Vegan Chickpea Tuna Salad

Vegan chickpea tuna salad in a bowl and with bread on a plate

The Spruce Eats / Kristina Vanni

Prep: 15 mins
Cook: 0 mins
Total: 15 mins
Servings: 4 servings
Yield: 2 cups
Nutrition Facts (per serving)
176 Calories
9g Fat
21g Carbs
5g Protein
Show Full Nutrition Label Hide Full Nutrition Label
Nutrition Facts
Servings: 4
Amount per serving
Calories 176
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 9g 11%
Saturated Fat 1g 6%
Cholesterol 0mg 0%
Sodium 325mg 14%
Total Carbohydrate 21g 8%
Dietary Fiber 5g 17%
Total Sugars 6g
Protein 5g
Vitamin C 4mg 18%
Calcium 43mg 3%
Iron 1mg 5%
Potassium 169mg 4%
*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.
(Nutrition information is calculated using an ingredient database and should be considered an estimate.)

Keep your kitchen cool and enjoy a quick lunch with this vegan chickpea "tuna" salad. It's an easy and satisfying no-cook recipe that's ideal for summer. You'll enjoy the same basic taste of a traditional tuna salad but with a few simple changes that transform it into a light vegan meal.

In this cold salad, canned chickpeas take the place of tuna and are mashed to a similar consistency. Vegenaise replaces the typical mayonnaise, ensuring that the dish is egg free as well. Mix in the flavor combination of celery, dill, onion, parsley, and relish, and you have a tasty salad in just a few minutes. There are also lots of ways you can vary the flavor, especially since there's no tuna taste to inhibit the possibilities.

Enjoy the salad for lunch over bread or lettuce, or combine the two, add a tomato slice, and use spicy mustard or Vegenaise as a sandwich spread. Serve it with crackers for an appetizer or snack or take it along for a picnic.


  • 1 (15.5-ounce) can chickpeas, drained

  • 1/2 cup diced yellow onion

  • 1/4 cup diced celery, about 1 to 2 stalks

  • 1/4 cup vegan mayonnaise

  • 1 tablespoon fresh parsley

  • 1 tablespoon pickle relish

  • 1/2 teaspoon dried dill

  • 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt, or more to taste

  • 1/8 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, or more to taste

  • Bread slices, or lettuce, or crackers, for serving, optional

Steps to Make It

  1. Gather the ingredients.

    Ingredients for vegan chickpea tuna salad recipe gathered

    The Spruce Eats / Kristina Vanni

  2. Mash chickpeas in a medium mixing bowl with a potato masher or fork.

    Chickpeas being mashed with a fork in a bowl

    The Spruce Eats / Kristina Vanni

  3. Add remaining ingredients and mix well.

    Vegetables, mayonnaise, and seasonings added to mashed chickpeas in the bowl

    The Spruce Eats / Kristina Vanni

  4. Serve on bread, lettuce, or crackers.

    Vegan chickpea tuna salad in a bowl and spread on a slice of bread

    The Spruce Eats / Kristina Vanni


  • Though the salad is intended to be a little chunky, you can use a food processor to create the chickpea mash.
  • To use dried chickpeas, soak overnight, then drain and add them to a pot of boiling water. After 5 minutes, reduce the heat and simmer for about 1 hour. Once cooked, 3/4 cup of dried chickpeas is equivalent to a can of chickpeas (about 1 1/2 cups).
  • Any onion variety works well. Red onion is common in tuna salad because it has a mild flavor and adds a pop of color. Yellow or white onions would add a nice bite to the salad.
  • Store the salad in a covered container in the refrigerator for up to one week.

Recipe Variations

  • For a creamier salad, add more Vegenaise or incorporate some dairy-free sour cream.
  • Substitute spicy brown or Dijon mustard for the dill relish, or use diced dill pickles.
  • Give it a little tang with a tablespoon of fresh lemon juice.
  • Add chopped capers, garlic, olives, scallion, or shallot.
  • Chopped broccoli or sweet peppers add a nice crunch.
  • Mash avocado along with the chickpeas.
  • Use other herbs and spices from your pantry. Go with an Italian herb combo like basil and oregano, or add coriander, fennel, tarragon, or thyme.
  • Spice things up with curry powder, cayenne, or red pepper flakes. A splash of your favorite hot sauce or chopped chile pepper works, too.