Lentil & Chickpea Salad with Cumin Dressing

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Recipe quick take:

  • Hands on time: 15 MIN
  • Inactive time: 25 MIN
  • Start to finish: 40 MIN
  • Serves: 4
  • Skills needed: Mince Garlic

In a nutshell:

The cumin dressing adds a whole lot of flavor, boosting this side dish for an easy summer go-to.

This might catch you by surprise, but your pantry is a great place to start when you’re making a salad. While I love diving into a leafy, veggie-filled salad, I like mixing things up with this equally healthy and a bit heartier option.

My pantry isn’t in perfect shape, but it’s always stocked with canned chickpeas and dried lentils – my favorite being Le Puy green lentils. The first time I tried these lentils was when I lived in Paris and all of the cafés served some variation of a chilled lentil salad. I loved how they weren’t mushy and had a nice bite to them.

the basics

This protein-packed and gluten-free salad is made up of canned chickpeas and cooked lentils. While the lentils cook, you have plenty of time to prepare the cumin dressing, which is a light and refreshing combination of lemon juice, olive oil, cumin, and garlic.

Lentil and Chickpea Salad with Cumin Dressing
Lentil and Chickpea Salad with Cumin Dressing

If you’re like me, sometimes you don’t have the energy to cook the same day as a BBQ or picnic. Good news! This recipe holds really well overnight, and even tastes better if you make it the night before. The lentils and chickpeas soak up the dressing without getting soggy or mushy.

You can even make this salad vegan-friendly by leaving out feta cheese. Every day there seem to be new non-dairy cheese substitutes that could be fun to try.

Lentil and Chickpea Salad with Cumin Dressing

picnic perfect

With Memorial Day weekend right around the corner and summer barbeques ahead, this salad is prime for outdoor picnics and potlucks. It’s versatile enough to go with anything from hamburgers to grilled chicken, and the cumin dressing holds well at any temperature unlike dairy-based dressings.

Did you try this Lentil and Chickpea Salad recipe? We want to know how it turned out! Leave a comment below or share a photo on Instagram using #confettikitchen!

Lentil and Chickpea Salad with Cumin Dressing // gluten-free, vegetarian

What You Need

Lentil and Chickpea Salad with Cumin Dressing

Method

Cook lentils.

Add the lentils (1 cup) to a colander and rinse under cold water to remove any debris.
In a small saucepan over medium-high heat, bring the lentils and broth (2 cups) to a boil. This should take about 5-7 minutes.

Meanwhile, drain the can of chickpeas into a colander and rinse under cold water.

Once the lentils reach a boil, reduce heat to a low simmer and cook covered until tender, about 25-30 minutes.

Prep dressing.

While the lentils are cooking, make the cumin dressing.

  • Mince the garlic clove – watch our how-to video if you need a hand!
  • Juice the lemon.
  • Finely chop parsley to yield about ¼ cup. Set aside.

In a small bowl, add olive oil, all of the lemon juice, minced garlic, cumin, salt, and pepper. Stir to combine.

Toss, garnish, and serve!

Remove the lentils from the heat and drain off any excess liquid. Let cool.

In a large bowl, gently toss the lentils and chickpeas. Pour in the cumin dressing, and toss together until evenly coated.

Top with the chopped parsley and crumbled feta. Best served cold or at room temperature.

Recipe notes

Vegan in the house? Substitute the feta cheese with a dairy-free “cheese” of your choice.

Make it ahead! This salad tastes even better as it sits and the flavors come together. Try preparing this the night before you want to serve it.

Want a spicy kick? Add a pinch of red chili flakes to add some heat to this summer salad.

Substitutions

Don't have: Try:
Vegetable broth Chicken broth or water
Italian parsley Cilantro

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