Vegan Waldorf Chickpea Salad


Do you want to eat AND live more colorfully?

Subscribe to my newsletter and explore how to live your most vibrant plant-filled life.

(Note: this post was originally published on June 28, 2020. It has since been updated with a few tweaks.)

Chickpea Salad Goes Waldorf-Style

I'm excited to introduce you to a go-to picnic dish in our house. This vegan chickpea salad borrows some flavors and ingredients from the classic Waldorf salad to create a dish that is protein-packed, hearty, versatile, and filled with interesting flavors. We've brought this salad on many different outings and I hope it will become a staple for you too.

This chickpea salad can become whatever you want to be. It's delicious on its own, stuffed into a pita, or put on a sandwich. It can easily be scooped up with chips, crackers, and cucumber slices, or folded into a lettuce wrap. It's a great main course (especially plated on a bed of greens or served with some crusty bread) but can also act as a side dish depending on what else is on the menu. This is definitely a recipe that you can make again and again.

A healthy vegan Waldorf salad with chickpeas

What is a Waldorf Salad?

The Waldorf is an iconic salad originating from the Waldorf-Astoria hotel in New York City. Wikipedia says it dates all the way back to a charity event in 1896! It typically has apples, grapes, celery, and walnuts, as well as a creamy mayo-based dressing. That combination of sweet, savory, juicy, and crunchy ingredients made the Waldorf into an instant classic that is still well-known and well-loved today.

This vegan chickpea salad borrows some Waldorf flavors, but it's definitely not a classic Waldorf. I've omitted the apples because they can easily brown and aren't very friendly for make-ahead dishes (although feel free to add them if you'll be enjoying this salad right away). I've used almonds in place of walnuts for more crunch, especially if you'll be preparing the salad ahead of time (although again, feel free to use walnuts if you prefer). I've also used raisins in addition to grapes to add a chewy texture.

Healthy + Vegan Waldorf Salad

Like many iconic salads, the Waldorf isn't ideal nutritionally. Although the veggies, fruits, and nuts are all wonderful, the heavy mayo dressing isn't great for the body. One way to make it healthier is to use yogurt instead of mayo; you'll see a yogurt-based dressing in my Roasted Brussels Sprouts Waldorf Salad. In this vegan Waldorf salad, however, I'm using a tahini based dressing for extra decadence. If you're a fan of creamy dressings, you definitely need to get some tahini in your arsenal. Seeds of Collaboration is my absolute favorite; use the code ROGUE for 20% off.

Vegan chickpea salad with grapes, celery, raisins, and almonds

A Fast and Easy Chickpea Salad

Not only is this Waldorf riff delicious, it's also incredibly easy to make. There are very few ingredients and no cooking involved, plus only one bowl to wash. You can put this vegan chickpea salad together in 15 minutes, which makes it great for an impromptu outing or get-together.

Make-Ahead Tips

Thanks to the robust ingredients in this simple chickpea salad, it's very make-ahead friendly. Feel free to make the entire salad a couple hours in advance and take it with you on picnics or to potlucks. If you want to prepare it farther in advance, assemble most of the salad but keep the celery leaves, grapes, and almonds separate until you're ready to serve so they stay as fresh as possible. My favorite secret? Wrap the garnishes in a little bit of plastic wrap and put the garnish packet right in the container with the salad; just dump them in and stir when you arrive at your picnic spot!

Vegan Waldorf Chickpea Salad with crunchy almonds

Ingredients and Substitutions

Here's what you'll need for this vegan chickpea salad, as well as some thoughts, tips, and possible substitutions. If you make any substitutions, I'd love to hear about it in the comments section below.

  • Tahini. Tahini is the secret to making this vegan Waldorf salad feel indulgent. I love Seeds of Collaboration tahini; remember to use the code ROGUE to get 20% off.
  • Dijon mustard. Learn to make your own here.
  • Maple syrup
  • Salt and pepper
  • Chickpeas
  • Celery stalks
  • Raisins. Or feel free to use unsweetened cranberries instead; both are great and result in slightly different flavor profiles.
  • Red grapes
  • Celery leaves. I love how flavorful these are! You can just cut them off from the celery stalks you're using. Remember to keep them separate until close to when you're ready to serve so that they stay fresh.
  • Slivered almonds. I like to make my own toasted slivered almonds at home, and you can certainly do that to take this chickpea salad up a notch. But raw slivered almonds or store-bought toasted ones will work fine.

Healthy chickpea salad recipe for meal prep

Closing Thoughts

I just love easy, no-fuss, super-fast salads like this. Having some recipes up your sleeve for nutritious, versatile, no-cook dishes means you can get to all your adventures sooner. I also love having an easily-portable plant protein dish I can bring to potlucks to ensure I'll still have a good meal, even if there isn't much else veggie-friendly on the menu. For all those reasons, this vegan chickpea salad is a dish I make frequently and year-round.

Where are you headed this weekend? Maybe to a picnic? On a fun hike? Perhaps a canoe trip? What about a fancy picnic (with some cocktails, of course; see the blackberry Negronis in some of these photos) to watch the sunset? Regardless of where you're headed, this protein-rich vegan Waldorf salad wants to go with you.

Vegan Waldorf salad with added chickpeas for protein

Share It!

It makes me so happy to hear from you and see your creations! Please leave a comment below and let me know what you think about this recipe. If you post a photo on Instagram, hashtag #TheRogueBrusselSprout and tag me (@TheRogueBrusselSprout) in the post text so that I'm sure to see it.

Suggested Pairings

Ginger Bee's Knees

Spicy Ginger Sweet Potato Dip

Roasted Brussels Sprouts Waldorf Salad

Confetti Garden Vegetable Farro Salad

Apple Cider Donut Oat Flour Cake

Disclosure: Seeds of Collaboration is a long-term partner. I receive free product from Seeds of Collaboration and take a small commission on sales using the discount code. However, all opinions and thoughts are my own. Thank you for supporting the brands that keep The Rogue Brussel Sprout running.

Vegan Waldorf Chickpea Salad

Loaded with juicy grapes, crisp celery, crunchy almonds, hearty chickpeas, and a decadent tahini dressing, this vegan Waldorf salad riff is a year-round favorite. It easy to make, works great for healthy meal prep, and is perfect for a picnic.



For the Dressing

  • 0.25 c creamy tahini
  • 2 tbsp dijon mustard
  • 1 tbsp maple syrup
  • Generous salt and pepper

For the Salad

  • 2 15-oz cans of chick peas
  • 3 celery stalks with leaves
  • 0.5 c raisins
  • 1 c red grapes
  • 0.25 c slivered almonds


  1. To make the dressing, combine all of the ingredients in a large mixing bowl (the same bowl you'll make the salad in) and stir.
  2. Drain and rinse the chick peas.
  3. Peel the celery and slice the stalks into thin slivers. Set aside the celery leaves.
  4. To the bowl with the dressing, add the chick peas, chopped celery, and raisins. Mix well.
  5. Add the grapes, celery leaves, and almonds, then mix again gently.

Leave a Comment

Please Share Your Thoughts!

Did you make this recipe? Did you make substitutions? How did you serve it? Any helpful tips? Please share your thoughts, since these insights are really useful to both me and to other readers.

Thanks for contributing to our community! Your comment will appear shortly.
Oops! Something went wrong while submitting the form.
September 28, 2023
I made this last night with pears added. I used walnuts instead of almonds. Such a perfect September meal with some crusty local sourdough.
Julie Ann
May 23, 2022
Talk about an easy to throw together but impressive and delicious summer salad! ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ I love that the chickpeas are used to mimic a "chicken" salad and still add so much protein and texture. Love it😋