Megan Hysaw makes Chickpea Pan Bagnat with a Vegan Aioli, as seen on Vegan 101 with Megan Hysaw on Food Network Kitchen.
Recipe courtesy of Megan Hysaw

Chickpea Pan Bagnat

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  • Level: Easy
  • Total: 35 min
  • Active: 25 min
  • Yield: 2 to 4 servings
During my sophomore year of high school my mom informed me that the family would be celebrating Christmas in Nice. I was excited to visit France for the first time, but was admittedly a little disappointed that it wasn't Paris. I had no idea what the South of France had to offer, from lively Provençal cuisine to breathtaking landscapes to subtle luxury. One of my favorite memories of the trip was grabbing a pan bagnat, the local tuna-sandwich-like-no-other, at a café and enjoying it while strolling through the stone streets as my parents shopped. For years to come my family would recreate this sandwich at home. After my father became vegan, I came up with this alternative recipe that replaces tuna with chickpeas so he could continue to enjoy it. I honestly like it more than the original!



  1. Drain the chickpeas, reserving the liquid (aquafaba) and chickpeas separately.
  2. Make aquafaba mayo by placing 1/4 cup of the aquafaba (liquid from the can of chickpeas), the 2 grated cloves garlic, vinegar, mustard and 1/2 teaspoon salt in a blender and pulsing to combine. With the motor running, slowly drizzle in the avocado oil, blending until a smooth emulsion forms.
  3. Combine the chickpeas, 1/4 cup of the aquafaba mayo (save the rest for another use), lemon juice and lemon zest, the remaining 1 whole clove garlic and salt and pepper to taste in a food processor and pulse until well combined. The mixture should look similar to tuna salad; it's okay to have a few whole chickpeas remaining. Transfer the mixture to a medium bowl. Add the parsley, basil and capers and mix until combined. 
  4. Open the baguette pieces and lightly drizzle the inside top and bottom with the olive oil. Spread with the chickpea mixture, then layer with the mixed olives, cucumber, tomato, shallot and red pepper. 
  5. Wrap the sandwiches tightly in plastic wrap or foil and place on a baking sheet; top with another baking sheet and weight the top down with a cast-iron skillet for 10 minutes. 

Cook’s Note

Using a sheet pan topped with a cast-iron skillet to press the sandwiches is a fun technique that compacts the fillings and results in a neater bite. You can make the chickpea filling a day ahead, but the sandwiches are best assembled and pressed just before serving. Read the labels on condiments and prepared items to make sure they are vegan. Some—like champagne vinegar and Dijon mustard—can be not-so-obvious sources of animal products.