Do you struggle with what to bring for lunch to work, or to eat at home, or to send with the kiddos?
Trying to incorporate more healthy food into your diet, like plant based recipes and legumes?
Need a new flavor combo after years of tuna salad sandwiches and chicken salad sandwiches?
Tired of spending $6 or more on lunch every day?
Have I got the solution for you!
Meet the magical, miracle, chickpea salad.
I cannot believe I went 3 decades without knowing what chickpea salad is, or ever eating it! This stuff is so delicious! It is:
- creamy but with a bit of texture
- filling – no more 3pm tummy grumbles
- super simple to make
- cheap af
- ridiculously healthy for you
- everything I’m looking for in a brown bag lunch
The cheapest option is to buy dried chickpeas and cook them yourself. Just put 1/2 pound in a bowl and cover with water. (LOTS of water, these babies plump up like nobody’s business).
After 6-8-12 hours, drain and either simmer on the stove for 4 hours or so, or put in a crock pot on low for 6-8 hours.
That’s it! Then you can store them in the fridge or freezer for whatever and whenever.
You can also totally use cans, no judgment here. Not everyone has time for that, or remembers to soak the night before, or has space on the counter or a crock pot in your house. Just drain and rinse.
However you do it, just get yourself about a cup of chickpeas, and get ready to make some magic happen.
This simple base recipe makes enough for 2 good sized sandwiches or wraps, but I recommend double or tripling! And below I’ll add some ideas on how to further customize it to whatever flavor combo you’re feeling.
- 1 heaping cup cooked chickpeas, or 1/2 can drained
- 1 small-medium pickle, chopped (or 1 tbsp relish)
- 1/4 red onion, diced small
- 1 tbsp mustard of your choice
- Optional: 1 tbsp Greek yogurt
- Optional: Green onion or celery, diced
Step 1: Soak your beans ~8 hours and cook until soft, or open and drain the can. Put about 1 heaping cup in a bowl and mash with a fork or potato masher. You want it mostly crushed but with some small pieces left for texture.
Step 2: Add your other fillings, and mix well.
Layer on bread, in a wrap, or on top of a mixed greens salad. Put inside or on top of biscuit mix and make puffs. I haven’t tried it yet with pasta to see if it can sub as tuna noodle salad, but if you have please report back!
If you want it extra salty:
- Add 1 tbsp capers
- Layer on seaweed (nori) sheets between the salad and the bread
- Sprinkle with sea salt or garlic salt
- Add a tbsp powdered kelp
If you want it extra crunchy:
- Add a few tbsp chopped cucumber
- Add a few tbsp sliced radish
- Add a few tbsp diced celery ribs
- Sprinkle in some slivered almonds or walnuts
If you want it to be creamier:
- Add 1-2 tbsp plain Greek yogurt
- Add 1-2 tbsp thick coconut milk cream (the top part when you open a can of cold coconut milk)
- Add 1-2 tbsp cashew cream
If you want it a little bit spicy:
- Add chopped jalapeno or green chilies
- Drizzle on a tsp or 2 of hot sauce
- Sprinkle a little cayenne on top
- Add a tbsp horseradish or wasabi
4 thoughts on “Simple Chickpea Salad”
I love chickpea salads, especially in sandwiches. And prior to eating exclusively plant-based vegan, I have never even heard of them. It’s the perfect substitute for tuna salad sandwiches (and almost as much protein too!). The taste is surprisingly similar!!!
Oh my goodness, yes. So happy to know about this now, and I will be spreading the chickpea gospel wherever I go lol. People think vegetarians and vegans are boring and just eat salads all day, but I bet you my monthly grocery budget that they eat FAR more variety than a typical omnivore!
Yum! I love all the extra suggestions, this may just be my lunch, but on salad greens since we don’t have any bread right now.
Go for it Mrs. Kiwi! It is surprisingly similar to tuna salad in flavor, like Doc said. And can be changed up so easily. If you think up a great new combo not listed here let us know!