Friends, the vegan “tuna” melt is a great soup companion! It’s no secret that we adore sandwiches of all kinds, and this plant-based version of a “tuna” sandwich is no exception. It’s hearty, classic, creamy, cheesy, and full of fiber-rich chickpeas!
What’s better? It’s ready in 30 minutes and only requires 9 ingredients, most of which you probably already have on hand! Let’s get started on lunch!
The fiber-rich chickpeas are the foundation of this delicious sammie! They’re quite good at imitating the flavor of canned tuna, and they have a meaty, nutty flavor that we really enjoy.
We start with mashing the chickpeas by hand and combining them with creamy vegan mayo, zesty dijon mustard, sliced shallots, dill pickles, and the all-important salt and pepper! YUM
The vegan “tuna” is extremely creamy once blended! It’s salty and sharp enough to cut through the richness of vegan mayo and keep you coming back for more.
For a toastier finish, we smeared vegan butter on one side of our bread. And it’s true: any type of bread will suffice! White, wheat, sourdough, and gluten-free bread are all excellent choices.
Then, for added meltiness, create our Easy Vegan Cheddar Cheese or use your favorite store-bought vegan cheese!
Finally, we put our vegan tuna melt together in the pan! Bread, cheese, “tuna,” more bread, and then flip! We like our bread to be toasted and caramelized, and we make sure the cheese is nice and melty. Have you started drooling yet?
& it’s timeless!
It’s great on its alone, but it’s also great with soup or salad for a filling, protein-packed lunch or dinner!
Vegan “Tuna” Melts are quick and easy to make.
Smashed chickpeas make a savory, cheesy Vegan “Tuna” Melt! For soups and salads, this is the ideal quick lunch partner. It just takes 30 minutes and 9 ingredients!
1 batch Easy Vegan Cheddar Cheese (or 4-8 slices store-bought vegan cheese — Chao is our favorite)
1 can chickpeas (15 oz.) well rinsed and drained
2 tbsp mayonnaise (vegan) (for store-bought, we like Follow Your Heart Vegenaise)
1 teaspoon mustard
1/8 teaspoon each of black pepper and sea salt
1-2 tablespoons shallot, finely chopped (or sub red onion)
2 tbsp dill pickles, coarsely chopped
8 pieces of bread (any type of bread, even gluten-free / we used standard sandwich bread)
4 tbsp vegan butter (to butter bread / Miyokos is our favorite)
If you haven’t already made the Easy Vegan Cheddar Cheese, do so now. Then it’s time for a sandwich!
Rinse and drain your chickpeas thoroughly, then pat them dry with a clean dish towel to absorb any residual moisture. In a medium mixing basin, mash the chickpeas with a potato masher or fork until no large chunks of chickpeas remain, but before it gets too smooth or pasty – you want some texture.
Add the vegan mayonnaise, mustard, salt and pepper, shallot, and pickles to the chickpeas and stir completely. Taste and adjust seasonings as necessary, adding more mayonnaise for smoothness, dijon for brightness, or black pepper for heat.
Over medium heat, heat a medium cast-iron or nonstick skillet.
Butter one side of each slice of bread in the meantime. Place a slice of bread butter side down on a heated skillet, then gently put a semi-thick layer of vegan cheddar cheese (3-4 Tbsp) on the toast (or place a slice or two of cheese down if using store-bought). Spread a generous 1/3 cup of the vegan “tuna” on top of the cheese, smoothing it out evenly with a fork. Place another slice of bread on top of the “tuna,” butter side up.
Cook the sandwich for 2-3 minutes over medium heat, checking the underside of the bread to see if it’s getting crispy. Flip the bread once the bottom slice is browned. Cook for an additional 2-3 minutes, or until both sides are golden brown and crispy, and the cheese is melted and gooey (covering the pan can help melt the cheese; lower the heat as needed if browning too quickly).
Rep with the rest of the bread, cheese, and “tuna.” Then have fun! These sandwiches go great with soups and salads.
When it’s fresh, it’s the best. Chickpea “tuna” can be made ahead of time and kept refrigerated for up to two days in a covered container. Not suitable for freezing.
*Preparation time does not include the time it takes to make Easy Vegan Cheddar Cheese.
*Nutrition information is based on 4 slices of Chao vegan cheese slices from the store and Dave’s Killer Bread 21 Whole Grains Bread.
1 sandwich per person
61.4 g carbohydrate
14.1 g protein
24.7 g fat
12.4 g saturated fat
0.57 g polyunsaturated fat
0.32 g monounsaturated fat
0 g trans fat
0 mg cholesterol
864 mg sodium
310 mg potassium
13.8 g fiber
12.5 g sugar
30 IU vitamin A
0.4 mg vitamin C
70 mg calcium
3.5 mg iron
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