This Thai zucchini noodle salad tastes fantastic and get a hit of protein from a handful of chickpeas. It’s the perfect, healthy summertime salad! Thank you to USA Pulses and Pulse Canada for helping me to share this recipe with you.
There’s no good reason for it, but there has been a spiralizer sitting in my cupboard for 6 months…6 months!…without being used. All of my favorite food blogs are filled with spiralizer recipes and yet, I hadn’t zoodled my way through a recipe even one time. Well, it just took one time to turn me into a spiralizing convert.
Zucchini and yellow squash are popping up at every farmer’s market right now, and they are the poster children for the zoodle revolution. Choose medium or large squash, trim the ends, cut them in half crosswise and run them through the skinniest blade on the spiralizer to produce noodles that are the perfect size for a light salad.
I’m a sucker for Thai flavors, no matter what form they come in. Thai pizza, Thai Chicken Salad, Thai Vegetable Tacos – we can’t resist. While peanut sauce is one of our favorite ways to “go Thai”, sometimes a simple vinaigrette made with classic Thai ingredients is the way to go. This vinaigrette is the perfect balance of salty, sweet and tangy, and takes about two minutes to make. Once you add fresh herbs (cilantro, basil and mint), you have a salad that’s bursting with flavors and vitamins.
As much as I love an all-vegetable salad, I really wanted a shot of vegetarian protein. Adding chickpeas, also known as garbanzo beans, is one of the easiest way to increase the protein and fiber count. On top of that, they’re a fantastic source of folate, iron and other nutrients. Oh yeah, and they’re cheap as anything. Garbanzo beans can be bought canned, which are already soaked and cooked, or dried.
Of course, salads aren’t the only way to use chickpeas. They’re the staple ingredients of hummus, and are fantastic in soups and stews. One of my favorite ways to enjoy them is in a slow cooker stew or curry. So many reasons to keep them on hand in your pantry!
If you’ve stopped by before, you know that the United Nations has declared 2016 as the International Year of Pulses. Pulses include lentils, chickpeas, dry peas and beans, and are a fantastic addition to any healthy diet. If you haven’t already done so, join thousands of others by popping over to take the Pulse Pledge.
Besides all of the nutrition benefits, there are other reasons to include pulses in your diet:
- They have a low carbon footprint, as they pull nitrogen from the air to produce their own fertilizers.
- They enrich the soil by leaving behind nutrients when harvested.
- Add pulses help to stretch out meals. They’re filling and bulky, so can replace all or some of the meat in soups and stews.
- Pulses come in many forms – dry, canned and in flours – and are some of the most versatile ingredients.
Crack open those chickpeas and get spiralizing for a fantastic salad!
Other healthy recipes using pulses:
Thai Chickpea Zucchini Noodle Salad Recipe
- Cut the ends off of the zucchini and yellow squash, and cut them in half crosswise. Run the zucchini and squash through the skinniest blade on the to produce noodles. Place them into a large bowl.
- To the zucchini and squash noodles, add the chickpeas, toasted almonds, cilantro, mint and basil.
- Toss with the dressing. Serve.
- In a small bowl, whisk together the rice vinegar, fish sauce, agave nectar and chili garlic sauce.
Disclosure: This post was sponsored as part of an ambassadorship program with USA Pulses and Pulse Canada. All opinions are my own. This post contains links to my Amazon affiliate page. Any revenue made from sales through these links helps to support this blog. Thank you!