UPMC HealthBeat | Butternut Squash Tabbouleh Cooking

Tabbouleh is a salad that uses finely chopped parsley and bulgur wheat, among other ingredients. Like many other Middle Eastern dishes, tabbouleh is becoming more and more popular in the United States.

This version of a tabbouleh recipe uses butternut squash instead of tomatoes and adds in cranberries for another punch of flavor. It’s a good option if you’re looking for an appetizer or side salad in the late winter or early spring months.

Butternut squash is also a good source of vitamins A and C, fiber, and other nutrients — so you’ll be getting some health benefits, too.

Total time:50 minutes

Preparation time:30 minutes

Cooking time:20 minutes

Recipe serves: 10


  • 1 small butternut squash
  • 1/2 cup bulgur wheat
  • 1 cup parsley, chopped
  • 1/2 cup fresh mint, chopped
  • 1 shallot, minced
  • 1/4 cup dried cranberries
  • 1 lemon
  • 1 cup water
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 3-4 tablespoons olive oil, divided
  • Feta cheese (optional)


  1. Peel squash and cut into 1/4-inch cubes.
  2. Heat 2 tablespoons of oil in a skillet over medium heat. Add squash and salt. Cover and cook for five minutes, stirring occasionally. Uncover and cook for seven more minutes or until squash is easily pierced with a fork. Remove from heat.
  3. Prepare bulgur wheat by mixing with water and bringing it to a boil. Reduce heat to low. Cover pot and cook for 10 minutes. Remove bulgur from heat and keep covered for five more minutes. Fluff with a fork and add salt and pepper to taste.
  4. While the bulgur is cooking, chop herbs and mince shallots.
  5. After bulgur and squash have cooled, combine them in a serving bowl.
  6. Add chopped herbs, cranberries, and shallot.
  7. Squeeze lemon juice over the mixture and drizzle 1-2 tablespoons of olive oil.
  8. Toss and top with feta, if desired.

Nutritional Information

Serving size: 1/2 Cup

Calories (per serving): 250

2 g protein; 14 g fat; 31 g carbohydrates; 5 g fiber; 307 mg sodium.

*Recipe adapted from Cookie and Kate.

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