Lebanese Tabbouleh Salad

5 from 31 votes
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This traditional tabbouleh is made with parsley, mint, green onions, tomatoes, and bulgur, all tossed in an olive oil-lemon dressing. Quick, restaurant-quality vegan Lebanese salad!

A bowl with tabbouleh and lettuce leaves

What is tabbouleh?

Tabbouleh (aka tabouli or tabouleh) is a refreshing Levantine salad from Lebanon and Syria. It is a vibrant mix of fresh parsley, mint, tomatoes, green onions, and a hint of bulgur wheat, dressed in a simple olive oil and lemon juice dressing. Parsley is the standout ingredient in an authentic tabbouleh, giving it a fragrant, herby flavor. The bulgur is soaked directly in the dressing, allowing it to absorb the flavors and become deliciously chewy.

This healthy Lebanese salad is packed with flavor and contains plenty of fiber, vitamins, and minerals. Perfect for pairing or enjoying on its own, and this version is the one I grew up with. I may be slightly biased, but I think it’s the best tabbouleh ever!

A small bowl with Tabbouleh salad

Recipe video tutorial


Ingredients for tabbouleh salad
  • Fresh Parsley: You need Italian/flat-leaf parsley and plenty of it (leaves and stems). Parsley is the star of the show, after all! If unavailable, curly parsley serves as a substitute.
  • Mint: Though technically optional, fresh mint leaves are, in my view, an essential addition.
  • Green Onions: Green onions/scallions add a wonderful subtle onion flavor without overpowering it. You could substitute red onion or sweet onion for a more robust flavor.
  • Tomatoes: Use firm, fleshy tomatoes that are ripe.
  • Bulgur Wheat: Bulgur wheat, sometimes called cracked wheat, comes in several sizes. I use the finest one, labeled extra fine, which only takes a few minutes to start soaking up the dressing liquid and softening.
  • For The Dressing: Fresh lemon juice, extra virgin olive oil, salt, and pepper (to taste).
  • Lettuce: To serve, choose crisp and fresh lettuce leaves.

How to make tabbouleh

Step 1: Wash and Dry Your Veggies

First, rinse all your vegetables under cold water to remove dirt. If you have a salad spinner, use it to shake off excess water for the parsley, mint, and green onions. If not, gently pat them dry with a kitchen towel. It’s important to make sure these herbs are dry to avoid a soggy tabbouleh salad.

Step 2: Prep the Bulgur and Dressing

Mix the bulgur, lemon juice, olive oil, salt, and pepper in a small bowl. Leave it aside for a bit. This helps the bulgur soak up all the tasty dressing and get soft.

Step 3: Chop Your Veggies

Start by dicing the tomatoes into small, bite-sized pieces. Then, gather the parsley into a bundle and discard the thick stems. Chop the parsley finely. Next, finely chop the mint leaves, ensuring that they are cut in one direction to prevent bitterness. To beautifully chop the mint leaves, stack them neatly, then chop finely for uniform pieces.

Lastly, thinly slice the onions, almost resembling strings. Place all these freshly chopped ingredients into a large salad bowl. Remember, tabbouleh requires quite a bit of chopping, but don’t worry, you’ll master it in no time!

Chopped ingredients for salad

Step 4: Mix Everything

Pour the soaked bulgur mixture over the chopped vegetables in the bowl. Then gently mix everything with a spoon or your hands, ensuring all pieces are evenly coated with the dressing and the flavors are thoroughly combined throughout the salad.

Steps for mixing tabouli salad in a bowl

How to serve tabbouleh

Tabbouleh, loved for its fresh taste, is a fantastic addition to any mezze spread and works as an appetizer or side dish for a wide variety of meals. One easy way to enjoy it is by using romaine lettuce leaves as scoops. This is a common way to serve it in Lebanon, often alongside hummus, chicken tawook, kofta, or kibbeh. Whether as a starter or a side dish, tabbouleh adds a burst of flavor to any meal.

A mezze spread with meat and tabbouleh

If you try this tabouli recipe, let me know how it goes in the comments below. I’d appreciate a recipe card rating and would love to see your recipe recreations – tag me on Instagram @Alphafoodie!

Lebanese Tabbouleh Salad

5 from 31 votes
By: Samira
This traditional tabbouleh is made with parsley, mint, green onions, tomatoes, and bulgur, all tossed in an olive oil-lemon dressing. Quick, restaurant-quality vegan Lebanese salad!
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 10 minutes
Servings: 4


  • 2.8 oz flat-leaf parsley 1 large bunch; or curly parsley as an alternative
  • 10.8 oz tomatoes 1 large or 2 medium; firm and ripe
  • 1.6 oz green onion 5 stalks; or scallions
  • 0.2 oz fresh mint leaves 1/2 cup chopped
  • 0.2 oz bulgur wheat 1.5 Tbsp
  • 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 1.5 lemon or 5 Tbsp fresh lemon juice
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/4 tsp black pepper
  • 3.8 oz lettuce 1 medium head; to serve with


  • Rinse all vegetables under cold water to remove any dirt.
  • Use a salad spinner to dry the parsley, mint, and green onions, or gently pat them dry with a kitchen towel. Ensure the herbs are dry to prevent a soggy salad.
  • In a small bowl, mix the bulgur wheat, lemon juice, olive oil, salt, and pepper. Set aside to allow bulgur to absorb the dressing and soften.
  • Dice tomatoes into small, bite-sized pieces.
  • Remove the thick stems from the parsley and chop the rest finely. Finely chop the mint leaves, cutting in one direction to prevent bitterness. Thinly slice onions, resembling strings.
  • Place all chopped ingredients into a large salad bowl. Pour the soaked bulgur mixture over chopped vegetables and gently mix to ensure even coating with dressing.



To store: Leftover tabbouleh will keep for 2-3 days in an airtight container in the fridge. The flavors meld together so it’ll taste even better the next day!  To
To avoid a soggy salad: Sry the vegetables before cutting them with a sharp knife.  Also, add the dressing just before serving to keep the salad crisp. 
Ingredient notes: Use the freshest ingredients for the best flavor. Use fine bulgur wheat – you’ll find it in most Middle Eastern markets or online. If you prefer a grain-free option, you can substitute bulgur wheat for quinoa. 
Check the blog post for serving suggestions!
Course: Appetizer, Salad, Side
Cuisine: Lebanese
Freezer friendly: No
Shelf life: 2-3 Days


Serving: 1g, Calories: 155kcal, Carbohydrates: 8g, Protein: 2g, Fat: 14g, Saturated Fat: 2g, Polyunsaturated Fat: 2g, Monounsaturated Fat: 10g, Sodium: 311mg, Potassium: 380mg, Fiber: 3g, Sugar: 3g, Vitamin A: 2620IU, Vitamin C: 43mg, Calcium: 56mg, Iron: 2mg

Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.

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Recipe Rating


    1. Hi Sue,
      Burgur wheat should already be pre-cooked in the package. So then you can soak it directly with the rest of the dressing ingredients. I hope this helps.

  1. 5 stars
    i soak the wheat in water then squeeze the water out and rub it with spring onions I love this salad with falafels,baba ghannouj and or hummus also kebabs…..mmmmmmm….i have eaten lebanese food for 40 years and love it so much,so tasty and so healthy,keep up the good work,cheers john the kiwi

    1. Hi Miriam, sorry about that, it’s 1 and half small lemons. This is meant to be lemony, but you can start with one and see if you like it that way! then add more to your liking.

  2. 5 stars
    I followed the recipe exactly but did not include the optional chili pepper. And it was a big hit! It was delicious, thanks for the great recipe!

    1. 5 stars
      Absolutely delicious. Used fresh parsley and tomatoes from the garden, my husband and I loved it. Thanks so much.

  3. 2- To achieve the right tabouli texture, you will need to chop the vegetables as finely as possible. Can one use a food processor to chop tabouli ingredients? You can use one to chop the parsley, if you like, but I would advice you to chop the tomatoes, green onions etc. using a sharp knife.

    1. Thanks for your comment. I suggest chopping the tomatoes, green onions, parsley and mint. You could also blitz the parsley and mint in a food processor if you prefer – just one or two pulses to chop them finely.
      I hope this helps.