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Tzatziki -Delicious Greek Sauce

Updated on November 29, 2016


Tzatziki is one of the classic sauces in Greek cuisine. Some of the main ingredients include Greek yogurt, cucumbers, dill, and garlic...yup, garlic. In other words, this isn't for the faint of heart. This creamy white sauce is the perfect addition to any type of grilled meat or vegetable. My kids even love to eat it with fries or on a piece of bread. Much of the Greek cuisine today has middle eastern roots and it is difficult to know who first made what. This aside, the fact is that tzatziki is delicious and easy to make, but you'll need to know the "special" ingredient that makes all the difference. Try the recipe, you won't be disappointed.


4 cups Greek yogurt (or strained plain yogurt)

8 garlic cloves

2 cups chopped (skinless) cucumber (English cucumber works best & try to hollow out the seeds first as much as possible)

1/2 cup fresh dill (dried dill weed can be used as a substitute)

1 teaspoon salt

2 tablespoon white vinegar or apple cider vinegar

2 tablespoon extra virgin Greek olive oil

English Cucumber
English Cucumber


Be Green, Avoid Machines

1. Put the Greek yogurt into a mixing bowl. (I've also found that "Labneh," a Lebanese thick yogurt makes excellent tzatziki. You can find it in local Greek, Lebanese or Armenian markets). If you can't find Greek yogurt or Labneh, you can make something similar by straining regular plain yogurt.This can be done by placing the yogurt into a coffee filter and allowing it to strain for several hours to remove the liquid and thicken the yogurt.

2. Remove the skin from the garlic and chop it until it is very fine.

3. Peel the cucumber and grate it on a coarse grater. English cucumbers work best because of their thin skin and small seeds. Make sure to drain the cucumber of it's excess "water." You can do this by using your hands to squeeze the cucumber into palm-sized balls.

4. Remove the stems from the dill and finely chop it.

5. Add all of the above into the yogurt along with the salt, vinegar, and olive oil.

Mix well and add a little extra olive oil on can never have too much olive oil!


Tzatziki video

This video shows you a slightly different version of how to make tzatziki, but it is worth watching...she uses both lemon and vinegar! You will also notice that she adds other ingredients like onions and black pepper.

Olives: From The Tree, To The Press

I hope you enjoy this short video that shows olive oil production

Some Of The Products That Will Help You Make Your Tzatziki.

Delicious and good for you often does that happen!

If you are interested in learning more about Greek food (and a little bit about the Greeks of Asia Minor), you should definitely watch the movie, "A Touch of Spice." Read a review from the N.Y. Times below.

A Touch of Spice

"This is a heartwarming movie about family, love, and food. A gentle, bittersweet comedy, the film touches the heart in a very special way. The horrifying pain of political expulsion, the agony of repatriation, the longing for a lost past- all these are depicted with sensitivity and respect for the people involved. Family ties and traditions make the unbearable bearable in this lovely, touching film. This is, indeed, a rare treat."

-Courtesy of J.D. , New York Times


Check it out on Amazon.

Most tzatziki recipes use lemon juice instead of vinegar, but I think "vinegar" is the key ingredient that makes the tzatziki taste "nostimo" (means "delicious" in Greek). Your thoughts?

Lemon or Vinegar? - For those of you haven't tasted tzatziki, which are you most likely to try in your tzatziki, lemon juice or vinegar?

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    • profile image

      anonymous 8 years ago

      I believe its more delicious with vinegar....nice recipe...thank you!!

    • profile image

      Daubentonia 8 years ago

      Can't wait to try this recipe with vinegar -- I'm allergic to citrus :( Hmm, wonder if I could substitute vinegar for lemon in hummus?

    • profile image

      anonymous 8 years ago

      This sounds great I love lebanees food and this recipe would be great in the summer for cook outs to put on any grilled veggies or meet.

      Can;t wait to try it with lemon for sure. Any thing with Lemon or garlic is wonderful!

    • profile image

      anonymous 8 years ago

      I make cacik myself very often, and it's refreshing especially in the summer. My American friends who tried it loved it although they found the idea of simple yogurt dressing or yoghurt drink weird. Thanks for putting this up, IndigoS! :)

    • profile image

      anonymous 8 years ago

      Boy, I've always wanted a receipe for tzatziki. This one sounds GREAT!!! Can't wait ty try it (with vinegar of course, I love its tangy taste) Thanks a whole lot.

    • sciencefictionn profile image

      sciencefictionn 8 years ago

      I love Tzatziki . My wife makes it from time to time. Nice start.

    • profile image

      anonymous 8 years ago

      I tried IndigoS recipe and it's delicious! Using the greek yoghurt and vinegar makes a big difference. Save the lemon for the grilled chicken that pairs nicely with the tzatzikiâ marinate the chicken in lemon and oregano before grilling.

    • profile image

      anonymous 8 years ago

      Sounds great! Can't wait to try it.

    • profile image

      anonymous 8 years ago

      Wow! your description made my mouth water:-))

      can't wait to try it.


    • profile image

      Mart903 8 years ago

      Nice and well illustrated lens. Good start. Congratulations!!!!

    • profile image

      anonymous 8 years ago

      MMM sounds delicious! I love eating Greek food so I'm looking forward to trying it. I'll let you know how it turns out. Thanks!

    • profile image

      anonymous 8 years ago

      This looks delicious! I can't wait to make it. I like the part about dipping fries in it...

    • profile image

      anonymous 8 years ago

      I will try this and let you know. I am a big fan of Fage yogurt, so I think I'm going to love this. Sounds easy to make too. I think I'll try the vinegar.


    • LotusMalas profile image

      LotusMalas 8 years ago

      This looks delicious - I would definitely try this recipe! Primarily the tzatziki with lemon, but I'm adventurous, so I'd try vinegar too.

    • IndigoS profile image

      IndigoS 8 years ago

      @delia-delia: Hi d-artist,

      Of course you can always add a little more dill (or no dill), a little less garlic, but there isn't much to it as it is. So, if you come up with any other ingredients that you find work, please share.

    • delia-delia profile image

      Delia 8 years ago

      yummm my mouth is watering and I can't wait to make this...thanks for there a variety to making this? I would add on another recipe just for the comparison...nice lens...5*...

    • profile image

      anonymous 8 years ago

      Who knew that vinegar would make all the difference to a tzatziki sauce? I've always loved eating it at Greek restaurants, but I never thought of making it myself. Thank you IndigoS for your great recipe and your insights into buying the right ingredients. I'll never look at a bottle of olive oil the same. You've encouraged me to make something healthy, fresh and wonderful for my family. Happy Spring!