I won’t keep you in suspense any longer. If you’ve never had Balela Salad – you need to try it. But if you’ve never had it, or heard of it, let me let you in on what it is. Balela is a Middle-Eastern garbanzo bean and black bean salad that is dressed with a tangy, herbed vinaigrette.
Balela is something that I typically make anytime I need to cook for vegans or vegetarians. It’s perfect since it’s filled the beans and fresh produce. The dressing is simple but incredibly delicious – just a tangy vinaigrette that’s seasoned with parsley and mint.
One of the great things about this salad is the beans. Beans are a great food. They’re perfect to fill you up and help satisfy you, but also add a nice dose of protein into your day. Both garbanzo beans and black beans are rich in vitamins and minerals and a great source of fiber.
Black beans are a great food for you if you’re watching your carbohydrate intake or your blood sugar. Even though black beans are high in carbohydrates, most of the carbohydrates in black beans is in a form that isn’t broken down by the body.
This means that it passes through the intestines without being broken down or absorbed, and since the starch isn’t converted into simple sugars, blood insulin levels don’t rise.
They aren’t just a good as a low glycemic food. Black beans are a great source of folate (important in prenatal health), fiber, vitamin B1 and iron.
Garbanzo beans are the other nutrient rich ingredient in this salad. Garbanzo beans are a great source of fiber, like black beans, and are a low glycemic food. They’re a good source of folate, iron and several minerals.
But this salad isn’t just full of beans. It has bright, fresh and ripe tomatoes. The tomatoes add a beautiful color to the salad, but they also add a bright and summery taste. Tomatoes are full of lycopenes, a type of antioxidant, as well as a great source of several vitamins – including vitamin C.
Herbed Vinaigrette. I am telling you, the dressing is the coup de grâce of this salad. Heart healthy olive oil and tangy apple cider vinegar create the perfect base for the vinaigrette. A little lemon juice adds a bright and refreshing citrus flavor.
Next up is the spicy flavor of the minced garlic. Topping off this amazing dressing is the fresh parsley and mint that add a bright and refreshing note to this salad.
You’ll end up falling in love with this salad. I can’t blame you. It’s delicious and simple. With the convenience of canned beans, it’s ready to go in 10 minutes – TEN MINUTES!!! You don’t have to do anything fancy or whisk the dressing by itself. Just toss everything into a bowl, mix and go!
This is such a versatile recipe. You can serve it as a side salad, top meat or fish with it, or you can use it as a dip for crackers, bread or pita chips. It’s also great in a sandwich or a wrap. I’m telling you…a ton of things can be done with this recipe!
Try these other Bean Salad Recipes!
- 1 15 oz can garbanzo beans (drained and rinsed)
- 1 15 oz can black beans (drained and rinsed)
- 1/2 medium white onion (finely diced)
- 1 large tomato (finely diced)
- 1/4 cup parsley (finely chopped)
- 1/4 cup fresh mint (finely chopped)
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- 1 tbsp apple cider vinegar
- 1 tbsp lemon juice
- 2 cloves of garlic minced
- Salt and pepper to taste
- Combine all ingredients together.
Entire recipe makes 6 servings
Serving size is about 1/2 cup
Each serving = 1 Point*
*based only ingredients with an SP Freestyle value