Chopped Asparagus Salad Recipe

Make my Chopped Asparagus Salad recipe when the spring asparagus is plentiful and cheap, and you’re craving a bit of fresh crunch in your life after a long winter.  This cold asparagus salad becomes a complete meal with a few well chosen add ins like tuna and hard cooked egg, or turn it into an asparagus pasta salad ~ it’s up to you!

OMG asparagus is in season, and the grocery store has it stacked to the ceiling!  It’s so cheap, too, how can you not bring home multiple bundles of the stuff??

I say grab it and work out the details later.  The other day I made my ASPARAGUS SALAD WITH MIMOSA VINAIGRETTE, and today it stars in this chunky Mediterranean inspired salad ~ I’ll add whatever I’ve got in the pantry and in the fridge at the moment.  It’s a favorite around here.

In this case I’ve featured asparagus and other spring veggies like radishes, baby peppers, and carrots, but the recipe follows in the footsteps of my other chunky salad faves, like MEDITERRANEAN BEAN SALAD and COWBOY CAVIAR.  The through-line being a colorful mix of beans and veggies with a punchy vinaigrette.

The good news is that this salad holds up well; the veggies are raw or just barely blanched, and they maintain their crunch, so feel confident making it ahead of time.  There’s no mayo to spoil, either, so it works for outdoor occasions as the season progresses.  It also makes an ideal lunch to pack for work or school, and goes with just about anything, so tonight we’re having it alongside trout cooked in parchment paper :)

This recipe celebrates the changing season ~ it’s light, fresh, crunchy, and begs to be eaten outdoors, so dish yourself up a plate, and sit out in the backyard or on the deck and drink it all in!

I love the little edge that crumbled feta adds to this salad.  I’ve discovered that imported feta is far FAR better than the regular stuff, and I highly recommend trying it if you see it.  I’ve found Greek and Bulgarian, and it’s made with sheep’s milk.  The flavor is salty and complex ~ not as sharp as our cow’s milk feta here.

TIPS:

  • The key to using canned beans is to rinse them really well.  The ‘canned’ flavor rinses right off!  (And no matter what any recipe tells you, don’t use the canning liquid, unless you’re making ‘aquafaba‘)
  • I only plunge the asparagus into boiling water for 60 seconds.  Asparagus is best when it’s just barely heated through, and can go limp and drab in an instant.  Don’t over cook it!  (If your stalks are super thick they might take a little bit longer.)
  • I love to add some great canned tuna to this chopped asparagus salad, which makes it a complete meal.  I sometimes add a couple of hard cooked eggs, too.   If you’re feeling fancy you could use fresh salmon or shrimp.

Chopped Asparagus Salad

Category: salad, side dish, lunch

Yield: serves 6-8

Chopped Asparagus Salad

Ingredients

  • 1/2 pound trimmed asparagus (asparagus that has already had the lower 1/3 cut off)
  • 15 ounce can chickpeas (or other bean) well rinsed and drained
  • 1 carrot, peeled and chopped
  • 5 radishes, trimmed and cut into wedges or chunks
  • 1 Persian cucumber, chopped
  • 1/2 cup chopped red onion
  • 1/2 cup cherry tomato halves (cut in wedges if they are larger)
  • 1/2 cup colorful bell peppers, chopped
  • 1/2 cup black olives
  • 1/4 cup roasted red peppers (from a jar) chopped
  • salt and fresh cracked pepper to taste
  • 1/2 cup crumbled feta cheese
    garnish
  • fresh thyme
    dressing
  • 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 1/8 cup champagne vinegar (or your favorite)
  • juice of 1/2 lemon
  • 1/4 tsp dried thyme
  • pinch of salt and pepper

Instructions

  1. First I blanch the asparagus ever so briefly to take the raw edge off. I bring a pan of water to a boil, plunge the asparagus in, and remove it in exactly 60 seconds. Set the timer and don't leave it in the water any longer than that. (The only exception is if your asparagus stalks are very thick.) Rinse in cold water, or drop the asparagus into a bowl of ice water to stop the cooking and preserve the color. Once completely cold, dry on a clean towel. Slice the stalks into 2 inch pieces, on the diagonal.
  2. Add the asparagus, chickpeas, carrots, radishes, cukes, onions, tomatoes, peppers, and olives to a large mixing bowl. Toss with enough dressing to thoroughly moisten, and season with salt and pepper to taste. Let the salad chill in the refrigerator until ready to serve, give it at least an hour.
  3. Toss the salad and add more dressing if needed. Transfer to a serving bowl, top with the feta cheese and fresh thyme.
  4. To make the dressing: Whisk together the ingredients and taste to adjust any of them.
https://theviewfromgreatisland.com/chopped-asparagus-salad-recipe/

Make it your own ~

  • This salad is naturally gluten free and vegetarian.
  • Leave out the cheese for a vegan salad.
  • Omit the beans for Paleo, the cheese and beans for Whole 30.
  • Any type of canned bean will work, I almost used white beans ~ red kidneys would be great, too.

 

Don’t forget to pin this healthy Chopped Asparagus Salad!

Chopped Asparagus Salad, is a healthy gluten free bean salad perfect for spring. Add some great canned tuna and hard cooked eggs to make it a main course salad. #salad #asparagus #beansalad #glutenfree #healthy #nomayo #Mediterraneandiet #weightwatchers #feta #choppedsalad #lunch #sidedish #vegetarian #vegan

 

Some other asparagus recipes for spring ~

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28 Comments

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  • Reply
    KalynsKitchen
    March 14, 2018 at 5:34 pm

    YUM, this looks amazing!

  • Reply
    Antri C. | Beauty Blogger & Reviewer
    March 11, 2018 at 9:23 am

    Just pinned it on my Pinterest Board “Healthy Meets Tasty”. It was a must!! xoxo

    • Reply
      Sue
      March 11, 2018 at 10:31 am

      Thank you!

  • Reply
    Laura | Tutti Dolci
    March 7, 2018 at 9:00 pm

    Gorgeous salad, Sue! This looks so vibrant and fresh for spring! :)

  • Reply
    Kim
    March 6, 2018 at 5:16 pm

    Hi Sue:

    Gorgeous recipe. I’m a Garde Manger prep cook, this is right up my alley.

    Hubby will NOT go for beans.

    I was thinking of, at the end, adding roasted chickpeas…that might work right?

    • Reply
      Sue
      March 6, 2018 at 8:22 pm

      omg husband doesn’t like beans…what a drag. It’s like my situation living with a hubby who doesn’t go for beets in any form…sheesh! I think the idea of roasted chickpeas sounds really good :)

  • Reply
    Linda Teskey
    March 6, 2018 at 9:27 am

    Was in the local supermarket today and they had asparagus on sale for $1.99. Needless to say, I just finished making this salad with a few minor changes to ingredients. I tasted it before it went into the fridge and it’s soooo good. Now the countdown to lunch…… These are the kinds of things I should be eating and can tell you know that it will be on the menu often. Thanks for the recipe.

    • Reply
      Sue
      March 6, 2018 at 9:33 am

      Perfect! It should only get better tasting as it sits in the fridge, Linda, if you can wait ;)

  • Reply
    Marina
    March 6, 2018 at 1:57 am

    Looks so lovely. We will not have asparagus before May so there is still a long way to go. Right now we actually have no vegetables in true season in Denmark (beside Jerusalem artichokes).

    • Reply
      Sue
      March 6, 2018 at 8:40 am

      That’s so interesting Marina, there is such a huge difference between our climates…here in CA there is never a break from the fresh veggies, I sometimes wish there was!

      • Reply
        Marina
        March 11, 2018 at 3:30 am

        But why? I SO miss fresh spring veg in Marts and have all kind of little tricks to introduce at least some spring felling into my cooking this time of year. I would love to have something in true season. We do have fish in season, but they are not readily available in grocery stores. In Denmark you now have to buy fish online if you want something a little unusual and live outside the big cities. Like lots of other people I buy fish in subscription. They bring me a box of what ever they decide once a week and it comes complet with a suggested recipe and all. You can also buy subscriptions with everything needed for the suggested recipe and that is very popular. However I miss going to the fishmonger.

        • Reply
          Sue
          March 11, 2018 at 8:52 am

          That’s interesting…meal delivery services are big here too, where they deliver the ingredients with the easy recipe all ready to go. Maybe small specialty markets will be disappearing soon, that’s sort of sad.

  • Reply
    Lee
    March 5, 2018 at 5:33 pm

    Wow – I can’t wait to try this recipe! Looks delicious. :)

  • Reply
    2 Sisters Recipes
    March 5, 2018 at 5:29 pm

    Yum! This is our kind of salad and it’s calling our name!! Lovely photos Sue!

  • Reply
    Angie@Angie's Recipes
    March 5, 2018 at 6:27 am

    So colourful and pretty! An awesome salad to welcome spring!

  • Reply
    Jennifer @ Seasons and Suppers
    March 5, 2018 at 4:45 am

    Asparagus is starting to show up at great prices here, too (though local is a ways away yet :). Still, can’t wait to try this beautiful salad :)

    • Reply
      Sue
      March 5, 2018 at 8:47 am

      I once saw a documentary on asparagus and it’s incredibly labor intensive…it’s a wonder it’s ever affordable!

  • Reply
    Tricia @ Saving Room for Dessert
    March 5, 2018 at 3:57 am

    Love, love, love this salad and want a big bowl in my refrigerator now! What a glorious spring treat and so pretty too :)

    • Reply
      Sue
      March 5, 2018 at 8:46 am

      We’re working out way through that big bowl in our fridge now…good thing it keeps so well :)

  • Reply
    Chris Scheuer
    March 5, 2018 at 3:55 am

    This looks fabulous, Sue! A perfect way to herald in the new season!