Mediterranean Zucchini and Chickpea Salad with Mint

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As someone who loves to cook, potluck invitations always launch me into a sweet little daydream where I imagine all the things I could bring. I start thinking about what’s in season, what I’ve been craving lately, and what are the people going to be in the mood for. I usually settle on something seasonal and fresh, but very easy, uncomplicated, and most of all – transportable. So for me, especially in the summertime, I often bring this Mediterranean Zucchini and Chickpea Salad.

zucchini and chickpea salad in a wooden bowl.

Why I Love Making This Mediterranean Zucchini and Chickpea Salad

In the middle of summer (which is when I’m writing this), I love making food that celebrates the season’s bounty. This Mediterranean Zucchini and Chickpea Salad is a great way to do that, without breaking the bank and without breaking a sweat. Bonus – you can make it in about 20 minutes.

Another factor that makes this Mediterranean Zucchini and Chickpea Salad recipe an especially good option, is that it can be (and should be) eaten at room temperature. There’s nothing worse than when people show up to a potluck with dishes that require an oven. It’s almost as bad as the people who bring a bag of ingredients and need to mess up your whole kitchen to make their food on the fly. That wasn’t the deal!

It’s obvious I have opinions on this matter. I’m all about potluck ideas that arrive ready to go, in the bowl or container it’s going to be served in.

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Zucchini Deserves More Love!

The thing about zucchini, is it’s kind of a ‘whatever’ vegetable. It doesn’t have much flavour on its own, the texture is not everyone’s favourite, and it’s never really had its moment in the superfood limelight. But when given the right treatment, zucchini is great! It can be eaten raw or cooked, it comes in a few different colours, and it’s cheap as heck! You can grill it, roast it, dip it in blue cheese dressing, or stuff it with any number of things. As far as versatility is concerned, the humble ‘zucc’ scores a ten out of ten. 

 A slight variation on my original grilled zucchini salad, this one has thinly sliced red onion.

So here is just one of the many ways I like to eat zucchini. The complete lack of flavour in zucchini is perfect in this case because the dressing is SO zingy and flavourful.

For the Best Zucchini and Chickpea Salad, Cook Your Own Chickpeas!

Canned chickpeas are great, and you can absolutely use them in this Mediterranean Zucchini and Chickpea Salad recipe. However, if you’re up for it, soaked and cooked chickpeas are SO MUCH BETTER! I’m sorry if you’ve heard me yap about this before, but it’s one of those little changes I’ve made in my cooking recently that has made a huge difference. Cooking your own chickpeas means you can infuse them with flavour from the get-go. If you use chickpeas often, It’s worth investing in a pressure cooker for that reason alone! I use an Instant Pot to cook my chickpeas, but there are other good pressure cookers on the market. I made an Instagram highlight on my chickpea cooking process so be sure to check that out if you’re a chickpea cooking newbie!

What You’ll Need to Make This Mediterranean Zucchini and Chickpea Salad

  • Zucchini – of course
  • Fresh parsley – you can’t beat the fresh flavour of parsley for a summer salad
  • Fresh mint – this adds a refreshing twist to the salad, and gives it a Mediterranean vibe
  • Cooked chickpeas – canned or cooked at home – your choice!
  • Lemon – both the zest and the juice, for maximum lemon flavour
  • Garlic – for more Mediterranean flavour
  • Olive oil – extra virgin please!
  • Red onion – for a crunchy edge
  • Salt and fresh cracked pepper – to taste

How to Make This Mediterranean Zucchini and Chickpea Salad

  • Prepare the zucchini by cutting it into quarters lengthwise, or into round coins, and rub it with some vegetable oil and salt.
  • Grill the zucchini on high heat until the cut sides have nice grill marks and the zucchini is cooked slightly but still firm.
  • Cut the long quarters of zucchini into cubes and transfer them to a large bowl.
  • Toss the warm zucchini with the herbs, garlic, lemon, chickpeas, salt and pepper, and serve slightly warm or at room temperature.

Storage, Freezing, and Reheating Tips

In my opinion, this salad is most delicious when eaten right away, or within an hour or two after it’s prepared. The flavours are at their best when the salad is room temperature, rather than fridge cold. If you do make this salad in advance, or if you have leftovers to contend with, I recommend keeping them in a sealed food container in the fridge for up to two days. When you’re ready to eat it, pull it out of the fridge and let it sit at room temperature for 20 minutes or so before you eat it.

zucchini and chickpea salad on a colourful plate.

What goes well with this Mediterranean Zucchini and Chickpea Salad?

If you want a little something extra on this salad, crumbled feta is an excellent option. A little squeeze of lemon juice over the top never hurt anyone either.

This grilled zucchini salad makes a perfect side dish for grilled meats (try my tips for grilled chicken thighs), grilled or roasted halloumi, or a perfectly poached egg.

I hope you add this Mediterranean Zucchini and Chickpea Salad to your summer potluck recipe list! It’s a good one, and even the non-zucchini lovers out tend to like it as long as you don’t overcook the zucchini. Keep them on the firm side and you will have some converts on your hands!

And if it goes terribly wrong, stop at the store and pick up a tub of seven layer dip and a bag of tortilla chips and everybody will love you. Just steer clear of the macaroni salad from the deli counter. It’s never a good idea.

A delicious looking bowl of grilled zucchini and chickpea salad with red onions

Mediterranean Zucchini and Chickpea Salad with Mint

This Mediterranean Zucchini and Chickpea Salad is bright, light, lemony and flavourful. You're going to appreciate the humble zucchini a lot more after this one!
5 from 2 votes
Prep Time 15 mins
Cook Time 10 mins
Total Time 25 mins
Course Salads
Cuisine Summer, Vegetarian
Servings 4 servings
Calories 345 kcal

Ingredients
  

  • 2 zucchini, medium
  • 1 handful fresh parsley
  • 2 tablespoon fresh mint
  • 250 grams cooked chickpeas (one can)
  • 1 lemon – zest and juice
  • 1 clove garlic
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • .5 small red onion
  • Salt and fresh cracked pepper, to taste

Instructions
 

  • Prepare the zucchini by cutting it into quarters lengthwise, or into round disks and rub it with some vegetable oil and salt.
  • Grill the zucchini on high heat until the cut sides have nice grill marks and the zucchini is cooked slightly but still firm.
  • Cut the long quarters of zucchini into cubes and transfer to a large bowl.
  • Toss the warm zucchini with the herbs, garlic, lemon, chickpeas, salt and pepper, and serve slightly warm or at room temperature.

Video

Nutrition

Calories: 345kcalCarbohydrates: 43.4gProtein: 13.8gFat: 14.6gSaturated Fat: 2gSodium: 31mgPotassium: 877mgFiber: 12.7gSugar: 9.2gCalcium: 98mgIron: 5mg
Keyword zucchini
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!

2 Comments

  1. kderby@live.ca Derby

    We love this salad Paula!
    I have to confess I used canned chickpeas because well, poor planning, and lacking fresh parsley I used dried summer savory from my cabinet and the flavour was simply perfect. Served it with some nice salmon and the lemon from the salad complimented it nicely.
    Kara & Bil.

  2. Pingback: Crispy Skin Salmon | A Perfect Dinner In 7 Minutes | How To Make Dinner

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