Direct Your Dining: Zesty Parmesan Roasted Chickpea Salad

Direct Your Dining: Zesty Parmesan Roasted Chickpea Salad

Welcome to Direct Your Dining! This cooking series will introduce you to energy efficient recipes full of tips to keep your meals delicious without using every appliance in the kitchen. Preparing recipes with energy efficiency in mind at least once a week will make cooking a little easier, and may even help reduce your monthly electricity bill. Check in every week for a new recipe full of flavor and creativity that will surely impress your friends and family.

Since February is American Heart Month, I want to feature low-energy use recipes and ideas that are tasty and healthy! This week’s recipe is a super-simple and delicious vegetarian meal that even meat-eaters will enjoy.

Direct Your Dining: Zesty Parmesan Roasted Chickpea Salad
Well, doesn’t THIS look yummy?!

In 2015, I wrote recipes for a series called Meatless Monday, and this zesty Parmesan roasted chickpeas dish is a perfect nod back to that series. The only thing you have to cook is the chickpeas, and it only takes 20 minutes in the oven. I cook them at 385° F (196° C) – not hot enough to put a lot of stress on your oven, but it’s a high enough heat to achieve a crispy coating on the chickpeas while leaving a soft texture in the center.

This recipe features the chickpeas in both a hearty salad and lettuce wraps complete with fresh, juicy cherry tomatoes, cucumber, and avocado. I suggest making double the recipe so you can keep the extra chickpeas for snacking later. If you leave them in the oven a little longer, they serve as a heart healthy replacement when you are craving chips!

Direct Your Dining: Zesty Parmesan Roasted Chickpea Salad
I might have found a way to combat my late-night cravings for chips and salsa.

Notice I like to coat some lemon wedges in extra seasoning and roast them along with the chickpeas. I do this because I like to squeeze the lemons over my produce for even more flavor without any extra effort. And while this excellent season mix is wonderful on these roasted chickpeas, you can use it on chicken breasts, fish, or even skirt steak!

Vinaigrette dressings are often a much healthier choice for your cholesterol and calorie intake versus creamy dressings. Any store bought lemon vinaigrette or Caesar vinaigrette dressing will work perfectly with these chickpea salads and wraps. I recommend checking the ingredients and nutritional information on salad dressing bottles before buying to locate options without added high fructose corn syrup, massive amounts of sodium, or a bunch of preservatives.

Let’s get cooking!

Zesty Parmesan Roasted Chickpea Salad

Chickpea Ingredients:

Direct Your Dining: Zesty Parmesan Roasted Chickpea Salad
It always helps for your seasoning to have plenty of pop.
  • 1 Can chickpeas (15 oz. size)
  • 2 tbsp. Olive oil
  • 1 tbsp. Parmesan cheese
  • 1 tsp. Parsley flakes
  • 1 tsp. Paprika
  • 1 tsp. Garlic powder
  • ½ tsp. Sea salt
  • ½ tsp. Red chili flakes
  • ½ tsp. Black pepper
  • 2 Lemon quarters

Perfect Pairings for the Chickpeas:

  • Cucumber (peeled, seeds removed, diced)
  • Multi-colored cherry tomato halves
  • Avocado slices
  • Lemon or Caesar vinaigrette dressing
  • Romaine or Butter lettuce
  • Fresh cracked black peppercorns
  • Extra sprinkle of Parmesan cheese

Directions:

1) Heat oven to 385° F (196° C). Open can of chickpeas and drain them. Pat the chickpeas dry with a paper towel and move to a mixing bowl.

Direct Your Dining: Zesty Parmesan Roasted Chickpea Salad
Make sure the ingredients of your seasoning are mixed well.

2) Mix together the olive oil, parmesan cheese, parsley flakes, and seasonings from ingredients list in a small bowl.

Direct Your Dining: Zesty Parmesan Roasted Chickpea Salad
From start to finish, this protein-packed vegetarian meal is easy to assemble.

3) Pour the mixture over the chickpeas. Spread chickpeas out on a baking sheet. Take the lemon quarters and rub them in the extra olive oil/seasoning mix left in the bowl. Place them on the same baking sheet.

Direct Your Dining: Zesty Parmesan Roasted Chickpea Salad
Snack Time!

4) Roast the chickpeas in the oven for 20 minutes for a crispy outside and soft inside. Leave them in the oven another 6-7 minutes for a fully crispy texture perfect for snacking.

5) Squeeze a small amount of the roasted lemon quarter’s juices on your diced cucumber, tomato halves, and avocado slices.

To Make Lettuce Wraps:

Direct Your Dining: Zesty Parmesan Roasted Chickpea Salad
Lettuce wraps make for a fresh meal option for lunch or dinner.

1) Wash the lettuce leaves and pat them dry with a paper towel.

2) Fill them with all the pairing items and roasted chickpeas.

3) Drizzle a little vinaigrette on top.

To Make Salads:

Direct Your Dining: Zesty Parmesan Roasted Chickpea Salad
The chickpeas act as your croutons and protein in this flavorful salad.

1) Wash the lettuce leaves and pat them dry with a paper towel.

2) Slice the leaves up into your preferred size for salads.

3) Use the pairings ingredients to create a custom salad.

Direct Your Dining: Zesty Parmesan Roasted Chickpea Salad
Enjoy!

I hope you enjoy this recipe for American Heart Month! Please head over to the recipe section of the blog to find some of our best meatless meals for more heart healthy ideas! One of my favorites from that series is a roasted acorn squash power greens salad!

Check back in every week for more Direct Your Dining recipes to help reduce your energy use in the kitchen while getting creative with delicious dishes!

Recipe and Images by Stacie Morgan

About 

Stacie is a Texas A&M animal science graduate using her education and passion for food to get creative in the kitchen. She previously worked in business before becoming a mom to a special little boy. She's excited to share recipes her family enjoys at home - and they may even help you save energy in the kitchen.

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