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Great Grains Chap 3--Bulgur, the wheat that no one knows how to spell.
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Great Grains Chap 3--Bulgur, the wheat that no one knows how to spell.

Poor, poor Bulgur.  It can be spelled so many ways...bulgur, bulghur, bulgar...very, very confusing.  And it sounds vaguely nasty at first glance.  No wonder it doesn't get tried very often.  Bulgur needs a good PR person.

Truth be told, bulgur is faster and easier to cook than rice!  Though the terms bulgur and cracked wheat are often used interchangeably, bulgur is precooked, and requires just a very short time to cook.  Cracked wheat is not precooked, so it may not work in recipes calling for bulgur.  Be careful if you try to buy it from bins....often, what you find in the Bulgur bin is cracked wheat.  Bulgur comes in different grades of sizes, from fine to extra course.  You may want to use the fine grind for breakfast cereal, salads, and for breads. The medium grind, which is the grind you are most likely to find, can be considered all-purpose. The larger grind, is typically better for pilafs and stuffings.

Bulgur has a wonderful, nutty flavor, and can be used for most anything, from cereal to breads or desserts.  It is probably best know as the grain in tabbouleh or Middle Eastern Parsley salad.  Tabbouleh is so ridiculously easy to make, you don't even have to heat it.

The cooking ratio is 2 ½ cups of liquid to 1 cup of bulgur (usually) and only requires about 15 minutes to absorb any liquid.  

Try bulgur.  Poor, lonely bulgur.  
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Simple Tabbouleh


1 cup fine bulgur
1 medium onion, chopped
1 ½ cups flat leafed parsley, chopped
¼ cup mint, chopped
¼ cup olive oil
¼ cup strained, freshly squeezed lemon juice
Salt, to taste

Soak the bulgur in cold water, to cover, for half an hour. Strain, and squeeze as much of the moisture out as possible. In a bowl, combine the bulgur with the onion, parsley, and mint. Sprinkle the olive oil, lemon juice, and salt over the salad, toss, and refrigerate until chilled.


Lebanese Bulgur

1/3 cup olive oil
1 onion, chopped
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 teaspoon dried basil
1 cup bulgur
1 cup tomato, seeded and chopped
1 1/2 cups vegetable broth or chicken broth, heated
1 tablespoon honey
1 tablespoon tomato paste
salt and pepper
1 pinch cayenne (optional)
2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley

1-Heat the oil in a medium saucepan over medium heat.
2-Add the onion and cook until lightly browned, about 3 minutes.
3-Add the garlic and cook for another minute.
4-Stir in the tomatos and basil, cooking 2 more minutes.
5-Stir the bulgur into the tomato mixture, making sure that the bulgur is well coated.
6-Stir in the hot broth, reduce the heat to low and cook, covered, for 5 minutes.
7-Add the honey, tomato paste, salt, pepper and cayenne to the bulgur mixture.
8-Continue to cook, covered until the bulgur is tender and all the liquid has been absorbed, about 15-20 minutes.
9-Turn off the heat and let sit for 10 minutes.
10-Sprinkle the parsley over the top.

Bulgur Pilaf

1 cup broccoli floret, cut small
1 onion, chopped (use a small onion)
2/3 cup frozen green bell pepper or 1 fresh green bell pepper, chopped
1 clove garlic, minced
1/2 tablespoon olive oil
1 cup canned tomato
1 cup bulgur
3/4 cup canned black bean, rinsed and drained
dried oregano (optional)
salt, to taste
pepper, to taste
3/4 cup hot water


1--Bring a large pan of salted water to boil over high heat.
2--Add the broccoli and cook until it is crip tender but still green, about 1 to 2 minutes.
3--Drain the broccoli and rinse it briefly under cold water.
4--Using the same pan, add the oil.
5--Then add the onion, garlic, pepper, and oregano if using.
6--Cook over medium heat, stirring often, until the onion is translucent which is about 3 to 5 minutes.
7--Add the tomatoes, bulgur, water, and salt and pepper to taste.
8--Bring to a boil and then reduce the heat to low.
9--Cover it and cook until all the liquid is absorbed.
10--Start checking at 10 minutes but it may take up to 15.
11--Turn off the heat and add the broccoli and the black beans.
12--Cover the pan and let it sit until the bulgur is tender but still slightly firm.
13--This will take about 10 to 15 minutes.
Bulgur is also a Core grain, for those who are on the Core plan of Weight Watchers.  
That's a new one on me. I have never tried it.

I''m glad to see that it is core.
I don't like cucumber or tomatoes so this is my fav version of tabbouleh :)

melon and mint tabbouleh
Gourmet | July 2006

Makes 4 side-dish servings.

1 cup boiling-hot water
3/4 cup fine bulgur (5 oz)
1 1/2 cups loosely packed fresh mint leaves
1/3 cup olive oil
3 tablespoons fresh lime juice
1 (1/2-lb) piece firm-ripe honeydew, rind discarded and fruit cut into 1/2-inch pieces (1 cup)
1/2 cup very thinly sliced red onion (from 1 small)
1/2 teaspoon salt

Pour boiling water over bulgur in a bowl, then cover bowl tightly and let stand 30 minutes. Drain in a sieve if watery.

Meanwhile, puré mint with oil in a blender until smooth.

Toss bulgur with mint oil, lime juice, honeydew, onion, and salt.

Bulgur Chickpea Salad Serves: 7
Hands-OnTime: 20 Minutes
Total Time: 2 Hours 40 Minutes

1 cup bulgur
2 cups boiling water
1/2 cup vegetable oil
1/2 cup fresh lemon juice
salt to taste
ground black pepper to taste
1 cup chopped green onions
1 (15 ounce) can garbanzo beans, drained
1 cup chopped fresh parsley
1 cup grated carrots

1 In a heatproof bowl, pour boiling water over bulgur. Let stand 1 hour at room temperature.
2 In a small bowl, beat together oil, lemon juice, salt, and pepper. Pour over bulgur; and mix with a fork.
3 Place bulgur in the bottom of a nice glass serving bowl. Layer vegetables and garbanzo beans in this order on top of the bulgur: green onions, garbanzo beans, parsley, and carrots on top. Cover, and refrigerate. Toss salad just before serving.

Nutrition Info (per serving)
Calories 299 (48% from fat) | Fat 16.8g (sat 2.1g) | Cholesterol 0mg | Carbohydrate 33.6g | Fiber 7.5g | Protein 6.2g | Iron 2mg | Calcium 55mg
I love tabbouleh. Last time I made it, it didn't turn out so well. I'll have to try your recipe. I like the no-cook aspect. It's too hot to be cooking right now. And the boyfriend should be happy that it's healthy.
I made Bulgur Pilaf for lunch, only I didn't use any of the ingredients from this recipe here...#1--I was lazy #2--I didn't have any of the ingredients besides bulgur.

And the whole thing was eyeballed.  I put about a cup and 3/4 of water in a saucepan, added a vegetable boullion cube, a couple glugs of low sodium soy sauce, a couple heaping tablespoons of minced garlic, several shakes of dried minced onions, and some oregano.  Brought to a boil and added about 3/4 cup of the bulgur.
Covered, lowered heat to simmer for like 10-15 min.  Done.

Added a can of rinsed and drained black beans, and some frozen mixed veggies I thawed in the microwave.  I considered adding chopped roma tomatoes, but didn't feel like chopping.

There.  Lunch.

Kitchen Sink Bulgur Pilaf.  I'll have plenty for a few meals, it makes a lot.
What's a glug? Is that like dash, or like a jigger full or what? Or is it like a shot glass full?
*falls over dead, LMAO*

A glug is a glug.  
I know what a glug is. I just wanted to make sure you new! LOL
Yes.  I do know.  Its when the bottle goes "glug....glug.."

Any good drinker knows that!  Not that I drink low sodium soy sauce, but I am extremely familiar with the "glug" sound.
Lol...Only an experienced drinker would know the sound of a true GLUG!
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