This Quinoa Chickpea Salad recipe is the perfect meal when you want something light.
This recipe is Daniel Fast friendly, vegan, and vegetarian, but it's also a wonderful side dish with a steak, roasted chicken, or fish.
Sometimes the simple recipes are the tastiest, and I think that's the case with this easy quinoa chickpea salad. It's one of my favorite recipes.
When I was in Jordan last year, we had chickpeas with almost every meal when dining at restaurants in Amman.
Whether it was in hummus, a salad, or even in lentil stew, Middle Eastern food relies a lot on the humble chickpea.
Fortunately, I love chickpeas any way you make them. I like roasted crispy chickpeas, in a salad, as a side, and even straight out of the can.
It's good to love those healthy peas also known as garbanzo beans! Wait- is it a pea or is it a bean? Well, the best answer I can give you is that it's part of the pea family, and also a legume.
The names have crazy histories, which you can search if you're curious. The most important thing is that you know they are one and the same when you're searching the grocery store shelves.
With life the way it is right now, everyone is looking for pantry meals. This would not really qualify as a pantry meal as it has fresh ingredients, too, but if you absolutely had to, you could freeze the carrots, onion, kale, and cilantro in small batches to be added when you're ready to make this dish.
The kale and carrots should be blanched first if you're freezing. Let's just plan on being able to get fresh ingredients now and then and making this when you have them.
What You Need
To make this healthy quinoa salad, you'll need carrots, red onion, kale, and cilantro, you will need quinoa and chickpeas, of course, as well as a good quality olive oil.
For the lemon dressing, you'll need fresh oregano, salt, black pepper, cumin, and lemon juice.
Again, as much as you can get of the freshest of everything is going to make your best salad.
How to Make Quinoa Chickpea Salad
Scroll all the way down to see the exact measurements for ingredients as well as detailed instructions for this recipe. You can also print the recipe card so you have it when you need it.
I can't tell you the number of times I've found a recipe I couldn't wait to make, bought all the ingredients, and then forgot the name of the recipe and where I saw it. Yes, I've done that!
Go ahead and print it, bookmark it, or pin it on Pinterest so you have it for later.
Gather those ingredients and get started making this delicious salad.
Quinoa Chickpea Salad Dressing
Mince cilantro and oregano finely. In a small bowl, whisk fresh herbs with all remaining ingredients. Set aside.
Quinoa Chickpea Salad Base
Rinse quinoa well in cold water.
Cook quinoa in a small saucepan following directions on package. Typically, quinoa cooks for about 15 minutes.
Wash and dry kale.
Remove large stems from kale with a paring knife or by pulling along the stem from the base to the tip.
Slice kale into thin ¼” strips cross-wise.
Heat oil in a pan over medium heat. Add chickpeas and cook for 1 minute, stirring frequently.
Combine cooked quinoa, chickpeas, and prepared vegetables in a large bowl.
Toss with dressing.
Serves well warm, room temperature, or will keep in the fridge for 2-3 days.
This is such a flexible recipe, the possibilities are endless. Tomatoes or red peppers would be delicious, as would cucumbers. If you are planning to have leftovers, it's best to use harder vegetables like snap peas, turnips, parsnips, or even fresh corn that is cooked just enough so it is still firm.
Any dressing would probably go well. You could also replace the cilantro with fresh parsley or rosemary in the dressing and toss in some black olives and you'll have a variation of a chickpea quinoa Mediterranean salad. It's really so easy to switch this salad up!
Any protein would round this out as a complete meal. Grilled chicken, shrimp, or tofu are all great choices. As long as you aren't avoiding dairy, feta cheese would be a nice addition.
If you're serving this salad as a main dish, a piece of pita bread, one of these Cheddar Bay biscuits, or a slice of crusty bread would be delicious alongside the meal.
Quinoa Chickpea Salad Recipe
- 1 C dry quinoa any variety
- 1 C cooked chickpeas
- 1 C grated carrot one large
- 1 C red onion ¼ large onion, minced
- ½ bunch kale
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- ½ C fresh cilantro leaves
- 1 tbsp fresh oregano leaves
- 4 tbsp olive oil
- 3 tbsp lemon juice
- ½ tsp ground cumin
- ½ tsp ground black pepper
- ¼ tsp sea salt
- Mince cilantro and oregano finely. Whisk with all remaining ingredients with the fresh herbs.
- Cook quinoa according to package directions.
- Mince onion and grate carrot. Wash and dry kale. Remove large stems with a paring knife or by pulling along the stem from the base to the tip.
- Slice kale into thin ¼” strips cross-wise.
- Heat oil in a pan over medium heat. Add chickpeas and cook for 1 minute, stirring frequently.
- Combine cooked quinoa, chickpeas, and prepared vegetables. Toss with dressing.
- Serves well warm or will keep in the fridge for 2-3 days.
How Long Does this Salad Keep?
Quinoa Chickpea Salad lasts 2-3 days in the refrigerator.
This salad is really meant to be served fresh, so don't try to freeze it. Just make enough for your family or guests, perhaps having some leftover for the next day.
There are so many quinoa recipes. This roasted cauliflower with quinoa is one of my go-to recipes. Do you have a favorite recipe with quinoa?
I'm thinking next about using up some of the avocados and making quinoa chicken avocado salad. Doesn't that sound good?
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