Ladies and gentlemen, I bring you: a healthy Middle Eastern dish!

I’ve been addicted to Trader Joe’s Balela Salad (Middle Eastern chickpea & black bean salad) for a while now. Balela is savory and tangy with a gratifying bite. Plus, thanks to the amazing plant-based protein and fiber, it’s quite filling. I’m pretty sure you guys are going to be hooked like I am!

It’s amazing on it’s own, but if you are following the Rabbit Food Pyramid, you can add some lettuce and tuck it into a whole wheat pita pocket, or serve over a bed of lettuce and quinoa!

Love my new bunny bowl that Brett gave me for Christmas! It’s so photogenic : )


Balela Salad
Serves 1
1/2 cup chickpeas, cooked (I use Eden Organic – No Salt Added Chickpeas)
1/4 cup black beans, cooked (I use 365 Organic No Salt Added Black Beans)
1/4 cup chopped fresh tomato
3 Tbsp lemon juice
1 Tbsp olive oil
1/2 Tbsp apple cider vinegar
2 cloves garlic
2 Tbsp cup chopped red onion
2 Tbsp chopped fresh parsley
1 Tbsp chopped fresh mint
Pinch of cayenne
Salt & Pepper to taste

Rinse and strain cooked chickpeas and black beans. Chop, tomato, garlic, red onion, parsley, and mint. Combine together with the chickpeas, beans, lemon juice, olive oil, and apple cider vinegar. Add cayenne, salt and pepper to taste. Store in a covered container in the refrigerator.
Note: This dish is best after the chickpeas have marinated for several hours of overnight.
Make your meal RFFMBT Pyramid approved:
Serve over a bed of lettuce and quinoa
Add lettuce and tuck it all into a whole grain pita pocket!

The Rabbit Food Pyramid Breakdown
Produce: tomato, garlic, red onion, parsley, mint (1 cup of lettuce if desired)
Whole Grain: None (1/2 cup of cooked quinoa – or 1/2 whole wheat pita pocket if desired)
Protein: chickpeas & black beans
Plant Based Fat: olive oil
Free Extras: lemon juice, apple cider vinegar, cayenne, salt & pepper

… I love rabbit food!

8 Comments on Balela Salad

  1. Lisa @ The Skinny on Health
    January 9, 2014 at 11:12 pm (10 years ago)

    YUM!! This salad looks so delicious and filling! (Not to mention how cute the bowl is!) Plus, the idea to put it in a pita pocket would make it really filling, perfect for hungry boys!

    Lisa @ The Skinny on Health

  2. Jess K
    January 10, 2014 at 4:24 am (10 years ago)

    This looks so good! We just got a Trader Joe’s in Buffalo, NY and everyone’s so excited! I thought I’d share with you that Barnes and Nobles has cookbooks specifically for Trader Joe’s, so you can get all the ingredients there. Three of the ones I liked were…

    Cooking with Trader Joe’s Cookbook: Skinny Dish
    Cooking with Trader Joe’s Cookbook: Lighten Up
    Cooking with Trader Joe’s Cookbook: Vegetarian

    But there’s more where that came from! I love your blog and hope you have a great day! 🙂

  3. D @ The Kosher Cave Girl
    January 10, 2014 at 6:16 am (10 years ago)

    This looks delicious! I always drool over the to-go section at Trader Joe’s when I’m grocery shopping. Everything just looks so yummy!

    I love that this salad is packed with good protein and nutrients! Perfect for vegetarians and vegans.

  4. Kelly
    January 11, 2014 at 6:24 am (10 years ago)

    You’re kidding me! I LOVE balela. It’s the best on the go lunch and it’s SO healthy. Thank you so much for sharing the recipe!

  5. GiVi
    January 16, 2014 at 11:29 am (10 years ago)

    I love all your chickpea recipieer ^^ Btw thought you should know that à Dutch diet pill producer is using your before and after pictures in web banners. I cant link iT via tablet, but if you drop me à line via mail or tumblr i could do so for you later. Greetings! Xo GiVi

  6. Tiffany
    February 1, 2014 at 11:40 am (10 years ago)

    This is by far the best Balela salad recipe online. I made it almost exactly as the recipe states, except I added more (Italian flat leaf) parsley because I love parsley, and it is absolutely amazing. The grape tomatoes and dressing blended with jalapenos were clutch.

  7. Amanda
    May 24, 2014 at 7:51 pm (10 years ago)

    YUM! I am completely addicted to the TJ’s version–can’t wait to try your recipe. Thanks!

  8. Ursula
    November 8, 2014 at 6:25 am (9 years ago)

    I too love Balela salad – try adding sumac – it really adds some zip !


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