Beet and Feta Tabbouleh


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Use any grain in this Beet and Feta Tabbouleh, a twist on the bright, classic Middle Eastern salad of parsley, bulgur, and lemon. Beets and feta add flavor, color, and a nutritional boost.

Beet salad in a white bowl

How do you feel about beets?

I wonder because it was only recently that it occurred to me that not everyone is a fan of these sweet, toothsome globes.  Over Christmas I met the two friends I’ve known longer than any others for lunch at André’s in Kansas City.  A cozy café filled that smells of chocolate and coffee, it was a perfect place to linger over a wintertime lunch with good friends.  We sat there, drinking tea well into the dinner hour.

As it turns out, André’s is also a great place to have a beet salad.  At least, that is, if you like beets.

beet salad in a large white bowl

The waitress came by to tell us about the lunch menu – quiche and sandwiches.  And a beet salad that they were serving alongside most of the dishes.  My oldest friends crinkled their noses and passed.  I’ve known these girls since we were eight.  They are constant proof to me that, no matter how well you know someone, they still surprise you.  Having known each other in our pickiest stages of life, I had been pretty certain I knew every food these two refuse to eat.

The waitress returned a few minutes later and asked if my name was Jessica.  I had a telephone call, she said.  In a throwback to 1995, my mother had called the restaurant directly and asked for the blond girl dining with two other thirty-somethings.  (My vacationing cellphone-less self quickly remembered what it was like before we all had phones on us at all times.  It was refreshing.)

Back at the table, I devoured my beet salad.  To their credit, both of my friends tasted it.  Neither were sold.

If you like beets, this salad is for you.  It doesn’t stray too far from the traditional Middle Eastern tabbouleh salads.  Parsley and lemon and a good, hearty grain.

I add some feta and loads of beets and call it a meal.

Beet and Feta Tabbouleh in a white bowl

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Beet and Feta Tabbouleh Recipe

Use any grain in this twist on the bright, classic Middle Eastern salad of parsley, bulgur, and lemon. Beets and feta add flavor, color, and a nutritional boost.
Prep: 1 hour
Total: 1 hour
Servings: 6


  • Saucepan
  • Mixing Bowl


  • 4 large Beets, rinsed and scrubbed clean
  • 1 small Red onion, finely chopped
  • 1/4 cup Red Wine Vinegar
  • 1 cup cooked Bulgur Wheat (or substitute another grain – millet or quinoa would also be delicious)
  • 4 ounces Feta Cheese, cut into cubes
  • 2 large bunches Fresh Curly-Leaf Parsley, finely chopped
  • 3 Tablespoons Fresh-Squeezed Lemon Juice
  • 2 Tablespoons Extra-Virgin Olive Oil
  • 2 teaspoons Balsamic Vinegar
  • Salt and black pepper, to taste


  • Place beets in a large saucepan covered with salted water to taste. Boil until tender when pierced with a fork, 35-60 minutes. (Very large beets can take 60 minutes.)
  • Drain pan and run cool water over beets. When beets have cooled enough to touch, gently pull the skins off the beets. Cut beets into bite-sized cubes and set aside.
  • Combine red onion and vinegar in a large mixing bowl. Allow to soak for 10 minutes. Drain and discard vinegar, returning shallots to the bowl. Add bulgur, feta, parsley, lemon juice, olive oil and balsamic vinegar to the shallots. Toss to combine. Add salt and pepper, to taste.
    MAKE AHEAD: At this point, you can refrigerate the salad and the beets in their individual bowls for up to a day.
  • Just before serving, add the beets to the salad and toss gently. (The beets will begin to color the salad, so toss as little as possible.) Serve immediately.


Calories: 210kcal | Carbohydrates: 27g | Protein: 7g | Fat: 9g | Saturated Fat: 4g | Cholesterol: 17mg | Sodium: 273mg | Fiber: 6g | Sugar: 7g

Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.

Author: Jess Smith via Inquiring Chef
Cost: $6.00
Calories: 210
Keyword: easy dinner, lunch, vegetarian
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About Jess Smith

Jess is the recipe creator and photographer at She spent nearly a decade as the Chief Recipe Developer for the award-winning meal planning app Cook Smarts. Her colorful, healthyish recipes have been featured in popular online publications including Parade, Hallmark, and HuffPost.

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  1. I don’t usually like beets, but this was so good. I made it because my boyfriend loves them. I roasted the beets and used vegan feta.

  2. Jess I am over the moon about beets. I don’t think I could eat enough of them. Besides the health benefits, I love how they taste. Especially roasted. Yum! This salad looks divine and I shall absolutely make it. 🙂 I’ve been making a beet salad for years now, it’s delicious but last time I prepared it my husband mentioned we should find a new beet salad recipe. LOL!

  3. I love beets. But I’m the only one in this house that shares that same affection. More for me, I guess. 🙂 Fabulous salad – it’s gorgeous and I love the flavors. I pinned it, definitely want to make this!

  4. I love beets!! I just hate cooking them. 😉 But I did get some in my CSA recently and your recipe looks fantastic — I’m movitated by your gorgeous photo to put those beautiful colors together into this salad and onto my dinner table.

    PS — I’ve been shocked to learn recently how many people I’m close to dislike sweet potatoes…

    1. SWEET POTATOES!? That’s even harder for me to understand than beets. But to each their own. I guess I’m not one to talk – no one can ever understand how I don’t like pretzels. 😉

  5. I love the colors of this tabbouleh salad Jess! I pretty much will eat anything with feta cheese too lol. One of my favorites. 🙂 I always love looking at your beautiful photography.

    1. Me too, Sally! I love feta! We can get some great imported stuff here, so I use it all the time. The saltiness goes so well with so many veggies!

  6. I’m slowing starting to like beets more and more. For a while the only thing I thought of when it came to beets was Dwight Schrute from the Office. haha.

    1. Definitely check it out, Cassie. This was my first trip, but I’ll definitely be back – such a fun, unique lunch spot. We went the Saturday before Christmas and had to wait for an hour, but it was totally worth it!

    1. Hi Molly! I buy mine at Foodland, but I’ve seen them in Villa as well. They’re very cheap, and unlike other items, they never seem to be out of stock. Like most produce, they come wrapped in plastic, and they have all the stems and leafy greens removed, so they don’t look much like the beets I used to buy at home.