Bulgur Salad with Cucumbers and Chick Peas Recipe

This delightful bulgur salad with cucumbers and chickpeas is a refreshing and hearty dish that's packed with contrasting textures and Mediterranean flavors. The chewy bulgur, crispy cucumbers, and creamy chickpeas come together in a flavorful dance that's heightened by fresh herbs and a zesty lemon dressing. It's the perfect side dish for any meal or a satisfying meal on its own.

Bulgur Salad with Cucumbers and Chick Peas Recipe
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All ingredients for this recipe are generally common and should be easily found in your local supermarket. If you're not familiar, bulgur is a type of dried cracked wheat, used often in Middle Eastern and Mediterranean cooking. It has a light, nutty flavor and is an excellent source of fiber and protein. Fresh dill and parsley are key to the flavor profile of this dish. If you can't find fresh herbs, dried ones can be used as a substitute, but fresh is always best.

Ingredients for Bulgur Salad with Cucumbers and Chickpeas

Bulgur: A type of whole wheat that has been cracked and partially pre-cooked, it's high in fiber and has a light, nutty flavor.

Salt: Used to enhance the flavors of the other ingredients.

Red Onion: Adds a sharp flavor and a bit of crunch.

Red Bell Pepper: Gives the salad a pop of color and a sweet, slightly tangy flavor.

English cucumber: A variety of cucumber that's typically sweeter and has thinner skin than regular cucumbers.

Fresh Dill: Adds a fresh and slightly bitter complexity to the salad.

Fresh Parsley: Brings a fresh, slightly peppery flavor.

Chickpeas: Also known as garbanzo beans, they add a creamy texture and are a good source of protein.

Fresh Lemon Juice: Adds acidity and brightness to balance out the flavors.

Extra Virgin Olive Oil: Used for the dressing, it adds richness and depth of flavor.

Garlic Clove: Gives a robust and slightly spicy flavor.

Black Pepper: Adds a mild heat to the salad.

Cumin: A warm, earthy spice that complements the other flavors really well.

Sugar: Just a touch to balance out the acidity and spiciness.

One reader, Alix Badillo says:

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This bulgur salad with cucumbers and chickpeas recipe is a game-changer! The combination of fresh ingredients and zesty dressing creates a burst of flavors. It's a perfect blend of healthy and delicious. I love how easy it is to prepare, making it a go-to for quick, satisfying meals.

Alix Badillo

Techniques Required for Making Bulgur Salad

How to prepare bulgur: Bulgur needs to be soaked in boiling water for 25-30 minutes until all the water is absorbed, resulting in a fluffy and tender texture.

How to soften raw onions: Soak the raw onions in cold water for 10 minutes to reduce their sharpness and bite, resulting in a milder flavor. Drain the onions before adding them to the salad.

How to season the salad: After combining all the ingredients, taste the salad and adjust the seasoning with salt, pepper, sugar, or lemon juice according to your preference.

How To Make Bulgur Salad with Cucumbers and Chick Peas

This bulgur salad yields a low-fat meal that’s packed with fresh cucumbers, crisp bell peppers, and tangy lemon, to create a flavor-packed salad!

Preparation: 40 minutes
Cooking: 10 minutes
Soak Time: 25 minutes
Total: 1 hour 15 minutes



  • 1cupbulgur,or light bulgur
  • tspsalt,divided
  • cupred onion,diced
  • 1red bell pepper,diced
  • 1small English cucumber,seeded, diced
  • ½cupfresh dill,finely chopped
  • cupfresh parsley,finely chopped
  • 15ozchickpeas,drained, rinsed
  • ¼cuplemon juice,fresh
  • ¼cupextra virgin olive oil
  • 1large garlic clove,finely minced
  • ½tspfreshly ground black pepper
  • 1tspcumin
  • 1tspsugar


  1. Bring a kettle of water to a boil. Place the bulgur in a large bowl with ½ teaspoon of salt and 1¼ cups of boiling water.

  2. Cover the bowl tightly with saran wrap and let sit for 25 to 30 minutes, or until all of the water is absorbed.

  3. To soften the bite of the raw onions, place them in a small bowl and cover with cold water. Let them sit for 10 minutes, and then drain.

  4. Combine the cooked bulgur with the red onions, remaining teaspoon of salt and all of the other ingredients. Season to taste with more salt, pepper, sugar or lemon if desired.

  5. Serve cold, and enjoy!


  • Calories: 450.92kcal
  • Fat: 13.84g
  • Saturated Fat: 1.76g
  • Monounsaturated Fat: 7.65g
  • Polyunsaturated Fat: 3.06g
  • Carbohydrates: 67.64g
  • Fiber: 12.54g
  • Sugar: 10.39g
  • Protein: 18.16g
  • Sodium: 413.73mg
  • Calcium: 69.45mg
  • Potassium: 749.72mg
  • Iron: 4.40mg
  • Vitamin A: 51.92µg
  • Vitamin C: 38.94mg

Helpful Technique for Making Bulgur Salad with Cucumbers and Chickpeas

When preparing the bulgur, ensure that you cover the bowl tightly after adding the boiling water. This traps the steam inside, which helps the bulgur to absorb the water and cook evenly. If the bulgur is still a bit crunchy after the suggested time, let it sit for a few more minutes until it reaches your desired texture. Remember, the bulgur will continue to absorb the dressing, softening further as it sits in the salad.

Time-Saving Tips for Preparing This Recipe

Prep ahead: Prepare the bulgur, chop the vegetables, and make the dressing a day in advance to save time on the day of serving.

Use canned chickpeas: Opt for canned chickpeas instead of cooking them from scratch to cut down on preparation time.

Multi-task: While the bulgur is soaking, use that time to chop the vegetables and herbs to maximize efficiency in the kitchen.

Invest in a food processor: Use a food processor to quickly chop the herbs and vegetables for the salad, saving time on manual chopping.

Make extra: Prepare a larger batch of the salad and store the leftovers in the fridge for a quick and convenient meal option later in the week.

Substitute Ingredients For Bulgur Salad with Cucumbers and Chick Peas Recipe

  • bulgur - Substitute with quinoa: Quinoa has a similar texture and nutty flavor to bulgur, making it a great substitute in this recipe. It also provides a good source of protein and fiber.

  • red onion - Substitute with shallots: Shallots have a milder flavor compared to red onions and can add a subtle sweetness to the salad without overpowering the other ingredients.

  • red bell pepper - Substitute with yellow bell pepper: Yellow bell peppers have a slightly sweeter flavor and can add a vibrant color to the salad, while still providing a crunchy texture.

  • english cucumber - Substitute with Persian cucumber: Persian cucumbers are similar in flavor and texture to English cucumbers, and their smaller size makes them convenient for slicing and adding to the salad.

  • fresh dill - Substitute with fresh mint: Fresh mint can provide a refreshing and aromatic flavor to the salad, complementing the other ingredients while adding a unique twist.

  • fresh parsley - Substitute with cilantro: Cilantro can add a fresh and citrusy flavor to the salad, enhancing the overall taste and providing a different herbaceous note.

  • chickpeas - Substitute with cannellini beans: Cannellini beans have a creamy texture and mild flavor, making them a suitable alternative to chickpeas in this salad.

  • lemon juice - Substitute with white wine vinegar: White wine vinegar can provide a tangy and slightly fruity flavor, similar to lemon juice, while adding a subtle acidity to the salad.

  • extra virgin olive oil - Substitute with avocado oil: Avocado oil has a mild flavor and can provide a smooth texture to the salad, along with its healthful monounsaturated fats.

  • garlic clove - Substitute with garlic powder: Garlic powder can be used as a substitute for fresh garlic, providing a convenient option while still imparting a savory garlic flavor to the salad.

  • cumin - Substitute with coriander: Coriander has a citrusy and slightly sweet flavor that can complement the other ingredients in the salad, offering a different aromatic profile.

  • sugar - Substitute with honey: Honey can add a touch of sweetness to the salad while also contributing a subtle floral note, enhancing the overall flavor profile.

Essential Tools for Making Bulgur Salad with Cucumbers and Chickpeas

  • Cutting board: A flat surface used for cutting, slicing, and chopping ingredients.

  • Chef's knife: A versatile kitchen knife used for a variety of tasks such as chopping, slicing, and dicing.

  • Mixing bowl: A bowl used for combining ingredients, mixing batters, and preparing salads.

  • Whisk: A kitchen tool used for blending, whipping, and beating ingredients.

  • Measuring cups and spoons: Used for accurately measuring ingredients for recipes.

  • Lemon squeezer: A tool used to extract juice from lemons or other citrus fruits.

  • Garlic press: A tool used to crush and mince garlic cloves.

  • Colander: A bowl-shaped kitchen utensil with perforations used for draining foods such as pasta or rinsing vegetables.

  • Large bowl: A larger vessel used for mixing and tossing ingredients for salads or other dishes.

  • Saran wrap: A thin, plastic cling film used to cover and protect food items.

  • Kettle: A container with a lid, spout, and handle, used for boiling water.

  • Food processor: A kitchen appliance used for chopping, blending, and pureeing ingredients.

  • Small bowl: A smaller vessel used for soaking or marinating ingredients.

  • Spatula: A kitchen tool with a broad, flat, flexible blade used for lifting, spreading, or flipping ingredients.

  • Pepper grinder: A tool used to grind peppercorns to add freshly ground pepper to dishes.

  • Juicer: A tool used to extract juice from fruits such as lemons or oranges.

  • Strainer: A kitchen tool used for separating liquids from solids or for sifting dry ingredients.

  • Tongs: A kitchen utensil with two arms and a pivot used for gripping and lifting items.

  • Grater: A tool used to shred or grate ingredients such as cheese or vegetables.

  • Zester: A tool used to remove the zest from citrus fruits.

  • Peeler: A tool used to remove the outer skin or peel from fruits and vegetables.

Storing and Freezing Tips for Bulgur Salad

  • This bulgur salad can be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 4 days. The flavors will meld together and intensify over time, making it even more delicious on the second or third day.

  • If you want to prepare the salad in advance, you can cook the bulgur and chop the vegetables ahead of time. Store them separately in the refrigerator and combine them with the dressing just before serving to keep the salad fresh and crunchy.

  • While it's best to enjoy this salad fresh, you can freeze the cooked bulgur for up to 2 months. Allow it to cool completely before transferring it to a freezer-safe container or resealable bag. Thaw the bulgur in the refrigerator overnight before using it in the salad.

  • The vegetables and herbs in this salad don't freeze well, as they tend to become soggy and lose their texture. It's recommended to add them to the salad just before serving for the best results.

  • If you have leftover salad that you want to freeze, remove the vegetables and herbs and freeze only the bulgur and chickpeas. When ready to serve, thaw the mixture in the refrigerator and add freshly chopped vegetables and herbs for a tasty and refreshing meal.

How To Reheat Leftover Bulgur Salad

  • To reheat leftover bulgur salad, start by transferring the desired portion into a microwave-safe bowl. Cover the bowl with a damp paper towel to prevent the salad from drying out during the reheating process.
  • Microwave the bulgur salad on high power for 30-45 seconds, depending on the quantity. After the initial time, stir the salad gently to ensure even heating throughout.
  • If the salad is not heated to your liking, continue microwaving in 15-second intervals, stirring between each interval, until it reaches the desired temperature. Be careful not to overheat the salad, as this may cause the vegetables to become mushy and the bulgur to become overcooked.
  • Alternatively, you can reheat the bulgur salad in a skillet over medium heat. Add a small amount of olive oil or water to the pan to prevent sticking and to help revitalize the salad.
  • Stir the salad frequently while reheating in the skillet, ensuring that it heats evenly and doesn't burn on the bottom. This method may take a bit longer than the microwave, but it can help to slightly crisp up the vegetables and give the salad a fresher taste.
  • If the salad seems a bit dry after reheating, you can add a splash of fresh lemon juice, a drizzle of olive oil, or a small amount of water to help moisten it and revive the flavors.
  • Once the bulgur salad is heated through and has reached your desired temperature, taste and adjust the seasoning if needed. You may want to add a pinch of salt, pepper, or a sprinkle of fresh herbs to brighten up the flavors after reheating.
  • Serve the reheated bulgur salad immediately, enjoying it as a warm and satisfying meal or side dish.

Interesting Fact About Bulgur Salad with Cucumbers and Chickpeas

Bulgur is a whole grain that is high in fiber and protein, making it a nutritious addition to your diet. It is also a good source of vitamins and minerals, including manganese, magnesium, and iron. Incorporating bulgur into your meals can help support digestive health and provide sustained energy throughout the day. Additionally, bulgur is a versatile ingredient that can be used in a variety of dishes, from salads to pilafs and soups. Its nutty flavor and chewy texture make it a delicious and healthy choice for your meals.

Is This Recipe Budget-Friendly for Home Cooking?

This bulgur salad with cucumbers and chickpeas recipe is highly cost-effective for a household. The main ingredients, such as bulgur, chickpeas, and vegetables, are affordable and readily available. The recipe's simplicity and use of basic, economical ingredients make it a budget-friendly choice for families. The overall verdict for this recipe is 9/10, considering its nutritional value, flavor, and affordability. The approximate cost for a household of 4 people is around $10-$12, making it an excellent option for those looking for a delicious and economical meal.

Is This Salad Healthy or Unhealthy?

This bulgur salad with cucumbers and chickpeas recipe is a nutritious and well-balanced dish. Here's why:

  • Bulgur: A whole grain packed with fiber, protein, and essential nutrients like iron and magnesium.
  • Vegetables: Cucumbers, red bell peppers, and onions provide a variety of vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants.
  • Chickpeas: An excellent source of plant-based protein, fiber, and complex carbohydrates.
  • Herbs: Fresh dill and parsley add flavor and offer additional vitamins and minerals.
  • Olive oil: A healthy source of monounsaturated fats, which can help reduce inflammation and improve heart health.
  • Lemon juice: Rich in vitamin C and helps enhance iron absorption from the other ingredients.

The combination of whole grains, vegetables, legumes, and healthy fats makes this salad a nutrient-dense and satisfying meal.

To further enhance the nutritional value of this already healthy salad, consider the following suggestions:

  • Add more leafy greens, such as spinach or kale, to increase the vitamin and mineral content
  • Include additional colorful vegetables like cherry tomatoes or grated carrots for a wider range of antioxidants
  • Sprinkle some nuts or seeds, such as almonds or pumpkin seeds, for added healthy fats and a crunchy texture
  • Experiment with different herbs and spices to boost flavor without relying on excess salt
  • Use whole grain or sprouted grain bread to serve alongside the salad for a complete and balanced meal

Editor's Opinion on This Bulgur Salad Recipe

The bulgur salad with cucumbers and chickpeas recipe is a delightful combination of fresh and vibrant flavors. The use of bulgur adds a nutty and wholesome base, complemented by the crispness of cucumbers and the creaminess of chickpeas. The blend of fresh herbs, lemon juice, and olive oil creates a refreshing and zesty dressing that ties the salad together beautifully. The addition of red bell pepper adds a pop of color and sweetness, while the cumin and garlic infuse the dish with a warm, aromatic depth. Overall, this recipe offers a delightful balance of textures and flavors, making it a perfect addition to any meal.

Enhance Your Bulgur Salad with Cucumbers and Chick Peas Recipe with These Unique Side Dishes:

Roasted Garlic Asparagus: Toss asparagus with olive oil, salt, and pepper, then roast until tender and slightly crispy. The perfect accompaniment to the bulgur salad!
Grilled Lemon Herb Chicken: Marinate chicken in a mixture of lemon juice, herbs, and olive oil, then grill to perfection. The juicy, flavorful chicken pairs beautifully with the refreshing bulgur salad.
Mango Avocado Salsa: Combine diced mango, avocado, red onion, and cilantro with a squeeze of lime juice for a vibrant and tangy salsa that adds a tropical twist to the meal.
Coconut Curry Lentil Soup: Simmer lentils, vegetables, and aromatic spices in a creamy coconut curry broth for a comforting and hearty soup that complements the lightness of the bulgur salad.
Berry Mint Sorbet: Whip up a refreshing and palate-cleansing sorbet using fresh berries, mint, and a touch of sweetness. The cool, fruity dessert is the perfect way to end the meal.

Similar Salad Recipes to Try

Grilled Vegetable Platter: Grill a variety of vegetables such as zucchini, bell peppers, and eggplant, then drizzle with balsamic glaze for a delicious and healthy side dish.
Mediterranean Stuffed Peppers: Stuff bell peppers with a mixture of ground turkey, quinoa, tomatoes, and feta cheese, then bake until tender for a flavorful and satisfying meal.
Fruit Salsa with Cinnamon Chips: Combine diced mango, pineapple, and strawberries with lime juice and cilantro to make a refreshing and colorful fruit salsa, perfect for dipping with homemade cinnamon chips.

Appetizer and Dessert Pairings for Bulgur Salad with Cucumbers and Chickpeas

Stuffed Mushrooms: Create a savory and indulgent appetizer by stuffing large mushrooms with a mixture of cream cheese, garlic, and herbs. Bake until golden and serve hot for a crowd-pleasing starter.
Bruschetta: Offer a taste of Italy with crispy slices of toasted baguette topped with a vibrant mixture of diced tomatoes, fresh basil, garlic, and balsamic glaze. This classic appetizer is sure to impress your guests.
Chocolate Mousse: Indulge in a rich and velvety chocolate mousse, topped with a dollop of whipped cream and a sprinkle of cocoa powder. The smooth texture and decadent flavor will satisfy any sweet tooth.
Apple Pie: Savor the warm and comforting flavors of a classic apple pie, with a flaky golden crust and tender cinnamon-spiced apples. Pair it with a scoop of vanilla ice cream for the perfect balance of sweetness and tartness.

Why trust this Bulgur Salad with Cucumbers and Chick Peas Recipe:

This recipe offers a delightful combination of wholesome ingredients, including bulgur, cucumbers, and chickpeas, providing a nutritious and satisfying meal. The use of fresh dill and parsley infuses the salad with vibrant flavors, while the addition of red bell pepper adds a pop of color and a delightful crunch. The dressing, made with fresh lemon juice and extra virgin olive oil, enhances the dish with a zesty and aromatic touch. With a harmonious blend of textures and flavors, this recipe promises a delightful culinary experience.

Got a great recipe for Bulgur Salad with Cucumbers and Chick Peas? Share your thoughts and discuss this delicious and healthy dish in the Recipe Sharing forum!
Can I use a different grain instead of bulgur?
Yes, you can substitute bulgur with quinoa, couscous, or even brown rice for a different texture and flavor.
How long can I store the salad in the refrigerator?
The salad can be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3-4 days. Just give it a good stir before serving.
Can I use dried herbs instead of fresh ones?
While fresh herbs provide a brighter flavor, you can use dried herbs if that's what you have on hand. Just use about one-third of the amount of dried herbs as the recipe calls for fresh.
Can I make this salad in advance?
Absolutely! In fact, the flavors meld together even better if you make it a few hours ahead of time. Just wait to add the fresh herbs until right before serving to keep them vibrant.
Can I omit the sugar from the dressing?
Yes, you can omit the sugar if you prefer. The salad will still have plenty of flavor from the other ingredients.

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