As I make my way back through older recipes, I’ve realized how much my cooking style (for the site) has changed over the years. While the the recipes from yesteryear are good, I’ve found myself branching out into new flavors, ideas, and recipes. It’s a good thing but don’t be fooled, there are still recipes from the archives that I use quite a bit. One of my favorite recipes is from four years ago and it’s super simple: smother a potato with chickpeas tossed with buffalo sauce. I still have a weakness for buffalo sauce and this buffalo chickpea salad is an updated version of that older recipe. Many recipes call for cooking the chickpeas in the sauce but I much prefer to fry the chickpeas, then toss them in the sauce. This way, the tangy buffalo sauce mixes with the cool ranch.
Buffalo Chickpea Salad with Homemade Ranch
Cooked chickpeas tossed with an easy buffalo sauce and served with homemade ranch- a perfect lunch or light dinner.
- 1 small clove garlic
- 3/4 cup whole milk plain greek yogurt
- 3 tablespoons fresh minced chives
- 11/2 tablespoons fresh minced parsley
- 1/2 tablespoon fresh minced dill
- 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 2-4 tablespoons buttermilk
- 2 teaspoons olive oil
- 1 cup cooked chickpeas drained and rinsed if using canned
- 3 tablespoons Frank's Red Hot (or similar hot sauce)
- 1 tablespoon unsalted butter
- 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1/8 teaspoon onion powder
- 1/8 teaspoon smoked paprika
- Pinch of salt
- 3 to 4 handfuls loose lettuce
- 1/4 cup thinly sliced red onion
- 1 avocado cubed
- In a blender, add garlic and pulse until minced. Add in remaining ingredients for the dressing and pulse until just combined (any longer and the dressing might turn green). Place in refrigerator and allow to site (the dressing is best done ahead of time, up to the day before). Dressing will thicken up as it sits. Add a splash more buttermilk if needed.
- Heat a skillet over medium heat. Add the olive oil followed by the chickpeas. Cook chickpeas, shaking pan occasionally, until most have popped and turned golden, 4 to 6 minutes. In a small sauce pan, heat the red hot with the butter, garlic powder, smoked paprika, and salt until butter has melted. Whisk until smooth and combined. More or less butter can be added depending on desired level of heat. Stir in fried chickpeas and toss to coat. Let sit while assembling salad.
- Divide the salad ingredients into two bowls. Top with chickpeas and a drizzle of ranch.
The buffalo chickpeas are easy and make for a great topping/filling. Besides the suggestions below, I will add the buffalo chickpeas to tacos, quesadillas, or as mentioned above, a stuffed potato. Play around with the hot sauce/butter combination to find the right balance for you. I like my sauce with barely any butter but others like it 50/50.
BBQ Sauce: In place of the buffalo sauce, use bbq sauce. A fun alternative that works just as well with the ranch! I like this homemade bbq recipe.
Stuffed Pita: Place all the ingredients from the salad in a pita- a portable lunch!
Vegan: Ditch the butter (or use a vegan butter alternative to cool the sauce down) and use this herby hemp dressing in place of the ranch.
Featured Ingredient: Chickpeas
I always have chickpeas on hand for quick meals (like these chickpea burgers). I prep a big batch on the weekend, freeze in 2 cup portions, and pull out/thaw whenever I need them. A few other ways to use up those chickpeas in fun dinners: