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Substitute For Bulgur Wheat In Kibbeh And How To Use Them!

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Substitute For Bulgur Wheat In Kibbeh

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Kibbeh is a pliable and most followed traditional recipe of the Middle East that delights everyone amazingly. Its outer crispy skin and deliciously meaty core is what make kibbeh more special and appealing. The staple ingredient of kibbeh is bulgur wheat which gives enough crispiness and grainy feel to it. However, a gluten-free diet essentially needs the best substitute for bulgur wheat in kibbeh.

Bulgur wheat is a cracked or a little ground version of wheat and thus isn’t gluten-free. Although kibbeh is a symbolic and thanksgiving treat getting its signature properties from bulgur wheat, still you can replace it fully.

Here is a well-researched countdown of the best alternative for bulgur wheat in kibbeh that you can navigate easily. This way, you can replace bulgur wheat with gluten-containing or gluten-free ingredients perfectly. So, let’s start the countdown.

Substitute For Bulgur Wheat In Kibbeh

Bulgur wheat is not so popular as its other grainy cousins like barley, rice, and quinoa. It’s an old tradition dating back 4,000 years and served as comfort food.

Nowadays, it has become a staple ingredient of Asian cuisines such as stews, soups, casseroles, and more specifically kibbeh and tabbouleh salad.

Maybe the little production or gluten are the reasons bulgur wheat is not so common in a broad spectrum of recipe dishes. People are seeking for the best bulgur wheat replacements to rejoice their holidays in a splendid healthy way.

Continue reading further to know an alternative that compliments your dream recipes perfectly.

Barley – Your First Bet


Barley grains replace bulgur wheat because of their similar texture, soaking, and cooking time. It’s a versatile and all-purpose flour with sufficient binding properties giving kibbeh crispy plain skin.

Use one cup of cracked barley instead of one cup of bulgur wheat to make kibbeh delectably irresistible.

Wheat Berries – Rich In Fibres

Wheat Berries
Wheat Berries

Wheat berry is a husk-free kernel of wheat including bran making it rich in fibres. It’s unprocessed wheat offering slight nutty and sweetish flavor hints that’s very close to bulgur wheat.

Moreover, it lends a perfect crunch and delicate crisp to kibbeh making it more appetizing and flavorful. Use wheat berries in 1:1 ratio to make your signature recipe without making a compromise on flavor.

Orzo – A Delicious Replacement


Orzo is a kind of pasta made of durum wheat and closely resemble rice grains in shape and texture. The amazing thing is that it’s a great bulgur wheat substitute in kibbeh and its preparation is also easy.

Pasta lovers always have orzo on hand and if you are also one of them, utilize it to make traditional recipes uniquely.

Cracked Wheat – Easiest To Find

As bulgur wheat is simply cracked wheat of various levels ranging from finely ground to coarse wheat grains, you can use cracked wheat in place of bulgur wheat.

For that purpose, pre-soak the wheat grains, boil and dry them properly. After drying, subject it to grinding up to the grain texture your recipe calls for and that’s it.

Gluten-Free Substitute For Bulgur Wheat In Kibbeh

All the above-listed alternatives are not gluten-free and thus not suitable for a gluten-free diet. Thereby, if you are focusing on your fitness but still craving savory masterpiece, switch your recipe ingredients freely.

Here is a list of gluten-free ingredients working great as bulgur wheat substitutions in kibbeh.

Quinoa – The Closer One


When compared with bulgur wheat, quinoa remains closer in terms of flavor, nutrients, and grainy texture. Its nutty, slightly sweet flavor and chewy tenderness are perfect for giving a splendid touch to kibbeh.

Quinoa is a gluten-free substitute and can also be used after mixing with other all-purpose flours. It’s also a great egg replacement for waffles and other baked creations.

Tapioca Flour – A Flavorless Option

Tapioca Flour
Tapioca Flour

Tapioca flour is a flour containing tuber starch that is gluten-free, light, and flavorless making it a versatile alternative for bulgur wheat. It is mostly used after mixing with an equal amount of quinoa.

Tapioca flour is available both in finely ground and grainy form. Go for a grainy version for replacing bulgur wheat in kibbeh.

Buckwheat Flour – Easy To Find

Buckwheat Flour
Buckwheat Flour

Another gluten-free replacement is buckwheat flour which is nutrient rich, light, flavorful, and easily available. Buckwheat is the oldest cereal still used and loved by many people.

It seems a worthy candidate to be used in kibbeh whenever bulgur wheat is out of stock. Buckwheat works great in kibbeh and remains unnoticeable because of similar texture and slight crispiness.



Millet grains are not so common in baking and cooking recipes similar to bulgur wheat. It’s a gluten-free cereal having slight nutty sensations that’s enough to make kibbeh mind-blowing.

Its firm and tender texture bestows a nice crunch to the kibbeh and bind all other recipe ingredients firmly. Try it instead of bulgur wheat and make your usual recipe unique and twisted deliciously.



Amaranth makes its place in the bulgur wheat replacements because of its high nutrition value and unique flavor profile. It’s also a gluten-free cereal that is rarely used in recipes and not widely available.

If you have it on your pantry by luck, you can take advantage of it and make kibbeh more flavorful and pliable.

To conclude, bulgur wheat is not an ingredient of kibbeh that is impossible to replace. In fact, you can use the best gluten-containing or gluten-free substitute for bulgur wheat in kibbeh from the list mentioned above.

6540cookie-checkSubstitute For Bulgur Wheat In Kibbeh And How To Use Them!


Hey, I’m Ayesha Khalid, the main writer of Substitutesfor.com. I love to write about food ingredients, cooking guides, and helping tips and tricks to upgrade your cooking experience. The aim of writing is to provide you with a collection of substitutions and novel ideas to try so that you can find all the needed information at once. Here, you can get ideas according to your diet restrictions, taste preferences, and health conditions.

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