This is the best vegan mashed chickpea sandwich you’ll ever have! It is a Vegan Caesar Smashed Chickpea Sandwich that is made with a delicious dairy-free and oil-free homemade Caesar dressing, giving it a delicious Caesar salad flavor. Fresh red onion gives it a nice kick and texture!
VEGAN CAESAR SMASHED CHICKPEA SANDWICH
I believe I have finally nailed the perfect Vegan Caesar Dressing. I’m so serious. It’s so delicious and tastes so authentic, I’m in love with it. And get this, it has NO nutritional yeast, no oil and is soy-free! So many versions contain added oils, mayo or soy.
Not just sharing a Caesar Dressing today, though. I’m sharing this Vegan Caesar Smashed Chickpea Sandwich recipe, of course! The inspiration for these came from going out with my girlfriends a week ago. My best friend ordered Caesar salad at the restaurant and kept talking about how much she had been craving Caesar salad and went on about how delicious it was. So, naturally, she then passed over the craving and grumble in my tummy.
Instead of just posting a Caesar salad, I thought I’d make a chickpea sandwich. I was flipping through Southern Living Magazine and saw a Caesar inspired chicken recipe in there and that got the ideas rolling for this recipe I’m sharing today. Obviously, that recipe is nowhere near vegan, had chicken, anchovies, mayo and oil, so I really had to do some magic to create something just as yummy but with none of the same ingredients.
I started with my 1st Caesar Dressing recipe that I posted over 4 years ago and tweaked it from there. That recipe is good, is loved by readers with over 100 comments, but it’s older and honestly, I knew I could amp it up and make it taste even more like a true Caesar.
THE SECRET TO THE BEST VEGAN CAESAR DRESSING
The artichoke brine is a game-changer here. The dressing is fabulous on its own and chilled overnight, it becomes a dip like consistency. I wanted it this thick so that it holds up well (not runny) in a sandwich.
HOW TO MAKE OIL-FREE VEGAN CAESAR DRESSING
It’s so easy to make oil-free dressings. I share all my tips on this How to Cook and Bake Without Oil. For this Caesar dressing, you will need a Vitamix or food processor.
First, gather the following ingredients (+salt/pepper/water):
- artichoke brine from a can (one soaked in water, not oil!)
- fresh lemon juice
- Dijon mustard
- garlic powder
- red onion
- bread of choice
Next, add all of the Caesar dressing ingredients to a high-powered blender and blend until completely smooth. It is a thick dressing, so you will have to scrape down the sides a couple of times to get it all to blend.
Add the chickpeas and ONLY 6 tablespoons of the dressing and 1/4 teaspoon salt to a large bowl. Reserve the rest to make more sandwiches or use in salads. Mash until the dressing is evenly incorporated and the chickpeas are mashed but still have texture. Add the red onion and stir until mixed.
Assemble your sandwiches with extra Oil-free Vegan Caesar Dressing on the bread!
Devour! This recipe is perfect for the summer too because it’s HOT and no cooking required and takes just minutes to put together!
I hope you all love this Vegan Caesar Smashed Chickpea Sandwich! Be sure to leave feedback below after you make it!
Vegan Caesar Smashed Chickpea Sandwich
VEGAN CAESAR DRESSING
- 4 tablespoons (60g) artichoke brine from a can (one soaked in water, not oil!-linked here!)
- 4 tablespoons (60g) fresh lemon juice
- 4 tablespoons (60g) water
- 2 tablespoons (30g) Dijon mustard
- 1 cup (140g) raw, unsalted cashews
- 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
- 1/4 - 1/2 teaspoon fine sea salt (start with 1/4 and add more if desired)
FOR THE SANDWICH
- 1 15 oz can of low-sodium chickpeas, drained & rinsed
- 6 tablespoons (90g) of the above dressing
- 3 tablespoons (45g) finely diced red onion
- 1/4-1/2 teaspoon or more of salt
- bread of choice
- optional: any toppings you like (I used cherry tomatoes, lettuce and hemp seeds/sesame seeds)
- I use this scale.
- Add all of the Caesar dressing ingredients to a high-powered blender and blend until completely smooth. It is a thick dressing, so you will have to scrape down the sides a couple of times to get it all to blend. Keep going until completely smooth. If you do NOT have a Vitamix, then you will need to soak your cashews overnight to get them really soft and then process in a food processor, which I find makes things smoother than a weak blender. It should be bold, rich in flavor and a salty bite...just like Caesar.
- The dressing should be nice, thick and creamy. I wanted it thick so it goes well and sticks to the chickpeas. The dressing is fabulous on it's own and chilled overnight, it becomes a thick dip-like consistency. Thin out with a bit of water if wanting to use on a salad or just use thick to dip veggies in or make more chickpea mixture. It's thickness is great to use as a spread on the sandwich.
- Add the chickpeas and ONLY 6 tablespoons (90g) of the dressing and 1/4 teaspoon salt to a large bowl. Reserve the rest to make more sandwiches or use in salads. Mash until the dressing is evenly incorporated and the chickpeas are mashed but still have texture. Add the red onion and stir until mixed. Taste and add any more salt if desired. Depending on how salty (or not) your chickpeas were, it will affect how much salt you'll need. I also liked a good turn of freshly ground black pepper. I did place the mixture in the fridge to chill and set the flavors for awhile before eating.
- When assembling the sandwiches, I like to spread extra Caesar dressing on the bread like a "mayo" and as an extra boost of Caesar flavor. Assemble sandwiches as desired!