Delightful vegan Lebanese potato kibbeh aka kibbet batata is made with fluffy mashed potato, fine bulgur, fragrant fresh herbs and spices that are finished with silky extra virgin olive oil.
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🥔 What is Potato Kibbeh?
Potato kibbeh is a vegetarian or vegan Lebanese food made with two main ingredients of potato and fine bulgur (cracked wheat) that have been mashed together with fresh herbs, onions, seasoning and topped with extra virgin olive oil.
It is served similarly to the way kibbeh nayyeh is, which is generally made with raw lamb, however potato is used instead.
How to pronounce kibbet batata?
Kibbet batata is how potato kibbeh is said in Arabic, which is pronounced as kib·bet ba·ta·ta. Two words with easy and clear syllables.
😋 Why You’ll Love This Recipe
- Simple to make, a great starch meal - filling
- Very tasty and fragrant from the fresh herbs
- Can be enjoyed on it’s own with a side of fresh vegetables or salad, or can be served as part of a mezze
- Dietary friendly - Naturally vegan, dairy free, soy free, corn free
✔️ Ingredients You’ll Need
Potatoes are the main ingredient and will need to be peeled, boiled and mashed. It is best to select a potato suitable for mashing such as an all rounder, or Yukon Gold. Avoid waxy potatoes or red skinned potatoes. If unsure, ask your local grocer for some help.
Fine bulgur (cracked wheat) is one of the main ingredients of this recipe. Do not use coarse bulgur, the texture will differ, which should be smooth.
Do note that bulgur is not gluten free. Wash prior to using.
Fine bulgur can be found at your local Middle Eastern grocer or online here (affiliate link).
Fresh basil and thyme leaves will need to be taken off their stem. These herbs are integral to kibbet batata as it has such a distinctive fragrant flavoring. Avoid using dry herbs, fresh is best in this recipe.
Onion carry alot of water content and helps to keep the potato kibbeh moist, it also adds some bite and sharpness.
Salt, black pepper and Lebanese 7 spice, click on the link for how to make your own blend of the widely used Lebanese 7 spice mix. A little of this blend goes a long way.
Extra virgin olive oil is always used to serve this dish. It does add such a depth to the taste, I do not recommend skipping this if possible.
🥔 How To Make Potato Kibbeh
Step 1 - In a bowl add fine bulgur and submerge in 2cm (¾") of boiling water. Set aside for at least 20 minutes to hydrate (do this whilst making the other components of this recipe)
Step 2 - In a food processor, add basil, thyme, Lebanese 7 spice, onion, salt, pepper and one tablespoon of olive oil. Process until it has turned into a smooth but chunky paste. You will need to scrap the sides a few times.
Step 3 - In a bowl, add cold boiled potato and mash until completely smooth. Add hydrated bulgur, and the herb paste and use your hands to combine everything together.
Feel the mixture for any obvious lumps. Taste test and adjust salt and pepper as need. Flatten the mixture into a plate, use the handle tip of a spoon to create an indented pattern and top with extra olive oil. Serve cold.
⭐ Pro Tips
Allow the bulgur ample time to hydrate and soften otherwise it can still be crunchy. If it still is a little crunchy it will eventually soften the longer it sits in the potato.
The mixture should not contain lumps of potato, use a potato masher (affiliate link) to thoroughly mash and then use your hands to knead and feel the mixture.
Olive oil is an important ingredient, be sure to use the best extra virgin variety you can find as it adds to the flavor and silkiness. I highly recommend it for this dish of kibbet batata, however if you are on an oil-free diet, leave it out.
If storing potato kibbeh in the fridge, it will slightly solidify, which makes it easy to eat.
I love using ample black pepper to give kibbet batata a nice pepperiness. If you prefer, you can substitute this with chili. Either fresh or dry.
From time to time I like to add dry toasted walnuts or pine nuts to the herb mix, it lends a delicious nutty flavor to the dish. Try adding a handful and process with the herbs and onion.
🥄 Serving Suggestions
Kibbet batata is always flattened into a plate (about an inch thick) with indented patterns made on the surface to help the olive oil pool on top of the potato kibbeh rather than spilling over the sides.
It is served with a side of fresh vegetables such as radish, mint leaves, cucumber and white onion which are placed in a piece of Lebanese flat bread with the kibbeh and then eaten together, however I love eating mine in lettuce cups.
It is also commonly enjoyed with taboule or try quinoa taboula. You could even pair it with rocca salad.
I also love eating kibbet batata with shatta (Middle Eastern hot sauce). Just add a small amount on top.
Place the kibbeh into an air tight container for store in the fridge for up to 5 days. Freezing is not recommended.
Are you a kibbeh fan? Try my baked Lebanese kibbeh.
Or for another Lebanese potato recipe, check out my refreshing Lebanese potato salad.
Otherwise, check out this curated list of vegan potato recipes.
Vegan Lebanese Potato Kibbeh (Kibbet Batata)
- 750 gram Potato peeled, boiled and mashed
- 1 cup Fine bulgur
- 1 teaspoon Lebanese 7 spice
- 1 large Onion peeled and quartered
- ¼ cup Thyme leaves fresh
- ¼ cup Basil leaves fresh
- 2 teaspoon Salt to taste
- 1½ teaspoon Cracked black pepper
- 1 tablespoon Olive Oil extra virgin + extra for topping
- Boiling water for soaking fine bulgur
- Wash and rinse fine bulgur, then add to a bowl and submerge in 2cm (¾") of boiling water. Set aside until all the water has been absorbed.1 cup Fine bulgur, Boiling water
- In a food processor add all herbs, onion, Lebanese 7 spice, salt, pepper and olive oil. Process until this mixture is turned into a finely chopped paste.1 teaspoon Lebanese 7 spice, 1 large Onion, ¼ cup Thyme leaves, ¼ cup Basil leaves, 2 teaspoon Salt, 1½ teaspoon Cracked black pepper, 1 tablespoon Olive Oil
- In a mixing bowl, add cold plain mashed potato and the processed ingredients and combine using hands, ensuring the texture is smooth. Spread potato kibbeh onto a flat plate and make indents on the surface. Drizzle extra virgin olive oil. Serve cold.750 gram Potato
N.B., nutrition info is an estimate based on an online nutrition calculator. This will vary based on the specific ingredients you use.
Those herbs are the perfect combination in this kibbet batata, my family makes it similarly, but it is not as tasty as this one. It's a new favorite now.
Thank you for your kind words Jamila. Sahtein