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This 5-Ingredient Vegan Tuna Salad Is So Delicious (And Quick To Make)

Eliza Sullivan
Food Writer By Eliza Sullivan
Food Writer
Eliza Sullivan is a food writer and SEO editor at mindbodygreen. She writes about food, recipes, and nutrition—among other things. She studied journalism at Boston University.
This 5-Ingredient Vegan "Tuna" Salad Is Full Of Gut-Healthy Ingredients
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A vegan version of a classic is always a welcome addition to the menu—after all, they're classics for a reason, and just because you're eating plant-based doesn't mean you shouldn't enjoy them.

This update on tuna salad swaps in tinned chickpeas for the usual tinned tuna, which means it's still relatively packed with protein—and even more fiber than the original. The trick is to remove the skins from the chickpeas before you mix the salad. "It makes for a much better texture," writes Kate Friedman in 5-Ingredient Vegan Cooking. "Red onion and pickle brine make this tuna salad stand-in every bit as good as the original."

Those ingredients contribute their own benefits, too. Pickles and brine add some good gut-supporting probiotics into the mix (granted they're properly fermented pickles). Another note on the pickles: "Not all dill pickles are created equal," reminds Friedman. "For this recipe, I like to use dill pickles that have a spicy, mustardy flavor. Look for a brine that includes mustard seeds and red pepper flakes."

With a quick ingredient list (and just-as-quick assembly time), this dish is the perfect thing to make for lunch on a busy day.

One-Dish Chickpea "Tuna" Salad

Serves 2



  • 1 14-oz. can chickpeas, drained and rinsed 
  • ¼ cup vegan mayonnaise 
  • 2 tbsp. dill pickles, finely chopped + 1 tbsp. dill pickle brine (see Recipe Note) 
  • 2 tbsp. finely diced red onion 
  • 2 tbsp. sliced almonds 
  • Salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste 


  1. Drain and rinse the chickpeas with cold water. Lay them out on a clean kitchen towel. Lay another clean kitchen towel on top, and gently rub the chickpeas between the two towels. This will loosen the skins. Continue this process until most of the skins have been removed. The more you can remove, the better, but you do not need to remove them all. 
  2. Using a potato masher, gently mash the chickpeas. Leave some larger pieces intact. Add the mayonnaise, pickles, brine, red onion, and sliced almonds. Stir to combine. 
  3. Refrigerate the salad for about 1 hour, until chilled, then season with salt and pepper. 

Reprinted with permission from 5-Ingredient Vegan Cooking by Kate Friedman, Page Street Publishing, Co. © 2021. Photo credit: Kate Friedman.

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