You'll make this easy chickpea salad recipe again & again! It keeps well if you prep it ahead of time, so pack it up for a sweet/savory healthy lunch.
Chickpea salad has been one of my go-to lunches for years. With back-to-school season right around the corner, I thought I’d share my favorite chickpea salad recipe with all of you! Because of the protein from the chickpeas, it’s hearty enough to be a meal on its own, but it can also double as a healthy side dish. The garbanzo beans hold up well in the fridge, so you can easily make it ahead for parties and lunches. And with a mix of beans, herbs, and fresh vegetables all cut to a similar size, you get a delicious blend of flavors in every bite.
I’ve made many chickpea salad variations, but this quick and easy recipe takes the cake. The star of the show is a light, creamy fresh milk honey goat cheese from Roth. I’m picky about my goat cheese, but I’ve been loving this one and their plain goat cheese on salads, pasta, zucchini noodles, and more. It’s fresh and tangy, with a touch of sweetness from the honey. In my opinion, the new Roth Chèvre varieties (try the wild blueberry on your next cheese board!) are the perfect cheeses for summer entertaining.
In this recipe, I played off the cheese’s sweetness, adding toasted cumin seeds and Medjool dates to give the salad an aromatic, sweet & savory flavor. We really love this one, and I hope you do too, whether you serve it with dinner, pack it up for lunch, or bring it to your Labor Day gatherings!
Chickpea Salad Recipe Ingredients
This chickpea salad starts with a bright, spiced dressing made from lemon juice & zest, garlic, extra-virgin olive oil, and toasted cumin seeds. I whisk it together in the bottom of a big bowl and then toss in the chickpeas, as well as these components:
- Goat cheese. In this recipe we use Roth Honey Chèvre, which is a fresh milk goat cheese with a delightful creamy texture and a lightly sweet, mellow flavor.
- Medjool dates. Soft & chewy, they contrast perfectly with the earthy goat cheese and the cumin-spiced dressing.
- Persian cucumbers. They’re essential for a crisp, fresh crunch. I especially like to use Persian cucumbers because of their small size. Cut into little half-moons, they’re perfect for pairing with garbanzos.
- Cherry tomatoes. They add juicy, bursty texture.
- Roasted red peppers. I love the hint of char and nice sweetness they add to the salad. If you don’t have roasted red peppers, diced red bell pepper would be fine in its place.
- Chopped fresh parsley. Sprinkle it in for fresh flavor and flecks of green.
- Roasted chickpeas. These guys add a great crunch. If you don’t feel like roasting chickpeas, a handful of toasted almonds would be good too.
- Basil or mint. I like to top my salad with leaves of fresh herbs for a light, herbal finish.
Aside from the pan for toasting the cumin seeds, this bean salad comes together in one bowl! Just toast the seeds for 30 seconds or so until fragrant, crush them lightly with a mortar & pestle, and whisk them together with the other dressing ingredients.
Add the veggies, dates, chickpeas, and parsley, and toss. Then, dot on the cheese, remaining herbs, and roasted chickpeas, and serve!
Chickpea Salad Recipe Tips
- Taste and adjust. The key to making a great salad is tasting and adjusting until you have a balance of flavors you love. You might need an extra pinch of salt or squeeze of lemon. Don’t be afraid to try your chickpea salad before serving!
- Cut everything to a similar size. The best bites of chickpea salad happen when you get a little of everything – fresh herbs, creamy cheese, sweet dates, juicy veggies, etc. Cut your cucumbers, dates, and tomatoes into a small, even dice so you can scoop them up along with the chickpeas.
- Save some herbs and/or cheese for garnish. If you make this salad ahead of time, I recommend saving the mint leaves to add at the last minute. If you’re packing it for lunch, dot a few leaves on the top of the packed salad before you head out the door in the morning. The same could go for the goat cheese, depending on your preferences. Over time, the goat cheese starts to blend into the salad, creating a creamy coating. If you prefer it in chunks, add it at the same time you add the mint. See this post for more of my best meal prep tips!
If you love this chickpea salad recipe…
Try my couscous salad, pasta salad, or Greek salad next, or head to this post for more summer salad ideas!
Mediterranean Chickpea Salad
- 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
- 3 garlic cloves, minced
- 1 tablespoon lemon zest
- 2 tablespoons lemon juice
- 3/4 teaspoon sea salt
- Freshly ground black pepper
- 1 ½ teaspoon cumin seeds*
- 2 cups cooked chickpeas, drained and rinsed
- 1 cup cherry tomatoes, halved
- 4 Medjool dates, pitted and diced
- 3 Persian cucumbers, sliced into thin half moons
- ⅓ cup chopped roasted red peppers
- ¼ cup finely chopped parsley
- 3 ounces Roth Chèvre Honey Goat Cheese
- ¼ cup fresh mint
- ⅓ cup roasted chickpeas, optional
- In a large bowl, combine the olive oil, garlic, lemon zest, lemon juice, salt, and several grinds of pepper.
- In a small skillet over medium-low heat, toast the cumin seeds until aromatic, about 30 seconds. Remove from the heat and crush them a bit (a mortar & pestle is easiest for this). Add them to the bowl and stir.
- Add the chickpeas, tomatoes, dates, cucumbers, red pepper, and parsley to the bowl and toss. Transfer to a serving platter and dollop with the goat cheese, sprinkle with mint, and top with the extra roasted chickpeas, if desired. Season to taste and serve.
Special thanks to Roth for partnering on this post. Click here to find the new Roth Chèvre Fresh Goat Milk Cheeses, nationwide, at a store near you!
This salad is incredible. Every time I make it I’m worried it won’t be as tasty as the last time I made it because the deliciousness level does not make sense. By rights this should not taste as good as it does, but every time it’s amazing. Recipe review cliche incoming: even my salad-disliking carnivorous male partner person loves it. Thanks!
Hi Caitlin, I’m so glad it’s holding up!! Love that it won over your partner too.
i have tried this salad recipe.. my family really like it especially my husband,. he always told me to make it again,.
I’m so glad it’s been a hit!
Thank you very much for the recipe you gave ,.. I really like that dish.. and I will try to cook it at home
I made this salad for my wife earlier this year and she literally asks we weekly to make it again. I happily comply.
I’m so glad she loved it!
I was reading the “Basil 101: Growing Tips & 28 Recipes” article and clicked on the recipe for “Chickpea Pan Bagnat Sandwiches” link, and I was brought here.
That was highly disappointing, yet an intriguing find to discover. Though I really do not care for goat cheese.
I scanned through this recipe and that was more than enough to dissuade me from trying it. The good news is more goat cheese and Mediterranean Chickpea Salad for YOU, and I get to avoid the goat cheese. Though I may substitute cream cheese and give this a whirl someday.
But that still leaves me with wanting to peruse the recipe for the chickpea pan not sandwich, and no recipe to look at. I’d be grateful with the link were repaired or a new link established.
Thank you for your time and consideration. Bon appetit.
This was an amazing salad!! My family loved it! Thank you for the recipe!!
This is really good. I improvised a little bit but it was fabulous. Thank you. I will make this again and again!
This may be the best chickpea salad I’ve ever had, what a great recipe! Thank you for sharing!
I absolutely love this salad! Have made it multiple times and the first bite still makes my eyes role back in my head. Thank you!!!
Aw, I’m so glad you love it so much!
So good! I subbed 1/2 cumin for the toasted seeds. Don’t skip the dates! They make the recipe!
I’m so glad you enjoyed it!
Hi, can I prep the verges the day before
yep, absolutely. The whole salad can also be made the day before, I’d just leave the mint off until ready to eat.
This salad is delicious and great for summer. I used feta instead of goat cheese and it was delicious!
I actually didn’t have even a full cucumber on hand so I used seedless watermelon and it was spot-on for a summer salad. I added some pepper flakes to balance out the sweetness and feta (didn’t have any goat cheese) for saltiness. I loved the figs and roasted pepper and how the simple dressing just pulled it all together. Another winner!
I’d love to make this but allergic to cucumbers! What would you recommend to put in as an alternative please?
Hi Lisa, you could try thinly sliced raw zucchini or maybe some chopped bell pepper.
This was a hit at the picnic yesterday! I used feta instead of the honey goat cheese and it was almost gone before the hot dogs and hamburgers were even cooked. Delicious and satisfying. Thank you so much!
Hi Denise, I’m so happy to hear!
This was soooo delicious! I even forgot the cumin and garlic. So I can’t wait to make it the right way but it was still amazing. Definitely going to make this regularly.
For the cumin seeds, can we use ground cumin? Or has anyone else tried that?
Hi Katie, you can use about 1/2 teaspoon ground, I’d just skip step 2 and add it straight to the bowl.
I usually am not a fan of roasted chickpeas and tend to like them better as they are out of the can. Do you think that’d still work for this recipe?
Hi Chris, yes, this recipe uses them straight out of the can for the main part of the salad. I added a few roasted ones on top for extra crunch but they’re very optional.
I made this wonderful chickpea salad for 48 and had a lot left over, so I put it in a pot with vegetable broth, zucchini, summer squash, green beans, celery, cooked quinoa, oregano, and Italian herb seasoning to create a hearty soup! The mint and dates blended right in.