Monday, March 11, 2013

Mediterranean Spinach Salad Recipe with Garbanzos, Tomatoes, Radishes, and Sumac-Lemon Vinaigrette

This favorite Mediterranean Spinach Salad has the same Sumac-Lemon vinaigrette that makes me swoon over Fattoush!

Mediterranean Spinach Salad

I'm still intrigued with Yotam Ottolenghi's Jerusalem, and if you've seen that book you can understand how it inspired the Fattoush-Inspired Chopped Salad I posted a few weeks ago, and now this Mediterranean Spinach Salad with Garbanzos, Tomatoes, Radishes, and Sumac-Lemon Vinaigrette.  Every spring I get a serious craving for salads with tomatoes, and when I find cherry or grape tomatoes with that fresh tomato smell I usually have to have them even though they're out of season. 

This salad would be mind-blowingly good with ripe summer tomatoes, but it was still pretty darn spectacular with the tomatoes I found at Costco, and if you're still not acquainted with Sumac, this salad is a great opportunity to add it to your spice collection!

If you're one of those Sumac-deprived people who haven't tried it, Sumac tastes a lot like lemon, but more fruity and not quite so sour.  I love it sprinkled on hummus, salad, soup, vegetables, and even on eggs, and of course it's classic in the dressing for Fattoush, which is the salad that turned me into a confirmed sumac lover.  That same lemon-Sumac vinaigrette is a winner on this spinach salad, and I'd eat this salad any time of year for a Meatless Monday lunch or dinner.  (You can find more meatless recipes by using the label Meatless Monday or checking Vegetarian Recipes in the recipe index.  I'm also doing a meatless slow cooker recipe each Monday on Slow Cooker from Scratch.  For more Meatless Monday ideas from other bloggers, follow our Meatless Monday board on Pinterest, or check Meatless Monday at BlogHer.)

Drain canned garbanzos and rinse with cold water until no more foam appears.

While the beans are draining, whisk together the dressing ingredients.

Put drained garbanzos into a bowl and mix with about 2 T of the dressing.  Let the beans marinate while you prep the other ingredients.

Slice tomatoes, radishes, and green onions.

If the spinach has been in the fridge, I like to crisp it in very cold water in the salad spinner, and then spin until it's really dry.

Put the spinach in a bowl that's large enough to toss the ingredients and add the marinated garbanzos with dressing. 

Then add the tomatoes, radishes, and green onions and toss, adding more dressing as desired until the salad is at wet as you like it.  (You will probably use most of the dressing, but maybe not all of it.)

Then crumble in most of the Feta and toss again.  (Save a little Feta to crumble over each salad as you serve it.)  Serve right away and enjoy!

Mediterranean Spinach Salad with Garbanzos, Tomatoes, Radishes, and Sumac-Lemon Vinaigrette
(Makes about 4 salads; recipe created by Kalyn with inspiration from Jerusalem by Yotam Ottolenghi.)

1 can (15.5 oz.) garbanzo beans, rinsed and drained
5 oz. baby spinach, refreshed in cold water and spun dry if needed
1 cup sliced cherry or grape tomatoes
1 cup thinly sliced radishes
1/4 cup sliced green onion
about 1/3 cup crumbled Feta (more or less to taste)
fresh ground black pepper to taste
extra Sumac for finished salad, optional

Dressing Ingredients:
1/2 tsp. minced garlic (or more, to taste)
1/2 tsp. salt
2 T fresh-squeezed lemon juice
1 tsp. Sumac
3 T extra-virgin olive oil

Dump the garbanzo beans into a colander placed in the sink and rinse with cold water until no more foam appears.  Let beans drain while you make the dressing.  (You can blot dry with paper towels if you're in a hurry.)

Mash the garlic and salt together, then whisk in lemon juice, Sumac, and finally olive oil.  Put the garbanzo beans into a shallow bowl and toss with 2 T of the dressing mixture.  Let beans marinate while you prep other ingredients.

Slice the tomatoes, radishes, and green onions.  If you have a package of spinach that's been in the fridge a few days, I like to crisp it in very cold water in the salad spinner, then spin dry.   

Put the spinach in a bowl big enough to toss the ingredients.  Add the marinated garbanzos and dressing, tomatoes, radishes, and green onions and toss with enough dressing to moisten the salad to your liking.  Toss with most of the Feta, season with fresh ground black pepper, and serve, garnishing with a little bit of crumbled Feta on each salad and more Sumac sprinkled on if desired.

Click Here for Printer Friendly Recipe

South Beach Suggestions:
This healthful salad is loaded with low-glycemic ingredients, and this would make a wonderful main dish or side dish salad for any phase of the South Beach Diet.

Nutritional Information?
I chose the South Beach Diet to manage my weight partly so I wouldn't have to count calories, carbs, points, or fat grams, but if you want nutritional information for a recipe, I recommend entering the recipe into Calorie Count, which will calculate it for you.

More Meatless Salad Ideas with Sumac:
(Recipes from other blogs not always South Beach Diet friendly; check ingredients.)
Baby Spinach Salad with Date and Almonds ~ Lottie + Doof
Fattoush - Lebanese "Crumbled Bread" Salad ~ Kalyn's Kitchen
Shepherd's Salad ~ Give Recipe
Sauteed Chickpea Salad with Roasted Red Pepper, Capers, Mint, and Sumac ~ Kalyn's Kitchen
Cross-Mediterranean Caprese with Fried Onions and Sumac ~ Cafe Liz
(Want even more recipes? I find these recipes from other blogs using Food Blog Search.)

Blogger Disclosure:
Posts may include links to my affiliate account at, and Kalyn's Kitchen earns a few cents on the dollar if readers purchase the items I recommend, so thanks for supporting my blog when you shop at Amazon!
counter customizable free hit
Posts may include links to my affiliate account at, and this blog earns a few cents on the dollar if readers purchase the items I recommend, so thanks for supporting my blog when you shop at Amazon!


  1. I have sumac in my spice cabinet but definitely don't use it enough! I'm so intrigued by this vinaigrette! Sounds so tasty.

  2. Lovely salad! Have you had Yotam Ottolenghi's 'Mediterranean Feast' TV series in the US yet? He also did a program titled 'Jerusalem on a Plate'.

    He comes over as well on TV as he does in writing. One of my favourite chefs.

  3. Thanks Joanne. It's really good on so many things.

    Pat, I only have basic cable, so he may be on a channel I don't get, but haven't seen him on TV. That would be a treat though!

  4. I adore the flavor of Sumac (thanks to you!), but don't have any in my pantry. That needs to change. Lovely salad, Kalyn,

  5. Dara, I have two big jars of it; remind me when you're at my house and I'll give yo some!

  6. I'm a huge fan of sumac, too. This salad looks like a big burst of summer, and even though it's rushing the season a bit, I'm all for it.

  7. Lydia, every year I get these summer-foods cravings, and I just cannot wait!

  8. If this salad doesn't scream warmer weathers, I don't know what does. This looks amazing. I'm intrigued by the flavors of the dressing and love any excuse to eat radishes. They're a favorite of mine!

  9. I'm a big fan of sumac and love to use it many dishes. This salad sounds so flavorful! I love the crispy spinach in it! BTW thank you so much for giving a link to my shepherd's salad, in which it's a must to use sumac!

  10. Kelley, I am totally with you on the radish love! Glad you like it!

    Zerrin, my pleasure!

  11. I was just thinking today that I need to start taking some salads for lunch at school. But I need something substantial. This is perfect!

  12. I love the step by step photos and your salads always look so appetizing. You also remind me to use radishes, which are sadly under used this house.

  13. Pam, I'd love this salad for school. I'd marinate the beans until lunch; then toss the salad together when you eat it.

    Thanks Priya, me too!

    Jacqueline, love radishes. But they're probably underused here too.

  14. You have the most colorful food on the world wide web!

  15. Your salad looks like Spring is finally here, Kalyn. Snow is almost all gone....woohoo.
    I can't wait to try the sumac spice.

  16. Love that book, too. And your dressing looks fantastic. Can't wait to give it a spin!

  17. Kalyn, I have Za'tar, can I use that instead? Also, I think hearts of palm would be great in this salad. Of course, I think they're great in most salads! Thanks for the great recipes.

  18. Donna, thanks. (And not always, some of my food is decidedly brown!)

    Wanda, I have a lot of Sumac; stop by and I'll give you some.

    Thanks Abbe!

    Edith, using Za'atar will add some other flavors to the dressing, but I think it will still be good.

  19. Forgot to say, I think hearts of palm would be amazing in this salad! Great idea.

  20. The vinaigrette sounds terrific. I need to find some sumac.

  21. I bought Za'tar recently for hummus. Your recipe sounds like a terrific way to continue to use it.

  22. I just loooove this salad! I have sumac at home but I haven't try it yet, so I'll do it with this recipe.


I'm so happy you're taking the time to comment on Kalyn's Kitchen! I love hearing from people who stop by, especially if you're sharing feedback or asking questions about a recipe I've posted here.

I've recently changed my comment settings so people can comment without signing in, but you will need to check the box to show you're a live person, and comments on older posts won't show up until I publish them. Thanks for understanding!

Blogging tips