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Celery, Chickpea and Feta Salad

In a perfect world, all recipes would be this fast, this easy, and have only a few ingredients. The truth is, the world isn’t perfect, and recipes like this celery, chickpea and feta salad are few and far between. (Another reason why you should add this to your quick meal repertoire!)
Celery is sort of a mystery vegetable. We know it’s good in soups, and for ants-on-a-log, but it’s usually the last item left on the veggie tray at the office party. Celery is loaded with antioxidants, including phytonutrients which have proven anti-inflammatory effects. Celery also contains vitamins A, C and K, as well as potassium and folate. Like chickpeas, celery is a good source of fiber. 

Chickpeas are such a good go-to source for plant based protein, fiber and folate, as well as other vitamins and minerals. Protein and fiber work together to slow digestion, helping to promote a feeling of fullness. While chickpeas aren’t a source of complete protein, they are considered a higher quality plant based protein than most legumes because they contain almost all of the essential amino acids except methionine. When paired with a whole grain such as quinoa, barley, or whole wheat couscous they supply all nine of the essential amino acids. (Essential amino acids are those that our body can’t produce and that must be obtained through our diet.)
Aside from the nutritional benefits of this recipe, you just can’t beat the prep time! 
Give it a try next time you’re in a rush! 

Hands-on time 10 minutes. Total prep time 10 minutes.
Serves: 6

INGREDIENTS:

6 stalks of celery, chopped
2 cans (@15 oz) chickpeas, well drained
10 oz. grape tomatoes, halved
1 cup crumbled feta cheese
4 TBLSP extra virgin olive oil
4 TBLSP balsamic vinegar
2 cloves of garlic, minced *To make life simpler, I buy Spice World brand ready-to-use minced garlic 
2 tsp pepper
½ tsp salt
½ cup fresh-chopped parsley
½ cup fresh-chopped thyme

DIRECTIONS:
Gently combine celery, chickpeas, tomatoes, feta, olive oil, and balsamic vinegar in a bowl. Mix in garlic, pepper and salt. Sprinkle with fresh herbs (parsley and thyme) over the top, and stir gently to combine.
Refrigerate leftovers.
Thanks to Smiths Grocery Store for this wonderful recipe!