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Easy Bulgur Wheat with Red Beans, Peppers and Onions Recipe

Bulgar Wheat with Red Beans, Peppers and Onions

Bulgur Wheat with Red Beans, Peppers, and Onions is a healthy dish worth making. A hearty grain cooked to perfection with herbs and spices.

This flavorful and easy Bulgur Wheat with Red Beans, Peppers and Onions recipe is a perfect weeknight meal that is packed with protein and fiber. It’s a great source of vegetarian protein and can be easily made vegan by omitting the ham or Endui.

Bulgur Wheat with Leek and Lima Beans
Bulgur Wheat with Leek and Lima Beans

What is bulgur?

Bulgur wheat is a whole grain made from durum wheat kernels that have been parboiled, cracked, and dried. Here’s a breakdown of its key features:

  • Processed Wheat: It’s basically cracked wheat that’s been parboiled, which means it’s partially cooked before it’s dried. This step gives bulgur wheat some advantages over regular cracked wheat.
  • Quick Cooking: Because of the parboiling, bulgur wheat cooks much faster than other whole wheat options like wheat berries. It typically takes just 15-30 minutes to prepare.
  • Nutty Flavor and Chewy Texture: Bulgur wheat has a mild, nutty flavor and a chewy texture that’s similar to couscous or quinoa.
  • Versatile Ingredient: It’s a very versatile ingredient that can be enjoyed in many dishes, including salads (like the one in the recipe!), pilafs, stews, and even stuffings.
  • Health Benefits: As a whole grain, bulgur wheat is a good source of fiber, protein, vitamins, and minerals.
Bulgur Wheat with Leek and Lima Beans
Bulgur Wheat with Leek and Lima Beans

We’ve talked about the benefits of bulgur wheat, but let’s delve deeper. While it seems like a trendy health food today, bulgur wheat actually has a long history. In fact, wheat, like bulgur wheat, was a staple grain in ancient civilizations like Rome. So, if it was once so common, why might it seem new or unfamiliar?

A Grain Recipe with a Bold Flavor

Bulgur wheat can be a divisive grain, but with the right recipe, it becomes a flavorful and satisfying meal. A simple bulgur wheat dish can be bland, but adding ingredients like beans, greens, meat, or seafood takes it to a whole new level. This recipe for Bulgur Wheat with Red Beans, Peppers, and Onions is a great example!

Flavor Explosion:

The beauty of this dish is its customizability. Don’t be afraid to add your favorite hot sauce or condiment for an extra kick. The peppers and onions add a delicious base flavor, while the red beans bring a touch of creaminess. Spices and seasonings further elevate the dish, creating a symphony of tastes.

Bulgar Wheat with Red Beans, Peppers and Onions
Bulgar Wheat with Red Beans, Peppers and Onions

Whole Grain Goodness:

If you’re new to whole grains, the texture of bulgur wheat might seem a bit toothsome. But don’t be discouraged! This chewiness comes with a wealth of health benefits, particularly its high fiber content.

Make it Your Own:

Feel free to experiment with different bean varieties – any mixed bean combination works! Red kidney beans are a great choice for their vibrant color. This recipe is perfect for a single serving, but it also freezes well, making it a great option for meal prepping.

Complete the Plate:

Pair your bulgur wheat dish with a refreshing green salad or roasted vegetables for a well-rounded meal. If you’re looking for something more substantial, consider serving it alongside a hearty stew-like carrot and eggplant.

The Bottom Line:

This bulgur wheat recipe is a healthy, quick, and delicious option for busy weeknights. With its versatility and bold flavors, it’s sure to become a new favorite. So give it a try, and don’t be shy about adding your own personal touch!

Choosing the Right

The best pot for cooking bulgur wheat with red beans (or any dish really!) depends on a few factors:

  • Heat source: Are you cooking on a gas stove, electric stove, or induction cooktop?
  • Recipe requirements: Does the recipe involve searing, slow simmering, or oven use?
  • Size and quantity: How much bulgur wheat and beans are you cooking?
  • Material preference: Do you prefer stainless steel, cast iron, or another material?

Here’s a breakdown of some pot options to consider:

  • Dutch Oven: This is a versatile pot with a heavy bottom that distributes heat evenly. It’s great for searing meat (like ham or sausage additions) and then slow simmering the entire dish in the oven. A Dutch oven comes in a variety of sizes, so you can choose one that fits your needs.
  • Stockpot: A stockpot is a large pot ideal for cooking large quantities of beans or soups. It’s not the most glamorous option, but it gets the job done for simple simmering.
  • Saucepan: A medium-sized saucepan is a good choice for smaller batches of bulgur wheat and beans. Look for one with a tight-fitting lid to trap heat and moisture during cooking.

Here are some material considerations:

  • Stainless Steel: A classic choice, stainless steel is durable, easy to clean, and works on all heat sources (including induction). However, it may not distribute heat quite as evenly as cast iron.
  • Cast Iron: Cast iron is known for its exceptional heat retention and even cooking. It’s a great choice for searing and slow simmering. However, cast iron can be heavy and requires special care (seasoning).

Ultimately, the best pot for cooking bulgur wheat with red beans is the one that meets your specific needs and preferences. Consider the factors mentioned above to make an informed choice.

Tips for Bulgur Wheat:

  • Soak Time Savvy: Since soaking time can vary by brand, be sure to check the instructions on your bulgur wheat package. Following the recommended soak time will ensure perfectly cooked grains.
  • Bean Patience: Beans may sometimes take longer to cook than expected. If your beans aren’t tender after the specified time, continue cooking until they reach the desired texture. Don’t be afraid to add a little extra water if needed to prevent burning.

This recipe yields 4 servings and is a great source of fiber and protein.

I hope you enjoy this delicious and easy recipe!

Bulgar Wheat with Red Beans, Peppers and Onions

Bulgar Wheat with Red Beans, Peppers and Onions is a delicious staple dish of the Caribbean that is mostly prepared with legumes or stew.
5 from 8 votes
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour 45 minutes
Total Time 2 hours
Cuisine Caribbean
Servings 4
Calories 382 kcal


  • ½ cup dried red beans cleaned, washed and soaked overnight
  • 3 cups water
  • 1 clove garlic
  • 2 pieces salted ham or Enduie
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 cloves garlic minced
  • 1 tablespoon chicken bouillon
  • 2 cups bulgur wheat soaked to 15-30 minutes
  • Salt and Pepper to taste


  • In a stockpot, cook beans with water, garlic, and salted ham/enduie until fully cooked. This may take about 2 – 2 hours and 30 minutes.
  • When the beans are cooked, in a saucepan, heat oil, add minced garlic, onions, peppers, and chicken bouillon. Let mixture fry for about 2 minutes. Before adding beans, measure beans water. You need 4 cups of liquid for 2 cups of Bulgar Wheat. If beans water is not enough, add hot water. Add beans water and any additional water to saucepan and bring to a boil. When water starts to boil, add bulgar, hot pepper if using, salt and pepper to taste. Wait until water has almost evaporated to lower heat and cover. Let Bulgar Wheat cook for 25 – 30 minutes. Make sure the Bulgar Wheat is fully cooked and fluffy. Serve hot with a side dish.


  • Soaking time not added.
  • Not all bulgur wheat need soaking – read the instructions on the packaging. Every brand is different. 
  • Beans may take longer to cook.


Serving: 4gramsCalories: 382kcalCarbohydrates: 68gProtein: 14gFat: 8gSaturated Fat: 1gPolyunsaturated Fat: 6gSodium: 39mgFiber: 16gSugar: 1g

Please keep in mind that nutritional information is a rough estimate and can vary greatly based on the products used.

Keyword Bulgur Wheat, Caribbean Cooking, Caribbean Recipes, Cracked Wheat, Healthy Grains, Wheat
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!
Tried this recipe?Mention @noubesscaribbean or tag #noubesscaribbean!

Nutrition info is automatically generated and provided as a courtesy and as an estimate only.

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Corn Allergy:

Always choose ingredients without corn or corn derivatives.


Originally published Mat 6, 2014. Revised and updated.

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    1. Glad you loved it! Don’t forget to check out other grains recipes. Thanks for sharing the love!!!

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