This Garden Chopped Salad is full of healthy raw vegetables and tossed with a Middle Eastern tahini, lemon juice, and olive oil dressing. It’s the perfect salad to go with chicken kebabs or fresh grilled fish.
I really love chopped salads, because they’re fast to make and full of so many healthy vegetables. I love all of the different textures and flavors from a big variety of vegetables, too.
This Garden Chopped Salad is inspired by the traditionally Persian Shirazi Salad. If you want an amazing recipe for a traditional Shirazi Salad, check out Naz Deravian’s incredible cookbook on Persian food, Bottom of the Pot.
I’ve been making a lot of Shirazi Salads, but over time, I started adding more and more things that my family loves into the mix – like olives and garbanzo beans. Oh, and lettuce. A traditional Shirazi Salad doesn’t have lettuce, but I love some Romaine lettuce leaves to give a little bit of soft texture and to also make the whole thing easier to eat. With the addition of the olives and garbanzo beans, this salad becomes more filling, too, and could easily be a Vegan main dish.
If you’re super strict Paleo or following a Low-FODMAP diet, just leave out the garbanzo beans. Otherwise, this Garden Chopped Salad is a wonderful addition to most Gluten Free, Vegan, Low-FODMAP, and Low Cholesterol diets. It’s an incredibly flavorful and incredibly healthy salad that is quick and easy to make. What more could you ask for?
A quick note on the herbs. I have really fallen in love with putting a lot of fresh chopped herbs in our salads. Feel free to add a bunch of different herbs or just use your favorite one. Herbs are an easy and super nutritious way to change up the flavor profile of the salad. You might be surprised to see fresh mint as an ingredient in a salad, but please give it a try. My dear friend, Atin, who is from Iran, suggested I try dried mint in my Shirazi Salad, and I haven’t looked back since. I love the taste of mint in fresh salads now.
Salads are a wonderful place to be creative and to also use up whatever vegetables you have camping out in your fridge. Try out different additions and leave a note in the comments to let everyone know how it worked out for you. Eat and enjoy!
Why You’ll LOVE this Recipe:
- Gluten Free
- Dairy Free
- Low Cholesterol
- Super Healthy
- Quick and easy to make
Ingredients for Garden Chopped Salad:
- romaine lettuce leaves
- fresh Italian parsley
- fresh mint, cilantro, or basil
- English cucumber
- kalamata olives
- garbanzo beans
- lemon juice
- olive oil
- Salt and pepper
Notes on Ingredients:
Romaine lettuce leaves – Any of the leaves will do – outer leaves or the heart leaves.
Fresh Italian parsley – A must. Italian Parsley is the one with the flat leaves. It has a smoother texture, and it’s packed with Vitamin C.
Fresh mint, cilantro, or basil – Choose one or all three or any combination of them. Make sure they’re fresh (not dried).
Tomato – Any kind of tomato will do, just chop them small so you don’t get a forkful of just tomato.
English cucumber – These cucumbers have a really nice crunch. They’re super juicy, but any cucumber will do in a pinch.
Kalamata olives – Use pitted olives.
Garbanzo beans – Use canned garbanzo beans and rinse them very well to make them easier to digest.
Lemon juice – Lemon juice brightens up all of the flavors and is the acid in the salad dressing. Use fresh lemon juice. If you love lemons as much as we do, I really recommend getting a good lemon juicer – it makes a world of difference.
Tahini – Delicious sesame seed paste, Tahini adds a lot of healthy fats and a ton of Vitamin E. It also gives the dressing a creamy satisfying texture.
Olive oil – The best oil for salad dressings (usually).
Salt and pepper – For flavor. To taste.
How to Make Garden Chopped Salad From Scratch
In my opinion, a salad should be quick and easy to make – and this one is.
Chop up all the veggies – the romaine lettuce leaves, Italian parsley, mint (or cilantro, or basil), tomato, and cucumber. Put them in a large mixing bowl.
Add the olives and garbanzo beans.
Now, before you add the dressing, squeeze ½ of a lemon over the veggies and toss them well.
Make the dressing. In a small bowl, whisk together the lemon juice, tahini, olive oil, salt, and pepper. Serve the dressing on the side or toss to lightly coat all the vegetables. Eat and enjoy!
Garden Chopped Salad – Paleo Gluten Free Sugar Free Vegan
- 4 romaine lettuce leaves
- 2 cups fresh Italian parsley
- 1 cup fresh mint, cilantro, or basil
- 1 large tomato
- 1 English cucumber
- 1 cup kalamata olives, pitted
- 1 can garbanzo beans (15 oz), drained and rinsed
- ½ lemon
- 4 tablespoon lemon juice
- 1 tablespoon tahini
- ½ cup olive oil
- salt and pepper to taste
- Chop the romaine lettuce leaves, Italian parsley, mint (or cilantro, or basil), tomato, and cucumber. Put them in a large mixing bowl.
- Add the olives and garbanzo beans.
- Squeeze half of a lemon over the salad. Toss to combine.
- Make the dressing. In a small bowl, whisk together the lemon juice, tahini, olive oil, salt, and pepper.
- Serve the dressing on the side or toss to lightly coat all the vegetables. Enjoy!
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