Whole Grain, Chickpea, and Black Bean Salad

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This salad is actually a main dish with whole grain, vegetables, beans, and nuts. It keeps for several days and actually is better after a day or so. Exact proportions are not critical so don’t worry if you have more tomatoes or less cucumber. You can even add other vegetables such as peas, carrots, or celery. The grain you use is flexible. Spelt, freekeh, cracked wheat, or brown rice all work well. This recipe uses canned beans which makes it easier to prepare than using dried beans. To make the beans easier to digest, I suggest rinsing them well, cooking them more, and using hing (or asafoetida).  Hing is available from Asian markets or online. It is a wonderful digestive aid.

Serves 10
Serving size: 1 cup
Prep time: 15 minutes
Cook time: 30 minutes+
Total time: 45 minutes+


  • 1 cup, uncooked spelt, freekeh, cracked wheat or brown rice
  • Water (amount depends on the grain)
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 1, 15.5 ounce can chickpeas
  • 1, 15.5 ounce can black beans
  • ½ teaspoon hing
  • 3 cups cherry tomatoes,  cut in half
  • 6-8 green onions, sliced
  • 1 English cucumber, cut into ¼” cubes
  • 2 red, yellow, or orange sweet peppers (or any combination) cut in ¼” cubes
  • 3 lemons, juiced (more if they are not juicy)
  • 2 teaspoons ground cumin
  • ½ teaspoon garam masala
  • 6 Tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • ½ cup peanuts, roughly chopped
  • ½ cup cilantro or mint, roughly chopped (optional)


  1. Cook the grain according to package directions. You can use an Instant Pot.
  2. Chill the cooked grain. You can do this the day before.
  3. Drain and rinse well the beans. Cover with fresh water and add the hing.
  4. Cook on medium to low heat for 30 minutes.
  5. Drain the beans and chill slightly. You can do this the day before.
  6. Juice the lemons and add the cumin and garam masala.
  7. Add the green onions to the lemon juice and let stand for a few minutes, this will help the onions mellow.
  8. Combine the grain, beans, vegetables, lemon juice mixture, and olive oil.
  9. Adjust seasoning with salt and more lemon juice if needed.
  10. Serve topped with nuts and mint or cilantro if using.

Nutrition Information per Serving

  • Serving Size: 1 cup
  • Calories: 270
  • Fat: 14 grams
  • Saturated Fat: 2 grams
  • Sodium: 300 mg
  • Carbohydrates: 32 grams
  • Fiber: 8 grams
  • Protein: 9 grams


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