22 May 2012

Marinated Chickpea Salad

I'm kind of a slut for ethnic cuisine.  Oh, and veggies.  I would pretty much do anything for a bite of tall, dark and GREEN!  Or yellow... red... orange... You see where I'm going with this right?  =)

Greek Restaurant Recreation - Marinated Chickpea Salad

Once I straight up cried in the middle of a restaurant simply because my friends wanted to abandon ship and eat next door where the only vegetable options were coleslaw and french fries.  We were on vacation and I desperatley wanted something fun/interesting/healthy to eat.  It was at that very moment that I realized just how much of a pain in the butt I am.  I also suffer from chain restaurant aversion.  Ask me to go to Applebee's instead of a sketchy little local joint and cue the water works.

So yes, if you ever try to make me eat at a Chilis, I will cry.  And I'm not a pretty crier.

There are, however, a few chain restaurants that don't make me cry.  In fact, I'll almost always jump at the chance to eat at a Panera Bread, Sweet Tomatoes, and a few others.  I've even been know to fling my car off at the nearest exit with a Taco Bell during road trips.  I'm not that much of a snob.  Unless of course I'm in a new town with seriously awesome food options.

Baba Gannouj is a North Carolina chain... and they're located in malls, no less.  But they're freaking AWESOME.  Their colorful Mediterranean dishes are fresh, full of whole foods, and pretty darn healthy to boot.  And their chickpea salads?  To die for.  So naturally I re-created it at home!

Greek Restaurant Recreation - Marinated Chickpea Salad
Pin It
Marinated Chickpea Salad
[makes 2-4 servings... depending on how ravenous you are]

what's in it?
1 can of chickpeas
1/2 an orange bell pepper
1/2 a red bell pepper
1/4 white onion
1/2 an english cucumber

uber easy marinade/dressing
2.5 Tbsp white whine balsamic vinegar
3 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
4 tsp lemon juice
1/2 tsp garlic powder or 1-2 cloves of garlic, minced
1/2 tsp dried minced onion
1/2-1 tsp dried parsley
1/2 tsp dried oregano
1/4-1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp dried dill

Brontosaurus Chefs It's fabulously vegan!  Enjoy as is or pair with falafel/hummus
T-Rex Chefs if you try to add meat to this I will fight you!  You can, however, pair this dish with shish kebabs or grilled chicken =)

get cooking marinating!
Drain and rinse chickpeas, chop your veggies, and toss them in a bowl.  Combine all dressing ingredients in a separate container and either shake or whisk to incorporate.  Pour over beans and vegetables and pop the bowl in the fridge, covered, for a few hours to let the fabulous flavors of the marinade get better acquainted with your veggies.

Greek Restaurant Recreation - Marinated Chickpea Salad

so... how was it?
I never get tired of answering this question -- SO GOOD!  It's tasty chilled but tastes absolutely best at room temperature [somehow the flavors are more amplified]  This refreshing dish is great as a side dish or as a stand-alone lunch.  You can toss them over a crisp green salad, serve it alongside a fluffy pita sandwich, or even turn it into a greek platter by adding grape leaves, hummus, tzatziki sauce, falafel, pita wedges and even a big ole pile of olives.  Just keep the olives to yourself.  I'm still terrified of them =)

This dressing also tastes pretty baller drizzled over Mediterranean Bruschetta!

Pin It!

55 comments:

  1. Yum! This looks like a good addition to any summer picnic, especially for my vegan friends. . . and me! :)

    ReplyDelete
  2. I'm not a fan of olives, either. ;)  And this looks super yummy!  What are some of your favorites at Panera?  I'm curious what a veggie-lover usually gets!

    ReplyDelete
  3. There is just something about Taco Bell that makes it taste so good! I totally agree with you on your chain restaurants! I dislike most, but T Bell and Panera are always welcome.

    ReplyDelete
  4. Can I go out to eat at restaurants with you, like, ALWAYS?  I do the same thing - which sometimes sucks being in college and all anyone ever wants to eat is pizza and ice cream and fried things.  I need more veg-foodie friends!
    This chickpea salad looks fantastic - light bean salads are one of my favorite summer veg dishes.

    ReplyDelete
  5. Sounds yummy! I enjoy chickpeas but never make them on my own, even canned.  Maybe I ought to try... 

    ReplyDelete
  6. This sounds delightful! I can't wait to give it a try! 

    ReplyDelete
  7. I'm with you on being anti-chain restaurants.  :)

    ReplyDelete
  8. God bless a chickpea. If I come visit you, can we make this?

    ReplyDelete
  9. Oh YUM - this looks fresh and delicious! (I don't like Chilis either) I'll avoid chain restaurants with you anytime, girl. :)

    ReplyDelete
  10. I hate it when my friends argue about going to restaurants with healthier options. Anyways, that recipe looks delicious! 

    ReplyDelete
  11. Green girl in wisconsinTuesday, May 22, 2012

     I'm with you on boycotting the chains--so many good restaurants owned locally--why buy overpriced food straight off the Sysco truck?

    ReplyDelete
  12. I think you and I are twins. I HATE chain resturants and love hole in the walls.  Veggies are my fav- living in Germany, with a meat eating family is seriously really really hard. AND, olives are not my thing.  I will be making this recipes asap!

    ReplyDelete
  13. Laura @ Sprint 2 the TableTuesday, May 22, 2012

    Haha - I read the first line in Reader and thought "is this safe for work?" :)

    Love this.  Chickpeas are my favorite salad base!

    ReplyDelete
  14. My brain isn't safe for work. I apologize =)

    ReplyDelete
  15. Oh Jenn! Per usual you have me laughing. I am a recent lover of chickpeas...did the whole I like hummus, but not chickpeas thing for awhile until I realized that I was kidding myself and I love the little guys. 

    PS I am making a restaurant recreation tonight. If it turns out as good as the restaurants it will def be a Monday Meal Share!!!

    ReplyDelete
  16. I love love LOOOOVE Baba Gannouj! And I love their chickpea salad! Totally going to have to try out this recipe. :)

    ReplyDelete
  17. This looks so delicious!! I love chickpeas and I'm totally the same about wanting to try out local joints instead of chain restaurants. Can't wait to try this salad.

    ReplyDelete
  18. That recipe sounds Wonderful, Jenn...but I need to find that chain!  Oh, my gosh, I could probably bring a cot and live there!!  Thanks for the recipe, sweetie!

    ReplyDelete
  19. This looks so bright and cheery! And I absolutely adore chickpeas - definitely one of my favorite fiber rich eats. I can't wait to try this recipe at home. 

    ReplyDelete
  20. Ohmygosh girl they are soooo good! Though I *will* hack all their recipes if it kills me! Haha its much cheaper at home ;)

    ReplyDelete
  21. Thanks Kati!!! Let me know if you end up making it -- I think I've had it 3 days in a row now and *adore* it! =)

    ReplyDelete
  22. LOVE Baba Gannouj (is that how you spell it?). My husband and I discovered it at the wilmington mall and have made a couple trips down there just to eat at it! Best mall food ever!

    ReplyDelete
  23. I don’t cook
    with chickpeas and the one time I tried to make hummus I failed…it was so bad I
    never got back on the horse. However this salad looks soo good and simple to
    make, maybe I’ll give it a try again. Especially since summer is coming it
    would make a great addition to the bbq. Thanks for the recipe!

    ReplyDelete
  24. I have had a ton of hummus fails too! Haha this is way way easier =) You can even use a pre-made greek/italian dressing in a pinch -- though the one I posed here is super simple too! Hope you give chickpeas another shot! xoxo

    ReplyDelete
  25. The Single NesterTuesday, May 22, 2012

    How funny that you have this recipe today!  I was just in Orlando on business and we ate at a restaurant called Taverna Opa.  They had the most amazing hummus.  I love chick peas.

    ReplyDelete
  26. I miss orlando! And good hummus is totally worth its weight in GOLD! <3

    ReplyDelete
  27. Delish! I love me a good chickpea salad. And I love your Mediterranean plate idea!

    ReplyDelete
  28. I'm a total chain restaurant avoider (except for Panera and others in that vein!). Love this recipe -will try it this weekend!

    ReplyDelete
  29. This salad is so pretty and I would love to have that last platter in front of me now.

    ReplyDelete
  30. definitely want to try it!

    ReplyDelete
  31. Love this so much. The color is fab and it looks positively delish.

    ReplyDelete
  32. This chickpea salad looks so good!  I could easily fall in love with it =)

    ReplyDelete
  33. This is definitely my kind of salad! I love salads that have beans in them :-)

    ReplyDelete
  34. Yum! "Keep the olives to yourself"--you are a woman after my own heart! lol.

    ReplyDelete
  35. Oh I definitely will! Hoping to make it this weekend. :)

    ReplyDelete
  36. Looks yummy!  I love chickpeas.

    ReplyDelete
  37. Stephanie @ Eat. Drink. Love.Wednesday, May 23, 2012

    I love me some chickpeas! I also don't really like a lot of chain restaurants either.  I feel like the food is not fresh and it's so fattening!

    ReplyDelete
  38. I'm not a pretty crier either...red face, snot, the whole 9 yards....anyway, this looks delish. Pinned!

    ReplyDelete
  39. I love chick peas! This looks so good, I must try it.

    ReplyDelete
  40. I am making this as I type! You don't happen to have any nutritional values do you?

    ReplyDelete
  41. I don't have it calculated yet but it's super healthy! I use grape seed oil for the fat in the dish and not all of it even ends up on the chickpeas at the end so it's a light and flavorful =)

    ReplyDelete
  42. Love it!  Chickpeas are one of my favorite things to eat.  Thank you for posting this wonderful recipe. :)

    ReplyDelete
  43. Thank you!!! Glad you're also team chickpea =) xoxo

    ReplyDelete
  44. I just came across your site from I <3  Being a Military Spouse and I am sooo very excited to start trying your recipes!!

    ReplyDelete
  45. Ahhh nice to meet you!!!! =) and thank you!! What branch are you kids in?

    ReplyDelete
  46.  lovely treat

    ReplyDelete
  47. I love chickpeas and always looking for new alternatives.Going to try this one for sure. I can tell before I even make it,  it's right up our alley.Thanks. sue

    ReplyDelete
  48. I hope you fall head over heels with it like I did! Thanks Sue!

    ReplyDelete
  49. Cat @ Breakfast to BedThursday, July 19, 2012

    chickpea salad makes me want to make out with random middle eastern men.

    ReplyDelete
  50. OHMYGOD CAT REMEMBERED TO ADD HER FREAKING EMAIL!

    Thanks hooker.

    And I got a really odd visual of that... Hmm... Though I envisioned a goat covered in hummus.

    ReplyDelete
  51. Maria MacDonaldTuesday, July 24, 2012

    I'm kind of a slut for ethinc cuisine?!! OMG!! You're hilarious!! I love it!! We love chickpeas at my house and always looking for some new way to use them in a recipe. Gonna have to try this one out...looks fab btw! Thx for sharing :)

    ReplyDelete
  52. Thanks Maria! Totally make the salad! It's super addictive and tastes great with just about everything! =) xoooo

    ReplyDelete
  53. I love that white bowl of yours it's gorgeous i so want it

    ReplyDelete