Healthy and vibrant, this raw cauliflower tabouli recipe makes a delicious low carb alternative to the traditional Middle Eastern tabouli. It's a light plant-based side dish bursting with lemon and herbs.
Some vegetables are most definitely underused in my kitchen. One of them is cauliflower. I admit I don't really like it. To me, it's the lamb of vegetables i.e. it needs to be flavoured with something more palatable before I'll happily eat it.
Cooked cauliflower can represent all that is bad about stereotypical British food. Wet, soggy, tasteless and bland with a nasty aftertaste. If that's what you think too, just give it a chance raw. You might be pleasantly surprised.
Make this Cauliflower Tabouli with Raw Cauliflower
This cauliflower tabouli is made with raw cauliflower and raw cauliflower is a completely different vegetable. Yes, it is. Raw cauliflower is crisp, tasty, perfect in salads or just on its own for a healthy vegetable snack. That's right, I like raw cauliflower, I just don't use it enough.
I saw this recipe in Delicious Magazine and it jumped out at me straightaway. I'd been wanting to make a cauliflower tabouli for quite a while and I loved the sound of the sundried tomatoes in this.
However, as I rarely buy cauliflowers, it's not something I often have the ingredients for at home. This time though, I'd picked a small cauliflower at the pick your own and was actually looking for ways of using it without cooking it.
Blitzed up the cauliflower is a good substitute for bulgur wheat. It's not the same, but as long as you're not expecting it to be, that's fine. I loved the little grains of white cauliflower amongst the fresh herbs, garlic and the punchiness of the sundried tomatoes. It's definitely a reason to buy a cauliflower, even if you've avoided it since becoming an adult.
How to adapt this raw cauliflower tabouli recipe
Of course, you could make this raw cauliflower tabouli recipe with bulghur wheat or couscous but the cauliflower makes a nice change. It is also a good way of getting some extra vegetables in your diet. Or your family's.
I often avoid recipes that include lots of different herbs. I love using herbs but if I buy too many then I find I don't use them before they go limp and I hate waste. So, bearing that in mind, don't feel you need to use all three of the herbs I have used. This recipe is just as tasty using just two herbs or even just one herb. Feel free to use what you can get easily.
If you want the tabouli to be extra lemony then grate some of the zest before squeezing the lemon. If you are not so keen on raw garlic then leave it out. You could also add a little finely diced raw onion.
The quantities in this salad can be adjusted. Make sure to taste it and adjust the lemon juice, oil and black pepper to taste.
Raw Cauliflower Tabouli Recipe
The recipe is from My Petite Kitchen Cookbook by Eleanor Ozich.
- 300 g cauliflower Approximately half a cauliflower
- 10 g mint
- 10 g basil
- 10 g parsley
- 1 clove garlic crushed
- 70 g sundried tomatoes roughly chopped
- 1 lemon juiced
- Pinch black pepper
- 2 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
- Put the cauliflower and garlic in a food processor and blitz until the grains are about the size of grains of rice.
- Add the herbs and blitz again until all the herbs have been chopped.
- Put the mixture from the food processor into a bowl and add the lemon juice, sundried tomatoes, black pepper and olive oil. Stir together.
Pin this tasty cauliflower tabouli recipe!
More vegan salad recipes
If you're looking for more healthy side salad recipes then why not try my lemon, barley and basil salad?
It's delicious as a barbecue side dish as is my tomato, olive and couscous salad.
If you prefer a low carb salad then how about my harissa carrot salad? It's ideal for spice lovers!
Salads Recipe Collection
I love salads and even have a whole recipe collection for main course salad recipes. Do check it out if you're looking for inspiration!
I love tabouli and lucky for me I love cauliflower. Seems like a match made in heaven! Such a great alternative for a low carb diet.
Exactly! The garlic, herbs and sundried tomatoes make it so tasty too.
This looks and sounds stunning Corina. My little boy loves raw cauliflower so I'll have to try this with him.
I hope he likes it. I did manage to get my little girl to eat a little and she doesn't normally eat veggies!
Cat | Curly's Cooking
I never eat cauliflower boiled. The only way I actually enjoy eating it is in a curry so I will definitely have to try this to try it a different way. It looks so fresh and light.
I hope you like it this way too Cat! I have to agree that apart from raw one of the best ways to eat it is in a curry, especially if it is roasted first.
I buy cauliflowers and never do anything exciting with them - now I have a new idea!
Yay! And this is a really easy way to prepare it too.
I'm not a big fan of cooked cauliflower and will only make it when I'm able to add lots of spices and sauces. Your refreshing salad is more appealing because of the lemon and herbs and also because its raw. Raw cauliflower when processed to smaller pieces is more palatable.
I definitely agree about raw cauliflower. I've always liked it raw and now I like it roasted too but it can be horrible if it's boiled and overcooked!
Jac -Tinned Tomatoes (@tinnedtoms)
Love Tabbouleh! Nice entry for No Croutons required.
Helen @ Fuss Free Flavours
This is a great idea! Someone else sent cauliflower rice to #ExtraVeg this month. I have a wilted bunch of parsley in the fridge at the moment too.
I think using cauliflower in dishes like these has become quite popular recently!
Kate - Gluten Free Alchemist
I have had cauliflower cous cous on my list of thinks to make for months, but haven't got round to it yet. This looks pretty good though, so maybe I should take the plunge!
Definitely take the plunge. I'm so glad I finally tried it and discovered a way of eating cauliflower that I really love.
Katie Bryson (@cookingkt)
What a fab little recipe! So healthy using raw cauliflower instead of couscous - great for keeping things light. I quite like cauliflower, but generally when it's smothered in cheese sauce. I often chuck some into a pot of macaroni cheese. Over-cooked and on its own and you're right - it's vaguely sour and vile. And i'm with you on the lamb front... fatty strong tasting bleugh memories of sunday lunch as a child! Thanks for hooking up with bookmarked recipes this month, I'm going to be bookmarking this to try as I love salads like this 🙂
I'm sure you'll love it. It's definitely one I'll be making again!
I just made cauliflower rice and didn't think of eating it raw! I love the herbs and garlic. I do agree with you that cauliflower needs a bit of flavour to stand out and overcooked is never nice 🙂 This looks fresh and very delicious.
Thank you. I plan to have a go at cauliflower rice soon although I think I might leave it raw or just very lightly steamed.
Raw sounds interesting, it goes very well with coconut 🙂
I've never thought to put coconut with cauliflower but I love the idea. I'll think about how I can try it out.
Elaine @ foodbod
Nice 🙂 I do so much with cauliflower nowadays - it's a very far cry from how it used to be isn't it!!?!
It is! I think in my mind I still think of cauliflower as how it used to be and that stops me from trying new things with it.
Elaine @ foodbod
Ah, there's soooooo much you can do with it - that doesn't involved boiling it to death!! I use cauliflower almost every day 🙂
Wow! I need to be a bit more inventive!
Elaine @ foodbod
Search cauliflower on my blog and youll find lots of ideas...;)
I will. I've got a whole one in my fridge at the moment and will be using it one day this week.
Bunny Eats Design
Haha. I adore lamb and I adore cauliflower but glad you find a way to enjoy cauli. I don't eat raw cauli very often, but when I'm chopping it, a few raw pieces get nibbled on...usually because I'm hungry while cooking. I find roasting cauli brings out the flavour more, this can be a good or bad thing depending if you want to taste or hide the flavour of the cauli!
I've never tried roasting cauliflower but I'm afraid your comment has put me off! Maybe I'll give it a go anyway though.
Yes! love raw and cooked cauliflower, beautiful dish!
Ooh that looks lovely, I totally agree about cauliflower, I don't use it enough and when I do it's smothered in cheese sauce!
That's one way I've never got into eating cauliflower. If I make a cheese sauce it has to go on past for me!
Lovely! I've recently started using finely chopped cauli in place of rice with curries, but this sounds delicious. A great way to eat more veg.
I'll have to try that too. I love curries (I've just eaten one now!) so would love raw finely chopped cauli with them.