Chickpea Salad Is a Healthy Lunch of Fresh Vegetables
2024/04/02

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Ah, chickpeas—these legumes make the most delightful and refreshing . Bursting with chopped vegetables, creamy avocado, feta cheese, lots of , and a hearty squeeze of lemon, this is jam-packed with fresh ingredients to cool you off on a hot day. Luckily, these produce items are available year-round, so you don't have to wait until the farmers' markets crank up for the season—you can enjoy it for a  any time of year! It keeps well in the fridge, too, so it's a great .

What is the difference between a chickpea and a garbanzo bean?

Guess what? The names are totally interchangeable. While garbanzo bean is the Spanish term and chickpea is the English word, this agricultural staple has been around for thousands of years and has gone by many names.

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Luckily, you can find chickpeas and garbanzo beans right next to all the other beans in the canned food section. If inspiration strikes, this recipe works very well with other canned beans as long as you use the same amount. 

What do your pair with chickpeas?

Like most any bean, chickpeas have a relatively mild flavor. That means they're best with balancing, bold ingredients like fresh herbs, bright lemon juice, zingy vinegar, and salty feta. Due to their texture, pairing chickpeas with crunchy vegetables such as cucumber, onion, and bell pepper is also ideal.

What kind of feta is best for chickpea salad?

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This recipe calls for cubed feta, cut from a block. While crumbled feta would be delicious here (and works just fine if you can’t find a block!), it tends to break down in the dressing. Cut from the block, feta tastes fresher and holds its shape in the salad, giving you perfect little bites of creamy, salty goodness. 

Which herbs are best in chickpea salad?

Herbs bring so much freshness to this salad. While the recipe calls for parsley and basil, feel free to switch it up! Dill, mint, or cilantro are all great substitutes for basil. 

Can chickpea salad be made ahead of time?

Chickpea salad is a perfect candidate for being made ahead.

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This marinated bean salad stores very well in the refrigerator for up to two days. If making it ahead of time, keep the avocado and basil on the side until ready to serve. This ensures that the avocado and basil both stay fresh.

1

(15-oz.) can chickpeas, drained and rinsed

6 oz.

feta, cubed

1

English cucumber, cut into half moons

1 pt.

cherry tomatoes, halved

1

orange bell pepper, diced

1/2

small red onion, thinly sliced

2

avocados, cubed

1 c.

chopped Italian parsley

1/2 c.

torn basil

1/3 c.

olive oil

3 tbsp.

red wine vinegar

2 tbsp.

fresh lemon juice

1

grated garlic clove

1/2 tsp.

kosher salt

1/4 tsp.

ground black pepper 

1/4 tsp.

red pepper flakes

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Step  1 For the salad: In a large bowl, fold together the chickpeas, feta, cucumber, tomatoes, bell pepper, red onion, avocado, parsley, and basil. Step  2 For the dressing: In a medium bowl, whisk together the olive oil, vinegar, lemon juice, garlic, salt, black pepper, and pepper flakes until combined. Pour over the salad and gently fold to combine. Serve immediately.

Caitlin Bensel

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