If you make one thing this summer, make this Cauliflower Tabbouleh! It’s light, flavorful, refreshing, and full of healthy, vibrant veggies and fresh herbs.
Unlike classic Mediterranean tabbouleh which is made with bulgur wheat, this version uses a base of riced cauliflower making it a great option for anyone following a grain-free or gluten-free diet. It’s naturally plant-based as well. This salad is great for anyone wanted to add more veggies into their diet, as well as anyone wanting a low-carb go-to for lunches, snacks, or as a side dish.
What is Tabbouleh Salad?
Tabbouleh is a traditional salad from the Mediterranean that typically includes bulgur wheat, fresh diced tomatoes and cucumber, loads of fresh herbs, and a simple dressing of lemon juice and olive oil. It is refreshing to eat and simple to make. This Cauliflower Tabbouleh replaces the bulgur with riced cauliflower for a grain-free, but equally delicious and satisfying salad full of flavor.
How Do You Make Cauliflower Rice?
It is very easy to rice cauliflower at home, but packaged cauliflower rice can also be found in the refrigerated produce section near the pre-mixed salads and other bagged veggies. Frozen cauliflower rice can be found near the other frozen veggies in the frozen foods aisle.
I recommend using raw cauliflower rice or gently sautéed cauliflower rice in this recipe. If using frozen cauliflower rice, thaw, sauté in a little olive oil and let cool completely before adding the other ingredients.
What are the health benefits of tabbouleh?
Because cauliflower tabbouleh is made with a base of vegetables and herbs, it is especially healthy. It’s high in fiber and great for both vascular and digestive health as a result. A fantastic grain substitute, cauliflower rice is very low in carbs, but also satisfies due to its versatility and texture. Cauliflower is also considered a detoxifying food – it is full of vitamins C, K, and B (folate, B6, B1, B3, pantothenic acid), as well sulfur, all of which may even prevent cancer and provide anti-inflammatory benefits.
The other ingredients in the Cauliflower Tabbouleh are also high in vitamins and minerals such as vitamin C which is a powerful antioxidant. Olive oil is a healthy fat that can help raise healthy cholesterol and lower the bad kind.
This salad fits in well with a paleo, vegan/plant-based, grain- or gluten-free, low-carb, and Mediterranean diet. It’s very versatile and can be tailored to meet any dietary needs.
Does tabbouleh need to be refrigerated?
Yes, tabbouleh needs to be refrigerated. It can sit out briefly, but should be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator to prevent spoilage. Also, tabbouleh should not be frozen.
If preparing in advance, the salad will keep for several days. If desired, prep all of the ingredients beforehand and assemble before serving. The cauliflower tabbouleh does benefit from sitting for at least 30 minutes before serving to allow flavors to blend.
Does tabbouleh contain gluten?
Cauliflower Tabbouleh doesn’t contain gluten, but the original recipe contains bulgur wheat, which does contain gluten.
Cauliflower Tabbouleh Recipe
- 1/2 pound riced cauliflower (2 cups)
- 2 roma tomatoes seeded and chopped (about 1 cup)
- 1 large cucumber peeled, seeded, and chopped
- 2 scallions sliced
- 2 cups chopped fresh parsley
- 1 cup chopped fresh mint
- 1/4 cup lemon juice from 2 large lemons
- 1/4 cup olive oil
- 2 cloves garlic minced (about 1 teaspoon)
- Salt and freshly ground black pepper
- In a large bowl, combine cauliflower, tomatoes, cucumbers, scallions, parsley, mint, lemon juice, olive oil, and garlic. Season to taste with salt and pepper (I like 1/2 teaspoon salt and 1/4 teaspoon pepper)
- Cover and refrigerate at least 30 minutes to blend flavors. The salad will taste better the longer it sits, so feel free to make it ahead and let it sit overnight.