Cool No-Cook Summer Salad: Tabbouleh

Wednesday is Recipe Day at Cooking Manager.

tabbouleh-bulgur-wheat-salad Tabbouleh is a simple salad based on bulgur wheat, a boon for a busy cook who wants to eat healthy. To make bulgur, grains of wheat are cracked and partially cooked. Either cook it briefly in boiling water or merely soak it, like in the recipe below. Bulgur is sold according to coarseness, from whole to very fine.

For a light no-cook summer meal for 3-4 people, add some yogurt or canned beans, or serve with tuna or prepared chumus (chick-pea spread).

Serves 4 to 6


  • 1-1/2 cups medium bulgur (cracked wheat)
  • 3 cups water, for soaking
  • 2 ripe tomatoes
  • 1 large cucumber
  • 1 medium pepper
  • 1/2 cup fresh parsley leaves
  • 1 tablespoon fresh mint leaves
  • 1/2 cup lemon juice
  • 1 teaspoon salt


  1. Soak bulgur in water for at least 1 hour, drain excess.
  2. Chop vegetables and herbs finely. Mix with bulgur.
  3. Toss with lemon juice and salt.

Photo credit: illustir

You may also enjoy:

Summer Chickpea Stew

Beet Salad with Yogurt

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  1. I also make Tabbouleh with quinoa

  2. Sounds really good! Have never tried bulgur wheat but am going to make this salad next week. Thanks!!

  3. A friend once taught me that if you don’t have fresh mint, you can use dried mint which you may be surprised to find you have–since that’s what’s inside an herbal mint tea bag.

  4. also a simple and delicious tabouleh from Joan Nathan–made with bulghur. Add scallions, olive oil, lemon juice and pomegranite seeds, salt & pepper. At Trader Joes, they now sell pomegranite seeds already removed from the pomegranite (I think it’s a nearly impossible chore–but my husband loves opening up a pomegranite).

  5. I like tabbouli, but checking and soaking the parsley and mint for bugs makes it such a time consuming dish to make. So I hardly make it. Any tips? I don’t like using the “Gush Katif” produce, because it’s more expensive and has lots and lots of pesticides.

    • Ilana, I think everything has pesticides. I soak the greens briefly and then I check the water for bugs, to give me an idea what to expect.

  6. Miriam Isserow says

    Ilana, I think you can use dried mint and parsley if you don’t want to go to the bother of fresh. It won’t have the “mouthfeel” and zest of fresh, but it could work. Another pssibility is to use stems–I just saw that done on a Top Chef cooking video–they recommendig using parsley STEMs in making lamb kubbeh which mixes better than the leaves. I also recommend this pomegranite tabouleh by Joan Nathan–which only has the parsley so at least you won’t have to deal with 2 greens:
    c up bulghur, sokaed for an hour and then squeeze water.
    Add parsley (she says 2 cups, but you could use less or use the stems). seeds of 1/2 pomegranite, i clove garlic crfushed, juice of 1 lemon, salt, pepper to taste and 3 TBS olive oil.

    • Ilana, you can also freeze the leaves. Any insects will come off when you rinse the leaves afterward. Frozen leaves are good for cooked dishes like soups.

  7. So how do you make Tabbouli quickly? I still don’t get it. Even after the soaking, I pull off all the leaves — which also takes a lot of time.


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