Farinata (a.k.a. Socca), a High-Protein Chickpea Flour Flatbread


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(Note: this post was originally published on December 15, 2019. It has since been updated with a few tweaks.)

Farinata: a High-Protein Flatbread Miracle

Imagine a world in which pizza crust contained one ingredient, took no time, and was loaded with protein. Oh wait, that world has existed for centuries! I want to introduce you to Farinata, a Mediterranean / Middle Eastern chickpea flour flatbread that will change your pizza game forever.

Farinata actually goes by numerous names depending on the region. There are several names for this dish throughout Italy, plus additional names in France and northern Africa. In parts of the Mediterranean region it's referred to as Socca, but I'm sticking with an Italian name because of my Italian roots.

The magic of Farinata (a.k.a. Socca) lies in its simplicity. It's a crust made from a batter of chickpea flour, water, and salt. That's it. It's straightforward, absolutely delicious, high in protein, and easy to make. It can be served by itself as a chickpea flour pancake to accompany a meal, or (less traditionally) as a pizza crust with toppings.

Farinata chickpea flatbread with pizza toppings

Chickpea Flour Flatbread: Nutritious AND Easy

I think Farinata is particularly relevant right now because there's so much interest in alternative pizza crusts. This is just my personal opinion, but many of those alternatives contain a bunch of other ingredients that I don't want in my pizza crust; some are loaded with starches and gums, while others have tons of cheese to make them stick together.

Conversely, Farinata is just chickpea flour; no starches or gums, no eggs or cheese, no fussing or crumbling. It's easy to make, holds together better than any other alternative pizza crust, and doesn't need any time to rise. It's deliciously nutty, crisps nicely on the bottom, and can hold up to a lot of toppings. As an added benefit, this chickpea flour flatbread is high in protein. Because of that, a simple Farinata pizza with just veggies on top can still serve as a satisfying meal.

Ready to get all my Farinata/Socca tricks? Keep reading to learn about ingredients, how to make it, and ways to customize your high-protein flatbread.

Farinata/Socca Mediterranean flatbread made from chickpea flour

How to Make Farinata

Farinata Ingredients

Here's what you'll need for this simple, whole-food, high-protein flatbread. These amounts will give you enough batter to make one 12'' pancake or crust; multiply the recipe to make numerous, or scale it down if you have a smaller skillet.

  • 1 c chickpea flour
  • 1 c water
  • 0.5 tsp sea salt
  • Other add-ins for the batter (optional, see ideas below)
  • Olive oil for cooking
  • Toppings as desired

Step #1: Preheat

Cooking Farinata works best with a very hot oven and a very hot skillet. Don't skimp on this step! Place an oven-safe skillet in the oven and preheat to 450. Let the skillet heat for at least 15-20 minutes. This is a good opportunity to prepare your toppings, make the batter, and (ideally) sip on a glass of Italian wine.

Step #2: Prepare The Toppings

Decide what toppings you want to use and prepare them as needed. You can roast some veggies (e.g. squash, as shown in these photos) during the preheat phase since the oven is on anyways. As the oven heats, you can also slice other produce that you plan to use, grate cheese, chop herbs, etc. The farintata cooks quickly, so it's useful to have everything else ready to go.

Making the batter for Farinata

Step #3: Make the Chickpea Flour Flatbread Batter

Whisk together a 1:1 ratio of chickpea flour and water. For a 12'' skillet, I like to use a cup of each; for a smaller skillet, scale down slightly. Salt it generously with about half a tsp of good, flavorful, fine-grained sea salt.

Now is your opportunity to add in any additional spices or herbs if you want the batter to be flavored throughout. As a general rule, keep the add-ins pretty minimal and make sure they contain no moisture so that the flatbread cooks properly. Some options include:

  • Generous freshly-ground black pepper
  • Lemon zest
  • Fresh or dried thyme
  • Very finely chopped fresh rosemary
  • Sumac

After mixing, let the batter sit for five minutes; it will thicken slightly during this time as the chickpea flour absorbs the water.

Step #4: Pour the Batter

Very carefully, remove the hot skillet from the oven. Keep it on a heat-proof surface and cover the handle with a towel for safety. Add a dash of olive oil and swirl it around until the skillet is lightly but evenly coated.

Next, pour the Farinata batter into the skillet. You should hear a sizzling sound when the batter hits the hot skillet. The bottom will begin to cook immediately, which will create a crisp, browned bottom surface. Gently tilt the skillet sideways to help the batter spread into an even layer.

Cooking the Farinata batter in a skillet

Step #5: Cook the Batter

Carefully return the skillet to the oven and let the Farinata finish cooking. It will need about 10-15 minutes. Cook it until the upper surface and center are completely set and the edges have browned slightly.

Step #6: Top and Finish

When the Farinata is cooked through, remove it from the oven. Like before, set the skillet on a heat-proof surface and cover the handle with a towel for safety. Add any toppings you wish to use. If you want to add cheese, you can return the skillet to the oven for several more minutes to melt the cheese. Save any fragile toppings (e.g., fresh herbs) to add at the very end.

Finally, tilt the skillet and use a spatula to slide the Farinata out onto a cutting board; it should come right out. Slice it and serve!

Close-up of Farinata with pizza toppings

Closing Thoughts

That's it! You now have super simple, protein-rich, delicious chickpea flour flatbread. It's sort of magical, isn't it?

This high-protein flatbread is great as a main course, as a side, or as an appetizer. Because you can switch up the toppings based on the season, to match what else you're serving, and to accommodate any dietary restrictions, it's a great dish for entertaining. My preference is to make a few of them, one after the other (allowing the skillet to heat back up in between), each with different toppings.

I can't wait for you to give Farinata/Socca a try! If you're someone who loves the idea of pizza but not the nutrition, then this is definitely a recipe for you.

Cutting a slice out of high-protein flatbread made with chickpea flour

Share It!

It makes me so happy to hear from you and see your creations! Please leave a comment below and let me know what you think about this recipe. If you post a photo on Instagram, hashtag #TheRogueBrusselSprout and tag me (@TheRogueBrusselSprout) in the post text so that I'm sure to see it.

Farinata (a.k.a. Socca), a High-Protein Chickpea Flour Flatbread

This high-protein flatbread is a one-ingredient, easy-to-cook wonder that's made from chickpea flour. It works beautifully as a pizza crust or even just by itself as an accompaniment to a meal.



  • 1 c chickpea flour
  • 1 c water
  • 0.5 tsp sea salt
  • Other herbs or spices for the batter (see ideas in the post)
  • Olive oil for cooking
  • Toppings of choice


  1. Place an oven-safe skillet in the oven. Preheat both the oven and the skillet to 450 degrees.
  2. While the oven preheats, prepare all of your chosen toppings as needed.
  3. Whisk together the chickpea flour, water, salt, and any additional herbs or spices you want to use. Let the batter sit for five minutes to thicken.
  4. Carefully remove the preheated skillet from the oven. Add a dash of olive oil and swirl it until the skillet is lightly but evenly coated.
  5. Pour the prepared batter into the skillet and gently tilt the skillet until the batter has spread into an even layer.
  6. Return the skillet to the oven and cook the Farinata for another 10-15 minutes until the center is cooked through and the edges have just barely started to brown.
  7. Carefully remove the skillet from the oven and top the Farinata with sauce, cheese, veggies, etc, if desired. Gently slide it out of the skillet onto a cutting board to slice.

Leave a Comment

Please Share Your Thoughts!

Did you make this recipe? Did you make substitutions? How did you serve it? Any helpful tips? Please share your thoughts, since these insights are really useful to both me and to other readers.

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August 21, 2022
Bookmarked! We love to make pizzas, but the ingredients are usually so unhealthy and my daughter is now GF.
September 5, 2021
Whaaaaat mind blown! Why have I been buying all those $$$ cauli crusts that are loaded with weird starches and cheese? Definitely trying this.
January 6, 2022
What's the difference between chick peas and chick pea flour, can I make the flour myself?
January 7, 2022
Sam- Hmm, unfortunately I don't think you can make your own chick pea flour at home, or at least not easily. The flour is basically dried, milled-down chick peas; I think they're powdered much more finely than you could achieve with a home food processor. Sorry. On the upside, it's about $3 for a big bag of chick pea flour!
August 16, 2021
Wow super helpful, thx! I've always heard of this flatbread but thought it was complicated.
June 10, 2020
KK- Good question on the chick pea flour. Most specialty stores will have it. I like Bob's Red Mill; it will be with the specialty flours (e.g. almond flour, etc) rather than the regular baking stuff. If you have a food Co-Op, that's a good bet. I think you can also order it online! Bob's also makes a 50/50 mix of chick pea flour and fava bean flour that I've used in this recipe and it works fine.
June 9, 2020
Any advice on where to find chick pea flour?? I'm not seeing it at my grocery store.