Cabbage Salad – made with spicy chickpeas, carrots, and snap peas – is a terrific light meal what's perfect for warm weather. Serve it for lunch or dinner, or as a side salad alongside your main meal. This easy Asian inspired recipe is vegan and gluten-free.
Spicy Chickpea and Cabbage Salad
I can't think of any meal that isn't made better with the humble chickpea. It can be whipped into hummus for an appetizer and even added to baked goods for dessert. I like to toss them into pasta, add them into soups and curries, and blend them into burgers or falafels. By far the easiest way to use a can of chickpeas is to toss a can of them into a salad.
I eat a lot of salads, especially in the warmer months. Let's face it, there are only so many ways you can serve lettuce, tomato, and cucumber, and salad can get pretty boring, really quickly. So I'm constantly on the look out for new ways to make it. Several years ago, I came across a spicy Asian style cabbage salad in an issue of Food Network Magazine. It sounded like a fun meal, and I knew it could be easily veganized with chickpeas. (Fun fact: I often use chickpeas to veganize omnivore recipes that are made with chicken!)
How to Make Spicy Chickpea and Cabbage Salad
This recipe is super easy to make!
- First you toss the chickpeas in the sriracha, salt, garlic powder, and then onion powder.
- You roast them in a 400° oven for about half an hour, tossing them after 15 minutes.
- While the chickpeas are roasting, you whisk together the dressing ingredients.
- Next you toss together the cabbage, snap peas, and shredded carrots.
- You then mix the dressing into the salad.
- Finally, you top your salad with the roasted chickpeas, peanuts, and cilantro.
When draining your can of chickpeas, you don't need to worry about rinsing them. The aquafaba (fancy word for bean water) will help the sriracha and spices to stick to the beans.
Napa cabbage is a type of Chinese cabbage that's used in a lot of Asian cooking. Unlike other types of cabbage, a head of the napa variety is oval. The veins are long, thin, and white, while the leaves are light green and ruffled.
If you can't find napa cabbage at the grocery store, you can use savory, which is round and has ruffled, lacy leaves. The leaves on both savoy and napa cabbages are more tender than those of regular green cabbage, making them ideal as a salad base.
How to Customize Your Cabbage Salad
It's easy to make this recipe your own!
- If you don't want use napa cabbage, you can use savoy. Or, you can use romaine lettuce.
- You can add more vegetables to your salad. Try chopped cucumbers, shredded red cabbage, and sliced scallions.
- Instead of peanuts, you can use toasted cashews or almonds.
- To make this recipe nut-free, you can use sunflower seeds or pumpkin seeds.
- If you’re pressed for time, you can use prepackaged roasted chickpeas.
- You can cut back on the sriracha if you're sensitive to heat.
- Instead of chickpea, you can use spicy baked tofu. Trader Joe's has a sriracha tofu that would be great in this recipe.
- Spicy peanut dressing or tahini dressing can be used instead of the lime and tamari dressing the recipe calls for.
Spicy Asian Chickpea Salad
For the Chickpeas
- 1 15-ounce can chickpeas drained
- 1 tablespoon sriracha
- ½ teaspoon sea salt
- ½ teaspoon garlic powder
- ½ teaspoon onion powder
For the Dressing
- 3 tablespoons lime juice
- 2 tablespoons tamari
- 2 tablespoons rice vinegar
- 1 tablespoon peanut oil
- 1 tablespoon agave
- 1 tablespoon minced ginger
- ½ teaspoon garlic chili paste or ½ teaspoon red pepper flakes
For the Salad
- ½ head napa cabbage thinly sliced (about 6 cups)
- 2 carrots shredded
- 1 cup snow peas trimmed and diagonally sliced
- ⅓ cup cilantro chopped, loosely packed
- ⅓ cup peanuts chopped
- To make the chickpeas, preheat your oven to 400°F and line a baking sheet with parchment paper. In a medium bowl, toss together the chickpeas, sriracha, sea salt, garlic powder, and onion powder until the chickpeas are coated. Spread the chickpeas in an even layer on the baking sheet and bake for 30 minutes, stirring them at the half-way point to prevent burning.
- To make the dressing, whisk together the ginger, lime juice, peanut oil, agave, tamari, rice vinegar, and garlic chili paste in a small bowl.
- To make the salad, mix together the cabbage, carrots, and snow peas in a large bowl. Toss in the dressing. Top with the chickpeas, peanuts, and cilantro.
If you enjoyed this recipe, you might also like:
- Chinese Style Tofu Salad from Wait, That’s Vegan?! by Lisa Dawn Angerame
- Thai Style Quinoa Salad
- Vegan Thai Noodle Salad
- Asian Inspired Mandarin Orange Salad
More Chickpea Salad Recipes You Might Enjoy Include:
- Avocado Chickpea Salad
- Tahini Kale Salad with Garlicky Chickpeas
- Kale Caesar Salad with Roasted Chickpeas
- Chickpea Waldorf Salad