Recipes > Lunch/Dinner > Tuna Chickpea Salad

Tuna Chickpea Salad

Many store-bought tuna salads contain more fat and salt than necessary. We cut back on the mayonnaise and replaced it with gut-friendly and protein-rich Greek yogurt. Then, by adding chickpeas, we make this tuna salad recipe more plant-forward and even more delicious!
tuna chickpea salad in a bowl

This is a variation of our simple tuna salad base recipe. Tuna is a nutritious and affordable protein source, but do you know what is an even more budget-friendly protein food? Beans! We replace half of the tuna with smashed chickpeas to give you the best of both worlds – omega-3s from the tuna and plant power from the beans. Give this tuna chickpea salad recipe a try – your wallet and body will thank you!

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Culinary Tips for the Best Tuna Chickpea Salad Recipe

Make the tuna salad dressing first to ensure the parsley,  minced garlic, and onion are evenly distributed before adding the tuna and smashed chickpeas.

Check to see if you need to drain the tuna. Some tuna pouches don’t require draining, but the cans can have quite a bit of water.

Drain and rinse the chickpeas to remove excess sodium and liquid. You might consider hanging on to some of the bean juice – also known as aquafaba – for other recipes

Ingredient Substitutions

  • Chickpeas: chickpeas (garbanzo beans) work best, but you could substitute navy or other white beans.
  • Plain Greek Yogurt: substitute plain yogurt. Choose a fat content that fits within your overall diet.
  • Mayonnaise: substitute up to ½ of the mayonnaise with more Greek yogurt. Keep in mind that the fat in the mayonnaise helps improve the texture of the dressing. Look for mayonnaise made with avocado, canola, or olive oil.
  • Parsley: substitute cilantro, dill, or any green herb to your taste.
  • Red Onion: substitute white, yellow, or green onion, shallot, or ¼ teaspoon onion powder.
  • Lemon Juice: substitute bottled lemon juice, apple cider vinegar, or white wine vinegar. Feel free to add some fresh lemon zest for an extra bright touch.
  • Garlic: substitute ½ teaspoon pre-minced garlic, ½ teaspoon garlic flakes, ¼ teaspoon granulated garlic or ⅛ teaspoon garlic powder. 
  • Canned Tuna: select wild-caught tuna in water – albacore or light both work. Choose low-sodium (≤140 mg) cans if possible.
  • Celery: substitute green bell pepper, red bell pepper, cucumber, or another crunchy vegetable to add texture to the salad.
  • Pickle Relish: substitute finely minced pickles.

Recipe Variations

Change up the dressing by adding hot sauce or dijon mustard. Looking for a tuna salad without mayo? Replace the mayo with additional yogurt or substitute sour cream.

Add different vegetables or fruits for more flavor, crunch, and nutrition. Make a tuna, chickpea, and egg salad by adding chopped hard boiled eggs. The sky’s the limit!

Want more tuna salad recipe inspiration?

Use our tuna salad base recipe as a guide, then have fun exploring other flavors, ingredients, and textures!

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Is this tuna chickpea salad recipe healthy?

Yes! Tuna is healthy on its own. Many store-bought tuna salads contain more fat and salt than necessary. We cut back on the mayonnaise and replaced it with gut-friendly and protein-rich Greek yogurt. Then, by adding chickpeas, we make this tuna salad recipe more plant-forward and even more delicious!

Tuna

Tuna is a quality source of protein that is rich in vitamins and minerals. Fatty fish, like tuna, is high in EPA and DHA omega-3 fatty acids, which are good for heart and brain health.

Greek Yogurt

Greek yogurt is a great source of B vitamins, calcium, and probiotics. It is also higher in protein than regular yogurt. Select a fat content that works with your overall diet. If you tend to consume a lot of foods high in saturated fat, a low-fat or fat-free variety is your best choice. If you limit saturated fat in your diet, full-fat varieties are okay.

Chickpeas

Beans of all varieties contain plant-based protein, complex carbohydrates, fiber, vitamins, and minerals. These nutrients promote gut health, decrease risk of developing heart disease, cancer, and diabetes, and promote a healthy weight. Beans are a key component of longevity diets around the world.

Learn more about health benefits of different foods and ingredients in our book, To Your Taste!

Tuna Salad Serving Suggestions

Serve this simple tuna chickpea salad with whole grain crackers or pita chips with a side of fruit and celery sticks (for more dipping). You can also add this tuna chickpea salad to a healthy wrap, sandwich, quesadilla, TikTok wrap, or green salad.

Storage Recommendations

For best quality, store leftover tuna salad in an airtight container in the fridge for 3-5 days.

Want more tasty lunch ideas?

Check out these favorites!

Curry Chicken Salad with Apples

Hummus Veggie Wraps

Chickpea Green Salad

tuna chickpea salad in a bowl

Tuna Chickpea Salad

This is a variation of our simple tuna salad base recipe. We replace half of the tuna with smashed chickpeas to give you the best of both worlds – omega-3’s from the tuna and plant power from the beans!
Prep Time 8 minutes
Total Time 8 minutes
Course Main Course
Cuisine American
Servings 5 servings

Ingredients
  

  • ½, 15-ounce can low-sodium chickpeas (~¾ cup)
  • ¼ cup plain Greek yogurt
  • ¼ cup mayonnaise (olive or canola oil based)
  • 2 Tablespoons chopped fresh Italian parsley
  • 1 Tablespoon finely minced red onion
  • 1 Tablespoon pickle relish
  • 2 teaspoons lemon juice
  • 1 small garlic clove, minced (~½ teaspoon)
  • 5-6 ounces wild-caught low-sodium tuna in water, drained
  • ¼ cup diced celery, ¼”
  • Salt & pepper to taste

Instructions
 

  • Smash chickpeas in a small bowl using a potato masher or clean hands until no large chunks remain. Set aside.
  • Combine Greek yogurt, mayonnaise, parsley, onion, pickle relish, lemon juice, and garlic in a medium-sized bowl.
  • Add drained tuna, smashed chickpeas, and celery to dressing. Using a spatula, fold to gently combine. Add salt and pepper to taste.
  • Make a sandwichwrapgreen salad, or quesadilla or eat on its own with whole grain crackers. Enjoy!

Notes

Check to see if you need to drain the tuna. Some tuna pouches don’t require draining, but the cans can have quite a bit of water.
Keyword Tuna Chickpea Salad

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