Chickpea Salad

Prep Time 10 minutes
Total Time 10 minutes
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This easy, fresh Chickpea Salad is full of flavor and protein. Chickpeas, fresh veggies, olives, and a homemade vinaigrette combine together for this zesty, bold side dish!

A Fresh Veggie Salad That’s Bursting with Flavor!

This easy, healthy salad is full of colorful veggies and meaty chickpeas (also known as garbanzo beans). It’s the perfect, easy lunch or light dinner recipe, and pairs well with all of your favorite fish, chicken, beef, and veggie recipes. If you’re looking for a refreshing side or main course that will fill you up without weighing you down, this is it!

This is also a great recipe for meal prep, since it lasts for several days in the fridge. Make a batch and portion it out for lunches to save time on busy days, or just set aside your leftovers for a grab-and-go meal the next day.

Chickpeas, spices, feta, bell pepper, olives, and other ingredients for chickpea salad measured into small dishes and arranged on a work surface.

Ingredients

So just what goes into my chickpea salad? It’s a fairly short list, to make things easy, but each item has a big, bold taste or texture. The result? A colorful, crunchy salad that’ll fill you up and make you feel great.

For the Salad

  • Chickpeas: Canned chickpeas, drained and rinsed. You could also cook your own chickpeas from dried, ahead of time. 
  • Cucumber: Cut an English cucumber into quarters lengthwise, and then slice them thinly.
  • Bell Pepper: I use green bell pepper, but any color would be great. Seed and dice the bell pepper.
  • Onion: Red onion, thinly sliced.
  • Cherry Tomatoes: Cut them in quarters, or substitute grape tomatoes cut in half.
  • Kalamata Olives: Chopped.
  • Feta Cheese: Crumble the feta, or buy pre-crumbled feta for even easier prep.
  • Salt and Pepper

For the Dressing

  • Olive Oil: Extra-virgin olive oil has the best, most robust flavor for the vinaigrette dressing, but you could also use regular or light olive oil if you prefer.
  • Vinegar: White wine vinegar is my go-to. You could also use rice wine vinegar, apple cider vinegar, or plain white vinegar – each one will affect the flavor of the dressing differently, but any of them would work.
  • Lemon Juice: Fresh is best, but bottled is good, too.
  • Parsley: Fresh parsley is best here.
  • Mustard: The wine-like flavor of Dijon is extra yummy in this dressing.
  • Salt
  • Garlic and Onion Powder: Using these savory seasonings amps up the flavor of the dressing, big time.
  • Red Pepper Flakes: For a little heat – or you can leave these out if you don’t like them.

Can You Eat Canned Chickpeas Raw?

Most chickpeas sold in grocery stores are either dried or canned. You might be wondering if you can eat chickpeas “raw” right out of the can, but actually canned chickpeas are already fully cooked. They are safe to eat right from the can, although it is recommended to drain out the liquid and give them a rinse first for the best flavor. Don’t eat dried chickpeas without cooking them first, or they’ll be hard (and natural toxins in the raw plant may make you sick!).

Are Chickpeas Carbs or Protein?

These days, we’re all aware of macros – carbs, protein, and fat – right? So you might need to know if chickpeas are counting as carbs, or as protein, for your dietary needs. The answer is both! Chickpeas are a well-balanced food, with about four grams of fat, 10 grams of protein, and 25 grams of net carbs per cup.

Close-up shot of vinaigrette-dressed salad with chickpeas.

How to Make Chickpea Salad

The instructions for making chickpea salad are so easy, you basically don’t even need them. It’s all about mixing the ingredients and letting them hang out. So simple, so quick, and so yummy.

  • Combine the Salad Ingredients. Toss all of the salad ingredients together in a bowl.
  • Make the Dressing. Combine all the dressing ingredients together in a small jar and shake to combine (you could also mix it up in a bowl with a little whisk or a fork). Drizzle this over the salad.
  • Mix and Refrigerate. Toss the salad again so that all of the ingredients are well-coated in the dressing. Then cover the bowl, and place it in the fridge until you’re ready to serve.
Salad with chickpeas and fresh vegetables.

Helpful Hints

There are a thousand different ways to customize this easy recipe, so feel free to make it your own! Here are a few of the ways that you can change it up to suit your preferences and dietary needs.

  • Eliminate Ingredients: Make this salad the way your family would enjoy it. For example, if your crew doesn’t care for raw onions or olives, just leave them out! You’ll still get tons of flavor from the other ingredients.
  • Add Herbs: Add fresh herbs such as dill, basil, or cilantro. These give the salad a special bright flavor that you really can’t duplicate any other way.
  • Cheese Options: You can use cubed mozzarella, Colby jack, or cheddar cheese instead of feta cheese, if you prefer.
  • Make It Meaty: Grilled chicken, cubed ham, or chopped deli meat like salami or pepperoni add even more umami goodness.
  • Make It Ahead of Time: I like to make this salad a few hours to a day before serving. This gives the salad time to marinate and become super flavorful.
Drizzling vinaigrette over salad.

Tasty Serving Suggestions

Make the most of this healthy salad recipe with some awesome side dishes (or main dishes). Here are a few favorites to try!

  • Soup: A bowl of creamy Roasted Garlic Cauliflower Soup works perfectly alongside fresh chickpea salad. This is one vegetarian meal everyone will devour!
  • Pita Bread: With the Mediterranean flavors going on in this salad, a side of Easy Homemade Pita Bread would be just the thing.
  • Chicken Kabobs: Juicy Grilled Chicken Kabobs with tender summer squash are just right with a hearty, savory chickpea salad like this one.
Lifting salad out of a bowl with a serving spoon.

How to Store Leftover Chickpea Salad

Chickpea salad is easy to store – simply place the leftovers in an airtight container in the refrigerator, and use it within 5 days. You can also store it in a bowl tightly covered with plastic wrap, or a zip-top baggie.

Can I Freeze This?

Sadly, I can’t recommend freezing chickpea salad because the tender vegetables tend to turn out watery and mushy when frozen and thawed. Instead, serve this dish fresh or refrigerated. If you feel that the recipe will make too much for you to use, try cutting it down by one-third to one-half.

Chickpea salad with feta and vinaigrette.
5 from 4 votes
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Yield: 6 Servings

Chickpea Salad

This easy, fresh Chickpea Salad is full of flavor and protein. Chickpeas, fresh veggies, olives and a homemade vinaigrette combine together for this zesty, bold side dish!
Prep Time10 minutes
Total Time10 minutes

Ingredients

Salad

  • 2 15 oz cans chickpeas, drained and rinsed
  • 1 English cucumber, quartered and sliced
  • 1 green bell pepper, seeded and diced
  • ½ red onion, thinly sliced
  • ½ cup cherry tomatoes, quartered
  • ½ cup chopped kalamata olives
  • ½ cup crumbled feta
  • Salt and pepper, to taste

Dressing

  • ½ cup extra virgin olive oil
  • ¼ cup white wine vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 1 tablespoon chopped parsley
  • 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
  • ½ teaspoon kosher salt
  • ¼ teaspoon garlic powder
  • ¼ teaspoon onion powder
  • ¼ teaspoon red pepper flakes

Instructions 

  • Toss all the salad ingredients together in a bowl.
  • Combine all the dressing ingredients together in a small jar and shake to combine, then drizzle over the salad.
  • Toss the salad to coat.
  • Refrigerate until ready to serve.

Notes

  • Storage: Place leftovers in an airtight container in the refrigerator. Use within 5 days.
  • Eliminate Ingredients: Make this salad the way your family would enjoy it. For example, if your crew doesn’t care for raw onions or olives, just leave them out! You’ll still get tons of flavor from the other ingredients.
  • Add Herbs: Add fresh herbs such as dill, basil or cilantro. These give the salad a special bright flavor that you really can’t duplicate any other way.
  • Cheese Options: You can use cubed mozzarella, colby jack or cheddar cheese instead of feta cheese, if you prefer.
  • Make It Meaty: Grilled chicken, cubed ham, or chopped deli meat like salami or pepperoni add even more umami goodness.
  • Make It Ahead of Time: I like to make this salad a few hours to a day before serving. This gives the salad time to marinate and become super flavorful.

Nutrition

Serving: 1, Calories: 329kcal, Carbohydrates: 22g, Protein: 7g, Fat: 25g, Saturated Fat: 5g, Polyunsaturated Fat: 19g, Cholesterol: 11mg, Sodium: 568mg, Fiber: 5g, Sugar: 5g

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5 stars
I’m assuming the onion powder amount is a typo so I used a 1/4 tsp instead and it turned out great! I also doubled the tomatoes, olives, and feta because my family likes those. I would definitely make this again and it is pretty enough to bring to a potluck!

I’m assuming the onion powder amount is a typo so I made this with a 1/2 tsp and it was great! I also doubled the tomatoes, olives, and feta because my family likes these a lot. I will definitely make this again. It’s also pretty enough to take to a potluck.

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Jessica
For the past 15 years, Jorge & Jessica have loved getting to share their families' favorite recipes with all of you. They live in Florida with their 3 kids.