Bulgur Cucumber Salad with Basil and Chili Oil


Close-up, side angle photograph of a cucumber salad tossed with bulgur and sesame seeds.

This salad is what occurs when you’ve gotten only a small little bit of grains leftover from dinner the night time earlier than. Cool, crisp cucumbers are paired with bulgur and a simple chili-oil. Simply multiply this recipe to feed extra. I adore it served with some corn fritters and hummus.

The Cucumbers

I like an excellent cucumber salad and aspect dish through the summer time. It’s crisp, it’s refreshing, and it’s often straightforward sufficient to via collectively in a couple of minutes. This cucumber salad is true to all of that. I like protecting the cucumber recent however I’ve observed fairly a couple of choices for grilling cucumbers as nicely.

Wish to swap it up? Strive utilizing recent tomatoes with or instead of the cucumber (suppose cherry tomatoes!)


I’m infamous for cooking just some too many grains to the place I solely have ¼ to ½ cup leftover (often from dinner the night time earlier than!) This salad makes use of the scraps of bulgur. Nonetheless, bulgur cooks rapidly so should you wanted to make it with the salad- it solely provides about 15 minutes.

Different grains that might work nicely embrace quinoa or millet. This is able to assist preserve the general dish gluten-free too!

Add some cheese

I left it out however this salad could be pleasant with a salty cheese like feta. I’d even go as far to say search for a sheep or goat feta- I discover they steadiness the spice from the chili flakes properly whereas protecting a outstanding taste.

Spicy Swap

I do know spice isn’t everybody’s recreation, so swap out the chili flakes for a little bit of floor smoked paprika (about half teaspoon). I really feel just like the chili flakes actually deliver all the pieces collectively so I wouldn’t suggest simply leaving them out fully.




1 giant cucumber

¼ cup cooked bulgur

1 teaspoon sesame seeds, plus additional for topping

2 tablespoons basil, plus additional for topping

Chili Oil

2 tablespoon olive oil

1 teaspoon crushed crimson pepper

2 teaspoons minced preserved lemon (or zest from ½ lemon)

Salt, to style


  • Lower the cucumber into bite-sized slices or cubes (doesn’t actually matter the shape- no matter you discover interesting!) Place in a bowl with the bulgur, sesame seeds, and basil.
  • Warmth a small skillet and add olive oil. As soon as it’s sizzling, flip off the warmth and add the chili flakes. Let cool then stir within the lemon and a pinch of salt. Drizzle over the cucumber combination and toss till mixed. Style and regulate the salt ranges if wanted.


+ I wish to often use Armenian cucumbers for this kind of dish however any sort of cucumbers will work nicely.

Overhead photo of a tan bowl on marble background with a cucumber salad.


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