Tangy, Fresh Bulgur Salad from the Instant Pot™
Bulgur salad is packed with fresh herbs, tomatoes, cucumbers, and great flavour. An easy side or light main from the Instant Pot™ that doesn’t scrimp on flavour or nutrition.
When it’s done right, nothing beats a really good salad. However, far too many salads fall short. Some taste great, but lack texture. Others lack herby freshness. And, all too often the dressings are just so-so.
However, when it comes to this herby, tangy, fresh bulgur salad, I could eat it every day of the week! The coarse bulgur (which the Instant Pot™ renders perfectly al dente) adds a tender chew, while the cucumbers add crunch. The sweet tartness of tomatoes and pomegranate are beautifully balanced by plenty of bright, fresh lemon juice and herbs, and just a hint of spice. Herbs and vegetables are the stars of this bulgur salad!
Best of all? Bulgur salad comes together quickly and holds up beautifully on a buffet or in the fridge. It’s perfect for lunchboxes, picnics, and potlucks.
About Bulgur Wheat
Bulgur wheat originated in the Mediterranean. It’s a whole grain made from parboiled cracked wheat which is used in salads and pilafs in cuisines throughout the region.
Because it’s parboiled, bulgur is quick and easy to prepare. However, it’s minimally processed and is, therefore, much more nutritious than other forms of wheat.
Bulgur is rich in fibre, manganese, magnesium, and iron (among others). Nonetheless, it is lower in calories than either brown rice or quinoa.
Thanks to all its healthy fibre, bulgur wheat is a heart-healthy option that supports blood sugar control. The fibre is wonderful for a healthy gut, and gives you a nice sense of fullness. Hence, bulgur wheat is an excellent addition to any weight management program.
What if I don’t have an Instant Pot™?
I prefer to prepare bulgur wheat in the Instant Pot™ because it speeds up and streamlines the process. However, you can also prepare bulgur wheat the traditional way.
Use a 2:1 ratio of water to wheat. Pour boiling water over the bulgur, and allow it to soak until it is tender (about 15-20 minutes is usually sufficient). Then, drain the bulgur over a sieve, pressing down to release any additional water, which — if left in the grain — will dilute the flavours in your salad. It’s that simple!
About This Recipe
This recipe is a template that doesn’t require slavish following. You can vary the herbs and vegetables according to what looks best at the market or in your garden.
The only requirement (in my book, anyway) is some form of tomatoes. If you don’t have gorgeous cherry tomatoes in your market, I would recommend seeding, and dicing normal tomatoes. But, please don’t leave them out.
When it’s cold outside and the cucumbers don’t look great, I often use fennel to add crunch and flavour. You may think of other additions or substitutions. If you do, I’d love to hear about them.
As for the herbs, the recipe calls for parsley. However, I often use a combination of coriander, chives and mint because those herbs are always in my garden. Once again, I encourage you to play with the flavours and try different combinations. The only important thing is to have at least 1 cup of fresh herbs in the salad. If you like herbs, or have a bumper crop, you could double the quantity. However, use less than one cup and you’ll compromise on flavour.
I hope your family adores this fresh, tasty bulgur salad every bit as much as mine does. Bon appétit!