Kibbeh is a Middle Eastern type of meatloaf. It is usually made of bulgur, minced onions and minced red meat, but this version calls soy meat (meatless beef, from Trader Joe’s) instead of the red meat. Besides being exotic and delicious, it is also a nutritious dish, since it is made with bulgur (instead of bread crumbs).


Bulgur is a whole grain derived of cracked wheat commonly used in Middle Eastern cuisine. It has high content of fiber which contributes to satiety and may help weight-loss. In addition, bulgur wheat is rich in manganese and is also a decent source of iron and magnesium. As most whole grains, bulgur is low in calories and very low in fat and cholesterol.

In a bowl, mix ½ cup of bulgur wheat (dried), 2 tablespoons of dried herbs (cilantro, parsley and mint), 1 teaspoon of Garam masala[1], and salt to taste. Add enough boiling water to cover the grains and set aside for 10 minutes. Meanwhile, sauté ¼ cup of diced onions in 1 tablespoon of olive oil. Cook until the onions are translucent. Add the cooked onions, 1 package of meatless beef and 1 egg to the grains, mixing everything well (I use my hands for that). Place the mixture in an oiled baking pan, spreading it evenly. Bake it for 30 minutes or until the top is golden-brown. Let it cool off for 10 minutes before cutting. Yield four servings.

[1] Garam masala is a mix of several spices such as cinnamon, black pepper, cumin seeds, cloves, and cardamom, typically used in Indian dishes.

Carla Torres is an AIF Master Trainer based in Rhodes, NSW. Her mission is to promote exercise, proper nutrition and healthy habits as a way to empower individuals to make decisions leading to better quality of life.