I’ve always had a strange relationship with tuna salad. I feel like I want to like it, but I never really do. The tart, briny taste of it is attractive…the oily, stomach-churny bit afterward, less so. The process of making tuna salad seems to be a rather grim task- the sink, can opener, and countertops all end up slightly smelly, as do my hands. It never occurred to me that I might get a similar result without actually using tuna. Earlier this year, I had a faux tuna salad made with lentils that was delightful. This one we’re making today uses chickpeas as a replacement for the tuna (because canned meat-type items aren’t quite my favorite thing). The mister prefers this to traditional tuna salad and I must say, I do too. The key with this recipe to ensure that you’re including the capers. The capers contribute a briny, almost ocean-like taste to the finished product that helps mimic fish. We use Duke’s mayo, but you can use whatever you like- you could easily make this a vegan recipe by using a vegan mayo alternative.
This is a simple to put together recipe and it works really well for lunchtime sandwiches or as a protein addition to a green salad. It’s very likely that you might have most of these ingredients in your pantry so you can get started right away!
Tuna ish Salad*
2 cans of chickpeas (drain & rinse) or soak your own beans
⅔ cup of dill relish (or cut up dill pickles)
¼ cup of capers
2 stalks of celery finely chopped
2 tablespoons of chopped fresh parsley (optional)
2-3 slices of onion, finely chopped (optional)
3-4 tablespoons of Duke’s mayonnaise (or adjust based on your preference)
Salt & pepper to taste (we used ~20 turns of pepper)
Place the chickpeas in a container or bowl with a flat bottom. Use a potato masher (or fork) to crush ¾ of the chickpeas. Leave some of the chickpeas (as much as you prefer) whole for texture. Combine the next 5 ingredients and mix them into the crushed chickpeas. Add the mayonnaise and mix well. Add salt & pepper to taste. Chill for at least 30 minutes prior to using.
I hope you’ll enjoy this simple tuna alternative as much as we do. I can’t wait to hear what y’all think!
*Name created by Lacy of Catch Me Crafting