Looking for healthy and easy lunch recipes? This delicious chickpea salad sandwich is essentially a vegetarian chicken salad sandwich using chickpeas!
Why is finding healthy and easy lunch recipes so hard? Alex and I like to eat extremely simple at breakfast and lunch, so that we can spend our time and energy on dinner recipes. So here’s one of our favorite easy lunch tricks ever: is this chickpea salad sandwich! It’s basically a vegetarian chicken salad sandwich, but uses chickpeas instead of chicken. It’s so tasty, it’s become one of our most popular chickpea recipes. Even our toddler Larson is a huge fan: he tries to sneak bites while we’re making it!
How to make a chickpea salad sandwich
This chickpea salad sandwich is truly easy to make: and we’re not just saying that. It takes just 10 minutes to whip up the chickpea salad and throw it onto a sandwich. The only cutting involved is thinly slicing some celery and green onions. Mix that up with some chickpeas, mashed with a fork, mayonnaise, lemon juice, and celery seed, and you’ve got a fresh, refreshing chickpea salad.
One note: you can use canned or cooked chickpeas for this chickpea salad sandwich. Our preference is canned chickpeas (see below), but both work. Here’s our Pressure Cooker chickpeas method if you happen to have an Instant Pot. If you don’t, use our How to Cook Dried Beans in a Dutch Oven (which includes chickpeas / garbanzo beans). However, if you do use canned chickpeas in this recipe, remember a few things
- Canned chickpeas have a bit of salt added, so you’ll want to flavor with a few pinches of kosher salt before using.
- The texture of chickpeas cooked at home can be drier than canned, so you may have to add a bit more mayonnaise to the chickpea salad. Because of this, we prefer making it with canned chickpeas. However, we’ve made it many times with cooked chickpeas too.
Toppings for this chickpea salad sandwich
Here, we’ve kept the toppings pretty minimal for this chickpea salad sandwich. We’ve used spring greens for some texture. A fun trick that we’ve used is spreading hummus onto the bread slices before assembling the sandwich. We happened to have it on hand and it made the sandwich even more delicious! Of course you could use mayonnaise, or also omit it. And if you’re up for a challenge, you could use our Homemade Sourdough Bread or Easy Dutch Oven Bread for the sandwich!
Like our Mediterranean Veggie Sandwich, you can use any toppings you like for this chickpea salad sandwich. Here are a few that might be fun to get your wheels turning!
- 1-Hour Quick Pickled Onions
- Shredded carrots (using a a Handheld Julienne Shredder is helpful)
- Sprouts or microgreens
- Fresh tomatoes
- Spicy mayo (mix a drizzle of hot sauce into mayo)
- Potato chips (if you’re into the crunchy sandwich type of thing)
- Quick Refrigerator Dill Pickles
This chickpea salad sandwich recipe is…
Vegetarian, vegan (with vegan mayo or cashew cream), plant based, and dairy free.Print
Looking for healthy and easy lunch recipes? This delicious chickpea salad sandwich features a vegetarian chicken salad using chickpeas!
- 15 ounce can chickpeas or 1 1/2 cups cooked chickpeas*
- 1 rib celery
- 3 green onions
- 1 to 2 tablespoons mayonnaise, vegan mayonnaise, or cashew cream
- 1 tablespoon lemon juice
- 1 teaspoon celery seed
- Kosher salt & fresh ground pepper
- 4 slices bread (try our Homemade Bread)
- Lettuce, spring green mix, or sprouts
- Hummus, optional
- Thinly slice the celery (if it’s a large rib, cut in half lengthwise first). Thinly slice the green onions.
- Drain and rinse the chickpeas. In a medium bowl, smash the chickpeas with a fork.
- Combine the chickpeas with the chopped celery and green onions, mayonnaise, lemon juice, and celery seed. Add about 1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt, depending on your chickpea brand and taste preferences, and fresh ground pepper to taste. Taste and salt until the flavor pops! If the salad is dry, add more mayonnaise (cooked chickpeas have a drier texture than canned).
- Assemble the chickpea salad sandwich: If desired, spread the bread with hummus (this amps it up a bit but not required). Top the sandwich with lettuce or greens and chickpea spread.
*If using cooked chickpeas, remember that canned chickpeas have a bit of salt added, so you’ll want to flavor with a few pinches of kosher salt before using. Also the texture of chickpeas cooked at home can be drier than canned, so you may have to add a bit more mayonnaise. Because of this, we prefer making this chickpea salad with canned chickpeas, but we’ve absolutely made it with cooked chickpeas too! Here’s How to Make Chickpeas or our Instant Pot chickpeas: we make them all the time.
- Category: Main Dish
- Method: Mixed
- Cuisine: American
Keywords: Chickpea Salad Sandwich, Lunch Ideas, Lunch Recipes, Fast Recipes, Easy Recipes, Easy Lunch Ideas, Chickpea Salad, Chickpeas, Faux Tuna Salad
Looking for more easy lunch recipes?
This chickpea salad sandwich is so easy, it’s perfect for quick lunches and for beginner cooks like college students! Outside of this chickpea salad sandwich, here are a few more easy lunch recipes:
- Hummus and Veggie Roll Ups
- Radish and Egg Salad Sandwiches
- Ricotta & White Bean Fancy Toast
- Instant Pot Hard Boiled Eggs or Perfect Boiled Eggs
- 5-Minute Pesto Arugula Breakfast Sandwich
- Vegan Banh Mi Sandwich
- Coleslaw & Swiss Melt Sandwich
- Classic 5 Ingredient Hummus with veggies or…
- Almond Cashew Homemade Crackers
- Basil Egg Salad
- Glowing Green Smoothie
- Chocolate Blueberry Smoothie
- Avocado & Chickpea Salad
- 14 Amazing Vegetarian Sandwiches
- 15 Easy Vegetarian Lunch Ideas
- Easy Vegan Recipes for Beginners
About the Authors
Sonja Overhiser is author of Pretty Simple Cooking, named one of the best healthy cookbooks of 2018. She’s host of the food podcast Small Bites and founder of the food blog A Couple Cooks. Featured from the TODAY Show to Bon Appetit, Sonja seeks to inspire adventurous eating to make the world a better place one bite at a time.
Alex Overhiser is an acclaimed food photographer and author based in Indianapolis. He’s host of the food podcast Small Bites and founder of the recipe website A Couple Cooks. Featured from the TODAY Show to Bon Appetit, Alex is author of Pretty Simple Cooking, named one of the best vegetarian cookbooks by Epicurious.