Chickpea Caesar Salad

Today, I’m excited to share with you my recipe for a delicious Chickpea Caesar Salad. Packed with wholesome ingredients and bursting with Mediterranean flavors, this dairy-free twist on the classic Caesar salad is sure to impress even the pickiest eaters at your table.

Why I Made This Recipe

Recently, I had a family member coming to visit who has a dairy intolerance. Determined to create a dish that everyone could enjoy, I set out to craft a dairy-free version of the beloved Caesar salad. By swapping traditional Caesar dressing ingredients for a creamy hummus-based dressing, I was able to achieve the same rich and tangy flavor profile without the need for dairy. By incorporating nutrient-dense ingredients like spinach, kale, and chickpeas, this salad offers a satisfying meal option for any occasion.

Ingredients

  • Spinach and Kale: 4 cups of roughly chopped spinach and 3 cups of roughly chopped kale form the base of this salad. Packed with vitamins, minerals, and fiber, these leafy greens add a vibrant burst of color to every bite.
  • Ground Meat: Opt for a lean ground meat such as turkey to keep this salad light and add a satisfying protein source.
  • Chickpeas/Garbanzo Beans: A can of chickpeas, are roasted to crispy perfection and provide a delightful crunch to the salad. Rich in protein and fiber, chickpeas add texture and nutritional value to the dish.
  • Fusilli Rice Pasta: This gluten-free pasta option adds a hearty and satisfying component to the salad. Fusilli rice pasta, or any wheat pasta preferred, serves as a delicious vehicle for soaking up the flavors.
  • Plain Hummus: The creamy and indulgent hummus serves as the base for the dairy-free Caesar dressing. With its rich texture and subtle nutty flavor, hummus adds depth and creaminess to the dressing without the need for dairy products.
  • Lemon: Freshly squeezed lemon juice adds a zesty and tangy kick to the dressing, brightening up the flavors of the salad and enhancing its overall freshness.
  • Minced Garlic: Garlic is used both to season the roasted chickpeas and to infuse flavor into the ground meat. It adds depth and complexity to the dish.
  • Avocado Oil: Used for roasting the chickpeas, avocado oil lends a mild flavor and helps to achieve a crispy texture.

Instructions

  1. Prepare the Chickpeas: Rinse and drain the chickpeas, then place them in a bowl. Toss the chickpeas with avocado oil, salt, pepper, and minced garlic. Spread the seasoned chickpeas in a single layer on a tray lined with parchment paper. Roast in the oven for about 30 minutes or until golden brown.
  2. Cook the Ground Meat: While the chickpeas are roasting, cook the ground meat over medium heat in a skillet. Season with the remaining minced garlic.
  3. Cook the Pasta: Meanwhile, cook the pasta according to the package instructions. Before draining, reserve about 1/2-1 cup of pasta water.
  4. Prepare the Greens: Wash and roughly chop the spinach and kale, then combine them in a large bowl.
  5. Assemble the Salad: Once the ground meat and pasta are cooked, add them to the bowl with the chopped greens.
  6. Make the Dressing: In a separate bowl, combine the hummus and lemon juice to make the dressing. Stir in the reserved pasta water to thin the dressing to your desired consistency.
  7. Toss and Serve: Pour the dressing over the salad and toss until everything is well coated. Top the salad with the roasted chickpeas from the oven.
  8. Enjoy: Serve the Chickpea Caesar Salad warm and savor the delicious blend of flavors and textures.

Chickpea Caesar Salad

Recipe by Jenna FisherCourse: MainDifficulty: Easy
Servings

8

servings
Prep time

10

minutes
Cooking time

35

minutes

Ingredients


  • 4 cups roughly chopped spinach


  • 3 cups roughly chopped kale


  • 1 package of ground meat – I used turkey


  • 1 can chickpea/garbanzo beans


  • 1 bag Fusilli rice pasta (wheat pasta is fine too – about 4 cups dry)


  • 3/4 cups plain hummus


  • 1 lemon – juiced 


  • 1/2 Cup pasta water


  • 1 Tbsp minced garlic 


  • 1 Tsp Avocado oil


  • Salt and pepper to taste 

Directions


  • Preheat oven to 400

  • Rinse and drain chickpeas, place in a bowl and toss with avocado oil, salt, pepper and 1/2 Tbsp minced garlic

  • Spread chickpeas in a single layer on a tray lined with parchment paper and place in the oven for 30 min or until golden brown

  • While chickpeas are roasting, cook ground meat over medium heat and season with remaining garlic – add salt and pepper to taste

  • Cook pasta according to bag instructions reserving 1/2-1 cup pasta water before draining 

  • Wash and roughly chop spinach and kale and combine in a large bowl

  • Once ground meat and pasta are cooked, add to bowl with copped greens

  • In a separate bowl, combine hummus and lemon juice, stir in the reserved pasta water to thin the dressing

  • Pour dressing over salad and top with roasted chickpeas from the oven

Recipe Video

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