Mediterranean Salad

Mediterranean Salad

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Mediterranean Salad

This Mediterranean Salad recipe is a fabulous side to practically every meal as well as an in-demand potluck, picnic and party side.  It’s also hearty enough to stand alone as a refreshing lunch or light dinner. This recipe is loaded with crispy cucumbers, juicy tomatoes, crunchy bell peppers, carrots, chickpeas, celery, red onions, tangy Kalamata olives, fresh sliced basil and salty creamy feta, all brightened by tangy, herb vinaigrette!  It’s easy to make, exploding with a rainbow of bright flavors and textures and the salad can be made ahead of time for the perfect stress-free win!

FOR THE SALAD:

  • Tomatoes– Please use ripe cherry tomatoes for the best texture.  Cherry tomatoes are inherently sweeter than grape tomatoes, so aim for cherry if you can. 
  • Cucumbers-  I use English cucumbers so you don’t have to bother peeling them, but you may also substitute with a peeled, slicing cucumber.
  • Bell pepper-  I used red, orange, yellow and green bell peppers. You can use any of these or all for this salad.
  • Red Onions- Chop these up the smallest compared to the other ingredients so they blend more easily into the salad.
  • Olives– Please use Kalamata olives and not just black olives for their dark, rich intensely fruity flavor.  I use pitted Kalamata olives and then slice them because they are juicer and tend to hold together better than jarred sliced olives.
  • Chickpeas-  Are optional but add a nutty, earthy, creaminess and are a rich source of vitamins, minerals and fiber.
  • Feta cheese-  This rich, creamy, salty, tangy cheese adds SO much flavor!  It is sold by the block or in crumbles. I always have a large container of feta crumbles in my fridge from Costco, so that is what I use but if you can get your hands-on chunked feta, it is also fabulous!
  • Celery and Carrots– Add a delightful crunch I wouldn’t skip but you may substitute with chopped cauliflower or broccoli.
  • Parsley–  fresh parsley adds an oomph of aromatic herb goodness. You can opt with 1 tablespoon of dried parsley if you don’t have any.

FOR THE DRESSING:

  • Olive oil– Use quality extra virgin olive oil for superior flavor.
  • Red wine vinegar– I don’t recommend swapping with any other vinegar.
  • Lemon juice– It will give a bursting taste with the lemon flavor.
  • Herbs– You will need one teaspoon of dried dill, basil, oregano OR you may substitute with 1 tablespoon each of fresh.
  • Dijon mustard– adds subtle tanginess.
  • Sugar– balances the vinegar, lemon juice and Dijon. I use Monk Fruit in this recipe.
  • Seasonings– garlic powder, salt and pepper. I prefer garlic powder in dressings as it disperses more evenly and doesn’t leave you with raw garlic pieces but you are welcome to use fresh garlic if you prefer.

Recipe Tips and Variations

  • Don’t like chickpeas replace with brined artichokes (about 1/2 cups chopped)
  • Add 1 avocado for additional nutrition and healthy fats.
  • Add more protein like chicken, salmon or meat
  • If you’d like additional plant based protein, to make this a little heartier, try adding in a cup of cooked quinoa.
  • If you would like to have this salad as a vegan meal, you can always omit the feta cheese.
  • Don’t add too much salt to this salad, as the feta cheese is quite salty.
  • You can replace fresh parsley with fresh basil for a more minty taste.
  • When you buy the feta cheese, make sure that it’s a block that you can crumble using your hands. Avoid buying pre-crumbled feta as it tends to be dry, and lacks flavor.
  • Store this chickpea salad in a sealed container in the fridge for up to 3 days. I don’t recommend freezing this salad.
  • To make ahead, I recommend keeping the salad dressing in a jar and dress the salad right before serving.

Mediterranean Salad

Recipe by Lucy ChesnaCourse: Sides, SaladsCuisine: MediterraneanDifficulty: Easy
Servings

6

servings
Prep time

20

minutes
Calories

214

kcal
Total time

20

minutes

This Mediterranean Salad recipe is a fabulous side to practically every meal as well as an in-demand potluck, picnic and party side.

Ingredients

  • Salad
  • 1 can chickpeas, washed and drained

  • 1/2 cup chopped red onions

  • 1 cup chopped tomatoes

  • 1 cup chopped cucumbers

  • 1/2 cup pitted kalamatta olives

  • 1/2 cup chopped red bell peppers

  • 1/2 cup chopped yellow or orange bell peppers

  • 1/4 cup chopped parsley leaves

  • 1/4 cup shredded feta cheese

  • 1/2 cup shredded carrots

  • 1/2 cup chopped celery

  • Salt and pepper, to season

  • Dressing
  • 4 tablespoons olive oil

  • 1-2 tablespoons red wine vinegar

  • 2-3 tablespoons Dijon mustard

  • 1 teaspoon dried basil

  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice

  • 1 teaspoon powdered garlic powder (2 gloves of garlic, minced)

  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano

  • 1 teaspoon dried dill

  • 1-2 teaspoons alternative sugar

  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper

  • Optional: 1/2 tsp red pepper flakes

Directions

  • Make the dressing. In a small jug or bowl, mix together all the ingredients. Set aside.
  • Prep all of the veg, then add to a bowl. Pour the dressing over the vegetables, chickpeas and half of the crumbled feta and give everything a toss
  • Garnish with the rest of the crumbled feta cheese, and serve!

Notes

    Nutrition Facts

    6 servings per container


    • Amount Per ServingCalories214
    • % Daily Value *
    • Total Fat 13.7g 22%
      • Saturated Fat 5g 25%
    • Sodium 546mg 23%
    • Potassium 567mg 17%
    • Total Carbohydrate 18g 6%
      • Sugars 3g

      * The % Daily Value tells you how much a nutrient in a serving of food contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.

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