Who says raw veggies need to be boring?! This easy chopped broccoli salad with tahini dressing definitely proves otherwise. So much flavor in every bite of this delicious vegan salad.
This chopped broccoli salad fits right in with the healthy lunch recipe kick I’ve been on lately. It started with the Roasted Vegetable Bowl with Peanut Sauce a couple of weeks ago and continued with a Cauliflower Salad with Pepperoncini and a Healthy Tuna Salad.
With all of the extra time spent at home these days, lunch has become more of an event. As much as I love a great hummus avocado sandwich or a bowl of soup left over from dinner the night before, I feel the need to expand my lunch repertoire to fight off boredom.
Chickpeas add a punch of protein to this healthy broccoli salad, which means you can serve it as an entrée or a side dish. And the tahini dressing takes the flavors to a whole new level!
What you need for this Chopped Broccoli Salad recipe:
These are the main components of this recipe (affiliate links included):
- Broccoli florets: You’ll need about 5 cups of small broccoli florets.
- Chickpeas: Use canned chickpeas. Drain and rinse them well in a fine mesh sieve. Shake out the excess water.
- Other vegetables: Carrot, red bell pepper and green onions.
- Slivered almonds: I buy raw slivered almonds at Trader Joe’s because they’re so cheap there, but they can be found in any well-stocked grocery store.
- Herbs: Fresh mint adds a wonderful layer of flavor and minced parsley is always fantastic for some added brightness.
- Tahini: Give the tahini (sesame paste) a good stir to make sure that the oil sitting on top is completely incorporated.
- Agave nectar: Feel free to the agave nectar substitute with honey (not vegan) or pure maple syrup.
How to make healthy broccoli salad:
There is nothing difficult about this salad. Just a little chopping and a quick whisk for the dressing.
- For the almonds, toast them in a dry skillet set over medium heat. I always set my timer to check them every minute and give them a little shake. Without the timer, I ALWAYS get distracted and manage to scorch the almonds. Let them cool while preparing the rest of the salad.
- The goal for the broccoli is to “rice” it. The easiest way to do this is by pulsing the broccoli florets in a food processor. Just 4 or 5 pulses should do the trick. If you don’t have a food processor, chopping with a chef’s knife works, too. It just takes a little longer.
- Combine the chopped broccoli, chickpeas, other vegetables and herbs in a bowl. Toss it with the tahini dressing.
- For the dressing, whisk all of the ingredients together. I typically use 5 tablespoons of water for the consistency I like, but the amount you need to achieve the perfect pourable dressing depends on the thickness of the tahini used.
Frequently asked questions:
How long does chopped broccoli salad last?
Since the broccoli is finely chopped, it tends to dry out a bit faster than whole florets. However, if stored in an airtight container like this one, it should last for 3 to 4 days.
One issue with making this salad ahead of time is that it soaks up the dressing like a sponge, so you don’t get that great tahini flavor a few days later.
If you aren’t serving the salad right away, I suggest making extra dressing to toss with the salad right before serving.
What can I use instead of chickpeas?
If chickpeas aren’t your thing, swap them out with cannellini beans, which are also sold as white kidney beans. Great Northern beans would also work.
If you aren’t aiming for a vegan broccoli salad, feel free to stir in poached chicken (see How to Poach Chicken Breasts) or sautéed shrimp.
Other vegan salad recipes:
Chopped Broccoli Salad with Tahini Dressing
- 12 ounces small broccoli florets (about 5 cups)
- 1 (14 oz.) can chickpeas drained & rinsed
- 1 large red bell pepper diced
- 1 large carrot diced
- 2 green onions thinly sliced
- 1/4 cup slivered almonds toasted in a dry skillet
- 5 large mint leaves chopped
- 1/4 cup minced flat-leaf parsley
- Place the broccoli florets in the bowl of a food processor. Pulse a few times until the broccoli is the size of grains of rice. Transfer to a large bowl.
- Add the chickpeas, bell pepper, carrot, green onions, almonds, mint and parsley. Stir to combine.
- Toss with the dressing. Serve.
- In a bowl, whisk together the tahini, agave nectar, lemon juice, garlic and salt. Whisk in the water, using enough to achieve desired consistency.
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