Bulgur: One Of The World’s Best Foods For Weight Loss

August 30, 2016

Bulgur is a whole grain that often takes a back seat to quinoa but did you know that bulgur contains resistant starch, nature's fat-burning breakthrough. (#vegan) ordinaryvegan.net

Bulgur is a whole grain that often takes a back seat to more traditional grains like quinoa. Did you know quinoa with 222 calories per cup has nearly twice the calories of bulgur, which has 112 calories per cup?

Cup for cup, quinoa has more macronutrients except for dietary fiber. However, if you eat two cups of bulgur, you'll be eating the same amount of calories and nutrients that are in one cup of quinoa.

Protein wise, quinoa contains approximately 8 grams of protein per cup and bulgur 4 grams of protein per cup serving, but calorie wise, bulgur contains just as much protein as quinoa.

One of the biggest benefits of eating bulgur vs. quinoa is the fiber. You get 8 grams of dietary fiber in one cup of cooked bulgur vs. quinoa which is 5 grams.

When you eat fiber-rich foods like bulgur, the soluble fiber swells with water and slows down the rate at which you digest food and absorb both glucose and cholesterol. Slower digestion allows you to feel full faster and longer.

Bulgur also contains resistant starch. Resistant starch has been called nature's fat-burning breakthrough because resistant starch is bulky, so it takes up space in your digestive system. Because you can't digest it or absorb it, the starch never enters your bloodstream.

That means it avoids the issue of some carbs which can get socked away as body fat when you eat more than you burn.

According to some studies, adding just 1/2 cup to one cup of resistant starch-rich food per day can lower blood sugar and shut down hunger hormones. Other starch resistant foods include bananas, black beans, oats, potatoes, barley, and brown rice.

Don't worry about getting fancy with this nutty whole grain. You can add it to salads, soups, and stir-fries.

I am still celebrating tomato season, so I made a delicious oil-free tomato cucumber bulgur salad with a lemon mint vinaigrette. For crunch, I added some baked breaded eggplant as a side dish which is very easy to prepare.

Need more plant-based crunch in your life? Try these baked breaded eggplant slices. (#vegan) ordinaryvegan.net

All you do is slice a medium eggplant into 1/2 inch slices. Dredge into some vegan eggs and than into some seasoned vegan breadcrumbs. I ended up using about 1/2 cup of bread crumbs and three vegan eggs for one medium eggplant. Bake at 400 degrees F for 30-40 minutes or until the eggplant is soft and golden brown. I seasoned the bread crumbs with chopped mint, chopped parsley, 1/4 cup of ground pine nuts and some ground black pepper.  Don't skimp on the herbs because that is what makes these breadcrumbs so delicious.

Bulgur is a whole grain that often takes a back seat to quinoa but did you know that bulgur contains resistant starch, nature's fat-burning breakthrough. (#vegan) ordinaryvegan.net

Bulgur Salad with Tomatoes, Cucumbers & Lemon Mint Vinaigrette

So the next time you are food shopping, grab a bag of this nutritious fat-burning grain. I like to make a big batch and add it to soups and salads. I also love it warmed up with a little soy sauce and veggies or for breakfast with almond milk, hemp seeds and a little drizzle of maple syrup.

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Bulgur Salad with Tomatoes, Cucumber & Lemon Mint Vinaigrette
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
Cuisine: salad
Serves: 3-4
  • 1 cup of bulgur
  • 2 cups of water
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • 10-ounces of cherry tomatoes, cut in half
  • 1 cucumber, peeled, sliced and diced
  • 1 lemon juiced
  • 2 tablespoon chopped shallot
  • 2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon dijon mustard
  • 1 tablespoon maple syrup
  • ¼ cup water + 2 tablespoons
  • 2 tablespoons chopped mint
  • 2 tablespoons chopped parsley
  • ¼ teaspoon ground black pepper (or more to taste)
  1. Add 1 cup bulgur to 2 cups salted cold water. Bring to a boil, cover and simmer for 12-15 minutes or until tender. Drain off excess liquid. Makes 2 to 2½ cups cooked bulgur.
  2. Combine 2 cups of the cooked bulgur with the tomatoes and and cucumber.
  1. Add all the ingredients to a food processor and process until smooth. Taste and adjust seasonings.**note: if you want to add some olive oil to this vinaigrette - add it in the end and process a few more seconds. I personally don't use a lot of oil but if you miss this ingredient, feel free to add it - all you need is a tablespoon or two**
  2. Combine a few heaping tablespoons of the vinaigrette to the bulgur mixture. Taste and keep adding until it is dressed. I don't like to overdress this salad so I would add a little at a time.
  3. Garnish with some extra chopped mint and parsley.



30 thoughts on “Bulgur: One Of The World’s Best Foods For Weight Loss

        1. Hi Mary – You can buy a vegan egg replacement mixture like this from Bob’s Red Mill or you can make your own. I like ground flax vegan eggs. All you need is two tablespoons of ground flax whisked with 6 tablespoons of water. Place it in the refrigerator to thicken for 10 minutes. That equals two eggs. This is a good binder especially for baking. Another new egg replacement binder I like is aquafaba. Aquafaba is the liquid from a carton or can of cooked chickpeas – 3 tablespoons of aquafaba equals one egg. Hope that helps and thanks for being part of our healthy community!

  1. I am a 58 year old female whose was told by an onocologist several years ago that I had a fatty diseased liver. I finally started to read some information on the condition and what helps. Bulgar was one of the foods they suggested eating. Thanks for your information and the recipe. I must begin a healthy life style!
    Donna S.

    1. Hi Donna – so sorry to hear about medical situation but happy to hear that you want to embrace a healthy lifestyle. I am proud of you and I know you can do it. Hope I can help. Have a wonderful day!

  2. Hi Nancy, I soak my Bulgar Wheat overnight then cook till soft and rinse with boiling water, is this correct only when I first started eating it and cooked it the way the packet said it was very sticky .


    1. Hi Brenda – normally I don’t soak it just give it a rinse. I will add 1 cup bulgur to 2 cups cold water and bring it to a boil; cover and simmer for 12 – 15 minutes or until tender. Then I drain off the excess liquid. But I like the idea of soaking it overnight to make it less sticky and thanks for the heads up. I will try it next time. Also, thanks for stopping by and for being part of our healthy community!

    2. Hi Brenda I am Lebanese origin and bulgur is the backbone of our food no need to soak it for a long time as it will swell up and puff up and won’t have the same taste if you need to soak it soak it in lemon juice as we do for the tabouli salad it will give it very citric powerful taste to it

  3. Hi

    I am diabetics with the high cholesterol and high blood pressure and also fatty liver.

    I should lose weight.

    do you think bulgur is better than quniua ?

    1. Hi Sarah – Thanks for stopping by and congratulations on getting control of your health challenges with nutrition. Yes, for weight loss, I think bulgur is best because it is resistant starch. Resistant starches are starch molecules that resist digestion and keep you full faster and longer. But both grains will be a great addition to your diet. Nancy

  4. Since it’s preboiled, you don’t need to cook bulgur. Just add boiling water to it, close the lid, and it will be ready in 5 mins. Water bulgur ratio is important. General rule is adding 2.5 cups of hot water to 1.5 cups of bulgur. Your dish is very similar to a Turkish dish called Kisir. It has olive oil, tomato and chili paste in it. You should definitely try. It is one of my favorite dishes ever.

    1. Hi Ozan – Thanks for stopping by and for the tip. I personally love bulgar and I can’t wait to try Kisir.

  5. Question-I have a soup recipe that calls for white rice and I want to try subbing in bulgur instead. That recipe says to only add cooked rice to the soup you plan on eating right away because the texture would break down in the soup if you stored for a few days in the refrigerator. Do you think bulgur should be treated the same?

    1. Bulgur would taste delicious in any soup recipe instead of rice. An no I don’t think you have to treat bulgur the same way. The upside to keeping them separate is the bulgur wouldn’t absorb the liquid but I always just add some extra veggie broth if it does. Hope that helps Nikole – Thanks for stopping by!

  6. I am confused, recently I bought a packet of bulgur & it doesn’t seem to have that much of fiber or protein. Can u recommend a brand or what to look for? 💐

    1. Hi – I use various brands but always organic. Maybe the protein and fiber looked lower because of the serving amount? It varies a little but normally a cup of bulgur should have around 17 grams of protein and 26 grams or dietary fiber. See attached per Wikipedia.
      Calories per cup: 151 calories
      Nutrition Facts
      Bulgur, dry
      Sources include:USDA
      Amount Per 1 cup (140 g)
      Calories 479
      % Daily Value*
      Total Fat 1.9 g 2%
      Saturated fat 0.3 g 1%
      Polyunsaturated fat 0.8 g
      Monounsaturated fat 0.2 g
      Cholesterol 0 mg 0%
      Sodium 24 mg 1%
      Potassium 574 mg 16%
      Total Carbohydrate 106 g 35%
      Dietary fiber 26 g 104%
      Sugar 0.6 g
      Protein 17 g
      Hope that helps – Thanks for stopping by and for being part of our healthy community!

  7. Cooked cooled bulgur is the original and best carb component for an awesome taboulleh:
    Abunch of coarsely chopped continental parsley,
    finely dice two over ripe Roma tomatoes ,
    chop half a red onion,
    a cup or two of cooked cooled bulgur,
    salt, black pepper.
    Mix it all together and pour over the juice of a large lemon and half a cup of extra virgin olive oil.
    Mix it all up, balance with more salt, pepper, lemon or olive oil.

  8. Hello
    I’m just starting my 800 cal for 8 week diet today. Thanks everyone for the tips and recipes. Im really looking forward to experimenting with Bulgur. I found an old packet in the back of the pantry. Does it go off? I think I’ve probably had it for a couple of years. Whoops. Wonder what other surprises I’ll find lurking in my pantry. Time for a tidy up!!

    1. Hi Angie – Good luck with your new food lifestyle. I wouldn’t eat that bulgur. Grains have a shelf life of approximately 6 months in a cool dark place. Thanks for stopping by.

  9. Thanks for the delicious recipe. I’ve been using bulgar as a staple in my diet for 8.5 mo ths and it has helped me lose 31 lbs so far. I don’t see it leaving my recipe book in the future. One of my favorite ways of fixing it is to soak it in cranberry juice for 30 minutes or so (a couple of minutes in the microwave if I’m feeling impatient). Then, add strawberries, blueberries, blackberries, raspberries, and grapes. Incredible and only a couple of hundred calories! Highly recommend.

  10. I recently discovered Bulgur grain and my first impression was wow! As an Nigerian I love my jollof rice and I have been looking for an alternative to rice,to my surprise I cooked Bulgur jollof omg!! The taste was so yummy I will never use rice again .The recipes are; red pepper,onions,scotch bonnets,tomatoes puree and seasons to taste .

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