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It’s been a pretty slow week around here. I’m caught up on my tasks at my nine to five, and only have one DJ gig in my pipeline which is good because my house needs some TLC. I broke down and hired a yard guy today. According to my neighbor, he worked on everything for five hours, and when I came home, the emotional weight I’ve been carrying around evaporated. My dog was all smiles and we played fetch in the backyard for the first time in a long long while.
You know what else gives me that sigh of relief? Salads. I know it sounds silly, but I live by the “If you eat 5 salads a week, you can eat whatever you want on the other meals” rule and it’s the best! I’ve been practicing this rule for a little over six months and I don’t anticipate changing this habit anytime soon. I actually work next door to a Sprouts too so I’m constantly changing ingredients when I run out of things and am able to get other ingredients as I run out instead of buying them in bulk.
One thing I love about a good salad is some kind of crunchy element. I used to always think this meant croutons, but then I discovered crunchy chickpeas. These bad boys are the best! 1. They’re crunchier than croutons. 2. They’re packed with protein. 3. You can season them any way you like!
This salad features buffalo spiced crunchy chickpeas. I’ve found making these on a Sunday for a Monday – Friday work week works the best for me. If I’m not tossing them on salads, I’m straight up snacking on them after work. They’re so delicious and super easy to make.
Another thing I think makes a great salad is homemade dressing. Most store bought dressings are full of fat and unnecessary calories. I mean HELLO! I’m eating salad for a reason over here! I’ve found that I can achieve way better flavors and even up the protein content of my salads by incorporating seed or nut based dressings.
This salad features my oil free hemp seed ranch because what else goes better with buffalo? This dressing is super easy to make! All you need is a blender and you’ll be well on your way to the fields of vegan Hidden Valley.
I have affectionately named my buffalo chickpea salad “The Mulligan” because the chickpeas took several rounds of roasting to perfect. I am typically a person who gets things right on the first or second try, but these chickpeas were a little challenging to figure out, and it wasn’t until the fourth batch that I really felt I had them dialed in. I also played golf in high school so I thought the name was extra cute.
I wrote this salad out to make four servings, but you can just as easily divide everything in four to make a single serving. As long as you have the chickpeas and dressing made ahead of time, it shouldn’t take long to assemble at all.
If you try this recipe, let me know! Leave a comment or tag me at #hellyesitsvegan on Instagram. Cheers!
Buffalo Chickpea Salad
- large salad bowl
- 12 cups kale, chopped
- 1 cup quinoa, cooked
- 1 cup buffalo spiced crunchy chickpeas
- 4 stalks celery, chopped
- 30 cherry tomatoes, halved
- 4 slices red onion
- 1 cup carrots, shredded
- ½ cup oil-free hemp seed ranch dressing
- 2 Tbsp nutritional yeast
- sea salt to taste, optional
- Toss all the ingredients in a very large bowl and eat!