If you haven’t noticed, I’ve been using a lot of chickpeas in my recipes lately- particularly in my cookies! While I like to be adventurous and sub out ingredients to create a healthier recipe, I also like to keep recipes rather simple and traditional and just enjoy the unique flavors that ingredients deliver to a dish. That simplicity is what makes my Chickpea Greek Salad with Balsamic Dressing such a hit. I didn’t need to use chickpeas creatively, because chickpeas are delicious just the way they are!
But there’s no doubt that chickpeas are nutritious too, because why else would I use them in chocolate chip cookies?!?! Chickpeas, like other pulses such as lentils, dry peas, and beans, are an excellent source of protein, which is great to build muscle, healthy hair and strong nails. Keep in mind that this plant-based protein does not contain all of the essential amino acids, so pair your chickpeas with other protein, whole grains, or vegetables in order to have a complete protein. My salad has a good amount of other vegetables, but also the quinoa helps to make the protein complete.
Chickpeas and pulses are also a great source of fiber- which helps your digestive system and keeps you feeling full longer. If you’re trying to watch your weight, then eating pulses can definitely help! I’m sure there have been times when you felt like a salad would satisfy your hunger, but after you finish, the hunger still lingers. How do we make a salad fulfilling? Just add pulses!
By simply adding a half cup of pulses to your salads and other recipes, you’re ensuring that you’re getting an extra dose of those important nutrients that your body needs to stay healthy. Depending on your age and gender, fiber needs range from 21 to 38 grams a day. In fact, a higher intake of fiber can decrease the risk of digestive cancers. Just a half-cup serving of chickpeas provides about a sixth of your daily fiber needs, and has as much protein as one large egg.
Are you ready to put plenty of pulses on your plate? If so, sign up for the Half-Cup Habit and see how easy it can be to add ½ cup serving of pulses to your diet 3 times a week. Plus you’ll receive free recipes and a downloadable pulses e-book just for signing up. Kick off your Half-Cup Habit by trying my Chickpea Greek Salad, and let’s see what other pulses you can incorporate!
- 1 cup chickpeas
- 1 cup cooked quinoa
- ¾ cup sliced olives
- 1½ cups grape tomatoes
- ½ cup diced red onion
- 1 cup sliced cucumber
- 6-8 cups Spring mix lettuce
- 2 tbsp. olive oil
- 2 tbsp. balsamic vinegar
- 1 tsp. salt
- 1 tsp. black pepper
- 1 tbsp. honey
- In small bowl, whisk to olive oil, vinegar and honey until it emulsifies. Set aside. Drain and rinse chickpeas. Add all ingredients in large bowl and pour vinaigrette dressing, salt and pepper.
This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of USA Pulses & Pulse Canada. The opinions and text are all mine.