Pesto Chickpea Sandwiches

Pesto Chickpea Sandwiches

Pesto Chickpea Sandwiches are ready in a flash! Mash chickpeas with store-bought basil pesto, sun-dried tomatoes, and almonds for a flavorful, hearty, and nutritious meal!

Pesto Chickpea Sandwich

Pesto Chickpea Sandwich

These Pesto Chickpea Sandwiches are part of our Back-To-School Lifesavers — a series of recipes that are intended to have little (or no) veggie chopping, minimal prep time, around 10 ingredients or less (not including pantry staples), and use kid-friendly ingredients. Click here to see all the recipes in the series!

Pesto Chickpea Sandwiches

When life is especially busy, big hearty sandwiches are one of my go-to choices for a fast dinner. A good BLT, Chicken Salad, Tuna Salad, and these Pesto Chickpea Sandwiches all fit the bill for a tasty, family-friendly dinner in a hurry!

When you load this chickpea mixture on a hearty sandwich bun with tons of veggies, these sandwiches can definitely be considered dinner fare — lunch shouldn’t get all the fun!

Even though these sandwiches are vegetarian, they have a very nourishing, meat-like filling that is loaded with (plant-based) protein. Pair the protein from the chickpeas with the good-for-you fats in the pesto and you’ll be amazed just how satiating these sandwiches are!

Ingredient shot-- image of all the ingredients used in this recipe

Ingredient shot-- image of all the ingredients used in this recipe

Pesto Chickpea Sandwich Ingredients

There are six primary ingredients in these sandwiches, with a few pantry staples to enhance the flavors. Let’s break down the ingredients below:

  1. Chickpeas: also called garbanzo beans — they’re one and the same!
  2. Pesto: more on this ingredient below!
  3. Mayo: use good, creamy, full-fat mayonnaise. We recommend Hellman’s/Best Foods®.
  4. Dijon: The Dijon adds a wonderful depth of flavor and a slight tang. Don’t use regular mustard; the two are very different.
  5. Sun-dried tomatoes: Pick the tomatoes packed in oil — those have the most flavor! While they’re generally pretty small as is, a quick coarse chop (or cut with sharp kitchen shears) ensures they’ll make it into every bite of the sandwiches. Our brand of choice is California® sun-dried tomatoes that have been julienne cut and have herbs added.
  6. Sliced almonds: The almonds add a great crunchy texture and flavor. We skip toasting them because this is a life-saver (quick) recipe!
  7. Pantry staples: The last few ingredients tie everything together and balance all the flavors nicely — honey, lemon, salt, and pepper.

QUICK TIP

Thoroughly rinse and drain the chickpeas. Wet chickpeas will water down the sandwich mixture and make it less flavorful.

Process shots-- add all ingredients to a bowl; mash together with a fork; add in almonds.

Process shots-- add all ingredients to a bowl; mash together with a fork; add in almonds.

Let’s Talk Pesto

Since these sandwiches are supposed to be super quick and require minimal ingredients, we use a store-bought pesto instead of making our own. And because the pesto is a big part of these Pesto Chickpea Sandwiches, make sure you use a really tasty one. I’d recommend getting refrigerated, freshly made basil pesto. You’ll find it near refrigerated fresh pasta and gourmet cheese. Rana’s® Basil Pesto is our personal favorite store-bought pesto sauce (not sponsored).

Freshly made pesto can certainly be spendy, but it lasts a good amount of time and a little goes a long way to add loads of flavor to so many dishes.

Consider adding some leftover pesto to some of our favorite dishes like: 

Process shots--mix all ingredients; add to toasted bread with toppings

Process shots--mix all ingredients; add to toasted bread with toppings

Pesto Chickpea Sandwiches: Serving Suggestions

  • We like this sandwich best on hearty toasted whole-grain bread or toasted ciabatta sandwich rolls. We love adding fresh, ripe tomatoes, ripe and creamy avocado, and lettuce. Other sandwich addition ideas: red onion, smashed ripe avocado, extra mayo or pesto, pickles, banana peppers, and micro-greens.
  • For a low-carb meal, layer this sandwich filling on butter lettuce leaves and enjoy it as a lettuce wrap.
  • Add the chickpea filling to warmed pita bread or naan with fresh veggies of your choice. Fold it up and eat it like a taco. 
  • Layer the chickpea filling on small toasted whole grain rolls for a fun appetizer or side dish.
  • Serve the chickpea mixture in a bowl (as a dip) with crackers!

Pesto Chickpea Sandwich

Pesto Chickpea Sandwich

More quick sandwiches or wraps

Pesto Chickpea Sandwiches

Pesto Chickpea Sandwiches are ready in a flash! Mash chickpeas with store-bought basil-pesto, sun-dried tomatoes, and almonds for a flavorful, hearty, and nutritious meal!

Pesto Chickpea Sandwiches

Pesto Chickpea Sandwiches are ready in a flash! Mash chickpeas with store-bought basil-pesto, sun-dried tomatoes, and almonds for a flavorful, hearty, and nutritious meal!

Ingredients

  • 1 can (15.5 oz; 439g) chickpeas, (also called garbanzo beans), drained & rinsed
  • 1/4 cup (40g) sun-dried tomatoes (packed in oil) Note 1
  • 1/4 cup (60g) prepared basil pesto Note 2
  • 3 tablespoons mayonnaise recommended: Best Foods/Hellmans
  • 1/2 tablespoon honey
  • 1 teaspoon EACH: lemon and Dijon mustard
  • Fine sea salt & pepper
  • 1/4 cup (27g) sliced almonds
  • Assembly: bread/sandwich rolls, lettuce, tomato, avocado, onion, etc. (whatever you like on a sandwich!)

Instructions

  • PESTO CHICKPEAS: Drain, rinse, and pat dry the chickpeas. Pour into a large bowl and add the rest of the ingredients except the almonds. Season to taste with salt and pepper (I add 1/4 teaspoon salt and 1/8 teaspoon pepper). Mix everything together with a fork, mashing chickpeas as you mix (you might need to use some muscle here; press them down firmly!). It’s okay if not all the chickpeas are mashed– we like lots of texture here! Once sufficiently mashed and mixed, stir in the sliced almonds.

  • ASSEMBLE: Toast the bread/sandwich rolls. Layer your sandwich faves — we like lettuce, tomato, and a ripe avocado sprinkled with some salt and pepper. Divide mashed pesto chickpeas between 4 sandwiches. Add the top piece of bread/sandwich roll. Enjoy immediately!

Recipe Notes

Note 1: Sun-dried tomatoes: Use the tomatoes packed in oil — those have the most flavor! While they’re generally pretty small as is, a quick coarse chop (or cut with sharp kitchen shears) ensures they’ll make it into every bite of the sandwiches. Our brand of choice is California® sun-dried tomatoes that have been julienne cut and have herbs added.
Note 2: Basil Pesto: I recommend getting refrigerated, freshly-made basil pesto, which you can find near refrigerated fresh pasta and gourmet cheese. Rana’s® Basil Pesto is our personal favorite store-bought pesto sauce.
Nutrition information doesn’t include bread and optional toppings.

Nutrition Facts

Serving: 1serving | Calories: 441kcal | Carbohydrates: 45g | Protein: 16g | Fat: 24g | Saturated Fat: 3g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 8g | Monounsaturated Fat: 7g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 6mg | Sodium: 263mg | Potassium: 936mg | Fiber: 12g | Sugar: 14g | Vitamin A: 465IU | Vitamin C: 7mg | Calcium: 135mg | Iron: 5mg

We do our best to provide accurate nutritional analysis for our recipes. Our nutritional data is calculated using a third-party algorithm and may vary, based on individual cooking styles, measurements, and ingredient sizes. Please use this information for comparison purposes and consult a health professional for nutrition guidance as needed.

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