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This Chickpea Salad Sandwich is loaded with plant-based proteins, fresh herbs, crunchy add-ins, and creamy vegan mayo. It’s simple to make, yet boasts so much flavor. Vegan, Oil-free, Gluten-free.
Enjoy the classic fillings and flavors of chicken salad with this Chickpea Salad Sandwich Recipe. It’s the perfect quick lunch or lazy dinner recipe that’ll keep you nourished, full, and satisfied at all times.
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The Ultimate Vegan “Chicken” Salad
While I didn’t eat “traditional” chicken salad growing up, I had many a vegetarian variation. Those were often made with meat substitutes, but I much prefer this wholesome version made with chickpeas!
Not only are chickpeas more affordable, but these legumes truly make a vegan “chicken” salad that’s next level. Chickpeas are packed with protein, have a nice “chew,” and have the added bonus of being an excellent source of dietary fiber. And since sharing this recipe, I’ve had several readers agree that this is simply the best vegan alternative.
What You Need for Chickpea Salad
This simple chickpea salad sandwich recipe is made with 11 simple ingredients, but don’t mistake that for simple flavor. In addition to smashed chickpeas, you’ll need:
- Vegan mayo: I highly recommend using my homemade mayo. It actually taste like mayonnaise, but is completely oil-free and has been my go-to recipe for years. If preferred, opt for a store-bought vegan mayonnaise, but please try my homemade version at least once! Trust me – it’s the BEST!
- Fresh veggies and herbs: Crunchy celery and herbaceous parsley and dill add both flavor and texture.
- Fruits and nuts: Slivered almonds and sweet, red grapes are my personal favorites, but you can also try chopped pecans, raisins, or dried cherries or cranberries.
- Good sandwich bread: This is only needed if you’re making vegan chickpea salad sandwiches and any bread will do. You can even make your own Homemade Whole Wheat Bread, if desired.
How to Make a Chickpea Salad Sandwich
- In a large bowl, make the vegan mayo by whisking the homemade mayonnaise, fresh lemon juice, dijon mustard, and poultry seasoning until combined. Season with black pepper to taste.
- Add the drained and rinsed chickpeas then mash to your liking with a potato masher or fork.
- Toss in the celery, red onion, parsley, almonds, and optional grapes and fresh dill. Mix to combine.
- Serve immediately or refrigerate until chilled and enjoy as desired.
Caitlin’s Cooking Tips
- Halve this recipe for a smaller prep. As written, this vegan chicken salad makes 6 servings, but can be easily adjusted to make less (or more).
- Don’t over mash the chickpeas. You’re shooting for a texture somewhere between whole chickpeas and Creamy Hummus. I personally prefer mashing 75% of the chickpeas, but if you crew up loving chopped chicken salad, you can leave even more texture. Whatever you do, avoid mashing the chickpeas into a paste.
The only thing better than this well-seasoned chickpea salad is the number of delicious ways you can enjoy it. It’s hearty enough to be served as main dish or protein-packed afternoon snack.
Try smashed chickpea salad on your favorite whole grain bread slices or stuffed in pita pockets with lettuce, tomato slices, and additional spicy mustard and vegan mayo. Or, keep it light and enjoy in lettuce wraps, spread on crackers, or as a dip for crisp veggies.If you’re looking for more vegan sandwich recipes, you’ll also love this Rainbow Veggie Sandwich with Hummus, these Vegan BLTs, and this Vegan Eggplant Reuben!
How to Store Chickpea Salad
This chickpea salad will keep in an airtight container for up to 7 days. Freezing is not recommended.
If you’re prepping this chickpea salad for meal prep, my suggestion would be be to store the chickpea salad separately or prevent your sandwiches from going soggy by protecting each side of the sandwich bread with a piece of lettuce.
Otherwise, prep your sandwiches no more than 12 hours in advance for best results.
Substitutions and Variations
- Gluten-free option: As written the chickpea salad is naturally gluten-free and oil-free. If you’re making this chickpea salad into a sandwich, use your favorite gluten-free bread or turn it into a gluten-free wrap using iceberg lettuce or rainbow chard.
- Nut-free option: Make my homemade tofu using silken tofu instead of whole cashews and replace the slivered almonds with sunflower seeds (or omit them altogether!).
- Make it spicy: If you love all things buffalo, you’ll love this Buffalo Chickpea Salad.
Yes, any canned beans can be eaten straight from the can, chickpeas included! For the best taste and texture, it is best to drain the liquid from the can and rinse them thoroughly under cool water before eating.
No, these legumes are the same thing and can be used interchangeably.
I personally prefer cooking my own chickpeas from scratch in the Instant Pot, but canned chickpeas are a great option when you’re short on time.
Enjoy! If you make this recipe and decide to share it on Facebook or Instagram, don’t forget to tag me @FromMyBowl + #FromMyBowl! I would also love it if you could leave a comment below with a recipe rating! Thank you for the support 😊
The Ultimate Chickpea Salad Sandwich
For the Chickpea “Chicken” Salad:
- 1 cup Homemade Vegan Mayo
- Juice of 1 lemon
- 1 tablespoon dijon mustard
- 1 teaspoon poultry seasoning blend
- 4 cups cooked chickpeas drained and rinsed if canned
- 2 large ribs of celery thinly sliced
- ½ cup red onion diced
- 2 tablespoons parsley diced
- 2/3 cup slivered almonds
- 1 cup red grapes sliced in half
- Salt and black pepper to taste
- Optional add-ins: 1/2 tbsp dill 2/3 cup raisins or other dried fruit
For each Sandwich:
- Chickpea salad above
- 2 pieces of lettuce
- 2 slices of bread gluten-free if necessary
- Make the "Mayo": Add the mayo, lemon juice, mustard, and poultry seasoning to a large bowl with black pepper, to taste. Whisk until well-combined.
- Mash the Chickpeas: Add the chickpeas to the same bowl, then use a potato masher or a fork to mash them to your liking; I prefer to roughly mash around 75% of them.
- Add the Add-Ins: Toss in the celery, onion, parsley, almonds, grapes, and any other optional ingredients. Mix well, then season with additional salt and pepper, if necessary. Serve immediately or refrigerate in a sealed container for up to 7 days.
- Sandwiches: To assemble each sandwich, lightly toast 2 slices of bread, and layer each with a piece of lettuce. Place a heaping portion of the chickpea salad onto one slice of bread, then fold the other on top. Serve as desired – lettuce cups, crackers, or veggies on the side are also great ideas!
- Meal Prep: I would suggest prepping the Salad ahead of time, but prepping each sandwich the night before to prevent soggy bread. Or, protect each side of the sandwich with a piece of lettuce!
- Nut-Free: make the tofu-based version of the mayo, and replace the almonds with sunflower seeds