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Chickpea Olive Salad with Za’atar and Cherry Tomatoes

Chickpea Olive Salad with Za'atar and Cherry Tomatoes

With temperatures soaring at the end of May, a simple salad was just what I wanted for dinner. Of course, simple is very often the tastiest, especially when it’s simple that you want and you’re using great ingredients. I’ve been enjoying finding ways to use za’atar lately — a highly aromatic and uniquely delicious Middle Eastern blend of dried herbs, sesame seeds and salt, za’atar goes wonderfully well with tangy foods like tomatoes as well as with bread. So substitute bread for buttery soft chickpeas, toss in the cherry tomatoes and some olives for good measure and za’atar. There you have an easy and simply wonderful summer salad.

Pre-blended za’atar is much more commonly found in supermarkets now than before, as well as in Middle Eastern grocers, but it’s also very easy to make at home using the fresh dried herbs you have on hand.

Chickpea Olive Salad with Za'atar and Cherry TomatoesChickpea Olive Salad with Za’atar and Cherry Tomatoes
Recipe by
Cuisine: Middle Eastern
Published on June 9, 2016

Simple but delicious summer salad of buttery soft chickpeas, tangy cherry tomatoes and plump olives dressed in olive oil, lemon juice and za’atar

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  • 1 cup dried chickpeas (3 cups cooked or 2 14 oz cans)
  • 1/2 cup pitted Kalamata olives, sliced or chopped
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil, or more as needed
  • 4 tablespoons za’atar
  • small handful of fresh parsley, chopped
  • 1 cup cherry tomatoes, halved
  • juice from 1 lemon (3 tablespoons)
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt, or to taste
  • fresh cracked black pepper, to taste


  • Rinse the chickpeas and soak in several inches of water for 8 hours or overnight. Drain and rinse, then transfer to a medium saucepan and cover with fresh water. Bring to a boil, reduce heat to medium-low, cover, and simmer for 1 to 1 1/2 hours or until soft. Drain and transfer to a large bowl.

  • Add the remaining ingredients to the chickpeas and toss until well combined.

  • Serve chilled or at room temperature.

Makes 4 to 6 servings

chickpea tomato salad

This is my contribution to My Legume Love Affair, a monthly event celebrating the goodness of legumes. This popular event was started my Susan of The Well Seasoned Cook and now is administered by me. I am hosting this month. I’m also sharing with No Croutons Required, another popular event focusing on vegetarian soups and salad. Alternately hosted by my myself and Jacqueline of Tinned Tomatoes, Jac is hosting this month.

Other chickpea salads to enjoy from Lisa’s Kitchen:
Chickpea Salad with Vegan Mayonnaise
Chickpea Salad with Chat Masala, Mango and Pomegranate Seeds
Summer Chickpea Salad
Chickpea Salad with Tamarind Dressing

Audio: Thomas Tallis

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