Quinoa tabbouleh with avocado

Quinoa Tabbouleh (Vegan, Gluten Free)

One of Guatemala’s blessings is our wonderful markets, filled with fresh local fruits and vegetables. Yesterday I went up to one of my favorite vendors, where I often buy basil and leafy greens. There was no basil on display, so I asked for it. The vendor pulled out a small paper bag: “Sí, hay.” She handed me a beautiful bunch of basil and said “También hay perejil”…”There is also parsley.” She handed me two gorgeous, fresh bunches of flat-leaf parsley.

I hadn’t though about parsley in months! My brain quickly went into planning mode: I have mint growing in the garden. Stop and get some tomatoes and cucumber. In my mind, I could already see the tabbouleh prepared for lunch.

While bulgur wheat can be found in specialty stores here, it’s not a common ingredient. I knew I had quinoa, however, and a new version of my favorite tabbouleh was born. If you prefer bulgur to quinoa, no problem! Use 1 cup of dried bulgur instead of 1 cup of dried quinoa.

Most tabbouleh recipes call for olive oil. I don’t add oil to mine–just some lemon or lime juice for moisture. Instead of oil, sliced avocado adds a whole-food source of richness.

Quinoa Tabbouleh

Course: Salad
Cuisine: Mediterranean, Vegan
Keyword: Gluten Free, Oil Free
Servings: 8
Author: Singing Vegan


  • 1 cup quinoa rinsed
  • 2 1/2 cups water
  • 1 cup parsley leaves fresh, chopped fine
  • 1/4 cup mint leaves chopped
  • 2 large tomatoes seeded and chopped
  • 1 small red onion diced
  • 1 large cucumber peeled, seeded, and diced
  • 1/4 cup lemon juice
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • avocado slices optional


  • In a large saucepan, mix the quinoa and water and bring to a boil over medium heat. Reduce heat and allow the quinoa to simmer until the water is absorbed, about 15-20 minutes.
  • Remove from heat, stir gently, and allow to cool while you prepare the remaining ingredients.
  • In a large bowl, stir together the parsley, mint, chopped tomatoes, diced onion, diced cucumber, and lemon or lime juice.
  • Season with salt and pepper to taste and add more lemon juice if needed.
  • When the quinoa is cooled, gently stir it into the mixture in the bowl.
  • Refrigerate for an hour to allow the flavors to blend if possible.
  • Serve garnished with sliced avocado, if desired.

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