Chickpea and Pita Salad

A healthy and lean salad to add to your rotation.

It’s important to grill the pita bread until it is really crisp and golden or it will quickly become soggy when mixed with the other ingredients. The dressing adds the distinctive flavors of olives, anchovy, and garlic.

Chickpea and Pita Salad
Chickpea and Pita Salad

[ingredients-list title=”Salad Ingredients” serving_size=””]


  • 4 sesame pita breads
  • 2 cans (15 ounces) chickpeas, rinsed and drained
  • 1 cucumber, diced
  • 4 large beefsteak tomatoes
  • 6 scallions, chopped
  • 1/2 cup pitted black olives, preferably kalamata olives



[ingredients-list title=”Dressing Ingredients” serving_size=””]

  • 1 1/2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
  • 2 teaspoons olive tapenade
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh mint
  • Pepper

Garnish: Sprigs of fresh mint



[step-list-wrapper title=”How to make it” time=”20 Minutes”]
[step-item number=”1″ image_url=”” title=”” ]Preheat the oven broiler. Split the pita breads in half by carefully cutting them open with a sharp knife. Place them on a baking sheet. Toast under the broiler until golden brown and crisp, turning once, then allow to cool. Tear into bite-size pieces.[/step-item]

[step-item number=”2″ image_url=”” title=”” ]Put the chickpeas, cucumber, tomatoes, scallions, and olives in a serving bowl. For the dressing, whisk together the olive oil, vinegar, tapenade, mint, and pepper to taste. Drizzle over the vegetables and toss together.[/step-item]

[step-item number=”3″ image_url=”” title=”” ]Just before serving, add the pieces of pita bread and mix well. Serve garnished with sprigs of fresh mint. Serves 8.[/step-item][/step-list-wrapper]

Chickpea and eggplant salad: Cut 1 small eggplant into 1/2-inch cubes and gently sauté in 2 teaspoons olive oil for 5 minutes. Stir in 1 teaspoon cumin seeds, and continue cooking until the eggplant is lightly browned and tender. Remove from the heat and mix with 2 cans (15 ounces) chickpeas, drained and rinsed, 1 thinly sliced red onion, 1 1/2 cups baby spinach leaves, and 1 seeded and thinly sliced yellow pepper. For the dressing, whisk together 1 tablespoon olive oil, 2 teaspoons lemon juice, 2 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro, and pepper to taste.

Plus Points

  • Tapenade is a thick paste made from capers, anchovies, olives, lemon juice, and seasonings. Just a little of this potent condiment goes a long way in flavoring a dish.
  • Both the white bulb and the green leaves of scallions can be eaten. Using the green leaves increases the amount of beta-carotene that is consumed.

[cooking_tip]If you cannot find sesame pita bread, you can substitute whole wheat pita breads.[/cooking_tip]

[nutrition-info calories=”269″ calories_fat=”58″ fat=”6g” sat_fat=”1g” choles=”0mg” sodium=”365mg” carbs=”44g” sugars=”8g” protein=”11g” fiber=”8g”]

Excellent source of folate, iron, thiamine, vitamin C. Good source of magnesium, niacin, phosphorus, potassium, riboflavin, vitamin A, vitamin B6.

Exchanges: starch 2 1/2 vegetable 1 fat 1


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Originally Published in Reader's Digest