I love using parsley as a base for my salads because it’s inexpensive, flavorful, full of nutrients, and it holds up well in the refrigerator, even when dressed! It might take a minute to get past its stereotype as a garnish, but once you do, you’ll see all the possibilities parsley has to offer! This simple Parsley Salad with Almonds and Apricots is a great introduction to parsley as a salad green with its sweet and savory flavor, crunchy texture, and tangy homemade dressing.
Dried apricots can sometimes be pricey, so if they’re a bit out of your range, golden raisins make a wonderful substitute.
I used bulgur (cracked wheat) as my grain in this salad, but just about any cooked and cooled grain works in its place. Some other options are: brown rice, quinoa, or even couscous.
If you don’t feel like making your own dressing (I don’t blame you, sometimes you just need “easy”) a store bought champaign vinaigrette would work well with the parsley salad’s flavors.
The recipe makes about four cups of parsley salad, which I suppose could be four big servings. The salad is rather dense and flavorful, though, so I haven’t yet eaten a whole cup per sitting. So, depending on how much you like it, count on 4-6 servings.
Now to the good part!
Parsley Salad with Almonds and Apricots
- 1.5 cups cooked and cooled bulgur* ($0.87)
- 1 bunch flat leaf parsley ($0.87)
- 1/2 cup sliced almonds ($1.32)
- 10 dried apricots (about 1/2 cup) ($0.50)
- 2 Tbsp olive oil ($0.32)
- 2 Tbsp vegetable or canola oil ($0.04)
- 2 Tbsp apple cider vinegar ($0.12)
- 1 clove garlic, minced ($0.08)
- 1/2 Tbsp Dijon mustard ($0.06)
- 1/2 tsp sugar ($0.02)
- 1/2 tsp dried basil ($0.05)
- 1/2 tsp salt + freshly cracked pepper to taste ($0.05)
- Cook the bulgur according to the package directions, then spread it out onto a baking sheet or dish and transfer to the refrigerator to cool. The grain should be barely warm, at most, when assembling the salad.
- While the bulgur is cooking, make the dressing so the flavors have time to blend. Mince a clove of garlic and combine it in a bowl with the olive oil, vegetable oil, vinegar, Dijon, sugar, basil, salt, and some freshly cracked pepper. Whisk the mixture until combined. Set the dressing aside.
- Rinse the parsley well with cool water and shake off as much water as possible. Use a salad spinner or pat with a paper towel to remove excess moisture. Roughly chop the leaves, leaving the bottom of the stems behind. Place the chopped parsley in a large bowl.
- Roughly chop the dried apricots into small pieces. Add the chopped apricots and sliced almonds to the bowl with the parsley. Finally, add the cooked and cooled bulgur. Pour half of the dressing over top of the salad ingredients and toss until everything is well mixed and coated with dressing. Add more dressing if desired (I used about 3/4 of the total dressing recipe).
Step by Step Photos
Cook your bulgur according to the package directions. Once cooked, spread it out onto a baking sheet or baking dish and place it in the refrigerator to cool. Spreading it out helps it cool more quickly. You’ll need 1.5 cups of the cooked bulgur (or whatever grain you plan to use).
When cooking grains like this, I often cook a double batch and then freeze half so I don’t have to cook it next time. To freeze cooked grains, make sure they’re completely chilled, then transfer to a freezer bag, make sure to date and label it, then it’s ready for the freezer.
While the bulgur is cooking, make the vinaigrette so that the flavors have a little time to blend. The vinaigrette is super simple to make. Combine one clove minced garlic with 2 Tbsp olive oil, 2 Tbsp vegetable or canola oil, 2 Tbsp apple cider vinegar, 1/2 Tbsp Dijon, 1/2 tsp dried basil, 1/2 tsp sugar, 1/2 tsp salt, and some freshly cracked pepper. Whisk the dressing until it’s fully mixed. The Dijon acts as an emulsifier and keeps it from separating out again. If preferred, you can add all the ingredients to a mason jar and just shake it until it’s mixed. I only used about 3/4 of the dressing, so if you know you won’t want a lot of dressing on the salad, you can go ahead and make a half batch (use a small clove of garlic or just cut one in half).
Now on to the actual salad. Rinse the parsley REALLY well because sand is the last thing you want in your salad. Shake off as much water as possible, then go one step further and use a salad spinner, paper towel, or a clean lint-free dish cloth to pat the parsley and remove any last bits of water. Roughly Chop the parsley leaves, leaving the stem ends behind (the small bits of stems attached to the leaves are okay and just get chopped up with the leaves). Place the chopped parsley in a large bowl.
Chop about 1/2 cup, or 10 dried apricots into tiny jewel like pieces so that every forkful of the salad has a nice sweet bit of apricot.
Add the chopped apricots, 1/2 cup sliced almonds, and the cooled bulgur to the bowl with the parsley. Make sure the bulgur is cool so that it doesn’t wilt the parsley.
Pour half of the prepared dressing over the salad and toss it until everything is well mixed and coated in dressing. Then, add more dressing as needed. I used about 3/4 of the dressing so that the salad was very moist and flavorful. It has held up well in the fridge, too. I’m on day 3 and it’s not at all wilty. Yay!
This parsley salad is sweet, savory, crunchy, and YUMMY.
Oh, and it’s PRETTY too!