Chickpea & Spinach Salad with Cumin Dressing

I live in a beautiful city full of beautiful people (in coastal Southern California). Petite, bikini-clad women and hard-bodied men frequent the beaches. Healthy-minded folks demand spa-style cuisine and organic coffee shops. Go for a drive on the weekend and you’ll see bike riders and runners everywhere you look. And let’s just say that cosmetic surgeons do quite well here.

I won’t ever be classified as ‘petite.’ I’m rarely seen in a one-piece bathing suit (let alone a bikini!) I’d order Mexican food over a salad anytime. I might bike or run around the neighborhood (but no further). And I haven’t had any plastic surgery. I do love where I live, but I’ve had to come to terms with the fact that I just won’t ever be one of those people, and I’m still working on feeling okay about that.

My newfound ‘love’ of exercise and eating healthy is turning out to be a wonderful experience. Who knew that there could be recipes out there that can be so satisfying and delicious, and they don’t make you fat? My family is going to benefit from this as well. I don’t want junk around, so there won’t be junk around! I find myself thinking more about experimenting with new, fresh flavors as well as how I can incorporate more vegetables in my meals.

My new favorite lunch: Chickpea & Spinach Salad with Cumin Dressing.

Look at all of those fresh, spa-like ingredients… fresh spinach, chickpeas, red onion, Italian parsley, a lemony cumin vinaigrette, and an orange-tainted yogurt sauce! Am I on the right path to healthy eating or what??


This was a fabulous lunch choice from Ellie Krieger’s The Food You Crave. I paired it with some leftover shredded lamb and a few orange slices to make a complete and filling mid-day meal.

I actually sat down… in the kitchen to eat this salad. Usually I’m on the run or eating in front of my computer screen. I forced myself to eat slowly, relax and enjoy my lunch. It was a wonderful salad with a light & flavorful dressing. Salads are pretty much a lunch staple around here, but it was nice to make one that was a little bit different.

Those spa-obsessed, perfect-people mentioned above might even like this one too (but none of them were invited to my house for lunch).

This recipe can be found HERE.

If you’re interested in reading about my daily progress in this healthy venture, go to this post.

Leave a Comment




46 Responses to “Chickpea & Spinach Salad with Cumin Dressing”

  1. 1

    Gretchen Noelle — January 14, 2009 @ 11:20 AM

    This looks really tasty. Amazing how beans can be filling, taste good and be good for you. Keep it up!

  2. 2

    Sylvie — January 14, 2009 @ 12:39 PM

    first of all let me say sorry for not commenting in such a long time. Things have been mad and blogging, as well as reading blogs had to go on the back burner a bit.

    That looks so light and summery. I wish it wasn’t as dreary here in January.

  3. 3

    StickyGooeyCreamyChewy — January 14, 2009 @ 1:48 PM

    What a tasty, tempting salad! I might actually sit down to a real lunch more often if I had something like this in front of me.

    I hear ya about living in the Land of Beautiful People. Things are pretty much the same here. Botox and boob jobs are the favored topics of cocktail party conversation!

  4. 4

    Katherine Aucoin — January 14, 2009 @ 1:54 PM

    That salad had me drooling. It looks delicious and like a salad you find at a spa. Good for you, you’re doing great!

  5. 5

    Peter M — January 14, 2009 @ 2:24 PM

    Lori, this transports me to warmer climes…we have a cold spell up here – don;t ask!

  6. 6

    Nina Timm — January 14, 2009 @ 2:29 PM

    This looks so delicious and to think it is good for you!

  7. 7

    sarah — January 14, 2009 @ 2:43 PM

    This looks great! I’ll have to try it sometime; I love chickpeas and spinach.

  8. 8

    Megan — January 14, 2009 @ 3:21 PM

    I’m not much of a salad kind of girl but I do like a good salad. This one looks good!!!
    The beach would be an amazing place to live but it would be hard to keep up with what my daughter calls “The Plastics” LOL

  9. 9

    Elle — January 14, 2009 @ 3:42 PM

    Spinach and chickpeas are two of my favorite things–I know I’ll love this!

  10. 10

    Sara — January 14, 2009 @ 3:44 PM

    This looks so great and healthy!

  11. 11

    Maria — January 14, 2009 @ 3:45 PM

    This salad looks so good and good for you too! Thanks for a healthy recipe!! Keep up the good work!

  12. 12

    Parker — January 14, 2009 @ 5:45 PM

    Living a healthy lifestyle has come a long way…some great foods out there and it does not all have to be about the salads – although I would be able to eat this one regularly (love chickpeas). Best of luck on your endeavors – your doing great.

  13. 13

    lisaiscooking — January 14, 2009 @ 6:01 PM

    Looks delicious! I’ve been on a 5-a-day kick for awhile now. When I focus on getting a minimum of 5 fruit and vegetable servings a day, it’s hard to fit in junk food, and I end up eating healthier. (and I can’t seem to handle counting calories)

  14. 14

    Patsyk — January 14, 2009 @ 6:11 PM

    Looks like a great salad from Ellie! I’ll have to go back and mark that one in my copy of her book. Thanks for pointing this one out!

    Let me know how you like the Healthy Cooking magazine. I hope to make some things from the current issue in the next week or so.

  15. 15

    Cakespy — January 14, 2009 @ 6:16 PM

    This recipe looks great–healthy without being a depressing, deprive-oneself type of salad. Of course, looking at the top pic made me exceedingly glad I live in the land of the pasty and flannel-covered :-)

  16. 16

    That Girl — January 14, 2009 @ 6:31 PM

    I love Ellie Krieger! She has the best food philosophy.

    Although, I have to say, living where we live totally spoils you. I love being able to go running outside almost every morning because it’s never too cold, and rarely too wet!

  17. 17

    Debbie — January 14, 2009 @ 7:54 PM

    Gawd that looks good! And I love chickpeas.

  18. 18

    Sri — January 14, 2009 @ 8:11 PM

    I’ve made this several times and it’s absolutely delicious. One of my fave salads.
    I love Ellie Krieger, btw.

  19. 19

    Veronica — January 14, 2009 @ 8:34 PM

    Chickpeas is on that long list of foods I want to love but I can’t bring myself to taste-isn’t that sad? Your salad makes them look so tempting…maybe…

  20. 20

    JennDZ - The Leftover Queen — January 14, 2009 @ 8:41 PM

    That looks like an awesome salad that would satisfy anyone – all of my favorite ingredients!

  21. 21

    Alexa — January 14, 2009 @ 8:59 PM

    Beautiful salad– which goes great with the gorgeous weather you have in California. I make this type of salads when the rainy sky gets to me. It brings some sunshine into my life. I’ll have to try it soon… I can’t resist that cumin dressing. Thanks for sharing!

  22. 22

    kellypea — January 14, 2009 @ 9:04 PM

    Hey, I recognize that boardwalk! My walk will take me there tomorrow w/ my new routine. This salad looks delicious. With this weather, I’m completely in the mood — funny that I posted one, too!

  23. 23

    Reeni? — January 14, 2009 @ 10:18 PM

    This does look amazing and so refreshing.! I love chickpeas. I have a chickpea and tuna salad recipe that is quite similar to this.

  24. 24

    LilSis — January 14, 2009 @ 10:48 PM

    Trust me, I can relate. I also live in Southern California and know “the hard bodies” that you’re talking about! And I am not one of them either.

    I am on a mission to cook as healthy as possible for myself and my family! We always eat pretty healthy but I’m going to try even harder to cut out unnecessary fat from recipes.

    Thanks for this recipe! I will give it a try!
    http://www.bigsislilsis.com

  25. 25

    Grace — January 14, 2009 @ 10:59 PM

    good ol’ chickpeas…good for more than just hummus. :)

  26. 26

    Deborah — January 14, 2009 @ 11:18 PM

    I’m pretty sure I would LOVE this salad – I’m a chickpea lover!

  27. 27

    Laura — January 15, 2009 @ 12:29 AM

    This reminds me a little of that Jack Bishop cumin and spinach dish–do you remember that? I think you made it too–anyway this sounds good and with a different twist in the form of the yogurt. I have the book I will have to check it out–thanks for sharing it. The pics are gorgeous. We could use a salad around here after all of the move-induced take-out!

  28. 28

    Stacey Snacks — January 15, 2009 @ 1:44 AM

    RG, if you keep eating like this, you will be bikini bound by the summer. Oh, how I long for summer, though I would only put on a one piece right now…but it’s 19 degrees here in NJ!
    Stacey Snacks

    Keep up the good work!

  29. 29

    Sara — January 15, 2009 @ 2:41 AM

    This looks really delicious. I am a chickpea fiend, they’re good in so many different dishes.

  30. 30

    noble pig — January 15, 2009 @ 2:54 AM

    Nice. I love the chickpeas, they fill you up in a good way. Gotta love Ellie Krieger!

  31. 31

    Nicole — January 15, 2009 @ 3:26 AM

    This looks lovely. Cudos to you for starting out so healthy. I wish I could say the same. I am behind the 8 ball and need to get on track.

  32. 32

    Roger. — January 15, 2009 @ 6:27 AM

    Now THERE’S a salad I’d eat!

  33. 33

    Pam — January 15, 2009 @ 6:31 PM

    Yum. Tasty, healthy and pretty. A perfect lunch.

  34. 34

    Laurie — January 15, 2009 @ 6:45 PM

    This is so healthy and nutritious! This is too tasty and filling to be a diet food! Yeah!! :)

  35. 35

    Sandie — January 15, 2009 @ 7:01 PM

    Good for you! I vote 2009 the year of healthier cooking and this salad is definitely a keeper. So glad you made it and brought it to my attention—I may have to tune into Ellie Krieger a little more frequently, or at least remember to set her show on the DVR.

  36. 36

    LaDue & Crew — January 16, 2009 @ 12:58 AM

    Oh I love you for posting this and for your commitment to change! I’ve SO needed some healthy recipes!! I have just joined my exercise classes 3 month weight loss challenge- With recipes like these and exercise, I can do it! http://classes.strollerstrides.net/peoria/moreinfo/40ff2b6ae3e9467ea48cce415f7d2ba4/85345/rio-vista-community-park/rio-vista-community-park/index.aspx

  37. 37

    Rindy R — January 16, 2009 @ 1:59 AM

    You go recipe girl! Aren’t you so proud of yourself when you go to bed at night and you have made healthy choices all day long. This salad looks great!

  38. 38

    Gina — January 16, 2009 @ 3:08 AM

    This sounds delicious!

  39. 39

    Cherie — January 16, 2009 @ 4:32 AM

    This salad to me is perfect. I am one of those weird people who get excited at the thought of a fresh, crunchy salad( like some people would at the thought of a big juicy steak). Keep it up, Recipe Girl! We’re cheering for you.

  40. 40

    Emily — January 16, 2009 @ 4:45 AM

    Well I think you’re pretty gorgeous. Yep.

    This salad sounds delicious. I’m a fan of chickpeas.
    I would order Mexican food over a salad, too.

    Wow, that was kind of a lame comment. I’ll have to do better next time.

  41. 41

    Carolyn Jung — January 16, 2009 @ 4:28 PM

    This sounds like the perfect lunch. As for the “perfect spa people”? They should be so lucky as to eat something as wonderful as this salad. ;)

  42. 42

    Dawn — January 16, 2009 @ 11:10 PM

    That looks really tasty to me…I’d wrap this up in flatbread or Naan.
    There is this spicy curry baked chickpea’s as a snack floating around…so good.

  43. 43

    Marc @ NoRecipes — January 17, 2009 @ 4:40 AM

    Wow this looks great. My issue with salads is that I end up being hungry about 30 minutes after I finish the salad, but with the addition of chickpeas it might tide me over a little longer:-)

  44. 44

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  45. 45

    Yaelian — January 18, 2009 @ 3:49 PM

    I just made this today, and loved it! And also posted about it in my blog, linking you ,hope it was ok..

  46. 46

    karen — January 21, 2009 @ 1:05 AM

    omg that looks DIVINE!!! i love garbanzo beans.

    ps: are you from san diego???? that looks just like mission beach!

    -karen