Lentil – Red Bean Salad

Lentil – Red Bean Salad with Crispy Cheese and Wilted Lettuce

As far as Greek salads go, beans and legumes figure pretty prominently. Lentils are especially loved in Greek salads and have been part of the Greek diet forever, as they are one of the oldest cultivated legumes in the Eastern Mediterranean. This Greek salad has an unusual combination of basic Mediterranean diet ingredients, such as the legumes themselves, but also extra virgin Greek olive oil, of course, and halloumi, which is pan-fried here in a crispy crust. This lentil salad makes a great vegetarian main course!


  • 1 ½ cups cooked lentils preferable small brown or green lentils and preferably Greek
  • 1 cup cooked red beans good quality drained, canned beans are fine
  • 1 small onion halved and sliced
  • 1 small head of romaine or iceberg lettuce
  • 1 ½ cups cherry or teardrop tomatoes halved lengthwise
  • ½ cup pomegranate seeds
  • 3 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley or cilantro
  • 1 pack of halloumi cut into 8 rectangular slices about ¼-inch thick each
  • 1 egg white
  • 2 – 3 tablespoons cornmeal or more, as needed
  • Extra virgin Greek olive oil for pan frying the halloumi and for dressing the salad
  • 3 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
  • Sea salt and pepper to taste


  1. Combine the cooked lentils, red beans and onions in a mixing bowl and set aside.
  2. Break the lettuce leaves into chunks or pieces about 2 – 3 inches wide and long. Heat 1 tablespoon of olive oil in a ceramic, stainless steel or well-seasoned cast-iron skillet over high heat. Sear the lettuce for a minute or so, turning it with kitchen tongs. Remove and set aside. Wipe the skillet clean.
  3. Add the tomatoes, pomegranate seeds parsley or cilantro and the wilted lettuce to the salad.
  4. Spread the cornmeal on a shallow plate. Lightly whisk the egg white in a shallow bowl. Brush the halloumi slices with egg white on all sides and dip into the cornmeal, turning to coat on all sides. Over high heat, heat 2 tablespoons of olive oil in the pan that you used for the lettuce and pan-fry the cheese pieces until golden and crisp, turning once to brown on all sides.
  5. Dress and toss the salad with a few tablespoons of olive oil and the balsamic vinegar. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Garnish with the halloumi and serve.

Want to learn more easy, healthy Mediterranean diet recipes? Sign up for my online course “Mastering the Mediterranean!

Want to learn more easy, healthy Mediterranean diet recipes? Sign up for my online course “Mastering the Mediterranean!

Share it if you like it!