Turmeric: The Golden Spice

By Stephanie Ng, CSUN Dietetic Intern

Turmeric is a spice that gives curry its yellow color, and it has been used in Indian traditional medicine for thousands of years1, 2. It comes from the turmeric root, which is related to the ginger family3, so turmeric can have a peppery flavor4. This spice contains the active ingredient, curcumin, which has been shown to have anti-inflammatory and antioxidant content3,5. It has traditionally been used in Indian medicine to treat inflammatory conditions, cardiovascular health, skin diseases, wounds, and gastrointestinal discomfort2,3,5. In addition, turmeric may reduce body weight, lower triglycerides, increase basal metabolic rate, and improve insulin sensitivity5. Clinical trials have also shown to help alleviate symptoms of joint arthritis1 and improve brain function6. Adding a little bit to your meals may exert health benefits!

There are many ways to incorporate turmeric into your meals without eating curry everyday! Try adding a dash to your salad dressings, hummus, marinades, or even breakfast smoothies. Pick up some fresh vegetables from CSUN’s Farmers Market and dunk them in turmeric spiced yogurt dip. Since turmeric may have an earthy, bitter, and peppery flavor4, a little bit goes a long way.

Check out this delicious and crunchy snack by a registered dietitian from The Wholesome Fork7. These turmeric roasted chickpeas are also good sources of protein, carbohydrates, and fiber. It is packed with vitamins and minerals to help support heart health, reduce cancer risk, and improve gastrointestinal health8. Turmeric roasted chickpeas are a healthier and crunchy snack alternative to potato chips.

Turmeric Roasted Garbanzo Beans

Prep time: 15 mins
Cook time: 35 mins
Total time: 50 mins


  • 2 (15 ounce) cans garbanzo beans
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • ½ tsp salt
  • ¾ tsp ground turmeric
  • 1 tsp curry powder
  • ¼ tsp garlic powder
  • ½ tsp freshly ground black pepper
  • ⅛ tsp cayenne pepper (optional)


  1. Preheat the oven to 400F (200C).
  2. Line a large baking tray with parchment paper.
  3. Drain and rinse the garbanzo beans.
  4. Put the garbanzo beans on a clean kitchen towel and rub gently to remove the skins.
  5. Keep rubbing and removing the skins until all the beans are naked. The more skins you remove, the crunchier your garbanzo beans will be.
  6. Dry the beans well.
  7. Put the garbanzo beans in a large bowl, add the olive oil and salt, and mix well.
  8. Spread the garbanzo beans evenly on the lined baking tray.
  9. Cook for 20 minutes, shaking half way through to ensure even cooking.
  10. Meanwhile, put the turmeric, curry powder, garlic powder, and black pepper (and cayenne if you like heat) in a small bowl and stir to combine.
  11. Remove the garbanzo beans from the oven.
  12. Sprinkle the spice mix on the garbanzo beans and toss to coat all the beans (add an extra drizzle of olive oil if the spices won’t stick).
  13. Return to the oven for a further 15-18 minutes, until crispy.
  14. Remove from the oven, leave to cool completely, then enjoy.
  15. Can be stored in an airtight container, but make sure they are completely cool before closing the lid.

Looking for more ways to get turmeric in your life? Try these Turmeric Roasted Pumpkin Seeds.



[1] Daily, J., Yang, M., & Park, S. Efficacy of Turmeric Extracts and Curcumin for Alleviating the
Symptoms of Joint Arthritis: A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis of Randomized Clinical
Trials. Journal of Medicinal Food . 2016;19(8):717-29. doi: 10.1089/jmf.2016.3705.
[2] Ware, M. Turmeric: Health Benefits, Nutritional Information. Medical News Today . Avaliable at:
https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/318405.php . 2017. Accessed Feb 17, 2018.
[3] Prasad, S. & Aggarwal, B. Turmeric, the Golden Spice. Herbal Medicine: Biomolecular and Clinical
Aspects. 2nd Edition. Boca Raton, FL: CRC Press/Taylor & Francis; 2011.
[4] Stanek, A. What is Turmeric? [online] Bon Appetit. Available at:
https://www.bonappetit.com/story/what-is-turmeric . 2018. Accessed Feb 17, 2018.
[5] Jayarathne, S., Koboziev, I., Park, O., Oldewage-Theron, W., Shen, C., & Moustaid-Moussa, N.
Anti-Inflammatory and Anti-Obesity Properties of Food Bioactive Components: Effects on
Adipose Tissue. Preventive Nutrition and Food Science . 2017; 22(4):251-262. doi:
[5]Khurana, S., Venkataraman, K., Hollingsworth, A., Piche, M., & Tai, T. Polyphenols: Benefits to the
Cardiovascular System in Health and in Aging. Nutrients. 2013. 5(10), 3779-3827.
[6] Small, S., Ercoli, W,, Martinez, E.,…Barrio, J. Memory and brain Amyloid and Tau Effects of a
Bioavailable Form of Curcumin in Non-demented Adults: A double-blind, placebo-controlled
18-Month Trial. The American journal of Geriatric Psychiatry . 2018; 13(7), P1264. doi:
[7] Jane, E. Turmeric Roasted Garbanzo Beans [online] The Wholesome Fork. Available at:
http://www.thewholesomefork.com/2016/03/29/turmeric-roasted-garbanzo-beans/ . 2016.
Accessed Feb 17, 2018.
[8] Wallace, T., Murray, R., & Zelman, K. The Nutritional Value and Health Benefits of Chickpeas and
Hummus. Nutrients. 2016; 8(12). doi:10.3390/nu8120766.

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