Greek Cucumber Salad is a light, fresh, flavorful taste of mediterranean cuisine. A Greek salad is not only delicious, but is a refreshing mix of vegetables that will help your body feel invigorated after a long day. This Greek salad recipe can be made in minutes and is so flippin’ yummy!
Greek salad ingredients are a winner- crunchy cucumber, sweet tomatoes, flavorful onions, and all those herbs. Packed with so much goodness, this cucumber mediterranean salad is great for a day when you are sick of heavy processed foods and want something that will be light and tasty.
What are the Ingredients of a Greek Salad?
Greek salads are loaded with vegetables and topped with a light dressing that only enhances the existing flavors. If you visit Greece you know the lush countryside, and beautiful vistas inspire these kinds of fresh and flavorful meals. With herbs and spices that tie it all together.
I can’t wait to share with you my Greek salad ingredients, but first let’s talk about the basics of a traditional Greek salad.
What is in a Traditional Greek Salad?
- Kalamata Olives
- Oil and Vinegar Dressing
*Note: No Lettuce- In other words, this is a salad without the greens. And that is okay with me.
It feels like in America when you think salad you envision a bed of lettuce with a variety of vegetables. In fact many garden salads at restaurants seem to be more lettuce than anything else. However, a traditional Greek Salad does not have lettuce.
There are Greek salad recipes that have chosen to add the crunch of lettuce to the recipe, but technically an authentic Greek Salad does not consist of lettuce. I know that may be hard to wrap your head around, but due to the chunky cut of the vegetables you don’t always need it.
In addition, many Greek Salads have creamy feta cheese, and a simple oil and vinegar dressing. For my salad I am meeting somewhere in the middle with a tasty crunchy onion, tomato, and cucumber mixture, but leaving out the olives, and creating a little more complex dressing that is still simple, uses pantry staples, and adds flavor.
The dressing is really just a little lemon (instead of vinegar), oil, and some herbs!
How Do You Make a Greek Salad?
Just because something tastes delicious doesn’t mean it has to take hours to prepare. Greek cucumber salad or Greek cucumber tomato salad can be prepped really quickly and the finished product is absolutely fantastic!
What is so nice about Greek Salad is that it uses the basic ingredients of an authentic Greek cucumber salad and then go from there. Meaning, if you want to have your salad be traditional then don’t stray from the listed ingredients.
If you want to have your salad be reminiscent of a Greek salad but with a little twist, feel free to add things like lettuce or peppers if your heart desires. Or leave things out like the feta and olives.
This recipe does not include the feta or olives because I wanted something I could add to wraps, on top of chicken, etc. and the feta and olives change the flavors. BUT, don’t let that stop you from customizing as you see fit.
How Do You Make a Real Greek Salad?
If you want to make a more traditional Greek Cucumber Salad than what I am sharing here, then keep the following things in mind:
- Cut your Veggies in Chunks
Sometimes I hate the tedious procedure of cutting vegetables into small little pieces. That is what is so great about a Greek salad. The food prep methods are totally catered to the impatient chopper.
A signature characteristic of a Greek Salad besides its ingredients is that the vegetables are cut into large chunks. Cut tomatoes into wedges, cut onions into rings, and cut cucumbers into half circles.
For my recipe today I chopped a little smaller because it is easier for my kids to eat it.
- Don’t Crumble the Feta
This recipe does not use feta cheese, but a real or traditional Greek salad does. When a recipe has feta in it so often the feta is crumbled. Although it is so easy to crumble your feta, despite the temptation, don’t. Just don’t do it. Cut your feta into cubes. Or leave whole and let those eating the salad chunk of the parts they want.
- Greek Salad is Not a Tossed Salad
When growing up, I remember my mom serving salad at dinner and putting all the salad ingredients into a bowl and then tossing the salad. She wanted to make sure that all the vegetables were mixed in proportionally throughout the bowl.
Tossing a salad was ingrained in me. However, with a Greek salad ignore the impulse to just keeping mixing or tossing away. Toss it a little bit and then just walk away. Resist the urge to keep tossing.
- The Signature Dressing of a Greek Salad
Greek salad dressing ingredients typically contain olive oil and vinegar seasoned with garlic and oregano. Mix the Greek salad dressing well and then add it to the salad.
The salad dressing recipe included is very reminiscent of this, with a few twists, like lemon instead of vinegar.
And there you have it. A Traditional Greek Salad not only has certain ingredients but technically there is a certain way of doing things. And in my opinion, that certain way of doing things is EASY.
Greek Cucumber Salad, Pair it with a Fantastic Greek Dish
Your are going to love my Greek Cucumber Salad recipe. Eat it for lunch or as a side to a main meal. Either way, you can’t go wrong.
Looking for a killer dish to serve with this killer salad? Pair Greek Cucumber Salad with:
or chicken prepared using this Greek Chicken Marinade
Greek Cucumber Salad
- 1 English Cucumber
- 1 cup Grape Tomatoes halved
- 1 medium sized Red Onion sliced
- 1 tsp Lemon juice
- 1 tsp Olive oil
- 1/8 tsp dried Oregano
- 1/8 tsp fresh or dried Dill
- Salt and pepper to taste
- Cut cucumber in half lengthwise, and scrape out the seeds
- Halve the tomatoes
- Slice red onion
- Toss prepared vegetables and all other ingredients together in a bowl, taste, and season to preference
- Store in an airtight container in a refrigerator for 2-3 days.
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