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This easy Greek Salad served over a bed of greens is a healthy choice that will add a pop of color to your menu. Fresh, vibrant and loaded with great flavor.
In my excitement over the upcoming Academy Awards, I actually considered calling this salad by a different name. A couple that came to mind were the Get Him To The Greek Salad, The Big Fat Greek Salad, you get the idea. I came to my senses.
We drove down to Southern California last weekend to watch Boy #4 play in a water polo tournament. We’ve made this trek for many, many years in support of our water polo playing sons. This year we took the slightly longer route and drove along the coast the entire way. It’s a gorgeous drive and along the way you pass some of the most beautiful scenery in California.
We got hungry as we approached Santa Barbara so with the help of our GPS we found a little deli with outdoor seating. It was over 70 degrees, with clear, sunny, blue skies. This is February mind you! Aaahhh, Southern California.
I could have cared less what I was eating, as long as I was eating it outside in the sun. I ordered half a sandwich and then the poor girl taking my order rattled off about 15 different salad choices as I stood there dumbfounded. After great consideration I chose the Greek and it ends up this little deli off the highway in Santa Barbara makes a killer Greek salad. I was completely inspired and I knew I had to make it.
This easy Greek Salad recipe is my take on this irresistibly fresh and crunchy salad. It’s loaded with veggies and tossed with a delicious homemade Greek Dressing.
- Bell pepper – I like to use both red and yellow bell pepper for gorgeous color contrast. They both have a sweet, mild flavor are not as strong as the green variety.
- Onion – Thinly sliced red onion adds great flavor
- Tomatoes – Look for a package of multi-colored cherry tomatoes to add great color.
- Cucumber – You’ll need an English cucumber, sometimes labelled as “Hothouse” cucumber. They have a thinner skin and smaller seeds than regular cucumbers and are generally a bit sweeter. These long, thin cucumbers are usually sold wrapped in plastic.
- Kalamata olives – These popular Greek olives are dark, thick and meaty. They have a unique, intense flavor that is the perfect accent to the other crunchy, fresh ingredients.
- Lettuce – Traditional Greek salad does not include lettuce but I like to serve it over a bed of greens. I use a mixture of substantial, crunchy romaine and iceberg lettuces which I think work perfectly for this salad.
- Feta cheese – This salty, tangy white cheese is a must in any Greek Salad.
- Greek Salad Dressing – The easy Greek vinaigrette consists of extra virgin olive oil, red wine vinegar, Dijon mustard, minced garlic, dried oregano, sugar, and a touch of salt and freshly ground black pepper.
This recipe makes a large salad, perfect for a group or big family. Scale it in half if you don’t have a crowd to feed like I normally do around here.
How to Make Greek Salad
For the Greek Dressing
- Process the ingredients for the Greek Dressing for 1 to 2 minutes in a food processor or blender to emulsify. The dressing can be made days or even a week in advance and refrigerated until ready to use.
For the Greek Salad
- Place the bell pepper, onion, cucumber, tomatoes, and Greek olives in a large mixing bowl or airtight container.
- Pour the Greek Dressing over the top and toss to combine. Cover and refrigerate for at least 2 hours or overnight to allow the veggies to mingle and marinate in the dressing.
You can serve Greek Salad on its own, but for a gorgeous presentation I love to serve it over a light bed of leafy greens. Garnish the finished salad with a generous amount of crumbled feta.
This bright and beautiful salad is a great choice for a summer gathering. It can be made ahead, stored in an airtight container, and assembled just before serving.
Store the Greek Salad in an airtight container for up to 3 to 4 days. Once it is combined with lettuce it is best consumed the same day.
- Greek Salad is great with pretty much anything that comes off the grill from chicken, to steak, to ribs or even burgers!
- It’s a natural choice to serve with my Grilled Greek Chicken and Greek Chicken Kabobs.
- It is a healthy way to round out a simple soup or sandwich dinner.
- Try stuffing it in a pita with grilled steak or chicken, very similar to my Chicken Pitas.
- Use your imagination and add additional ingredients, like artichoke hearts, or add sliced grilled chicken to make it a complete meal.
- Meal prep it on the weekend for easy lunches through the week.
- 1 cup extra virgin olive oil
- ½ cup red wine vinegar
- 2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
- 2 teaspoons minced garlic
- 2 teaspoons dried oregano
- 2 teaspoons sugar
- salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
- 1 red bell pepper chopped
- 1 yellow bell pepper chopped
- ½ small red onion thinly sliced
- 1 English cucumber chopped
- 10 ounces cherry tomatoes (red, yellow, and/or orange) halved
- ½ cup pitted Greek Kalamata olives or to taste
- ½ small head romaine lettuce
- ½ small head iceburg lettuce
- ⅓ cup crumbled feta cheese
For the Greek Dressing
- Place all the dressing ingredients in the bowl of a food processor or in a blender. Process for 1 to 2 minutes to emulsify (thicken slightly). Set aside, or if making in advance, cover and refrigerate until ready to serve.
For the Greek Salad
- Place the bell pepper, onion, cucumber, tomatoes, and Greek olives in a large mixing bowl or airtight container. Pour the Greek Dressing over the top and toss to combine. Cover and refrigerate for at least 2 hours or overnight to allow the veggies to mingle and marinate in the dressing.
- When ready to serve, chop the greens, rinse and drain well, and place them in a serving dish. Spoon the marinated vegetables over the lettuce, spooning some of the excess dressing over the top. Sprinkle with crumbled feta cheese.