Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Hummus & Tabouli Pockets

This hummus and tabouli was one of Charlie's favorite meals as a baby. I would just put a scoop on hummus on his high chair tray along with some tabouli (minus the cucumber and tomato chunks) and he would devour it, just using his little hands! It has been a while since I made this dinner, so it made a comeback tonight, and we all enjoyed it as much as ever. If you are going for a vegetarian meal, you can just use hummus and tabouli in your pita pockets and omit the grilled chicken. You get lots of great protein and flavor from the hummus alone. I also like to peel and cut up some fresh carrots for eating with the extra hummus.  When Charlie was a baby, I would cook carrots for him until they were very soft and put those on his tray with the hummus and tabouli as well. 

I made the hummus and tabouli and seasoned the chicken this morning, so at dinner time, all I had to do was grill the chicken and assemble the pita pockets. The hummus and tabouli could also be made the night before to save you some time.

Hummus & Tabouli Pockets


Hummus (recipe below)
Tabouli (recipe below)
Whole wheat pita pockets

1 pound grilled organic free range chicken breasts (optional)
Garlic powder to taste
Salt to taste
Black pepper to taste
1 Tbsp olive oil


1. Prepare hummus and tabouli from recipes below.

2. If adding chicken to your pita pockets: season chicken breasts with garlic powder, salt and pepper. Brush with olive oil. Heat grill pan and grill pan top over medium high heat. Place chicken breasts on grill pan and cover with grill pan top. Grill about 4-5 minutes per side, or until cooked through. Remove from heat and let sit for 3-4 minutes. Slice chicken into strips.

2. Spread 1/4 cup hummus into pita pocket and add 1/2 cup tabouli. If using grilled chicken, place chicken strips in pocket on top of tabouli.

3. Serve and enjoy!



1 can organic garbanzo beans, drained
3 Tbsp tahini
Juice of one lemon (~3 Tbsp)
6 Tbsp olive oil
2 small cloves garlic
1 tsp salt, or to taste


1. Place all ingredients in large food processor and process until smooth and creamy



1 cup water
1/2 cup bulgur
3/4 cup tomatoes, seeded and chopped
3/4 cup cucumber, chopped
1/3 cup fresh organic parsley, chopped
2 Tbsp olive oil
2 Tbsp fresh lemon juice
1 Tbsp red wine vinegar
1/2 tsp salt
1/8 tsp black pepper


1. In saucepan, bring water to boil. Add bulgur and return to boil. Reduce heat and simmer, covered, for 20 minutes or until all liquid is absorbed. Let cool.

2. In a large bowl, combine bulgur, tomatoes, cucumber and parsley.

3. In a small bowl, stir together olive oil, lemon juice, vinegar, salt and pepper. Pour over bulgur mixture and fold in until evenly combined. Place in refrigerator to marinate for at least 4 hours.

(Recipe adapted from 1000 Vegetarian Recipes by Carol Gelles)

What are the nutritional benefits of this meal? Garbanzo beans are packed with fiber as well as lots of great nutrients, including protein, molybdenum, manganese, folate, tryptophan, copper, phosphorous, and iron. Tahini, made from sesame seeds, is also a good source of protein, and provides some calcium and B vitamins. Lemon juice provides lots of vitamin C. Olive oil contains monounsaturated fatty acids, which have been shown to help lower bad cholesterol (LDL), raise good cholesterol (HDL), and aid in blood sugar control. Bulgur is a whole grain, so contains all of its original fiber, protein vitamins and minerals. Bulgur is particularly high in iron and B vitamins. Tomatoes are an excellent source of lycopene and vitamin C. Cucumbers are a great source of vitamin K and also provide some B vitamins and vitamin C. Red wine vinegar has been shown to reduce glycemic levels after eating in people with Type 2 Diabetes. Parsley is rich in vitamins C, K and A.

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