Greek Salad or Horiatiki (χωριάτικη σαλάτα) Recipe

Lastest Updated April 22, 2024
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Horiatiki, or Greek salad is a famous appetizer and side dish in Greece. Greek salad is a rainbow of vibrant colors from the Mediterranean: ruby-red tomatoes, emerald-green cucumber, velvety black olives, and creamy white feta cheese. What a symphony for your palate and for your eyes!

This article will cover additional information on the definition and varieties of Horiatiki, the needed tools and ingredients for preparing it at home, and must-know tips for preparing, storing, and serving it. The key to unlocking one of the best Greek dishes is here!


What Is Horiatiki?

Horiatiki (χωριάτικη σαλάτα or θερινή σαλάτα in Greek) is a traditional Greek salad recipe most readily available from spring to early fall when local vegetables are at their best. It is one of the best salads in Mediterranean cuisine. Its name is literally “village salad” or “peasant salad.”

As a great appetizer and side dish, Horiatiki is often present at mezze (a style of dining with various small plates like tapas in the Middle East and Mediterranean). This prominent Greek dish boasts a refreshing flavor that goes well with many heavy dishes, making the summer heat bearable.

This globally famous salad has spawned many versions, many of which even Greeks can’t recognize. For example, the classic Horiatiki doesn’t have lettuce or lemon juice, and it only uses large blocks of feta cheese, not cubed or crumbled feta.

In this post, I will aim for a mix of traditional and modern elements so that you can create Horiatiki according to your liking.

What Are Some Popular Versions Of Greek Salads?

Here are well-liked Horiatiki variations that I’d love to introduce to you:

  • Cypriot salad: Made with finely chopped vegetables and vegetables.
  • Patatosalata (πατατοσαλάτα): Made with boiled potatoes.
  • Lahanosalata (λαχανοσαλάτα): Made with shredded cabbage.
  • Marouli (μαρούλι): Made with lettuce.
  • Maintanouri (μαϊντανού): Made with parsley.
  • Revithosalata (ρεβιθοσαλάτα): Made with chickpeas.
  • Pantzarosalata (παντζαροσαλάτα): Made with boiled beetroots.
  • Salata Roka (σαλάτα ρόκα): Made with arugula.

What Are The Necessary Tools For Preparing Horiatiki?

Like all salads, Horiatiki doesn’t need fancy equipment. These most basic tools are sufficient for it:

  • Cutting board: for cutting the vegetables.
  • Knife: for cutting the vegetables.
  • Salad spoon: for mixing the ingredients. Alternatively, you can just use two regular spoons.
  • Small container: for mixing the dressing. While you can combine the ingredients in a small bowl, a container with a lid allows you to mix them more rigorously.
Grilled Sardines Tools

What Ingredients Do I Need To Make Greek Salad From Scratch?

Horiatiki calls for various Mediterranean vegetables, feta cheese, and several easy-to-find condiments. My recipe includes several ingredients not found in the Greek version of the salad; you can leave them out to get a closer taste of the original Horiatiki.

  • Cucumber: The crunchy and hydrating element of the dish.
  • Tomatoes: Few Mediterranean salads can do without the juiciness and sweetness of tomatoes. I like to use cherry tomatoes, but you can use any type you prefer.
  • Red onion: For adding a sharp flavor and some extra crunchiness. I prefer a medium-sized one.
  • Black olives: Large Kalamata olives with dark-purple skin are my favorite choice. This native variety of Greek olive has a richer and more fruity flavor than other types. It is also a good source of healthy fats.
  • Feta cheese: For adding creaminess and saltiness to the salad. I’d like to go against the traditional standard and use crumbled feta cheese rather than a large slab.
  • Lettuce: I find the addition of lettuce improves the deliciousness and nutrition profile of the recipe a lot. But you can omit it if you like the original salad better.
  • Parsley: This is an optional ingredient to make the salad more aromatic. Classic Horiatiki doesn’t contain it, so feel free to leave it out. In case you use it like me, go for fresh parsley.
  • Olive oil: The main ingredient of the dressing. Choose EVOO if possible.
  • Vinegar: The original recipe uses grape vinegar, but I prefer the apple cider variety. Feel free to use the one you like the most or have available at home.
  • Dijon mustard: For giving a smoother texture and a vibrant color to the dressing.
  • Lemon juice: This ingredient is absent in authentic Horiatiki, but I adore the extra freshness it bestows on the salad.
  • Dried oregano: Since oregano is arguably the most popular herb in Greek cuisine, its inclusion in Horiatiki is a must. Only dried oregano is acceptable; fresh oregano isn’t popular.
  • Salt and pepper: Basic condiments for Greek dishes.
Horiatiki Ingredients

How Can I Make The Perfect Horiatiki?

Whipping up Horiatiki is child’s play: you only need to cut the vegetables, prepare the dressing, and mix them together. Here is how you can do it:

Step 1: Prepare The Vegetables

Rinse the onion, cucumber, and tomatoes carefully. Cut them into large chunks. If you include fresh parsley and lettuce, chop them coarsely.

Horiatiki Step 1 Prepare the Vegetables

Step 2: Prepare The Dressing

Add olive oil, vinegar, lemon juice, Dijon mustard, dried oregano, salt, and pepper to the container. Mix and shake thoroughly.

Horiatiki Step 2 Prepare the Dressing
Horiatiki Step 2 Prepare the Dressing1

Step 3: Assemble The Salad

In a bowl, combine the vegetables, olives, and dressing. Place the crumbled feta cheese on top. Garnish with additional olive oil and dried oregano. Serve immediately.

Horiatiki Step 3 Assemble the Salad
Horiatiki Step 3 Assemble the Salad1

What Should I Do To Make Horiatiki (Greek Salad) More Delicious?

While Horiatiki is already tasty, you can improve it by adding protein-rich ingredients (meat or tofu), making the salad vegan, using more vegetables, or incorporating nuts and seeds. Moreover, the right side dishes, the best ways to store Horiatiki, and other recommended Greek dishes are also included in this section.

Here are the vital tips for perfect Greek salads:

  • Protein add-ons: you can include grilled chicken or smoked tofu for a heartier salad.
  • Vegan Horiatiki: there are many tofu- or cashew cream-based substitutes for feta cheese. You can use them to whip up a 100% vegan salad.
  • More vegetables: Horiatiki can contain other types of vegetables and greens, such as caper berries (not the same thing as capers), bell peppers, fresh fennel, or scallions.
  • More healthy fats: feel free to include nuts and seeds like pumpkin seeds, sunflower seeds, almonds, etc.

What Is The Best Way To Store Horiatiki (Greek Salad)?

The lettuce-free version of Horiatiki can last in the fridge for a few days, but the best method is to store the cut vegetables, the feta cheese, and the dressing separately.

They can be refrigerated for about 3-4 days. Freezing them isn’t a good idea since it adversely affects the flavor and texture of the salad.

Do I Need To Reheat Horiatiki (Greek Salad)?

It isn’t necessary to reheat the vegetables, but you can microwave the dressing for 30 seconds or so before tossing it into the salad.

What Are Some Suggestions For More Greek Dishes (Greek Salad)?

Chicken Souvlaki and roasted red pepper hummus are some excellent choices that you will appreciate. They pair well with Horiatiki and any main dish you have for lunch and dinner.

  • Chicken Souvlaki (Σουβλάκι): One of the most popular fast foods in Greece, Souvlaki consists of well-seasoned meat cubes grilled on skewers like kebabs. The chicken version is both healthy and easy to whip up at home. Remember to eat it straight off the sticks!
  • Greek roasted red pepper hummus (Χούμους): Hummus is a well-known condiment in Mediterranean cuisine. The traditional recipe relies on mashed chickpeas and sesame seeds, but the Greek take on it uses roasted bell peppers for a smoky and vegetal flavor.

What Is Stopping You From Making Horiatiki (Greek Salad) Today?

Horiatiki is effortless to prepare, yet its flavor is absolutely fantastic. Horiatiki is a celebration of the sun-kissed flavors in the Mediterranean region that nobody should miss. Whether you’re into the authentic recipe or the popular version, Horiatiki is always there to delight you with its diverse taste.

Feel free to tell me what you think about this salad in the comment section. Do you know other great Greek and Mediterranean recipes with seasonal produce? I’m eager to learn about them! And before you go, please share this post with your friends!


Greek Salad (Horiatiki)

Horiatiki is a dream come true for anyone wishing for a refreshing and nutritious Mediterranean salad. It is full of fresh vegetables, creamy feta, and a tangy dressing.
5 from 2 votes
Print Pin Rate
Course: Appetizer, Salad, Side Dish
Cuisine: Greek, Mediterranean
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Total Time: 15 minutes
Servings: 1 Servings
Calories: 273kcal


  • 0.5 cucumber sliced
  • 0.5 red onion thinly sliced
  • 0.5 cup cherry tomatoes 1.6 ounces, quartered
  • 1 ounce 30 grams feta cheese
  • A dozen of black olives 1.4 ounces
  • 1 cup of lettuce 2 ounces (optional)
  • Fresh parsley optional
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon apple cider vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
  • 1 teaspoon lemon juice optional
  • 1 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1 teaspoon salt


  • Rinse the red onion, cucumber, and tomatoes carefully. Cut them into large chunks. If you include fresh parsley and lettuce, chop them coarsely.
    Horiatiki Step 1 Prepare the Vegetables
  • Add olive oil, vinegar, lemon juice, Dijon mustard, dried oregano, salt, and pepper to the container. Mix and shake thoroughly.
    Horiatiki Step 2 Prepare the Dressing
  • In a bowl, combine the vegetables, olives, and dressing. Place the crumbled feta cheese on top.
    Horiatiki Step 3 Assemble the Salad
  • Garnish with additional olive oil and dried oregano. Serve immediately.
    Horiatiki Step 3 Assemble the Salad1



  • You can add protein-rich ingredients like grilled chicken or smoked tofu.
  • To make the dish vegan, use tofu- or cashew cream-based substitutes for feta cheese.
  • Don’t hesitate to add more vegetables, like caper berries, bell peppers, fresh fennel, or scallions.
  • Nuts and seeds are great additions, such as pumpkin seeds, sunflower seeds, almonds, etc.


Calories: 273kcal | Carbohydrates: 17g | Protein: 7g | Fat: 21g | Saturated Fat: 6g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 2g | Monounsaturated Fat: 12g | Cholesterol: 25mg | Sodium: 5051mg | Potassium: 608mg | Fiber: 4g | Sugar: 8g | Vitamin A: 992IU | Vitamin C: 30mg | Calcium: 233mg | Iron: 2mg
Liliya Balinska

Liliya Balinska

Content Writer


Content Writer, Home Cooking, Meal Planning, Recipe Development, Food Editor, Cooking-video Maker, Translator & Proofreader


Universidade do Minho, Portugual

  • Program: Bachelor’s degree in Oriental Languages and Cultures
  • Focus: The languages, cultures, and societal aspects of Eastern countries.

Nankai University, China

  • Program: Exchange Program, Chinese Studies
  • Focus: Improving understanding of Chinese language, culture, history, and possibly other specific areas related to Chinese studies.

Universidade do Minho, Portugual

  • Program: Master’s degree, Intercultural Studies Portuguese/Chinese
  • Focus: Preparing students for markets involving Chinese and Portuguese cultures, focusing on linguistic skills, communication, and cultural sensitivity

Escolas do Turismo de Portugal

  • Program: Culinary Arts
  • Focus: preparing students for technical and managerial roles in food service and restaurant business. It emphasizes solid technical training, creativity, and ethical awareness, with the goal of promoting sustainable development in the tourism and hospitality sectors​.

Liliya Balinska, based in Lisbon, is a culinary content writer with an impressive educational background in Oriental and Intercultural Studies, complemented by a specialization in Culinary Arts. Her broad expertise enables her to cover a wide array of cuisines, from European classics to global dishes, captivating food lovers worldwide with her deep cultural knowledge and captivating writing style.

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