Chickpeas, artichoke hearts, and fresh mint pack in plant-based protein & flavor in this High-Protein Tomato & Basil Salad. It's a complete meal all by itself and takes only 20 minutes to whip up.
I rarely eat side salads. Especially when it's so easy to transform a salad into a complete meal. If you're going through the effort of chopping a bunch of fruit and vegetables, it's worth taking a few extra step and save yourself having to prepare an additional main.
However, if you are looking for an easy salad side, try my Easy Vegan Creamy Cucumber Salad.
This salad recipe was inspired by my Panzanella Salad with Roasted Chickpeas, as well as this Orzo Salad with Oil-Free Pesto on this site.
See recipe card for quantities.
Salt highlights the sweetness of tomatoes and makes them stand out among the fresh herbs and lime juice. It also draws out their natural juice. This juice adds a delightful tanginess to the dressing.
Set aside for 15 minutes to drain. Reserve the tomato juice in the bowl to add to the dressing.
Meanwhile, chop the pistachios, artichoke hearts, fresh basil and mint .
The pistachios add a welcomed crunch to this salad. Plus, they add a notable amount of protein, fiber, potassium, and iron, as well as several other nutrients.
Next, add the dressing ingredients, including the tomato juice, to a bowl large enough to hold the salad. There's no need to make the dressing in a separate container. This method works perfectly well for this recipe, and there's less to wash up!
Add the remaining salad ingredients, including the tomatoes, to the same bowl.
Add the avocado for serving if you plan on having leftovers.
- Grape tomatoes - grape and cherry tomatoes are best for this salad, but you can also use chopped vine, heirloom, or beefsteak tomatoes
- Artichoke hearts - substitute with one third cup Kalamata olives as desired
- Chickpeas - the chickpeas can be substituted with white or pinto beans
- Pistachios - omit the pistachios or substitute with a different type of nut, or seeds (peanuts, walnuts, pecans, slivered almonds, pumpkin seeds, sunflower seeds)
- Fresh herbs - substitute with dried herbs (oregano, basil, Italian seasoning)
For another satisfying salad recipe, see this Protein-Packed Quinoa & Kale Salad on my website!
If you plan on having leftovers, add the avocado for serving. Don't mix it into the salad. Refrigerate any remaining High-Protein Tomato & Basil Salad in an airtight container. Good for 1-2 days.
These ingredients don't stand up well to freezing.
💡 Top tip
Roast the chickpeas for even more texture. Rub them between layers of a kitchen or paper towel to remove the skins (optional). Toss in olive oil. Roast at 400ºF for 15 minutes. Broil for an additional 3 minutes, or until golden brown and crispy.
Typically, the marinade contains a blend of sunflower or olive oil, vinegar, spices, herbs (Italian seasoning), garlic, and onion.
You can find artichoke hearts marinated in water, but the oil-based marinades are more flavorful. They pair deliciously with the tomatoes and fresh basil in this salad.
This high-protein salad contains chickpeas and pistachios for protein. Alternatively, you can substitute with other plant-based proteins, including:
-Nuts and seeds
Salt reduces the bitterness of the tomatoes, making them taste sweeter. It also draws out their water by a process called osmosis. This juice is great for adding to dressings. Plus, the drained tomatoes won't make your salad soggy.
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High-Protein Tomato & Basil Salad with Chickpeas
- 1 pint grape tomatoes halved
- Salt to taste
- 3 tablespoons avocado oil or extra-virgin olive oil
- 1 ½ tablespoons grain mustard
- 1 ½ tablespoon fresh lemon juice
- 1 large avocado cubed
- ½ cup marinated artichoke hearts jarred or canned, quartered
- 1 cup chickpeas
- 6 mint leaves chiffonade
- 7 basil leaves chiffonade
- ⅓ cup pistachios chopped
- Black pepper to taste
- Salt the tomatoes: Transfer the tomatoes to a large sieve. Add a generous dash of salt. Rub the tomatoes to evenly coat with the salt. Set aside to drain for at least 15 minutes. Rub them again while lightly squeezing to remove more of their juices. Reserve the juice.
- Make the dressing: Add the juice from the tomatoes, avocado oil, grain mustard, and lemon juice to a medium bowl and mix well to combine.
- Combine the ingredients: Stir in the tomatoes, avocado, artichoke hearts, chickpeas, mint, basil, and pistachios. Season with salt and pepper.
- Marinated artichokes add more flavor to this recipe, but any jarred or canned artichoke hearts will work. If you are not able to find them quartered, chop them before adding to the salad.
This information is provided as a courtesy and is an ESTIMATE only. Varying factors such as product types or brands purchased can change the nutritional information in any given recipe.
How much is a serving based on the estimated nutrition facts?
One third of the recipe.
So good, thanks for the recipe!! Alterations I had to make: I wasn't able to get fresh herbs so I used dry
along with a "Tuscany" flavored olive oil. Also used pine nuts that we already had.
Perfect substitutions. I'm so glad you enjoyed it. Thank you.
This looks great! How essential is the grain mustard? I always have dijon in my fridge but rarely grain mustard.
Hi. Use Dijon instead. It's totally fine!
Delicious! I omitted the oil and nuts and didn’t miss either. Thanks for sharing!
That's wonderful to know. Thanks for sharing that for other readers. So glad you enjoyed it. More oil-free recipes to come.
Made this salad tonight. Easy and delicious. I followed the recipe but added extra artichokes and added seedless cucumber!
Great additions. Thank you so much for leaving a comment and rating the recipe. Have a great day.
I love it as is but I added some pickled onions and it added just a kiss of sweetness. Sooooooo good. I love this recipe.
Thank you. Pickled onions are a delicious addition!