Quinoa Tabbouleh

I haven’t been able to convince Cava Mezze to build a restaurant here in Richmond but it’s one of my favorite quick stops when I’m in McLean for work. It’s like a Mediterranean version of Chipotle and I love it. Luckily, they sell their hummus, tzaziki, and quinoa tabbouleh here in Richmond so I can sort of recreate my own bowls at home. The problem is, buying a lot of pre-made food gets expensive! So I decided to make my own quinoa tabbouleh! I’ve made my own tabbouleh before with bulgar, the grain that is traditionally used in this dish, but I know most people probably don’t have that in their pantry and if you’re gluten free then you’re out of luck. So this version uses quinoa (come on, you have to have quinoa in your pantry at all times) and it’s gluten free so even more of you can enjoy it!

It’s also super easy to put together and you can turn this into a whole meal if you just add a little feta or maybe some falafel? Heck, you could just eat it with a spoon and call it a day. Quinoa is a complete source of protein, after all.

quinoa tabbouleh

Quinoa Tabbouleh
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
Recipe type: Side Dish
Serves: 4
  • 1½ cups quinoa, rinsed
  • 1½ cups water
  • 1 cucumber
  • 1 cup cherry tomatoes
  • ¾ cup parsley
  • ⅓ cup olive oil
  • 1 clove of garlic
  • ½ tsp salt
  • ¼ tsp black pepper
  1. Bring the quinoa and water to a boil and simmer until the water is absorbed. (This took about 8 minutes for me.)
  2. While that cooks, slice your cucumbers into thin slices and then quarter them.
  3. Slice the cherry tomatoes in half.
  4. Roughly chop the parsley and mince the garlic.
  5. Once the quinoa is cooked, remove from heat and let it sit for a bit until it's mostly cooled.
  6. Toss the quinoa with your chopped veggies, garlic and parsley, then drizzle with olive oil.
  7. Sprinkle with salt and pepper and pop it in the fridge until you're ready to serve it!

quinoa tabbouleh salad gluten free

This is a perfect dish to make ahead of time and pack for lunch because I think it tastes even better the next day. The flavors have a chance to really meld together and it’s not the kind of salad that gets soggy. You could also add in some extra cucumbers and tomatoes if you want to bulk it up a little more.

This quinoa tabbouleh is vegan & gluten free! It's so easy to make and is perfect stuffed inside a pita, topped with feta, or eaten with a spoon!

Want to make this recipe even easier? Make your quinoa in a rice cooker ahead of time!

how to make fluffy quinoa in a rice cooker

Do you ever try to recreate restaurant favorites?



  1. I’ll help you convince! Looks delish!

  2. I love tabouleh and never thought of substituting quinoa for the bulgur. Genius! And so simple. Why does it take a blogpost for me to figure this out? Well, the good news is that I caught up with this post.

  3. I am all about recreating restaurant favorites! 🙂

  4. This looks fantastic, and that eatery sounds LEGIT! I want to go to one!

  5. Mmmm this sounds delicious! I definitely must try to recreate this. Nom nom nom. I don’t cook with quinoa enough but that’s primarily due to laziness. Lol. Have a great weekend Liz! -Iva

  6. Cava Mezze Grill is my favorite “fast-food eatery”! Can you call it that? All I think about is McDonalds when I say “fast-food.” Anyways, I don’t think you can go wrong with tabbouleh. Have you ever tried it with bulgar wheat? Ina Garten makes a great one.

  7. This looks great! I’ve been looking for healthy options to bring to work!


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