Aug 21, 2013

Chickpea of the Sea “Tuna” Salad + Vegan Cashew Mayonnaise

Some people have never been big fans of tuna salad. I used to love it. I can’t believe it’s taken me this long to try a mock tuna salad. I made it for lunch and it’s delicious!

Using chickpeas (garbanzo beans) is also a great way to enjoy some plant-strong protein. And the chickpeas themselves have an uncanny similarity in smell to tuna! I never noticed it before I made this recipe. The finished dish is very similar (not identical) to tuna salad. It’s not as strong in that fishy-taste way. There’s just a light, hint of sea flavor from the sea vegetable that’s used. Fabulous.

Sea vegetables are a great vegan source of a broad array of minerals including iron and (in the brown varieties) iodine. They are an excellent source of vitamin K, a very good source of the B-vitamin folate, and magnesium, and a good source of iron and calcium, and the B-vitamins riboflavin and pantothenic acid. I always have a shaker container of mixed, dried sea vegetables on our table to sprinkle on our plates, ensuring we get enough iodine and other important nutrients that these foods offer.
You can use nori, dulse flakes, kelp powder or whatever you happen to have on hand for this salad. Just make sure that you get your sea vegetables from a clean, reputable source to avoid the possibility of contamination from ocean waters.


~ for the salad

  • 1 can no-salt-added chickpeas (Eden brand is best)
  • 1/2 red onion, chopped
  • 1 celery rib, chopped
  • 1 tsp Spike salt-free seasoning
  • 1 sheet of nori or 1 tsp dulse or kelp flakes/powder
  • 1 tsp tamari or other low sodium soy sauce (optional)
  • some chopped fresh herbs of your choice (I used dill)

~ for the mayonnaise

  • 1 cup raw cashews
  • 1/2 cup water
  • juice of 1 lemon
  • 2 TBS mustard of your choice


  1. Mash up the chickpeas in a bowl using a fork or a potato masher.
  2. If using a nori sheet, tear it up and place it in a nut/seed grinder to grind.
  3. Add all remaining salad ingredients to the chickpeas and mix well.
  4. Place all mayonnaise ingredients into a high-powered blender and blend until smooth.
  5. Mix however much mayo you want to use into the salad.
  6. Serve on bread or with a salad or other fresh veggies.

Makes enough for 4 large sandwiches. Enjoy!

Healthy trails,

4 responses to “Chickpea of the Sea “Tuna” Salad + Vegan Cashew Mayonnaise”

  1. I love mock tuna! Thanks for the reminder that I haven't had it in a while. And I appreciate your easy-to-make mayo too!

  2. Helyn says:

    Thank you! I love it too. Glad you like the mayo 🙂

  3. Susan says:

    This recipe looks delicious. One thing, though. I no longer buy Eden canned beans, which used to be my favorite. There is a boycott against Eden:

  4. Helyn says:

    Hi Susan,

    Well this is a touchy issue, isn’t it? I have purchased and will continue to purchase Eden foods. Their products are top notch and they have provided the public with the healthiest of food options for dozens of years. They were also one of the first food companies to take a stand against GMOs over 20 years ago. Whether or not the company is forced by Obamacare to pay for supplying its employees with birth control has nothing to do with the quality of their products.

    I was a small business owner for many years and, frankly, I would feel that my constitutional rights had been compromised if I were told what insurance I could and could not legally make available to my employees. The government has gotten too big and small business owners are suffering because of it.

    The 34% of Eden employees who opt in for prescription coverage can make this an ethical dilemma and blow it up like the Hobby Lobby debacle, or they can stop whining and purchase their own contraceptive drugs and devices and be happy that they are afforded health insurance at all, as well as their other employee benefits.

    I usually do not bring up the subject of politics nor religion on my blog, but since you brought this boycott to light, I felt compelled to add my 2 cents.

    Sorry, Susan, but I guess we can agree to disagree on this one!

    All the best,

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