Who says salads have to be boring?! This vibrant, protein-packed, vegan Mediterranean chickpea salad is far from that, providing flavor using herbs and spices. Try it out for meatless Monday and you’ll be pleasantly surprised!
This salad provides a number of health benefits, but today I’d like to highlight the star of the show – chickpeas, also known as garbanzo beans.
Chickpeas are an excellent source of protein for vegans and vegetarians, providing 15 grams of protein per cup cooked! Although garbanzo beans are a source of incomplete protein, eating a variety of other protein foods throughout the day, such as whole grains, dairy, nuts, or eggs will help prevent an amino acid deficiency. This recipe is vegan-friendly, but for any lacto-ovo-vegetarians out there, I suggest adding feta cheese into the salad or even a fried egg on top!
These delicious beans are also loaded with fiber & will keep you regular in the bathroom…if you catch my drift. Fiber-rich foods help stabilize your blood sugar levels by slowing down digestion & allowing sugar to move slowly from your digestive system into your bloodstream. A cup of cooked chickpeas provides 12.5 grams of fiber, providing half of the daily recommended intake for women and one-third of the recommendation for men. According to the Institute of Medicine, women need 25 grams of fiber per day and men need 38 grams per day.
Vitamins & Minerals
Garbanzo beans provide a number of vitamins and minerals, however, they are especially high in folate and manganese. A cup of chickpeas provides 71% of your daily folate requirements for men and women. Folate, also known as vitamin B-9, protects against genetic mutations that can cause cancer, while also assisting in new cell development and brain cell communication. Chickpeas provide 94% of the recommended daily intake of manganese for women and 74% for men. Manganese helps with bone development and wound healing.
All of the ingredients found in this Mediterranean chickpea salad can be purchased at Trader Joe’s & make for a perfect to-go meal, whether you’re heading to work or school! To top it all off, it takes no more than 10 minutes to put together.
Time saver tip – purchase kale already chopped & the secret “sauce” from Trader Joe’s (mentioned below).
The secret “sauce” that brings this whole salad together is the Olive Tapenade, which is a blend of finely chopped olives, pimentos, herbs, spices and oils. You could technically make this mixture on your own, but to cut down on time, I prefer to buy it as is.
- 1 can of no salt added chickpeas
- 3 stems of celery, chopped
- 1/4 cup of cherry tomatoes, halved
- 3 dinosaur kale leaves, chopped
- 3 tablespoons of Olive Tapenade
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- OPTIONAL - 1/4 cup feta cheese or a fried egg on top
- Rinse chickpeas under water then place them in a big bowl.
- Add all chopped veggies into the bowl then add the Olive Tapenade & olive oil.
- Mix ingredients all together,
What’s your latest favorite salad to make? I’d love to try it out!