This protein-packed Mediterranean chickpea salad is filled with vegetables and hint of salty capers with a simple vinaigrette. It’s a great side dish for backyard barbecue and it can pull double duty as a healthy, vegan lunch to last through the week. The flavors are bold and fresh, and the recipe can be made a day or two in advance.
How I made my mediterranean chickpea salad dairy free:
As of March 2018, this recipe has been updated to make it dairy free. I’ve added capers in place of feta cheese, and I cut back the amount of oil in the dressing to make it a bit healthier. Without the saltiness of the feta cheese, I decided to use Kalamata or Greek olives in place of the black olives I used to use. I love the salad both ways, so I’m keeping both versions of the recipe on this post, for readers who are still looking for the original version.
I love having chickpeas in a salad. It makes any salad more filling and seemingly more healthy. I made this Mediterranean chickpea salad as an alternative to my corn & chickpea fiesta salad, which was one of my first blog recipes. Ever since, I had been planning on making another version of it, and this is it. It’s simple, refreshing and so easy to make.
I made when we were on our houseboat in Amsterdam (minus the oregano but it was still fantastic) and I brought it to Julia’s to eat before a game a few weeks ago. And now, I’ve made it again for you. It makes a lot of salad so feel free to cut the recipe in half if you only want a few servings, and you can increase the amount of olives if you like them – Marc isn’t a big fan so I usually keep the olives to a minimum for his sake.
Tips for making the best mediterranean chickpea salad:
- Use the best beans you can. I’ve used “cheap” brands in the past, and I find that the beans aren’t a soft or as flavorful, so I spend the extra fifteen or twenty cents on name brand cans.
- Make the salad ahead, but keep the dressing separate until you’re ready to serve because the salt will draw out the juices from the vegetables and the longer they sit, the more bland they’ll get. So just wait.
Dairy Free Mediterranean Chickpea Salad
- Prep Time: 20 minutes
- Total Time: 20 minutes
- Yield: 16
For the salad:
- 3 15-ounce cans chickpeas, drained and rinsed
- 1 pint grape tomatoes, quartered
- 2 English cucumbers, seeded and chopped
- 1 red bell pepper, chopped
- 1/4 – 1/2 cup diced red onion (amount to taste)
- 3/4 cup sliced Kalamata olives
- 1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley
- 2 tablespoons capers
For the dressing:
- 1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil
- 1/3 cup lemon juice (or white wine vinegar)
- 1 teaspoon dried oregano
- 1/2 teaspoon coarse salt
- 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
- Combine salad ingredients in a large bowl.
- In a small bowl, whisk together dressing ingredients.
- Add dressing to salad, stirring to coat evenly, about 10 minutes before serving.