Chickpea Pasta Salad

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This vegan chickpea pasta salad is a simple summer side dish, ideal for family bbq’s or as a pack n’ go picnic menu item and is sure to please the palates of vegans and non-vegans alike. The rich, nutty chickpeas add texture to this light and refreshing salad, and a healthy dose of plant-based protein which vegans will love.

Chickpea Pasta Salad

My love for chickpeas has grown substantially ever since I bit the bullet and purchased dried chickpeas and cooked them myself. There is a significant difference in the texture and flavour of canned and dried chickpeas. For example, while the skin on canned chickpeas is tough and thick, it remains soft and translucent on the dried variety, not to mention if you do choose to discard the skins it is much easier when the chickpeas are cooked since the skins literally separate from the chickpeas.

Let’s talk hummus for just a moment. If you’ve prepared hummus at home (with canned chickpeas), I’m sure you’ve pondered the reason why the final product is never as smooth and creamy as restaurant-style hummus. The reason? More often than not, they cook their own chickpeas! It’s as simple as that. For this recipe (and for most recipes lately), I opted for dried chickpeas…because you just can’t beat the flavour and texture!

Chickpea Pasta Salad

The combination of simple yet flavourful ingredients makes this pasta salad stand out from the rest. Simply toss some penne or pasta of choice (gluten-free in this case) with chickpeas, tart dill and fresh lemon juice, rich extra virgin olive oil, creamy chunks of avocado and earthy capers and you have a crowd-pleaser, perfect for a dinner party, family meal, or packed lunch for the kids.

Chickpea Pasta Salad

Prep time
Cook time
Total time

Ingredients:

Yields: Serves 2-4
1 cup cooked chickpeas or canned chickpeas (drained and rinsed)
3 cups cooked pasta of choice
1 ripe Hass avocado, diced
1 small cucumber (about 1 cup), diced
1-2 tbs. fresh lemon juice
1/2 - 1 tsp. dried dill
3-4 tbs. extra virgin olive oil
Sea salt and black pepper to taste
Crumbled feta or goat cheese (optional)
1 tbs. capers, rinsed and finely diced

Directions:

If preparing dried chickpeas, soak covered in water overnight with 1 tablespoon of baking soda-this helps soften the chickpeas. To cook, transfer the chickpeas and water to a large pot and bring to a boil. After a few minutes the baking soda will create a layer of foam in the pot. Skim with a slotted spoon and discard then continue to cook the chickpeas for 20-25 minutes or until fork tender. Remove with the slotted spoon then add the pasta. Cook the pasta for 1-2 minutes less than the suggested cooking time on the package instructions. Once cooked, drain and allow to cool. Once the chickpeas and pasta is cool to the touch, transfer to a large bowl and add the remaining ingredients. Adjust the seasoning if needed then store in the fridge for at least one hour to cool.

Chickpea Pasta Salad

  • This looks really delicious! I love the combination of pasta and chickpeas in a pasta salad!

  • Robin Rue

    Chickpeas are one of my favorites! I have never had them in a salad though. Sounds really yummy.

  • Jeanette

    I pile chickpeas high on my salads. I love them! I am totally going to try this recipe!

    • I’ve actually never added them to a salad before this recipe…I prefer them heated or cooked through!

  • You had me at chickpea. Haha. I love them! I will definitely make this, I just pinned it. Thanks for posting it :D

  • Joann Woolley

    Oh great tip on cooking your own chickpeas – I kind of like the chunkier version though. Do chick peas come in a bag or a box? Trying to think aside from the can if I have seen them in the store in another form. I have this one pinned and think it will make a great pic nic side dish!

    • They usually come in a bag…I always cook them ‘al dente’ so they don’t get too mushy!

  • Stacie @ Divine Lifestyle

    That looks so good! I love chickpeas, and they’re so good for you, too. I can’t wait to make this.

  • Digna Dreibelbis

    Mmmm, that looks great. Will definitely pass this along to my hubby. He does all our cooking. Can’t wait to try this one. It looks healthy and tasty. Thank you for sharing.

  • I love a good pasta salad, especially during the summer! I have never tried one with chickpeas before but this looks really good!!

    • I’ve been making so many pasta salads lately because we’ve been spending our days at the beach…it’s an easy, healthy, make-ahead meal for the family.

  • I always have chickpeas stocked up! This sounds like a really fun recipe to try out.

  • Jennifer Juro

    I love this as a side dish for a bbq! I have a couple vegetarian friends and it can be hard to think of recipes that they will like.

    • I find myself in a rut sometimes too…I’ll be making this recipe very often now, lol!

  • Eileen Mendoza Loya

    Chickpeas in a pasta salad is something new to me. I will have to make this soon. Thanks for the recipe.

  • rika agustini

    i love chickpeas.. i have to try your recipe. Sounds pretty delicious.

  • chubskulit

    I love chickpea but my husband doesn’t. This looks so delicious. I will try to make this just for me lol.

    • You could always prepare this and then just add some chickpeas to your portion!

  • Mistee Dawn

    Yum! I love Chickpeas! And this salad looks amazing. Might have to make some this weekend.

  • I am going to have to try this! Looks so delicious and healthy!

  • Jeanine

    Yum. I have to try this. My kids are on a huge pasta kick right now so I know they’d love this!

    • Mine too…they are actually sick of tomato sauce so I need to be more inventive!

  • Kathy

    This looks really good. I don’t think I’ve actually had chickpeas before but I really want to after seeing this recipe. I’ll have to put this on my recipes to make list!

  • Lynn Dee

    I haven’t tried having cheakpeas in my pasta. I must try that because I do love pasta. Looks yummy!

  • This pasta salad sounds good. I would leave off the chickpeas. I haven’t tried them and not so sure I would like them.

    • Come to think of it, I think this pasta would be delicious even without the chickpeas!! ;-)

  • Erin Shebish

    I love chickpeas and would add them to everything if I could. I seriously LOVE them. I can’t wait to make this!

    • I think they lend well to so many different recipes because they have such a mild flavour.

  • Ann Bacciaglia

    I love learning new Chickpea recipes. This vegan chickpea pasta salad looks so delicious. I will have to try this recipe tomorrow.

    • I’ve only revently started appreciating chickpeas more (since I’ve been making the dried ones). Before, it was only ever hummus!

  • Oh yummy! I love pasta and so does my daughter… Now I know what I’m making tomorrow. :P

  • Irish Chik

    Oh, this looks really good. A gem for the whole family. I love chickpeas and have been looking for more recipes which are simple and delicious.

    • This is perfect for my family because my hubby and kids love pasta…but I eat only gluten-free! My kids also love chickpeas…they’ll eat them out of the can!

  • I never would have though to use chickpeas. What a unique way to add flavor to a pasta dish.

  • That looks delicious! Just about a year ago I fell in love with hummus and thought about making my own. I love chickpeas and a good pasta salad! I’d totally eat this and make it!

    • Have you made your own yet? It’s so-ooo easy! There’s a recipe for it on my Blog!

  • Mykidsguide

    The salad looks tasty. We love chickpeas and what a great idea to add them to salads. I will try this.

  • I love pasta salad, but never tried it with chickpeas before, though. I just might have to make this over the weekend!

    • I highly recommend cooking your own chickpeas…you can cook extra and make some homemade hummus while you’re at it ;-)

  • I love how creative you are. I really like pasta salads and really would love to try your recipe.

  • Bradley Finnearty

    I absolutely love pasta salads. This sounds so great. I am definitely going to have to try it.

  • I love chick peas and love pasta…so this is definitely something I need to try.

    • You probably eat chickpeas often, right? Aren’t they used often in your traditional cuisine?

      • Yep. ‘Doubles’ which is a Trinidadian staple is made with chickpeas. So delicious.

  • CourtneyLynne Storms

    Oooo this pasta salad sounds petty delicious!!!! Definitely going to have to pin this so I can try it out my self sometime!

  • I love chickpeas and I love pasta, but never thought of incorporating
    the two ingredients together in one recipe. This looks like something that I
    would like to try. Looks very tasty!

  • This is amazing recipe! I would most definitely try it because I like to eat something light and not so hard to make.

    • This is in fact so easy to make! The flavours are so simple yet it is very flavourful!

  • Adrienne

    Yummy! I don’t include chickpeas in nearly as many recipes as I should. This is definitely a great way to use them. Thanks for sharing.