This chickpea citrus and veggie confetti is a healthy, colorful, vegan, and gluten-free salad. This is my version of the tri-colored chickpea salad that they sell pre-made at Costco and Wegman's.
It's bright and cheery, makes a beautiful side dish, and it's the perfect summer salad to bring to a potluck or picnic! This fresh-tasting salad can be made ahead of time and works great for meal prep and lunches too!
❤️ This recipe is
- quick and easy to make.
- bursting with fresh flavors from oranges, limes, and fresh herbs.
- the perfect dish to bring to a summer picnic!
- great for making ahead and meal-prepping lunches!
- kid-friendly and allergy-free!
🧾 Ingredients and substitutions
- Chickpeas - You will need about 3 cups (or 3 cans) of cooked, drained, and rinsed chickpeas. Save the liquid to make aquafaba.
- Red Pepper - 1 medium-sized bell pepper. Orange or yellow will also work, but red makes it more colorful.
- Corn - Frozen corn works the best.
- Red Onion - This is optional, but adds a lot of flavor and color. Be sure to soak the diced onion in some water for 5-10 minutes. This will mellow the flavor of the onion.
- Green Onions - A few stalks of green onions add a lot of flavor and color.
- Cilantro - This is also optional, but if you like the flavor of cilantro, it's highly recommended. The cilantro and lime juice taste amazing together!
- Orange Juice - You can use it from the carton or fresh squeezed.
- Lime Juice - Fresh squeezed tastes the best! You will need about 1-3 limes depending on the size and how much juice they have in them.
- Oil - (Optional) This helps to make the dressing rich and creamy. Canola oil gives it the best flavor. (You can leave out the oil, but the dressing with not be creamy).
- Agave - To sweeten the dressing. You can use sugar, maple syrup, or whatever sweetener that you wish, but like like the flavor of agave with the citrus.
- Vinegar - To give the dressing acidity.
- Salt - For flavor.
🥄 How to make a citrus salad?
Step 1 - Dice the red onion, then place it in a small bowl and cover it with water. Let them soak while you prepare the rest.
Step 2 - Drain and rinse chickpeas and place them in a salad bowl.
Step 3 - Wash and dice the red pepper and add it to the bowl.
Step 4 - Chop the fresh herbs and add them to the bowl.
Step 5 - Add frozen corn.
Step 6 - Drain the red onion that has been soaking and add it to the salad.
Make the citrus dressing
Step 8 - Add the orange juice, lime juice, agave, oil, vinegar, and salt into a blender.
Step 9 - Blend for about 20 seconds until creamy. (The acid in the vinegar, orange, and lime juice interacts with the oil and turns it white and creamy when blended).
Step 10 - Pour over the salad and mix well.
🍴 Use it for meal prep
Make a big batch and use it for a quick and easy lunch food prep. It keeps well in the fridge for about 3 days and it's one of those salads that tastes better if it has at least a few hours to sit and soak up the flavors. If you have a pot picnic or potluck, just make it the night before and it will be perfect the next day.
Chickpea Citrus Confetti Salad is one of those meals that is great to make up and keep in the fridge for healthy snacks, easy lunches, or a satisfying side. The protein from the chickpeas fills you up while the lime and cilantro combo hits the spot! I know that there are people who hate cilantro, and if you are one of them, just leave it out. I personally think that lime and cilantro are totally addicting!
🧒 Make it kid-friendly
Kids like it because it is colorful and fun! The sweetness of the orange juice and the agave nectar keep them eating it up. Add a little more sweetener and leave out the strong flavors of the onions and/or cilantro to make it more kid-friendly.
🥗 More bean salads
If you love this recipe, check out my other bean salads and easy make-ahead summer meals!
- Easy Chickpea Garlic Vinaigrette Salad
- Vegan Potato Salad
- Vegan Bean Salad - Southwest Style
- Easy Quinoa and Kale with Mushrooms
Don't forget to save all of that liquid that you drain off of the chickpeas! That liquid is aquafaba and it can make some amazing desserts!
🍦 Recipes you can make with aquafaba
- Aquafaba Ice-Cream - No Churn Vegan Ice-Cream
- Vegan Lemon Meringue Pie
- Aquafaba Chocolate Mousse
- Aquafaba Whipped Cream - Vegan Cool Whip
- Vegan Candied Pecans
- Vegan Whipped Cream Frosting
📌 Be sure to follow me on Pinterest for new vegan recipes!
📋 Chickpea citrus salad recipe
Citrus Salad with Chickpeas
- 3 cans chickpeas drained and rinsed (about 3 cups)
- 1 ½ cups corn fresh or frozen
- 1 small red pepper chopped
- ¼ cup red onion chopped and soaked in water
- 3 stalks green onions
- ¼ cup fresh cilantro chopped
- ¼ cup orange juice
- 3 tablespoons lime juice
- 2 tablespoons agave nectar
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 2 teaspoons white or red wine vinegar
- ¼ cup canola oil
Make the Salad
- Chop the red onion and add it to a bowl with enough water to cover it. Set aside for a few minutes. (This will mellow the flavor of the onion).
- Drain and rinse the canned chickpeas and add them to a large bowl.
- Chop red pepper, cilantro, and green onions into tiny pieces and toss in with the chickpeas.
- Drain the water off of the onion and add to the salad.
Make the Dressing
- Put the orange juice, lime, agave, salt, and vinegar into a blender and blend for about 20 seconds, until creamy.
- Drizzle the dressing over the salad and mix well.
- Serve immediately or cover and place in the fridge to eat later.
- The salad can be eaten immediately, but the flavors mix and it tastes better if it is allowed to sit in the fridge for a least a few hours or overnight.
- This citrus salad keeps well for 3 days in the fridge.
- Perfect for potlucks, picnics, or lunches!
- You can leave out the oil for an oil-free salad - it will just not be as creamy.
*Updated March 28, 2019, from the original post on April 20, 2017, to include new pictures and updated information.
⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ Click the stars above or leave a comment! I'd love to hear from you!
This turned out to be an amazing salad, more delicious than Costco tricolor chick pea salad.
I used regular light beige Chick peas
Plus Brown chick peas and Frozen Green Chick Peas
Also used Orange & Yellow bell peppers plus Red ones.
Have made it a few times and Love it more each time.
Thanks Monica for sharing
You're welcome, Shema. I'm so happy that you enjoy it! 🙂
RJ SINGH says
i tried it first time with my cousin. he bought it from costco. He added peanuts to the salad. believe me it was so good. but never knew the recipe. now costco doesn't carry this salad so I am going to make it myself tomorrow. wish me luck.
I hope that you love it! 🙂
I’ve made this twice in the past couple of weeks and I’m obsessed (so is my family). I added come slaw mix to stretch it out while keeping it crunchy. LOVE!!! Thanks for sharing!
You're welcome, Becca. I'm so happy that you liked it. 🙂
Abby Scholl says
It tastes as good as it looks! It is so healthy and so delicious!
Jules Shepard says
BEAUTIFUL salad! One that will certainly come in handy during potluck season! Have already pinned!
Thanks so much! Hope you enjoy it!
Adrienne Davis says
Do you have to skin the chickpeas?
No, If you're using canned chickpeas just drain and rinse, no need to skin them.
Nico @ yumsome says
What a lovely, simple salad - light but filling. And so refreshing-sounding too. So perfect for spring! I'm totally with you on the coriander - I love it. This is definitely a keeper - have pinned and Tweeted!
By the way, why do you soak the red onion?
Thanks so much!
Hi Nico, I just realized that I didn't answer your question about the red onion. I find that if you soak the onion, it mellows out the flavor a bit so it's not so strong. I like the flavor of red onion, but I don't want it to dominate the salad. 🙂
Amber | Quite Good Food says
What a pretty salad. I love simple combos like this that get better with a little time in the fridge, perfect for lunches and easy meals. Lovely 🙂
Thanks! It is really great for lunches! Enjoy!
Elinor Kugler says
I LOVE cilantro! And I too think it goes great with some freshly squeezed lime. I'm loving how colorful, and fun this salad looks!
I can see why the kids love it so much. 🙂
Thanks! Cilantro and lime make everything taste so fresh!