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Tabule is a traditional Lebanese salad made from parsley, tomatoes, green onions, bulgur wheat, lemon juice, olive oil, and mint. This salad is vegan, and the flavor is fresh, light, and clean. Make this easy recipe and discover why this is the best Middle Eastern salad!
Since I can remember, I have loved tabule (tabbouleh, tabouleh, tabouli, or taboule, pronunciation 'tab-boo-lay'). My mom would make a massive batch, and in our household of five, I would eat most of it.
I could not get enough fresh flavor mixed with the tangy lemon dressing. While I love Arabic food, taboule is a Lebanese classic and the cornerstone of great Middle Eastern food, in my humble opinion.
This taboule recipe comes from my cousin Marianne. She followed my Sitto (grandmother in Arabic) around the kitchen for two summers, measuring everything as she cooked. Marianne then made a cookbook for all of her family. While they have both passed, I deeply treasure the cookbook as their legacy and a family heirloom.
If you are looking for traditional Middle Eastern dishes, start with tabule and creamy hummus. They are staples
One of my favorite things about Tabule is how easy it is to make. You only need six ingredients, and the recipe comes together in 20 minutes.
Parsley - Is the main ingredient of any tabouli recipe. Use either curly or flat-leaf parsley. For a fluffy salad, chop the parsley by hand. The salad will not be as fluffy if you use a food processor. (I recommend using this mezzaluna knife for faster chopping.)
Tomatoes - Start with firm tomatoes; you want them to hold their shape while dicing. I prefer using roma tomatoes or larger ones. Remove the seeds and any excess liquid. Dice the tomato into small cubes.
Green Onions - Thinly slice the onion using the whole onion (both the white and green sections). For a more robust flavor, use red onions.
Bulgur Wheat - Has a very subtle, light, nutty flavor. Soak it in water for 20 minutes and fluff with a fork. For extra zip, add some olive oil and lemon while soaking!
Lemon Juice- The sharp and tangy flavor of lemon is key to making a traditional tabule Use only a fresh lemon; There is no substitute for the taste of its fresh juices.
Fresh Mint - The coolness of fresh mint with the sharpness of lemon is refreshing and an absolute must ingredient. If you cannot access fresh herbs, I recommend omitting the mint.
Extra virgin olive oil - When it comes to olive oil, is no other choice than extra virgin.
Salt and Pepper - To taste.
I am a straightforward traditional tabule kind of girl. However, sometimes my family will ask for changes to the recipe; here are a couple of options.
Cucumbers - Use either traditional, hothouse, or English cucumbers. Start by scooping out the seeds. Sprinkle the top with salt and sit for 10 - 15 minutes. Use a paper towel to wipe off the salt. The salt will draw out moisture. Cut the cucumber into small pieces to blend with the other ingredients.
Garbanzo Beans - We sometimes add protein to the tabbouleh and make it a meal.
Feta - For a Greek feel, you can add feta. In this instance, I would increase the bulgar wheat ratio and decrease the parsley ratio for the best flavor balance.
In the Mood for Something Else? Try one of my Other Lebanese Recipes
How to Make Tabule (Tabbouleh Salad)
Prepare the bulgur wheat according to the instructions. Set aside while soaking.
Mix the olive oil and lemon juice. Set aside.
Prepare the Vegetables
Start by cutting off the lower half of the parsley (the thick stems.) Then finely chop the top half of the parsley, stems, and all. Thinly slice the green onion. Cut the tomatoes in half, scoop out the seeds to remove the excess water, and dice them into small cubes. Destem and very finely chop the mint.
Toss All Ingredients Together
Toss all the vegetables, bulgur wheat, and salad dressing together. Add salt and pepper to taste. Traditional tabule is served with romaine lettuce leaves. I like to eat tabule with warm pita bread.
Lebanese Tabule Making Video
Frequently Asked Questions
YES! Tabule is very healhty! The ingredients are all-natural, plant-based, whole food, and vegan recipe.
The traditional way to eat tabbouleh is to scoop it up with romaine lettuce. In the US, tabouli is often served with pita bread or a fork.
Traditionally tabbouleh is made of burglar wheat. However, in the west, burglar wheat is sometimes replaced with couscous.
The bitter taste comes from large parsley leaves. To avoid any bitterness, chop the parsley finely.
Make-Ahead and Storing
Countertop Instructions: Allow to fully cool and then place in an airtight container or ziplock bag for up to three days.
Refrigerate Instructions: Place in an airtight container and store in the refrigerator for up to seven days.
Freezing Instructions: Place in an airtight container and store in the freezer for up to three months.
Lebanese Tabule Salad (Tabouli)
- 1 Sharp knife
- 1 Medium mixing bowl
- 1 Small mixing bowl
- ¼ cup (35g) bulgur wheat
- ⅓ cup (72g) olive oil
- 3 tbsp (44g) lemon
- 2 bunches parsley, finly minced
- 6 fresh mint leaves, thinly sliced
- 3 green onions, thinly sliced
- 3 roma tomatoes, diced
- salt and pepper to taste
- 1 pita bread pocket per serving (optional)
- Prepare the bulgur wheat according to the instructions. Set aside while soaking.¼ cup (35g) bulgur wheat
- Mix the olive oil and lemon juice. Set aside.⅓ cup (72g) olive oil, 3 tablespoon (44g) lemon
- Finely chop the parsley and mint. Thinly slice the green onion. Cut the tomatoes in half and scoop out the seeds (the wet interior). Finally, dice the tomatoes.2 bunches parsley, finly minced, 3 green onions, thinly sliced, 6 fresh mint leaves, thinly sliced, 3 roma tomatoes, diced
- Toss all the vegetables, bulgur wheat, and salad dressing together. Add salt and pepper to taste. Serve with pita bread.salt and pepper to taste, 1 pita bread pocket per serving (optional)
- Picture Steps
- Picture Steps
When I was first married my neighbor who was Lebanese introduced me to this wonderful salad over 40 years ago. This is my family's favorite salad. My great granddaughter ask for that green stuff... She's 2 and absolutely loves it.
Oh Martha, that makes me so happy to hear that! I love that your Lebanese neighbor introduced this salad to you and you have enjoyed it all these years. I believe food and traditional recipes can bring the world together in kind and warm ways. BTW - your great granddaughter has great taste!
This tabbouleh is fantastic! Easy to make and full of flavor!
Thank you Katie. I am so happy you liked it.
one of my favourite salads - thanks for the tips and easy to follow steps
What a refreshing salad, thank you for making it so simple for us.
I love tabbouleh so much. This recipe was delightful and I will be making more again this afternoon.
Thank you Sean. I am so glad you loved it. Tabbouleh is my favorite Lebanese dish.
I make this often! I'm with you, I don't use non-traditional ingredients either. It usually takes me an hour to make a big batch. I have been known to cut grape tomatoes into 16 pieces :). I always chop the parsley by hand. I have found food processor makes it to "wet". Just ordered the mezzaluna in your link, I always used a chefs knife but I will try this for sure!
Great minds think alike! Hand chopping is the best way to make tabbouleh. I love this salad so much that instead of four small servings in the picture, I ate the entire bowl in one sitting. 🙂