Refreshing Quinoa Chickpea Salad

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There’s nothing like this refreshing quinoa chickpea salad on a gorgeous sunny spring or summer day. Quinoa pairs perfectly with the fresh vibrant herbs, crisp veggies, and a mouthwatering lemon dressing that adds a pop of flavor in each bite. This salad can actually be enjoyed year round as a simple healthy lunch, side dish, or light dinner that everyone will love.


  • Easy – This is a delicious salad you can whip up in less than 30 minutes that includes an easy dressing.
  • Flavorful – Combination of the fresh, vibrant herbs pairs perfectly with the bright flavor of the lemon and fresh veggies.
  • Healthy– This salad is a great source of protein and vitamins. It is a perfect lunch or side dish at a picnic or gathering too.
  • Vegan, dairy-free, & gluten-free



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Ingredients

Ingredient notes:

  • Quinoa: I like to use white quinoa for this recipe, but you can switch it up with tri-color quinoa if you prefer. I don’t necessarily recommend red quinoa for this recipe mainly for aesthetics because the vibrant veggies won’t “pop” as much. Quinoa is a great plant-based protein with all 9 essential amino acids (making it a complete protein).
  • Chickpeas/Garbanzo beans: You just need one can of chickpeas for this recipe. Be sure to drain and rinse to remove any preservatives or excess salt.
  • Fresh lemon: Get the largest (and juiciest!) fresh lemon you can find! The lemon juice will add a fresh pop of flavor to this recipe and you could even add some lemon zest for more lemony-flavor. This is the main component of our quinoa salad dressing, amongst a few other simple ingredients like olive oil.
  • Veg: You will need a few different veggies for this recipe: red onion, shredded carrots, diced red peppers
  • Fresh herbs: The combination of fresh parsley and mint in this recipe is heavenly.

See recipe card for full ingredient list and quantities.

Substitutions & Variations

  • Veg: Feel free to use any other fresh veggies you like such as English cucumber, arugula, spinach, kale, kalamata olives, other colors of pepper, even a little green onion
  • Protein: You can add or swap different beans like black beans or white beans
  • Dressing: If you don’t have lemon, try red wine vinegar (it is not as citrusy but tangy and slightly fruity flavor)

📝Step-by-Step Instructions

Step 1: Cook quinoa to package instructions in vegetable broth. (You can also cook in water, but the veggie broth really boosts the flavor!)Fluff your cooked quinoa with a fork and place in a bowl in the fridge to cool.

Step 2: Chop your veggies into small pieces. Finely chop your herbs.

Step 3: In a small bowl whisk together dressing ingredients.

Step 4: Combine quinoa, chickpeas, feta, and veggies in a large bowl. Toss with dressing. You can let it chill for 20 minutes in the fridge or serve right away.

❓Recipe FAQs

What’s the difference between red, white, and tri-color quinoa?

The main difference is their color and slight variations in flavor and texture, with red quinoa having a nuttier taste and firmer texture compared to the slightly sweeter and softer white quinoa. tri-color quinoa is a blend of three varieties (white, red, and black), offering a mix of flavors and textures. I personally use white the most and occasionally the tri-color when I want to mix it up.

Is quinoa salad served hot or cold?

Quinoa salad can be served either hot or cold, depending on personal preference but I think this quinoa salad tastes best chilled.

How do I store leftover quinoa chickpea salad?

You can refrigerate leftovers in an airtight storage container for up to 1 week.

Leftover Ideas

Add some Air-fried Asian Tofu for more protein and this makes for a great lunch or dinner!

▶︎You will LOVE this incredible list of unique Vegan Chickpea Recipes (including some REALLY good desserts you would never guess have chickpeas!)


Pro Tips


  • Cool the quinoa: Let the quinoa cool completely first before adding in the veggies (if you add veggies to warm quinoa it will wilt them)
  • Time saving tip: Cook the quinoa 1-2 days in advance and it makes salad assembly super quick.
  • Vegetable add-ins – Arugula, spinach, kale, kalamata olives, green onions, diced cucumber,

⇨ More Summery Salads ⇦

If you’re looking for more quinoa recipes, try out my Thai Peanut Tofu Quinoa Bowl!

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Refreshing Quinoa Chickpea Salad

Allie Petersen
Everyone will love this refreshing quinoa chickpea salad that is a vibrant lunch, dinner, or side dish. Hearty quinoa is tossed in a citrusy lemon dressing with fresh veggies and feta cheese.
5 from 26 votes

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Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Total Time 25 minutes
Course Dinner, Lunch
Cuisine American
Servings 6
Calories 318 kcal

Ingredients
  

  • 3/4 cup uncooked white quinoa
  • 1.5 cups low-sodium vegetable broth
  • 1 can (15 oz) chickpeas drained and rinsed
  • 1 medium red pepper diced
  • 1/2 cup shredded carrots
  • 1/2 cup chopped red onion
  • 1/3 cup feta crumbles (use dairy-free crumbles if vegan)
  • 1/4 cup finely chopped flat-leaf parsley
  • 1/4 cup finely chopped fresh mint leaves

Lemony Dressing

  • 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • juice of a large lemon
  • 2 cloves minced garlic
  • salt and pepper to taste

Instructions
 

  • QUINOA: Cook quinoa to package instructions in vegetable broth. (You can also cook in water, but the veggie broth really boosts the flavor!)
    Fluff your cooked quinoa with a fork and place in a bowl in the fridge to cool.
    3/4 cup uncooked white quinoa, 1.5 cups low-sodium vegetable broth
  • VEG: While your quinoa cooks and cools, chop your veggies into small pieces. Finely chop your herbs.
    1 medium red pepper, 1/2 cup chopped red onion, 1/4 cup finely chopped flat-leaf parsley, 1/4 cup finely chopped fresh mint leaves, 1/2 cup shredded carrots
  • DRESSING: In a small bowl whisk together dressing ingredients.
    1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil, juice of a large lemon, 2 cloves minced garlic, salt and pepper to taste
  • TOSS: Combine quinoa, chickpeas, feta, and veggies in a large bowl. Toss with dressing. Taste and add more salt and pepper, if desired. You can let it chill for 20 minutes in the fridge or serve right away.
    1 can (15 oz) chickpeas, 1/3 cup feta crumbles

Notes

Other tips:
  • No veggie broth? You can cook your quinoa of water, if preferable, however vegetable broth will add a ton of flavor to this recipe! 
  • Other veggie add-ins: diced cucumber, spinach, kale, kalamata olives, green onion, cherry tomatoes, and more! 
  • Meal prep idea: Portion quinoa salad into different containers for meals throughout the week. Add it into sandwiches/wraps, on top of greens, in grain bowls, or with the addition of more protein like tofu.

Nutrition

Calories: 318kcalCarbohydrates: 38gProtein: 11gFat: 14gSaturated Fat: 3gPolyunsaturated Fat: 3gMonounsaturated Fat: 8gCholesterol: 7mgSodium: 112mgPotassium: 455mgFiber: 8gSugar: 6gVitamin A: 2751IUVitamin C: 32mgCalcium: 104mgIron: 4mg
Tried this recipe?Comment below & tag @naturallieplantbased on Instagram!

4 Comments

  1. 5 stars
    This is maybe the most flavorful quinoa I’ve ever had. It’s light and delicious but the veggie broth gives it a lot of flavor. Definitely recommend this one!

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