Mediterranean Chickpea Salad with Amaranth Couscous

Beginning the week with a power packed recipe that screams “HEALTHY” from the rooftops! Presenting the Mediterranean Chickpea Salad with Amaranth Couscous. A simple salad recipe under 30 minutes that uses fresh plant based ingredients, herbs, olives and a flavourful light dressing with olive oil.

Gluten Free Vegan Dairy Free Mediterranean Chickpea Salad

Some Benefits of the Mediterranean Chickpea Salad with Amaranth Couscous

  • Excellent for weight watchers
  • Clean Eating Recipe
  • High Protein
  • No heavy salad dressing
  • Seasonal and local ingredients
  • Diabetic Friendly
  • Gluten Free, Vegan and Dairy Free

You can carry this salad at work (dressing separately) and / or this could be an early dinner option too especially during weekdays. You can plan and prep for this salad a day ahead and store the ingredients plus dressing in your refrigerator. Trust me, this is so much better than ordering take out.

Gluten Free Vegan Dairy Free Mediterranean Chickpea Salad

The Mediterranean Diet is considered extremely healthy as it includes plant based foods, legumes, nuts, olive oil, herbs and spices that benefits the whole body. Dairy products like feta cheese is very common, especially in salads. However, for this particular recipe, I have avoided the same and kept it Dairy Free too.

Couscous is usually made with Bulgar Wheat but since I wanted the recipe both Gluten free and Vegan, also focussing on using a superfood ingredient, Amaranth i.e. Rajgira.

The Mediterranean Chickpea Salad is one of the cleverest way to include Amaranth grains into your diet, which otherwise is usually labelled as “only for fasting”. It has major health benefits and is the Indian Quinoa (as I call it). The grain, unlike Quinoa is less expensive too.

Gluten Free Vegan Dairy Free Mediterranean Chickpea Salad

Some other SALAD RECIPES on the blog that might interest you are Steamed Broccoli with home made honey mustard dressing, Lettuce and Strawberry salad with honey mustard vinaigrette, Cherry, Cucumber Feta Salad and Quick Carrot salad.

Taking this recipe to the #181FoodieMondayBlogHop where the theme this week as suggested by Sujata Shukla who Blogs at PepperonPizza is Levantine Cuisine. Levantine cuisine is the traditional cuisine of the Levant, known in Arabic as the Bilad ash-Sham and Mashriq, which covers a large area of the Eastern Mediterranean. Some popular dishes from this cuisine are Falafels, Hummus and their world famous Pita Bread.

I was initially tempted to bake a bread but settled down for a salad instead as we have reduced our carb intake at home and I did not want to break the momentum. The salad is extremely refreshing and I am sure your family would enjoy this as much as we did.

Let us now look at the easy recipe of this hearty plateful of Mediterranean Chickpea Salad with Amaranth Couscous that has surely been a real treat.

Recipe for Mediterranean Chickpea Salad with Amaranth Couscous with step by step pics

Prep Time (doesn’t include soaking) 30 mins

Cook Time 10 to 15 mins

Serves 2 as lunch or dinner

1 cup is 200 ml

Ingredients for the salad

  • 1.5 cups of Boiled Chickpeas
  • 1/2 cup Cooked Amaranth
  • 1 medium onion finely chopped
  • 1 medium tomato finely chopped
  • 2 tblsp of finely chopped yellow bell pepper
  • 2 tblsp of finely chopped red bell pepper
  • 7 to 8 nos. Olives sliced
  • a bunch of mint leaves finely chopped
  • a small bunch of coriander leaves finely chopped
  • Salt to taste

Ingredients for the Salad Dressing

  • 2 tblsp Olive oil
  • 1 tblsp Za’atar Spice
  • 1 tsp Sweet Paprika Powder

Method

(1) In a large bowl, add the boiled chickpeas, onions, tomato, olives, fresh herbs, peppers. Add salt to taste and toss well.

Chopped vegetables for the salad

(2) Now prepare the dressing using the ingredients as listed above.

(3) Add the cooked Amaranth to the salad.

(4) Then, add the dressing to the salad, mix well and check for salt etc. Add more if required.

(5) Chill for an hour before serving (minus the dressing) especially if you are expecting guests.

Recipe Notes

  • For the Amaranth Couscous – I soaked 1/2 cup of amaranth seeds for 30 mins and cooked it over stove top with a pinch of salt for 15 minutes. Drained the water, cooled it and used for the salad. It was more than 1/2 a cup after cooking. I have added only what is required for the salad and stored the balance in an airtight container in refrigerator for the next day.
How to cook Amaranth Seeds
How to cook Amaranth Seeds
How to cook Amaranth Seeds
  • If you don’t have access to Amaranth (it is available in all leading Indian grocery stores), you can opt for regular couscous made with Bulgar Wheat.
  • You can add vegetables like cucumber, carrots too as a variation.
  • By all means add some minced garlic to the dressing or lemon juice too for added taste.
  • The salad tastes best when chilled for sometime.

If you try this at home, please give me a shout out / Tag Me on any of my social media handles.

Vidya Narayan

28 thoughts on “Mediterranean Chickpea Salad with Amaranth Couscous

Add yours

  1. Chickpea salad with amaranth couscous sounds so filling andanutritious Vidya ! I can happuly have this as my dinner anyday. Fantastic share for the theme !

  2. Such a beautiful medley of colors Vidya!! A platter full of flavours and nutrition. This is one of my favourite salads but I add Israeli Couscous to it and can have it anytime with some toasted bread. Liked the addition of gluten-free amaranth couscous.

  3. Amma! I want to dig into the screen. Such an amazing looking salad and so healthy too. I tried cutting carbs then ended up eating a lot of chocolate but I think this salad will help in building my stamina not just in eating chocolate but in walking too. 😀

  4. I generally have grain based salad bowls for lunch, and this recipe fits into that description perfectly. The Amaranth sounds a nice substitute for the Israeli couscous I use for salads. I haven’t thought of adding chickpeas to couscous salads before, and this is a welcome idea. Loved the colourful nutritious salad!

    1. I add chickpeas to almost every other salad at home. This is one pulse always available in my refrigerator any day. If I am hungry, sundal comes to my rescue and fills me up. This recipe is loved by both of us as its an excellent filling early dinner option. Glad you liked it.

  5. Wow, that is a loaded salad with all the lovely ingredients. I particularly like these tiny amaranth seeds that add like a pop upon the chew…

  6. Now I know how to use the Rajgira seeds (grains) at home – this dish -truly screams healthy & this is an assortment of veggies and proteins that can fix me up till dinner.. lovely addition of olives that my elder kid would love 🙂

    1. Home Delivery – Yes with love, Absolutely! We enjoyed the amaranth so much that I made it again during the same week on husband’s insistence.

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