals, has less calories than wheat flour, is full of healthy fibre and is high in protein.  The density of chickpea flour means socca and besan pancakes are a great substitute for bread.

Socca or chickpea flour flatbread is thin, crispy and simply delicious. It is commonly cooked in France and along the Mediterranean coast. Made with one basic ingredient it is perfect for dips, pizza bases or just snacking on.  

The secret to outstanding socca is a cast iron skillet. It needs to be cooked quickly at a high temperature and cast iron is a great heat conductor.  A 20cm skillet gives you the best results. They are available online at the Kitchen Warehouse.

So let’s get down to business. Here is a great socca recipe for you to try.


½ cup chickpea (besan) flour
½ cup of water (not from the fridge)
½ tsp of Himalayan salt
¼ tsp of freshly ground black peppercorns
2 tbsp olive oil
2 ½ tbsp olive oil for the skillet



1.  Add the 2 ½ tbsp of oil to the skillet. Place in the oven and preheat to 250c.

2.  Whisk together all the remaining ingredients and let the batter stand until the skillet is ready.

3.  Remove the heated skillet from the oven and pour ½ the batter into the skillet swirling it around as you go.

4.  Put the skillet back into the hot over and bake for 15 minutes or until crispy.

5.  Remove from the oven and flip to slightly crisp the other side.

6.  Repeat with the remaining batter.


Serving Suggestions

  • Accompanied with Olive Tapenade
  • Accompanied with Turmeric Pesto
  • Added to a mezze plate
  • Used as pizza base


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