Easy Turkish Bulgur Pilav

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Turkish Bulgur Pilav

Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes
Resting Time: 20 minutes
Total Time: 50 minutes
Servings: 3
Calories: 249kcal


  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 tbsp butter
  • ½ medium onion small diced
  • 3 sweet long thin green pepper small diced
  • 1 tbsp tomato paste
  • 1 cup coarse bulgur
  • 1 cup grated tomatoes
  • tsp black pepper
  • ¼ tsp red pepper flakes
  • ¼ tsp salt
  • 2 cups hot water


  • Heat the olive oil and butter in a shallow pot. Add the onion to the pot and cook until it gets translucent. Add the pepper to the pot, cook for a few minutes, then add the tomato paste and mix them well.
  • Add the bulgur to the pot and saute for about 5 minutes. Then add the grated tomatoes, spices, and salt over the bulgur.
  • Cook for a few minutes, then add the water to the pot and close the lid. When the water is boiled, reduce the heat to medium-low. Cook until the bulgurs boil down for about 10-12 minutes.
  • Turn off the heat, open the lid and gently fold the bulgur pilaf. After that, close the lid again, and rest for about 20 mins at room temperature.



Calories: 249kcal | Carbohydrates: 46g | Protein: 8g | Fat: 6g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 4g | Cholesterol: 1mg | Sodium: 267mg | Potassium: 609mg | Fiber: 12g | Sugar: 6g | Vitamin A: 998IU | Vitamin C: 105mg | Calcium: 51mg | Iron: 2mg

Tips, Notes & Substitutes:

This fantastic vegetarian dish is full of flavor and perfect for a weeknight meal. The best part about this recipe is that it is so versatile – you can easily substitute different vegetables or proteins to suit your taste.

Some important tips and tricks to keep in mind when making this dish:

  • If you want a bit of extra flavor, you can add red bell peppers and garlic to the pilaf.
  • I like to add some chopped fresh parsley to the dish before serving, but this is optional.
  • This dish can be served as is or with a dollop of yogurt or some grilled chicken or lamb on top.
  • The water holding capacity of each bulgur is different; you can learn the ratio of your bulgur by testing it over time.
  • It is essential to rest the pilaf; instead of consuming it right away, give it a rest. Cover the pot with a towel or a dense cloth, so the temperature does not decrease dramatically. This way, it will rest better. 
  • While the pilaf is cooking, be careful not to open the lid frequently and not to stir it.

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