This spicy chickpea salad is the best and easiest lunch around. It’s spicy, gluten free, dairy free and chock full of flavor. 10 minutes, only 8 key ingredients and you have a simple and delicious lunch.
In January and February I enter full buffalo mode. I’ve been making my buffalo cauliflower about once a week but felt it was about time for something new.
It’s packed with three different vegetables, perfectly spicy, creamy, high in protein, and filled with lots of buffalo flavor that I just love this time of year.
It’s great in sandwiches, wraps, lettuce cups, or on its own. My personal favorite? Toast your favorite bread, add a pice of green leaf lettuce, a generous serving of the chickpea salad, fresh tomatoes and sliced avocado. YUM!
Chickpeas: You will need 2 cans of chickpeas for this recipe. If you’re using chickpeas cooked from fresh, use 1.5 cups for every 1 can. Be sure to rinse them well whether they are canned or fresh.
Carrot: I like to shred the carrot in a food processor, but you can also chop it very finely.
Red Bell Pepper: Any color bell pepper will work just fine, but the flavor of red pepper works really well in this recipe.
Celery: I’m not a huge celery fan, so I like using just 1 stalk and chopping it very finely. It adds a slight salty flavor and a little crunch.
Onion and garlic: I suggest yellow onion, but any color onion will do the trick. If you don’t want a strong onion flavor, 3-4 green onions (scallions) are a good replacement.
Buffalo Sauce: I suggest a true buffalo sauce for the best flavor, but if you don’t have any, regular hot sauce will work.
Ranch: This recipe calls for buffalo ranch, but any ranch will work. Be sure to use a vegan one if necessary.
How to make spicy chickpea salad
PREP CHICKPEAS. Drain and rinse the chickpeas and add to a large bowl.
Mash with a potato masher, retaining some whole pieces. You can also add them to a food processor and pulse a few times to break them up. Careful not to over process so they don’t get mushy.
CHOP VEGGIES. Finely chop the celery, carrot, bell pepper and onion and add to the bowl with the chickpeas.
You can grate the carrot or use a food processor to do the grating, or just chop it small. Mince the garlic (I like using a garlic press) and add to the bowl.
COMBINE. Stir in the buffalo sauce, ranch, salt, and pepper.
SERVE. Mix until everything is well incorporated. Taste and adjust seasonings as desired. Serve as is or with bread, toast, or lettuce wraps.
How to store
Once prepared, this chickpea salad will keep for about five days. Store it in an air tight container for best results.
Since it’s served cold, there’s no need to reheat so its perfect for an on the go lunch!
Tips to make it perfectly
I like using the Sir Kensington’s buffalo ranch for this recipe, but any ranch will work. If you are vegan, be sure to use an egg free ranch (Primal Kitchen and Daiya both make one).
I used a buffalo sauce that is medium-spicy, but there are ones that are mild or hot. Feel free to adjust the amount of buffalo sauce according to your desired spice level.
You can mash the chickpeas as much or as little as you want. I personally like it with a decent amount of texture, so I don’t over mash. However, you are welcome to mash really well so no chunks remain.
The ranch can be subbed for mayo if desired. It’s also delicious with hummus, or even 1-2 tbsp of tahini in addition to the ranch for an ultra creamy salad.
Try these chickpea recipes next!
Spicy Vegan Chickpea Salad Sandwich
by: claire cary
- Drain and rinse the chickpeas and add to a large bowl.
- Mash with a potato masher, retaining some whole pieces. You can also add them to a food processor and pulse a few times to break them up.
- Finely chop the celery, carrot, bell pepper and onion and add to the bowl with the chickpeas.
- Mince the garlic (I like using a garlic press) and add to the bowl.
- Stir in the buffalo sauce, ranch, salt, and pepper.
- Mix until everything is well incorporated. Taste and adjust seasonings as desired. Serve as is or with bread, toast, or lettuce wraps.