How To Make Tabbouleh Kid-Friendly

Tabbouleh is filled with healthy ingredients like cucumber, parsley and mint. I love it but my kids hate the green bits and the raw onion. I came up with a way that gets my kids eating this salad by the spoonful.

Tabbouleh is one of those summer salads that I really love. The problem is that my kids don’t like it very much.

When making a batch recently my daughter was in the kitchen with me. I gave her some bulgur to taste. She liked it a lot. And why wouldn’t she? Bulgur has a very mild taste to it.

That made me realize that what they dislike about Tabbouleh isn’t the bulgur but the other ingredients. In particular, the raw onion is never going to be their favorite thing. And they are not big fans of green leafy stuff. So the parsley or mint were out of the question for them.

But could it possibly be Tabbouleh without green herbs and onion? Absolutely not.

Kid-Friendly Tabouleh

I therefore decided to make a Tabbouleh where the bulgur is dressed lightly with olive oil and lemon juice but the other ingredients are served separately. That way everyone can add what they like and avoid what they don’t like.

Build your own tablouleh

It’s a kid-friendly, and picky-eater-friendly, version of Tabbouleh. It’s very easy to make. And I’ve included a tip for cooling the Bulgur down quickly if you want to make this salad for dinner tonight.

Kid-Friendly Tabouleh

 And now, Here’s the Recipe for Kid-Friendly Tabbouleh



Kid-Friendly Tabbouleh

  • Author: Christine Pittman
  • Prep Time: 5 minutes
  • Cook Time: 20 minutes
  • Total Time: 25 minutes
  • Yield: 8 servings


For this kid-friendly version of tabbouleh you keep the lightly dressed bulgur separate from the other ingredients. Then you let everyone add whatever they like, and skip whatever they don’t like.


  • 2 cups bulgur wheat
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1/2 tsp. ground cumin
  • 2 medium tomatoes
  • 1/2 of an English cucumber
  • 1/2 of a red onion
  • 2 handfuls fresh flat-leaf parsley or 1 handful parsley and 1 handful mint
  • 2 Tbsp. olive oil
  • 1 Tbsp. lemon juice
  • 1/2 tsp. salt


  1. Cook the bulgur according to package directions. Note that I always add 1/2 tsp salt to the cooking liquid. Once all the liquid has been absorbed, add the garlic and cumin to the bulgur and fluff gently with a fork. Spread it out on a large baking sheet to cool quickly.
  2. While the bulgur cooks, chop the tomatoes, cucumber and red onion. Arrange them on a platter. Chop the fresh herbs and add them to the platter as well.
  3. Drizzle the bulgur with the olive oil and lemon juice and sprinkle with the salt. Use a fork to gently stir it all together. Transfer the bulgur to a serving bowl and allow everyone to serve themselves, adding toppings from among the fresh ingredients on the platter.

Kid-Friendly Tabouleh


Kid-Friendly Tabouleh

2 responses to “How To Make Tabbouleh Kid-Friendly”

  1. Couldn’t help but chuckle at this because growing up in a Lebanese household, everyone loved and at tabbouleh at all ages! But we probably weren’t the norm. ;-) This looks awesome!!

    • Christine Pittman says:

      That is funny, Liz! My kids just don’t like onions or any uncooked green leaves. However, we went for Tappenyaki this past weekend and they both ate their fill of edamame and habachi-seared squid. Kids!!

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