Oh, wow. The first time I made this salad was about a week ago, and we’ve already had it three times since then. It is so popular that I had to double the recipe just to keep people from rioting when there were no second or third helpings available. As usual, my photo doesn’t do it justice. But trust me. This is worth making!!!
It is ridiculous that such a plate-licking-good BBQ sauce can be whisked together in less than 2 minutes with so few ingredients. My family wants to put this sauce on everything now. Everything.
My version is ever-so-slightly adapted from the recipe in this amaaaazing cookbook by Terry Hope Romero, Salad Samurai: 100 Cutting-Edge, Ultra-Healthy, Easy-to-Make Salads You Don’t Have to Be Vegan to Love. (We tripled the sauce recipe, for example). I highly recommend adding this to your cookbook collection, if you don’t have it already!
SMOKEHOUSE CHICKPEAS & GREENS SALAD
4 Tbsp olive oil
2 (14 oz) cans chickpeas
Smokehouse BBQ Sauce
3 Tbsp tamari
3 rounded Tbsp tomato paste
3 Tbsp maple syrup
3 tsp liquid smoke (Terry recommends hickory, but we only have mesquite on hand, and it tastes delicious in this recipe, so I’d say you’re safe with either)
4 Tbsp nutritional yeast (optional: it’s yummy with or without)
(at least) 6 cups baby spinach (or use 3 cups spinach + 3 cups arugula – yum!!)
(at least) 1 pint cherry tomatoes (sliced in half)
1 big, ripe avocado (diced) (not pictured here, but it does make a lovely addition)
(optional add-ins: thinly sliced red onion, julienned carrots, etc.)
Smoked Paprika Dressing
4 Tbsp apple cider vinegar
2 Tbsp olive oil
1 tsp garlic powder
2 Tbsp maple syrup
3 tsp paprika (smoked sweet or hot)
1 tsp smoked salt (or Himalayan salt)
Preheat a large skillet over medium-high heat, then pour in the olive oil and tilt the pan to coat the bottom. Add chickpeas and fry for about 6 minutes, or until golden.
Whisk together the tamari, tomato paste, maple syrup, and liquid smoke. Pour over the chickpeas, reduce heat to low, and simmer for about 4 minutes, stirring occasionally. Turn off the heat and cover to keep warm.
Meanwhile, wash, spin dry, and tear the greens into bite-sized pieces. Add to a large bowl with tomatoes and other veggies.
Whisk together apple cider vinegar, olive oil, garlic, maple syrup, paprika, and salt, then pour over the salad and toss to coat all veggies.
Divide greens and veggies evenly among serving bowls/plates.
If you like nutritional yeast (I love it, but some in my family don’t), sprinkle it over the warm chickpeas and stir to coat.
Top the salad with chickpeas and a twist of freshly-ground black pepper to taste.