I’m constantly on the hunt for new recipes that can be packed up and taken along for summer hiking adventures and picnics. This spicy cranberry chickpea salad is my new favorite on-the-go meal.
I’ve been making variations of these creamy vegan salads for a while now and they’re always a big hit with vegans and omnivores alike. Think of them as a plant-based alternative to your traditional chicken/egg salad sandwiches.
I typically use the same formula each time, so feel free to substitute based on what you have on hand.
Creamy salad formula:
Plant-based protein (beans/tempeh/lentils) + vegan mayo + nuts (walnuts/pecans/cashews) + fruit (raisins/grapes/cranberries) + fresh herbs (parsley/basil/cilantro).
Also, a generous helping of cayenne pepper never hurts.
(Tip: if your chickpea salad is falling apart, try giving it another mash to better hold things together.)
This recipe can be served a number of ways – sandwiches and wraps are great for transporting but this salad is also tasty on it’s own, over a bed of dark leafy greens, or eaten as a dip with crackers. You could even serve it on top of your favorite whole grain – I think it’d be yummy over brown rice or barley.
Regardless of the delivery method, I guarantee your tastebuds will go wild for the zing of vinegar-y mayo and lemon, the crunch from omega 3-rich walnuts, the fresh herbaceous-ness of parsley, and the sweet/tart pops of flavor from dried cranberries.
Topped off with your favorite fresh sandwich veggies (I used tomato, cucumber, spinach, and red onions), this sandwich is sure to become a summer staple in your home – I know its already one in mine.
With protein, plant-based healthy fats, healthy carbohydrates and fiber, this simple 10-minute lunch recipe is one you can feel good about too.
Just mash, mix, and spread on your favorite whole grain vehicle.
(Then pack it up, get outside, and enjoy!)
- 1-15 oz can chickpeas, drained and rinsed
- ⅓ cup mayo of choice (I used vegan Just Mayo by Hampton Creek)
- ⅓ cup walnuts, roughly chopped
- ¼ cup (packed) fresh parsley, chopped
- ⅓ cup dried cranberries
- ½ lemon, zest and juice
- ¼ tsp cayenne pepper (optional)
- 4 slices whole grain bread of choice
- Optional fresh sliced veggies: baby spinach, tomato, cucumber, red onion
- Mix together chickpeas and mayo in a mixing bowl, mashing chickpeas until mixture begins to stick together. Add walnuts, parsley, cranberries, lemon, and cayenne, and mix until combined.
- Lay two slices of bread on a flat surface and top with the chickpea salad. Add spinach, tomato, cucumber, and/or onion if desired and place the two remaining slices of bread on top. Slice the sandwiches in half if desired.
Where will you take these creamy cranberry chickpea salad sandwiches?