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Tabbouleh Salad Recipe

Tabbouleh (tabouli) salad is the Best

It's not only easy to make but uses healthy ingredients - Oh and I should mention it is delicious too!

Tabbouleh salad pictured in a white bowl.
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What is tabbouleh?

Tabbouleh is a Levantine vegetarian salad made from bulgur wheat or sometimes couscous with onion, tomatoes, parsley and mint with olive oil and lemon juice.

Parsley should be the number one ingredient but here in the UK, we tend to make bulgur wheat the main ingredient!

In the Middle East, particularly Syria, Lebanon, Palestine, Israel, Jordan, Egypt, and Iraq, tabbouleh is usually served as a meze.

Bulgur wheat is a good source of fibre

Tabbouleh is so good for you too because bulgur wheat is a good source of fibre that can help maintain a healthy digestive system. You can buy bulgur wheat in any good supermarket or over on Amazon.

It's a great alternative to rice and is healthy, just like quinoa, I once made Quinoa with Roasted Butternut which was totally delicious.

Ingredients for tabbouleh salad include bulgur wheat, ripe tomatoes, spring and red onions, cucumber and parsley and also mint. Mint is also included and is more traditional but I'm not keen on mint and so I leave it out.

Other ingredients used are cinnamon, allspice, sweet paprika, black pepper and salt, lemon juice and extra virgin olive oil.


  • bulgur wheat
  • firm but ripe, tomatoes
  • spring onions (scallions) 
  • red onion 
  • cucumber 
  • flat-leaf parsley 
  • ground cinnamon
  • sweet paprika
  • black pepper
  • salt to taste
  • juice of a lemon
  • extra virgin olive oil
Ingredients for tabbouleh salad.

Recipe Top Tips!

*Wash and dry all the parsley well to prevent excess moisture from getting into the salad. I use a salad spinner for this - marvellous invention! Or, you can use a few sheets of kitchen paper towel.

*Always hand-cut the parsley and mint (if using) with a very sharp knife to prevent bruising. Don't attempt to cheat by using a food processor as it will result in a beaten, and battered horrid-looking salad.

*Salt, you will need to add salt otherwise your salad will be seriously bland.

*Lemon juice really brings out the flavours so don't forget to add it!

What to serve with tabbouleh

Tabbouleh is a great alternative to rice and makes a lovely and healthy side dish for many things, we especially like it with salmon.

Kofta Kebabs can also be included as part of meze along with other small plates such as falafel, Turkish fried eggplant and spicy Middle eastern potatoes.

Tabouli salad.

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Yield: 2-4
Author: Jan Bennett
Tabbouleh Salad Recipe

Tabbouleh Salad Recipe

Serves 2-4 depending on what you are serving it with.
Prep time: 5 MinInactive time: 30 MinTotal time: 35 Min


  • 100g bulgur wheat
  • 4 medium-sized firm but ripe, tomatoes - deseeded and diced into small cubes
  • 2 spring onions (scallions) - thinly sliced
  • 1 small red onion - peeled and diced into small cubes
  • 4 inches (10 cm) of cucumber - peeled and deseeded then diced into small cubes
  • a pinch of ground cinnamon
  • a slightly bigger pinch ground allspice
  • a pinch of sweet paprika
  • a good handful of flat-leaf parsley - leaves only - washed and dried
  • a pinch of ground black pepper
  • juice of a lemon - or to taste
  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • sea salt to taste


  1. Rinse the bulgur wheat well in cold water in a sieve until the water runs clear. Drain well, then transfer to a bowl.
  2. Pour over 400ml boiling water, cover with cling film and leave to soak for 30 mins or so. Once it's soft (have a taste to check) and then, drain any excess liquid.
  3. Add the diced tomatoes, spring onion, red onion, cucumber and parsley.
  4. Add the cinnamon, allspice and paprika and pepper, lemon juice and olive oil. Mix well and add salt to taste. Serve right away.
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