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15-Minute chickpea, arugula and onion salad

You’re tired, you don’t know what to cook, and you don’t have much time. Don’t we all go through that? Let’s face it: We are always pressed for time, especially on weeknights when we are caught between work and family.

Even though my life is about cooking, I still get frazzled when dinnertime arrives and I don’t have anything on the table. That’s when my emergency stash of precooked beans, chickpeas and other shortcut ingredients come in handy. They are not at all unhealthy, containing just a tad fewer nutrients, so don’t worry, you are still feeding your family well. The chickpeas went through a long cooking process before they were canned, more or less the same way you would have done when you cook the dried ones.

This is really such a simple salad that doesn’t require any special effort in preparing. Dress with a bottle of good extra-virgin olive oil and salt and pepper, or add a bit of balsamic vinegar for a sharper flavor. Use white or regular, whichever you prefer. It’s dinner in minutes.

Chickpeas, arugula and onion salad recipe

Chickpea, arugula and onion salad recipe

Skip cooking the chickpeas from scratch, and instead take a shortcut with a can, and you’ve got a healthy and simple salad that takes 15 minutes (even less if your chopping skills are better than mine) to prepare. The only “work” you have to do is chop the onions, and you are done.

Serves 4

Total time: 15 minutes


  • 6 cups precooked bottled or canned chickpeas, drained
  • 1 large red onion, sliced or chopped
  • 2 cups arugula
  • Extra-virgin olive oil
  • Balsamic vinegar (white or regular)
  • Salt
  • Freshly cracked black pepper


  1. In a serving bowl, mix together the chickpeas, onions and arugula.
  2. Drizzle with the olive oil and balsamic vinegar, and season with salt and pepper.

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