Recipe – Summer Chickpea Salad with Lemon-Garlic dressing

Chickpeas are really a wonderful addition to your diet. They’re super nutritious, packed with plant-based protein and healthy fibre, and an excellent source of iron, B6 and magnesium alongside vitamin K, folate, phosphorus and many more minerals essential for good health.

Chickpeas, otherwise known as Garbanzo beans, are a legume of the pea family known as one of the best plant proteins around. Their mild, nutty flavour compliments most flavour profiles and does well to absorb other flavours and spices, so they’re a pretty versatile ingredient in almost any dish you can think of!

Not to mention, they’re dirt cheap – making them an ideal meal base when you’re feeding a hungry family. You can buy the dried beans in bulk and as long as they’re kept airtight they’ll last indefinitely in the cupboard. Cook up a giant batch on Sunday night and throw them into everything you make – they’ll last up to 5 days in the fridge. Use them in stir fries, vegetable curries, and salads – like this delicious, hearty summer salad!

You can really chop and change the vegetables that you use in this salad, but try and get a good range of colours. Not only does this make your dish look Instagram-worthy (we know you’re gonna snap it right away!), but those different colours are due to different types of antioxidants, the free-radical-busting wonder compounds that have health benefits from supporting the liver to helping prevent cancer.

Ingredients (serves 4)

  • 2 cups cooked chickpeas, rinsed and drained (you can use canned, for ease – but freshly cooked are so much better, plus you can cook them to the exact firmness you like).
  • Half a small head of purple cabbage, sliced finely
  • Two large carrots, julienned (or grated with a cheese grater)
  • 1 red pepper, chopped
  • Two handfuls of baby spinach
  • Two cups sliced cherry or grape tomatoes
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 5tbsp lemon juice
  • 3tbsp olive oil
  • cracked black pepper, to taste

Method

Toss the chickpeas and vegetables together until well mixed

Whisk the olive oil, lemon juice and minced garlic and drizzle over the salad, mixing well, until coated to your liking

Season with a sprinkle of cracked black pepper or, for a little extra kick, a pinch of cayenne and a sprinkle of chilli flakes

Chill in the fridge for an hour to allow the flavours to meld together and enjoy!