Holidays and Entertaining/ Vegan Main Dishes/ Vegan Recipes/ Vegan Salads/ Vegan Side Dishes

Chickpea and Quinoa Salad in Sweet Pepper Boats

Quinoa and chickpea-stuffed bell peppers

These appealing bell pepper “boats” are filling enough to serve as a main dish for any festive meal. Perfectly portable, too, they make a wonderful picnic entree or a change of pace from sandwiches for a hearty lunch. Recipe contributed by Laura Theodore, from Jazzy Vegetarian Classics: Vegan Twists on American Family Favorites* © 2013 BenBella Books, reprinted by permission. Photos by Hannah Kaminsky.

Serves: 8 moderately; 4 larger servings

  • 1 cup quinoa, rinsed thoroughly and drained
  • 2 cups filtered or spring water
  • 1 can (15 ounces) chickpeas, drained and rinsed
  • ½ cup fresh flat-leaf parsley, chopped
  • 1 pint grape or cherry tomatoes, halved
  • ¾ cup kalamata olives, pitted and sliced and sliced
  • 1 teaspoon lemon zest
  • 2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil, plus more as needed
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1/2 teaspoon chili powder, plus more as needed
  • ¼ teaspoon sea salt, plus more as needed
  • ¼ teaspoon turmeric
  • 4 large sweet red, yellow, or orange peppers, or a combination
  • Chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley, for garnish (optional)

Put the quinoa and water in a medium sauce pan and bring to a boil over medium heat. Decrease the heat to medium-low, cover, and simmer for 15 to 17 minutes, until all of the liquid is absorbed. Fluff with a fork.

Transfer to a medium bowl. Let cool (see note). Put the cooled quinoa, chickpeas, parsley, tomatoes, and olives in a large bowl. Put the lemon zest, lemon juice, olive oil, garlic, chili powder, salt, and turmeric in a small bowl and whisk briskly until smooth. Pour the dressing over the quinoa mixture and stir gently to incorporate.

Quinoa and chickpea-stuffed bell peppers recipe

Taste and add more chili powder, salt, and/or olive oil if needed. Cover and refrigerate for 2 hours to let the flavors blend.

Right before serving, split the peppers in half lengthwise and seed them. Scoop the quinoa mixture into the pepper halves. Garnish with parsley, if using.

Note: The quinoa may be cooked up to 24 hours in advance and stored in the refrigerator.

Quinoa and chickpea-stuffed bell peppers

Nutritional Information: 
Per serving: 253 calories; 9.6g fat; 596.5mg sodium; 376.6mg potassium; 36.7g carbs; 5.8g fiber; 3g sugar; 6.6g protein

*This post contains affiliate links. If the product is purchased by linking through this review, VegKitchen receives a modest commission, which helps maintain our site and helps it to continue growing!

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  • Reply
    Linda Osborn
    December 30, 2013 at 10:02 am

    Beautiful colors—-already has my mouth watering to try it! Yummmm.

  • Reply
    December 30, 2013 at 10:03 am


  • Reply
    December 30, 2013 at 10:06 am

    Just started cooking with quinoa and really enjoy it. Can’t wait to try this recipe!

  • Reply
    December 30, 2013 at 10:08 am

    This sounds yummy! I love the combo of Chick Peas and Quinoa!

  • Reply
    Justine M. Vickers
    December 30, 2013 at 10:10 am

    Hmmmmm….this looks delicious! I must make this on my day off!

  • Reply
    December 30, 2013 at 10:11 am

    Sounds delish!

  • Reply
    Jean Hayes
    December 30, 2013 at 10:12 am

    These look beautiful and delicious. I would probably leave out the oil and add some vinegar, but gorgeous!

  • Reply
    Kathy Cultice
    December 30, 2013 at 10:13 am

    This sounds delicious! I can’t wait to try it!

  • Reply
    December 30, 2013 at 10:14 am

    I can’t wait to try these. They look delicious! My Christmas dinner all came from recipes from your website (and book). Thank you for publishing such wonderful recipes!

  • Reply
    December 30, 2013 at 10:17 am

    Great recipe! Hope I win!

  • Reply
    December 30, 2013 at 10:22 am

    Must try this soon!!

  • Reply
    December 30, 2013 at 10:23 am

    Looks Great!! Wonderful dish for anytime 🙂

  • Reply
    December 30, 2013 at 10:27 am

    This looks good.

  • Reply
    December 30, 2013 at 10:31 am

    So colorful! Sounds delicious!

  • Reply
    December 30, 2013 at 10:35 am

    Looks good!

  • Reply
    December 30, 2013 at 10:36 am

    Wonderful way to use quinoa.

  • Reply
    December 30, 2013 at 10:40 am

    I love the Jazzy Vegetarian! Thisrecipe looks fantastic!

  • Reply
    Linda Scherer
    December 30, 2013 at 10:43 am

    always love stuffed peppers

  • Reply
    December 30, 2013 at 10:43 am

    My husband would love this! 🙂

  • Reply
    Janelle Humphreys
    December 30, 2013 at 10:46 am

    I love trying these recipes.

  • Reply
    Heather Williams-McKenzie
    December 30, 2013 at 10:46 am

    I love the colors, and you could omit the peppers if you didn’t have them and serve as a grain salad. Looks like it would be great for school lunches!

  • Reply
    December 30, 2013 at 10:48 am

    Love this recipe and jazzy vegetarian!

  • Reply
    Debbie Johnson
    December 30, 2013 at 10:50 am

    I very recently started the “Eat to Live” healthy eating program and I will definitely be
    trying these with my family because they look delicious!!!!

  • Reply
    Alison L.
    December 30, 2013 at 11:00 am

    This looks like a delicious recipe…hope to try it soon! I recently discovered Laura’s show on Create and have my Tivo recording them. I’d love to have her book – much easier than trying to find the recipes online! 🙂

  • Reply
    December 30, 2013 at 11:01 am

    I’m making this one today!!!

  • Reply
    December 30, 2013 at 11:11 am

    Sounds delicious. I just discovered quinoa – yay!

  • Reply
    December 30, 2013 at 11:13 am

    I know this sounds stupid but I have still not tried quiona I’m just a little on the nervous side on trying to cook it.

  • Reply
    Vinny's Mom
    December 30, 2013 at 11:17 am

    Kalamata love!!! And lemon zest? AND garlic? It’s like you know me & want me to be happy!

  • Reply
    December 30, 2013 at 11:19 am

    Yum I cannot wait to make this!

  • Reply
    Heather Koch
    December 30, 2013 at 11:23 am

    This does look really yummy and seems like something i would try.

  • Reply
    December 30, 2013 at 11:25 am

    Sounds yummy! Can’t wait to try it!!

  • Reply
    Teddi Keefer
    December 30, 2013 at 11:38 am

    Ohhhhh Looks great!

  • Reply
    December 30, 2013 at 11:45 am

    Looks divine!

  • Reply
    Trisha Schnatterly
    December 30, 2013 at 11:46 am

    Thank you for another great recipe!

  • Reply
    robbie thomas
    December 30, 2013 at 11:51 am

    Beautiful colors.with beautiful flavors to match. Can’t wait to try it Yummy

  • Reply
    chris reed
    December 30, 2013 at 12:05 pm

    Mmmm………………………. love stuffed peppers!!!!

  • Reply
    tye block
    December 30, 2013 at 12:08 pm

    This looks like a wonderful addition to my New Years meal of black-eyed peas and greens!YUM!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • Reply
    Sherry Farley
    December 30, 2013 at 12:15 pm

    This looks wonderful!

  • Reply
    December 30, 2013 at 12:19 pm

    I love this recipe! I have tried a few of the Jazzy Vegetarian recipes, so yummy! I love this site too! My friend sent me a recipe from here and as soon as I saw it I knew I had to like you guys on Facebook! I’ve been making lots of your recipes!

  • Reply
    Terri Cole
    December 30, 2013 at 12:25 pm

    Wow, that looks really good!

  • Reply
    December 30, 2013 at 12:36 pm

    Chickpeas are a favorite of mine 🙂

  • Reply
    December 30, 2013 at 12:42 pm

    I cook beans in a pressure cooker as part of my daily diet, and I have found chickpeas to be the most versatile. I’m definitely trying out this recipe.

  • Reply
    December 30, 2013 at 1:00 pm

    I’ll be trying this whether I win or not (but I hope I win).

  • Reply
    Lizzie Crowl
    December 30, 2013 at 1:06 pm

    Perfect for dinner tonight’s Meatless Monday celebration.

  • Reply
    December 30, 2013 at 1:15 pm

    This sounds SO good. I just might make this for lunch today. 😉

  • Reply
    December 30, 2013 at 1:18 pm

    Yummy. Always looking for new quinoa recipes and love chickpeas so its a winner!

  • Reply
    December 30, 2013 at 1:20 pm

    Love new recipes for Quinoa, thanks.

  • Reply
    Norma Romero
    December 30, 2013 at 1:29 pm

    Quinoa is so good and healthy for us!!

  • Reply
    December 30, 2013 at 2:09 pm

    I just did the recepie. Instead of the basil I used parsley.. It is delicious!!!

  • Reply
    December 30, 2013 at 2:11 pm

    Yummie!! Must try this! May even be making it for nice snack on New Year’s Eve …

  • Reply
    Jamie Lee
    December 30, 2013 at 2:29 pm

    I love Laura and her show The Jazzy Vegetarian! As always, this looks delicious!

  • Reply
    Name *Kari
    December 30, 2013 at 2:31 pm

    I love to watch her show on PBS!

  • Reply
    Kate C
    December 30, 2013 at 2:39 pm

    This looks delicious and easy!

  • Reply
    December 30, 2013 at 2:39 pm

    This is definately one I will try!

  • Reply
    Jamie Wilkinson
    December 30, 2013 at 2:41 pm

    This dish looks absolutely beautiful and relatively easy to make. I can hardly wait to try it.

  • Reply
    December 30, 2013 at 2:41 pm

    Love the colors and the healthy choice!

  • Reply
    December 30, 2013 at 2:41 pm

    This looks amazing. I love her show!

  • Reply
    December 30, 2013 at 2:44 pm

    This looks delicious!

  • Reply
    December 30, 2013 at 2:45 pm

    This sounds so good!!

  • Reply
    Nicole mauer
    December 30, 2013 at 2:55 pm

    Entering contest. And saving recipe !!

  • Reply
    December 30, 2013 at 3:08 pm

    I love all of Laura’s recipes! She makes this lifestyle so accessible to everyone!

  • Reply
    December 30, 2013 at 3:22 pm

    I have a teenage vegetarian and am still learning how to make nutritious meals the whole family can enjoy. Thanks for the opportunity to win such an amazing cookbook to add to my kitchen.

  • Reply
    December 30, 2013 at 3:24 pm

    Delicious looking, colorful meal! Can’t wait to cook it up. And it would be awesome to win that cookbook. 😉

  • Reply
    December 30, 2013 at 4:10 pm

    looks good can’t wait to try, loved the show on PBS

  • Reply
    Ernest Mason
    December 30, 2013 at 4:20 pm

    I’m going to give this a try!

  • Reply
    December 30, 2013 at 5:33 pm

    Love chickpeas

  • Reply
    Rhiannon Rees
    December 30, 2013 at 5:34 pm

    Looks delish! Would love to win this book!

  • Reply
    faye clark
    December 30, 2013 at 6:05 pm

    Yummm! Adding peppers to this wks grocery list !

  • Reply
    December 30, 2013 at 6:13 pm

    Looks delicious! Can’t wait to try it in summer!

  • Reply
    December 30, 2013 at 9:29 pm

    I’m so tired of all the Christmas goodies and this looks amazing! It combines a number of my favorite foods: quinoa, chick peas and peppers. I will definitely be trying this SOON! Thanks for sharing the recipe.

  • Reply
    December 31, 2013 at 12:46 am

    This looks so good!!! Love quinoa and chickpeas!!!

  • Reply
    December 31, 2013 at 12:52 am

    Yum! This looks so good! I’ll have to try it.

  • Reply
    December 31, 2013 at 2:40 am

    Sounds yummy, definitely will try.

  • Reply
    Lynn f
    December 31, 2013 at 6:48 am

    Oh my this looks wonderful. I see this in my near future.

  • Reply
    Carrie Bello
    December 31, 2013 at 7:45 am

    This salad looks yummy! Am so excited for 2014 to really work on new recipes!

  • Reply
    Candyce C. Fleming
    December 31, 2013 at 8:10 am

    I have made this and it is delicious! I have never had a Laura Theodore recipe fail me!

  • Reply
    Janet Basinger
    December 31, 2013 at 9:23 am

    How do you pronounce quinoa? Is quinoa a complete protein? I would love to win this book! 🙂

    • Reply
      December 31, 2013 at 9:47 am

      Janet, it’s pronounced KEEN-wa. And it is a complete protein, or nearly so.

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