This Mediterranean Chard Salad was inspired by my friend Neicy who first introduced me to raw chard in one of her salads. Before then, I admit, I was a sceptic to eating chard in its raw state. But I fell in love with chard’s earthy, salty, tangy flavor and juicy crunch- plus it’s ability to hold up well in salads, sturdy enough for leftovers the next day. Turn this into a main course salad by adding hearty chickpeas. Keep it vegan or add crumbled goat cheese or feta for extra richness. Crunchy farmers market radishes and cucumbers are a nice addition as well as summer tomatoes, peppers, red onion, shaved fennel and optional kalamata olives. Chard loves to be paired with lemony dressings and this one is as simple as they come.
This week I partnered with USA Pulses and Pulse Canada to encourage readers to sign up for their Half Cup Habit– an easy way to eat healthier, just by incorporating a ½ cup of pulses into our diet 3 times a week. It’s so easy! Think buddha bowls, salads and tacos!
Pulses (chickpeas, lentils and split peas) are nutritional powerhouses – high in lean, clean protein and full of fiber, they keep us feeling energized and full all day. When you sign up you’ll receive a free downloadable e-book with healthy pulse recipes to help get your creative juices flowing.This recipe is a great starting point for your pulses journey, click here to join me in taking the Half-Cup Habit today!
When selecting chard for raw salads, make sure to choose young chard or baby chard. The more mature the leaves, the more bitter.
The easiest way to incorporate pulses during the busy workweek – such as these chickpeas, is to cook up big batch on sunday then use them through out the week. Of course you can always used canned, remembering to rinse and drain them well.
Finish your Mediterranean Chard Salad with crumbled goat cheese, crunchy pepitas or silvered almonds and fresh sprouts. Enjoy!
Mediterranean Chard Salad with Chickpeas
A healthy, raw Chard Salad, packed with summer veggies and chickpeas- vegan and gluten free, this hearty Mediterranean Salad tastes great stuffed into a toasted Pita.
- Prep Time: 20
- Total Time: 20
- Yield: 4
- Category: vegan, gluten free
- Method: salad
- Cuisine: mediterranean
- 4-6 cups shredded baby or young chard
- 1 red pepper – thinly sliced
- 4 radishes- sliced ( or sub grated carrots or beets)
- ½ english cucumber – sliced ( or try shaved fennel)
- 6 cherry tomatoes- cut in half
- 1 avocado- sliced
- ¼ cup kalamata olives- optional
- 1 cup cooked chickpeas
- 1 cup chopped Italian parsley ( or sub half cilantro, basil or mint)
- ¼ cup toasted pepitas (or slivered almonds)
- optional sprouts
- optional crumbled goat cheese or feta
- 2 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
- 1 teaspoon finely grated lemon zest
- 2 teaspoons honey
- 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
- Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
Place all the salad ingredients in a large bowl ( Either in separate ingredients into small piles over the greens, or toss all.
Whisk dressing ingredients together in a small bowl.
Dress the salad and toss- you will probably not need all the dressing.
Adjust salt and lemon adding more if necessary.
Sprinkle with nuts or seeds and optional sprouts.
Chard varies greatly in flavor, salt level and bitterness, so tasting after tossing is important, then you can adjust depending on variety. Feel free to sub or incorporate other greens.