Piccata is typically a meaty dish, made with veal or chicken cutlets, and garnished with a buttery lemon caper sauce. But author Robin Robertson decided to give this Italian classic a dairy-free and vegan makeover. Her Plant-Based Chickpea Piccata is made with easy, from-scratch chickpea cutlets and topped with a rich lemon caper sauce sans dairy. She also adds deliciously meaty mushrooms, because, why not?!
Plant-Based Chickpea Piccata that’s Rich in Protein and Taste
This casually elegant entrée is a sample recipe from The Plant Protein Revolution Cookbook by Robin Robertson. You can serve it for a weeknight meal, or a special occasion. Either way, it packs in a whopping 29 grams of protein per serving, and a generous helping of other nutrients.
The Plant Protein Revolution Cookbook contains more than 85 vegan recipes made with high-protein ingredients. It’s heavy in savories, with appetizers, soups, stews, salads, and sides galore. Here is just a sampling of the recipes in this vegan collection:
- Sunflower-Crusted Cashew Cheddar
- Faux Gras
- Greek Goddess Niçoise Salad
- Black and White Bean Quesadillas
- Seitan and Mushroom Gyros
- Brunswick Stew
- Indonesian Noodles with Tempeh
- Spaghetti with Lentil Bolognese Sauce
- Roasted Cauliflower and Potatoes with Chickpeas and Charmoula Sauce
- Potato and Bacon Breakfast Burritos
- Chocolate-Kissed Peanut Butter Pie
But go ahead and try this Chickpea Piccata recipe first. I’m sure you’ll be back for more.
Special Diet Notes: Plant-Based Chickpea Piccata
By ingredients, this recipe is dairy-free / non-dairy, egg-free, peanut-free, vegan, plant-based, and vegetarian.
- 1½ cups (246 g) cooked chickpeas, or 1 (15-ounce [425 g]) can, drained, rinsed, and blotted dry
- 2 tablespoons (20 ml) tamari (can sub soy sauce)
- ¾ cup (108 g) vital wheat gluten
- 2 tablespoons (16 g) nutritional yeast
- ½ teaspoon onion powder
- ½ teaspoon garlic powder
- ½ teaspoon sweet paprika
- ¼ teaspoon sea salt
- 1 tablespoon (15 ml) extra-virgin olive oil
- 1 cup (235 ml) water
- 1½ cups (105 g) sliced mushrooms (any type)
- Water, as needed
- Sea salt
- Freshly ground black pepper
- 1 tablespoon (16 g) almond butter
- ⅓ cup (70 ml) vegetable broth
- ¼ cup (60 ml) dry white wine
- 2 tablespoons (30 ml) fresh lemon juice
- 1 tablespoon (9 g) capers
- 2 tablespoons (8 g) minced fresh parsley
- 1 tablespoon (15 ml) dairy-free buttery spread
- Preheat the oven to 275°F (140°C).
- In a food processor, combine the chickpeas and tamari and process until smooth. Add the vital wheat gluten, nutritional yeast, onion powder, garlic powder, paprika, and salt. Pulse until well mixed.
- Transfer the mixture onto a work surface and knead with your hands for 1 to 2 minutes to fully incorporate. Divide the mixture into eight equal pieces and shape them into ¼-inch (6 mm) thick patties.
- Heat the olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the patties, in batches if needed, and cook until golden brown, about 5 minutes per side. Reduce the heat to low, add the water to the skillet, cover, and cook for 10 to 15 minutes, in batches with additional water if needed; they should be firm to the touch. Remove the patties from the skillet (do not wash) and place them on a rimmed baking sheet. Place them in the oven while you make the sauce.
- To make the sauce, add the mushrooms to the same skillet over medium heat and cook, stirring, until the mushrooms are tender, adding about 1 tablespoon (15 ml) of water so the mushrooms don’t burn. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Remove the mushrooms from the skillet.
- In the same skillet over medium heat, combine the almond butter and vegetable broth and cook, stirring to blend. Add the wine, lemon juice, capers, and parsley. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Simmer until the sauce thickens a little, about 3 minutes. Add the butter, stirring until melted. Return the mushrooms to the skillet and cook for a minute to heat through.
- To serve, transfer the cutlets to a serving platter and drizzle with the sauce and mushrooms.