Cauliflower tabbouleh

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Whole 30 Cauliflower tabbouleh It is our grain-free version of this classic Middle Eastern recipe. Loaded with fresh vegetables and herbs, it is simply seasoned with lemon juice and olive oil, and the resulting flavor is amazing, and it has a great nutritional impact, too! Whole30 compliant, plant-based and grain-free, this vibrant tabbouleh recipe is perfect as a side dish for dinner or meal preparation for a healthy lunch.

Side view, a bowl of integer30 and grain-free tabbouleh.

If you are so tired of the same old accompaniments or quick and easy recipes to prepare meals in your repertoire, then your taste buds are prepared and ready for Tabbouleh cauliflower.

This Whole30-free, grain-free twist on the classic Lebanese parsley salad is light, but hearty and has a hint of flavor in every bite. The tabboule comes together quickly, especially if you can get curly cauliflower in the produce section of your local supermarket. Hearty ingredients hold up wonderfully throughout the week, making it an excellent meal prep option for packed lunches, or as a ready-to-eat mid-day snack when you need me picked up.

Over the head, grain-free and whole30 cauliflower tabbouleh in a glass container.

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What is tabbouleh?

Tabbouleh is a classic Middle Eastern salad. Parsley is always the star of this vegan dish, and most variations also include mint, tomatoes, green onions, and sometimes cucumbers. It is simply seasoned with olive oil and lots of lemon juice, which really improves the herbs. The traditional tabouleh incorporates bulgur, which is a broken wheat. We've swapped bulgur for curly cauliflower to make this Whole30 and grain-free recipe.

Cauliflower tabboule ingredients

  • Cauliflower rice (homemade or store bought) – Our local supermarket chain always has pre-cooked cauliflower available in the produce section. It is incredibly convenient and the texture is perfect. Fresh raw cauliflower rice is a must: frozen and thawed rice will be too soft.
  • Lemon juice: use fresh squeezed lemons for a superior flavor. If you really love lemon, add a teaspoon of lemon zest as well.
  • Extra virgin olive oil: use the best quality you can afford; you can taste the difference. We love and recommend California Olive Ranch Everyday Extra Virgin Olive Oil.
  • Parsley: Lots! Parsley is the star of this plant-based salad, so use the two full bunches.
  • Mint: Fresh mint is a must, and a little goes a long way.
  • Tomato: use the freshest tomatoes you can get your hands on. In the winter, opt for cherry or grape tomatoes, or greenhouse tomatoes from your farmer's local market.
  • Cucumber: an English or Persian cucumber will have a firmer texture that will hold well for several days in the refrigerator. Scoop out the seeds before dicing, but leave the husks for additional fiber and nutritional value.

How to make cauliflower tabbouleh

Our touch of tabbouleh replaces bulgur with cauliflower and rice to transform this classic grain salad into a delicious Whole30 recipe. We give cauliflower rice a quick trip through the microwave, then marinate it with lemon juice and salt to break down some of the tough vegetable fibers. The result is a soft cauliflower rice that you would swear is actually wheat if you didn't know what you were eating!

We love this as a garnish with Kofta spiced beef dumplings or pomegranate chicken. Because it's so nutrient-dense, cauliflower tabbouleh is great for an afternoon snack, and it holds up well in the refrigerator as a food preparation option.

A collage of images showing how to make a Whole30 cauliflower tabouleh.

  • Prepare the cauliflower rice. Place the cauliflower rice on a microwave-safe plate and microwave for 60 seconds. Add four tablespoons of lemon juice and one teaspoon of salt. Mix, then set aside to marinate at room temperature for 20 minutes, about the time it takes to prepare the remaining ingredients.
  • Chop the herbs. If you really like cutting herbs, go ahead and do it the old-fashioned way. If you're a fan of convenience and don't mind washing an extra appliance, pulse herbs until finely chopped in a food processor with the standard blade.
  • Dice the vegetables. Dice two medium ripe tomatoes and half an English cucumber. Remove the seeds from your tomatoes so your tabbouleh doesn't get too watery. Sow the cucumber with a spoon or a melon, but you can leave the delicate skin intact.
  • Mix the cauliflower tabbouleh. Add fresh herbs, vegetables, and extra virgin olive oil to cauliflower. Mix until ingredients are evenly distributed, then try to season. Add another touch of lemon juice or a little salt until the flavors sing.

You can eat the tabbouleh immediately or place it in a sealed container in the refrigerator for 4-5 days. I think it is better the next day once the flavors have had a chance to really melt.

Side view, detail, grain-free tabbouleh in a frosted glass container.

More Whole30 and Vegan Side Dish Recipes

Above, I tabulated cauliflower in a glass bowl with a silver spoon.

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Cauliflower tabbouleh

Our touch of tabbouleh replaces bulgur with cauliflower and rice to transform this classic grain salad into a delicious Whole30 recipe. We soften the cauliflower in the microwave, then marinate it with lemon juice and salt to break down some of the hard vegetable fibers. The result is a dense, nutrient-free Whole30 cauliflower tabbouleh recipe that's as filling and tasty as the classic recipe.

Course: Salad, garnish

Cuisine: Lebanese, Middle Eastern

Preparation time: 20 minutes.

Total time: 20 minutes

Servings: 6

Calories: 127kcal

Ingredients

  • 12 ounces curly cauliflower, see notes
  • 1/4 cup fresh lemon juice, 2-3 lemons
  • 1/4 cup of extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon of kosher or sea salt
  • 2 bunches flat-leaf parsley, finely chopped
  • 1/2 cup fresh mint, (about 1 ounce), finely diced into 1/4 "cubes
  • 2 medium vine-ripened tomatoes, seeded, finely diced 1/4 "
  • ½ English cucumber, seeded, finely chopped

Instructions

  • Place the cauliflower rice in a large microwave-safe bowl. Microwave at high temperature for 60 seconds. Add lemon juice and salt, and stir to combine. Set the cauliflower rice aside to marinate and soften for at least 20 minutes and up to 1 hour.

  • While the cauliflower is marinating, prepare the herbs and vegetables. Finely chop the parsley and mint by hand, or pulse the herbs in a food processor with a standard S-blade, scraping the sides as necessary, until desired texture is achieved. Cut the tomatoes in half, scoop out the seeds, then cut them into 1/4 "cubes. Half the cucumber, scoop out the seeds, then cut into 1/4" cubes.

  • Add the extra virgin olive oil, parsley, mint, tomatoes, and cucumber to the cauliflower rice. Mix to combine. Try to season and add more lemon juice or salt until the flavor sing. Serve immediately or chill. Refrigerate leftovers in a sealed container for up to 5 days.

Notes

If you can't find raw cauliflower rice, it's simple enough to make yours! Follow the instructions in this post.

Nutritional information

Calories: 127kcal (6%), Carbohydrates: 6g (2%), Proteins: 2g (4%), Fats: 9g (14%), Saturated fats: 1g (5%), Polyunsaturated fats: 1g, Monounsaturated fats: 7g , Trans fat: 0 g, Cholesterol: 0 mg, Sodium: 360 mg (15%), Potassium: 391 mg (11%), Fiber: 4 g (16%), Sugar: 2 g (2%), Vitamin A : 63% (63%), Vitamin C: 81% (81%), Calcium: 7% (7%), Iron: 24% (24%)

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