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Chickpea, sweet potato, feta and Quinoa salad

Chickpea, sweet potato, feta and Quinoa salad is a salad that i have often because it doesn’t feel like a salad. That’s a win win situation if you ask me. All the benefits of a salad but without all the calories. I love that is is so hearty, filling and subtly flavoured. Some times i don’t want overpowering, ‘hey look at me’ flavours. Sometimes I want texture, simplicity and fresh flavours. Sometimes I like it when every ingredient sings and stands firm, rather then being forced out of the equation altogether by strong, in your face flavours. 

Chickpea,sweet potato, feta and quinoa salad

Plus it has no meat in it and as you know, we are trying to cut down on our meat intake. Not very successfully at the moment. We have good weeks and we have bad weeks. However in a week and a half, I am trying a vegan diet for ONE WHOLE WEEK. That scares me…. a lot.

Chickpea,sweet potato, feta and quinoa salad

Why does it scare me, you may ask? If i’m honest i worry about the food being bland, i worry about food prep time being tripled, I worry about all these extra ingredients like nutritional yeast etc (cost), I worry about practicality but mainly I wonder how the kids and my husband will take to it.

Chickpea,sweet potato, feta and quinoa salad

However if i don’t try, i will never know. It’s strange that i worry about the food being bland when I know all about people like King Cook Daily and V:GD who are really changing the face of vegan food. (Not that this salad is vegan).

Chickpea,sweet potato, feta and quinoa saladSo yesterday, i went to a lovely little place in Leicester called Room IV. I love most coffee shops/tea rooms and am currently working on compiling a list of my favourites. (Yay more days out for me!). I prefer them to restaurants or takeaways any day. Anyway, they were serving some vegan treats by V:GD. This is a company that specialise in vegan desserts that are free from Gluten, Wheat, Dairy, Soy and Refined Sugars. I tried their cookie dough pops and they were delicious. Even my little boy liked them and that is a really big deal for me because I want to cut down on the amount of refined sugar in the kids diet. If my kids likes a treat that isn’t full of hidden nasties, then I will choose that over and over again rather then giving them some chocolate buttons.

So, this salad is one i started to make when we decided to cut down on our meat intake and i love it. It is delicious served as a side dish yet substantial enough to be eaten alone. Adding a griddled aubergine to it would add another delicious smoky dimension altogether. It is also great served  with hummus and toasted pitta chips. Happy days!

Chickpea,sweet potato, feta and quinoa saladChickpea,sweet potato, feta and quinoa salad


Chickpea, sweet potato, feta and Quinoa salad
Recipe type: Salad
Serves: 2
Toasted chickpeas, roast sweet potato, feta and Quinoa salad.
  • 400g chickpea tin drained
  • 4 garlic cloves in the skins
  • 1 tsp cumin powder
  • 1tsp coriander powder
  • 1 tsp smoked paprika
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 tbsp oil
Sweet potato
  • 1 large sweet potato peeled and cubed into ½ inch pieces
  • 1tsp garlic granules
  • 2 tbsp parmesan cheese grated
  • ½ teaspoon brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon cumin powder
  • 1 teaspoon smoked paprika
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 2 tbsp tahini paste
  • 2 tbsp juice of a lemon
  • 2 cloves garlic crushed
  • 2 tbsp water
  • 1 tsp paprika powder
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 small red onion diced
  • ½ cucumber cubed
  • 1 carrot, skin removed and peeled into ribbons
  • 100g baby plum tomatoes diced
  • 2 tbsp pickled cabbage
  • 60g feta crumbled
  • 60g Quinoa
  • Handful parsley chopped
  1. Preheat oven to gas mark 6.
  2. Add chickpeas to a bowl and toss with oil, cumin, coriander and smoked paprika powders.
  3. Add garlic cloves and chickpeas to an oven tray.
  4. Drizzle the garlic with a bit of olive oil. (Now prepare the sweet potatoes so they can go into the oven at the same time following the instructions for sweet potato below).
  5. Bake for 20 minutes, or until the chickpeas are golden brown and very slightly crispy. Add the salt and pepper whilst still hot.
  6. The garlic should be fragrant and slightly browned. Remove from oven and set aside.
  7. Squeeze garlic out of skins once cool and mash as much as possible.
  8. Add it to the chickpeas. Toss through with your hands.
Roast sweet Potato
  1. Put the cubed sweet potatoes in a large bowl and drizzle with oil + melted butter. Add the parmesan, garlic granules, brown sugar, cumin, smoked paprika and salt and pepper, making sure everything is evenly combined.
  2. Spread the sweet potato in one layer. Bake for 25 minutes, then turn them and bake for 10 minutes more at gas mark 4.
  1. Combine the ingredients for the sauce. You may need to add more water to thin the sauce. Taste and adjust seasoning.
  1. Cook the Quinoa according to packet instructions and add half a vegetable stock cube to the water. Once done, separate with a fork and set aside.
  2. Combine all the ingredients for the salad in a bowl and add the Quinoa to it.
  1. Add the salad to the bottom of a dish.
  2. Top with the sweet potato and chickpeas.
  3. Drizzle some sauce over the top.
  4. Serve with Hummus and toasted pitta chips.

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