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Asparagus and Chickpea Salad with Vegan Buttermilk Dressing

Asparagus and Chickpea Salad with Vegan Buttermilk Dressing

Dianne Wenz
The vegan buttermilk dressing is the real star of this This Asparagus and Chickpea Salad, but the asparagus, chickpeas, and feta all play key roles.
Course Salad
Cuisine American
Servings 4 servings


  • For the Dressing
  • ¾ cup non-dairy milk
  • 1 teaspoon apple cider vinegar
  • 1 cup raw cashews, soaked for two hours, rinse and drained
  • 3 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
  • ½ teaspoon sea salt
  • 1 clove garlic
  • ¼ cup fresh parsley, chopped, loosely packed
  • ¼ cup fresh chives, chopped, loosely packed
  • For the Salad
  • 1 bunch asparagus, trimmed and cut into 2-inch pieces
  • 1 head green leaf lettuce, chopped
  • 1 bunch watercress, stems removed
  • 1 head radicchio, sliced
  • 1 ½ cups cooked chickpeas, or 1 14-ounce can, drained and rinsed
  • ¼ cup sliced almonds, toasted
  • ¼ cup parsley, chopped
  • ½ cup vegan feta, or your favorite vegan cheese


  • Make the dressing. Mix together the apple cider vinegar and non-dairy milk, and let sit for 10 minutes. It will curdle, which is what you want.
  • Mix the curdled milk, cashews, mustard, garlic, and salt together in a food processor or high-speed blender until smooth and creamy. Add the parsley and chives and pulse a couple times to combine.
  • Blanch the asparagus. Prepare a large bowl with ice water. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add the asparagus and cook for 2 to 4 minutes (depending on thickness), until bright green. Remove the asparagus pieces from the pot with tongs or a skimmer, and immediately transfer them to the ice water bowl. Let them sit in the ice water for a minute. Drain and pat dry.
  • Assemble the salad. Add the lettuce, watercress, radicchio, asparagus and chickpeas to a large bowl. Add about half of the dressing, and toss to coat. Top with the almonds, parsley and feta, and then drizzle on the rest of the dressing.
  • Divide among 4 plates and serve.