Bring this easy Quinoa Salad with Chickpeas to picnics, potlucks, barbecues, and more! Tossed in a lemon vinaigrette, it’s deliciously refreshing and packed full of veggies.
Easy quinoa chickpea salad
Whether you need a refreshing meal prep option or a tasty side dish to bring to the barbecue, this easy Quinoa Salad with Chickpeas is the perfect solution. It’s bursting with fresh Mediterranean flavors, creamy avocado, and lemon vinaigrette. Toss some vegan feta cheese on top for extra deliciousness!
Quinoa chickpea salad checks all the boxes:
- It’s easy to make and takes less than 45 minutes to put together.
- Every bite is bright, tangy, fresh, and summery.
- Make it for summer celebrations, weekly meal prep, or as an easy side dish for the picnic.
As a bonus, this quinoa and chickpea salad is packed with protein to keep you full and feeling great. If you love it as much as I do, you’re sure to love this Jennifer Aniston Salad and Chickpea Salad as well!
Ingredients needed (with substitutions)
- Quinoa – Use any color or variety of quinoa you like.
- Cherry tomatoes
- Red onion
- Fresh dill – Or dried.
- Avocados – Avocados tend to brown quickly when they’re exposed to the air. To keep them as green as possible, only add the avocado right before serving the salad.
- Chickpeas – These are what make the quinoa salad so filling and hearty. Canned chickpeas keep everything easy or you can cook the dried beans ahead of time.
- Vegan feta – Optional, but so tasty! My favorite is the Violife vegan feta or you can try my homemade vegan feta.
- Dressing – This really simple salad dressing is easy to make using lemon juice, olive oil, maple syrup, salt, and pepper.
How to make quinoa salad with chickpeas
Take the time to rinse the dry quinoa under water before you begin. This is important because it removes the bitter-tasting coating on the outside of the grains. Once that’s done, you can start:
- Cook the quinoa on the stove. Let it cool in the fridge or freezer while you work on the salad.
- Add all of the pasta salad dressing ingredients to a jar or container with a lid and shake to combine.
- Assemble the vegetables, herbs, and chickpeas in a large bowl.
- To finish, add the cooled quinoa and pour the dressing on top. Toss to combine, then serve the salad right away or keep it in the fridge for later!
Frequently asked questions
- What else can you put in a chickpea quinoa salad? Any fresh veggies or vegan protein you like. Add some greens (baby kale or spinach), kalamata olives, soy curls, diced bell pepper, fresh parsley, or crumbled tofu.
- Can you make it ahead of time? You can make the quinoa 2 or 3 days in advance or fully assemble the salad ahead of time. Don’t add the avocado until right before serving or else it will turn brown.
- How long does quinoa salad last in the fridge? It’s best to serve this salad right after it’s been assembled but the leftovers will keep for about 3 days in the refrigerator.
Want more hearty salads?
- Vegan Pasta Salad
- Best Vegan Potato Salad
- Vegan Macaroni Salad
- Curry Tofu Salad
- Vegan Cobb Salad
- Black Bean Corn Avocado Salad
Quinoa Salad with Chickpeas
- 1 cup uncooked quinoa
- 2 cups water
- 1 1/2 cups halved cherry tomatoes
- 1/2 cup diced small red onion
- 2 cups diced english cucumber
- 1/4 cup fresh chopped dill
- 2 medium avocados, diced
- 15 ounce can chickpeas, drained and rinsed
- 1/2 cup vegan feta optional
- 1/4 cup fresh lemon juice
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 tablespoon pure maple syrup
- 1/2 teaspoon salt, or more to taste
- few shakes black pepper
Cook the quinoa
- Rinse the quinoa well under cold water in a fine mesh strainer to remove the bitter coating.
- Add the rinsed quinoa to a medium saucepan and pour in the water. Bring to a boil, then lower heat so the quinoa is simmering and cover the pot.
- Simmer for 10-15 minutes, or until the liquid is absorbed. Remove from heat and let the quinoa rest in the pot for about 10 minutes.
- Fluff with a fork and let cool a bit before adding the rest of the salad ingredients. I transfer it to a bowl and move it to the refrigerator or freezer to speed up cooling. You can also prepare the quinoa 2-3 days in advance.
- Combine all dressing ingredients in a mason jar with a lid, and shake until well combined. Or whisk in a small bowl. Set aside.
Assemble the salad
- In a large bowl, add all vegetables and chickpeas. Once the quinoa is mostly cool, add it to the bowl.
- Drizzle the dressing in and toss to generously coat everything.
- If desired, add the vegan feta, if using. Serve immediately, or cover and refrigerate until ready to serve.
- The salad is best enjoyed the same day, but will keep for about 3 days in the refrigerator. If not serving right away, don't add the avocado until right before you serve it.
- Quinoa variety – May use any variety of quinoa for this salad.
Add some greens – Feel free to mix in some baby kale or spinach if desired. Or leave out any veggies you don’t like and add what you want.
Another delicious recipe from Nora! So fresh and light and summery!
I’m so glad you love it! Thanks for sharing your wonderful feedback and review!
sooooo yummy and healthy! another hit. thank you nora!
You are welcome! Thank you for sharing your positive feedback!
Just popped in my inbox today and I had to try it. Very tasty recipe with plenty of options to enhance. For me it was a good stand alone dish for light supper. Many thanks!
You are so welcome! I’m so glad you loved the salad! Thank you for taking time to share your wonderful review and comments!
If you are making this for lunch as a meal prep would you add the dressing to it still or would you keep it separate until it is ready to be eaten?
If you plan on eating the salad all week long, it’s probably best to keep the dressing on the side and add it right before serving. Mixing in the dressing and packing the salad away isn’t the end of the world, but it does dry up a little as it sits.
This looks delicious! Can hardly wait to try it. Thanks, Nora, for sharing this recipe.
You are welcome! I hope you enjoy!
I love your recipes and would love to make them all but we are whole food plant based no oil and cook with no oil so I am not able to make a lot of them 🙁 Would you ever consider giving an oil free version of your recipes?
Sometimes I do offer an oil free option, when I can and know it will work, but often it’s quite easy to simply omit the oil. For this particular recipe, you can easily leave out the few tablespoons of olive oil and the salad will still be good. Whenever I call for oil to saute in, you can simply use vegetable broth or oil instead. In most baking recipes, this is a difficult swap, but usually it’s not a problem with savory dishes. Hope that helps!