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Gluten Free Tabbouleh

I love this middle eastern dish. The fresh earthy flavors from the herbs, the sweet hot bite from bunching onions, the crunch from the red pepper, sour lemon and creamy olive oil. Tabbouleh is perfect. Tabulee is a fresh herb and vegetable salad with cooked bulgur, which is cut wheat grains. 

But I stopped eating gluten a while back. I started with cutting out any gluten that wasn’t fermented, and recently cut it al out. My main impetus for this move was unusual: not consuming guten helped me keep my calm in situations that I used to snap with my kids. I still have a lot of work to do with keeping my calm and not losing my patience but avoiding gluten has helped ALOT. Weird, huh?

So for this tabbouleh I use sprouted  quinoa instead of bulgur. 

Why quinoa?

  • Quinoa is a pseudo grain, that is to say it is the seed harvested from a tall leafy plant that is related to beets and chard, and not a grain grass. 

  • Quinoa is highly nutritious, containing all nine essential amino acids, and high in protein. It is high in minerals: manganese, magnesium, phosphorus, folate, copper and zinc  high in many of the b vitamins. 

  • Quinoa has a lot of fiber. One study conducted on mice with crohns and colitis indicated that quinoa’s rich fibers were prebiotic and had a positive effect on the gut dysbiosis in the mice. In richness of microbiome diversity and the decrease in pathogenic overgrowth.

Why sprouting?

  • The process of germination that occurs when sprouting changes the composition of the seed in many beneficial ways. 

  • Sprouting neutralizes phytic acid, a substance present in the bran of grains and inhibits the absorption of calcium, magnesium, iron, copper and zinc. 

  • Sprouting also neutralizes enzyme inhibitors present in all seeds. These inhibitors can neutralize enzymes in the digestive system. 

  • Sprouting inactivated aflatoxins, carcinogenic compounds found in grains. 

  • Sprouting increases the vitamin B content and increases carotene dramatically. 

  • Sprouting produces vitamin C. 

  • Numerous enzymes that help digestion are produced during sprouting. 

Sprouting quinoa:

  • Soak quinoa for 4 hours

  • Rinse in freshwater

  • Strain out as much water as you can

  • Allow bowl to sit for two days rinsing and straining thoroughly every few hours

  • Make sure to keep moist but not wet so the seeds won’t rot. 

  • It helps to “fluff” up the seeds every few hours as well. 

Gluten free Tabbouleh 


  • 1 cup sprouted quinoa 

  • 1 cup chopped parsley

  • ½ cup chopped dill/ green onion/ garlic chives or a mixture of all three

  • 1 chopped tomato 

  • ½ chopped red pepper 


  • ¼ cup olive oil

  • Juice from 1 lemon 

  • Salt and pepper 

Do you have any favorite gluten free recipes?

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