Chickpea and Raisin Salad

It’s 90 degrees today in Portland, and if it’s this hot here I can’t imagine how hellish it is elsewhere. When the temperature soars this high, I am seeking refuge outside the kitchen. But as much as I argue w/ my stomach, I still have to eat. Solution? SALAD. Apart from heating a single stove burner for a minute or two, this recipe requires no additional cooking and will be table-ready in about 10 minutes. My advice? If possible, make it ahead, omitting the cilantro until the very end. This allows the flavors to meld and makes the chilled result that much tastier and more refreshing. This salad is seriously satisfying on a day like today. The hearty chickpeas are hefty enough to stand in for meat, the scallion and cilantro lend zing and interest, and the raisins add the perfect subtle sweetness. It’s a great twist on a more traditional bean salad, one I hope you enjoy as much as I do. Recipe courtesy of Real Simple.

Yields 8 servings.

SODIUM CONTENT: 21 mg per serving


1 c. seedless raisins
1/4 c. red wine vinegar
2 t. sugar
3- 15-oz. cans no-salt-added garbanzo beans, drained and rinsed
1 c. fresh cilantro, chopped
4 scallions, sliced thinly (whites and greens)
1/3 c. olive oil
1/2 t. ground cumin
1/4 t. freshly ground black pepper


In a small saucepan, bring the raisins, vinegar and sugar to a simmer over medium heat. Remove from heat immediately and set aside to cool.

Place the chickpeas, cilantro, scallion, olive oil, cumin and ground pepper in a large mixing bowl.Add the cooled raisin mixture and stir well to combine. Serve immediately.

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6 Responses to Chickpea and Raisin Salad

  1. When I was younger, I didn’t really like raisins (for some strange reason). I remember one time my family was visiting some friends who made a salad like this for dinner. Needless to say, I began ‘stashing’ the raisins away in my cheeks… (while planning their secret disposal). I thought I was being all stealthy, but I sure wasn’t, because my mother still tells this story all the time. I guess I do, too! Anyway, this looks very, very good, Dishy! No secret raisin disposal required! 🙂

  2. Tammy says:

    Yum! We are traveling to Maryland tomorrow and this sounds like a great lunch for me (on the road). I’ll have to substitute some items for ones I have on hand- dried cranberries for raisins and fresh chives for the scallions. I know chives aren’t the same, but I have some growing.

    If I make it today, I hope I can save some of it for my trip tomorrow. 😉

  3. shambo says:

    Love garbanzo beans in any form. This sounds really good.

  4. Christy says:

    Inky, so glad to hear your taste has changed! My daughters were wild about raisins, then hated them, now are tepid. If there’s one thing you can count on, it’s CHANGE. hahahh

    Tammy – your version sounds delish too. The salad really makes 8 ample servings, so hopefully you’re enjoying it on the road today too!

    Shambo, just ate some for lunch and it may even be better the second day!

  5. Elena says:

    for those not too crazy about raisins, I wonder if trying currants which are smaller or cranberries. Would that work with this recipe?

  6. Christy says:

    Elena, I think either currants or cranberries would be great. You could also try it with other chopped dried fruit – like dates or dried apricots. If you do, let me know how it tastes! 🙂

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