Last Updated on April 18, 2022
Tabouli aka Tabbouleh is a healthy, rich, lemony, earthy and super-green salad with pure Lebanese origins. It is a staple of any Lebanese party involving food. Moms and grandmas show off their unique spins on making Tabouli. And typically to ace making an awesome Tabbouleh, you should use the freshest greens you can find, drain them after mincing so they’re not soggy, and of critical importance is to ensure using freshly squeezed lemon juice and not bottled juice. An awesome Tabbouleh recipe execution is highlighted by how lemony it is.
Tabbouleh is usually served along with Mezza which is a host of appetizers and hors-d’oeuvres.
If you’ve had Tabbouleh salad in non-Lebanese restaurants, you would be surprised that our Tabbouleh here will likely yield a different look and taste than what you’ve experienced.
Authentic Tabbouleh is greener, contains more tomatoes and much less Burghul (cracked wheat) that what restaurants typically add.
And on the topic of Burghul, if you are allergic to gluten or simply want a gluten-free version, try substituting the Burghul with Quinoa. I haven’t tried it myself, however I heard from a few folks that it’s a good gluten substitute.
Authentic Lebanese Tabbouleh Recipe
- 4 bunches Italian Parsley chopped finely, let dry
- 1 bunch fresh green mint chopped finely, let dry
- 1 Persian cucumber chopped finely
- 4 tomatoes medium. chopped finely, drained
- 1 white onion chopped finely, drained from juice
- 1/4 cup Bulgur or Bulgur, fine cracked wheat #1
- 1/3 cup olive oil
- 1/2 cup lemon juice freshly squeezed
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/3 teaspoon 7 Spices Lebanese or Arabic 7-Spices
- Rinse all vegetables and let dry on a paper towel, especially the parsley and mint.
- Cut stems off parsley then chop finely. Spread chopped parsley on paper towels and let rest for a few mins in order to get rid of excess moisture.
- Cut stems off mint, and finely chop the leaves. Spread on a paper towel and let dry.
- Finely chop tomatoes into small cubes 1/3in then place in strainer to get rid of the excess juice.
- Finely chop onions, drain then mix with the 7-spices, set aside.
- Finely chop the cucumber
- Soak the bulgur in half of the lemon juice with a bit of salt.
- Only once ready to serve, mix all ingredients together well, drizzle with olive oil and the leftover lemon juice. Add a bit more salt if needed.
- Serve as a side salad along with some lettuce leaves.
- Very Important: Once vegetables are chopped, ensure they are drained of their excess juices otherwise we'll end up with a soggy Tabbouleh.
- Mix the Tabbouleh only right before serving. If you mix it too much in advance it turns soggy quickly.
- Notice that we've used only 1/4 cup of Bulgur for 4 servings. This is the right balance in traditional Tabbouleh. In the US for some reason, restaurants overload what they call as Tabbouleh with a ton of Bulgur that it becomes something completely different.
- If you don't have the Lebanese 7-Spices handy, you can make your own by mixing equal proportions of ground Allspice, Black Pepper, Cinnamon, Ground Cloves, Ground Nutmeg, Fenugreek, and Powdered Ginger.