Make an authentic Greek salad, or Horiatiki, with this easy Greek salad recipe. Just a handful of fresh ingredients and a no-fuss dressing of good olive oil and a splash of vinegar is all you need!

close up of a Greek salad on a blue serving platter.
Photo Credits: Mariam Hamdy

I was lucky enough to visit the Greek islands of Patmos and Kos a few years ago, where I fell in love with the people, their local shops and hole-in-the-wall restaurants. In one of the small family-owned restaurants we visited, I enjoyed a fresh salad that opened my eyes to what a truly traditional and uncomplicated Greek salad should be! And, that's exactly what I have recreated for you.

This Greek salad recipe is a prime example of a simple salad that lets crunchy vegetables shine with no lettuce or other filler. Like Bulgarian Shopska or Italian Caprese, the classic table salad uses just a few humble ingredients, yet has become a totally iconic dish that’s beloved around the world. 

In Greece, Horiatiki or Greek village salad, is served most often from early spring through summer and up until mid fall. It's truly the best use of the season's produce, like crunchy cucumbers, sweet tomatoes, and earthy green bell peppers. I know you’ll love it as much as I do.

Table of Contents
  1. Ingredients for this Greek Salad (Horiatiki)
  2. How to Make Greek Salad
  3. What to Serve with Greek Salad
  4. More Greek Recipes 
  5. Greek Salad (Traditional Horiatiki Recipe) Recipe
Ingredients for Greek salad including cucumbers, tomatoes, green pepper, feta cheese, red onion, kalamata olives, salt, oregano, olive oil, and red wine vinegar.

Ingredients for this Greek Salad (Horiatiki)

This Greek salad recipe uses just a handful of easy-to-source ingredients. To make it, grab:

  • Tomatoes: Use Roma tomatoes or vine-ripe tomatoes. They stay somewhat firm when they’re ripe, which works well with the crunchy bell pepper and onion. 
  • Cucumber: I prefer English cucumbers as they tend to be sweeter. If standard slicing cucumbers are all that’s available, make sure to fully peel their bitter waxy skin.
  • Onion: Red onion is sweet and mild enough serve raw. To further take the edge off, a quick soak in ice water and a dash of vinegar does the trick. 
  • Olives: Briny Kalamata olives are my favorite for a traditional Greek salad, but any high-quality olive you have on hand will work. 
  • Bell pepper: Choose a firm and smooth green bell pepper, which is the only bell pepper that’s used in an authentic Greek salad. 
  • Feta cheese: Use quality Greek sheep’s milk feta if it’s available to you. Opt for whole blocks of feta packed in brine, as it not only boasts a better flavor but allows you to serve the large chunks of feta that act as the centerpiece of a traditional Greek salad. 
  • Extra virgin olive oil: Use a full-flavor Greek olive oil, like our Private Reserve from Kyparissia.
  • Red wine vinegar: Adds a dash of acidity to make an easy vinaigrette with no whisking necessary. 
  • Seasoning: This salad is seasoned simply with a sprinkle of kosher salt and dried oregano.
A serving of Greek salad one a white plate with a fork, with another in the background.

How to Make Greek Salad

This Greek salad recipe couldn’t be easier to make. Simply grab a serving bowl and get started:

  • Shock the onion (optional). Halve and thinly slice one red onion into half moons. If you’d like to mellow its raw taste, fill a small bowl with ice water. Add about 1 teaspoon of red wine vinegar to the water, then add the onion slices. Set aside to soak for 10 minutes or so while you prep the veggies.
  • Prep the veggies. Slice 4 medium tomatoes into bite-sized pieces. Partially peel a cucumber into a stripe pattern, then slice into half moons. Slice 1 green bell pepper into rings. sliced green pepper, tomatoes, cucumbers and red onions on a wooden cutting board.
  • Season. Place all the veggies in a large serving dish, along with a handful of pitted Kalamata olives. Remove the onions from the ice water and add to the platter with the rest of the veggies. Sprinkle on 1 ½ teaspoons of dried oregano and a pinch of kosher salt. Overhead photo of a Greek salad on a blue serving platter before the blocks of feta cheese has been added.
  • Dress. Pour in ¼ cup of extra virgin olive oil and 1-2 tablespoons of red wine vinegar. Give everything a very gentle toss. 
  • Finish and serve. Break off or slice large pieces of feta and add to the top of the salad. Finish with a final sprinkle of ¼ tablespoon of oregano. Enjoy!
close up overhead photo of a Greek salad on a blue serving platter.

What to Serve with Greek Salad

This simple Greek salad recipe is popular, in part, because it’s so versatile: you can serve it as a first course or side dish to just about any entree

That said, why not keep it in the family and go Greek? Try chicken gyros, chicken or pork souvlaki, whole roasted fish, or Kleftiko, a spiced lamb cooked in parchment paper. For a satisfying vegetarian dinner, serve with Gigantes Plaki (Greek Baked Beans).

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Greek Salad (Traditional Horiatiki Recipe)

Suzy Karadsheh
Greek salad web story poster image.
This simple Greek salad recipe, or Horiatiki, keeps things traditional. No need to fuss with a dressing, just toss ripe tomatoes, cucumber, green bell pepper, onion, olives with good olive oil and red wine vinegar, top with tangy feta cheese, and you’re all set! Serve as a quick and easy first course or side salad.
Prep – 15 minutes
Total – 15 minutes
Serves – 6 people


  • 1 medium red onion, thinly sliced into half moons
  • 4 medium juicy tomatoes, sliced into bite-sized pieces or wedges
  • 1 English cucumber, partially peeled to make a striped pattern and sliced into half moons
  • 1 green bell pepper, cored and sliced into rings
  • 1 handful pitted Kalamata olives
  • 1 ½ teaspoons dried oregano
  • Kosher salt
  • ¼ cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 1-2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
  • 1 (7 ounce) block Greek feta cheese in brine, torn into slabs


  • Shock the onion (optional). If you’d like to mellow the onion’s raw taste, fill a small bowl with ice water. Add about 1 teaspoon of red wine vinegar to the water, then add the sliced onion. Set aside to soak for 10 minutes or so.
  • Combine the veggies. Place the tomato, cucumber, bell pepper, and olives in a large serving dish. Remove the onions from the water and add to the dish with the rest of the vegetables.
  • Season. Sprinkle the vegetables with ¾ teaspoon of oregano and a pinch of kosher salt. Add the oil and vinegar (to your liking) then give everything a gentle toss.
  • Finish and serve. Top the salad with slabs of feta and sprinkle with the remaining ¾ teaspoon of oregano and enjoy!



  • Leftovers? Cover and refrigerate them for up to 2 days. 
  • For a punchier lemon and garlic flavor, try this salad with another classic Greek Salad dressing: Ladolemono.
  • Visit our shop to browse quality Mediterranean ingredients including olive oils, honey, jams, and spices.


Calories: 102.9kcalCarbohydrates: 4.7gProtein: 0.7gFat: 9.5gSaturated Fat: 1.3gSodium: 2.8mgPotassium: 135mgFiber: 1.1gVitamin A: 125.9IUVitamin C: 18.7mgCalcium: 20.9mgIron: 0.5mg
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*This post appeared on The Mediterranean Dish in 2019 and has been recently updated with new information and media for readers benefit.

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I'm Suzy; born and bred right on the shores of the Mediterranean. I'm all about easy, healthy recipes with big Mediterranean flavors. Three values guide my cooking: eat with the seasons; use whole foods; and above all, share! So happy you're here...
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  1. How am I supposed to know the size of a "block" of feta cheese?

    I am reading this recipe only because I found vegan feta, new at the supermarket this week, and decided to try it. A traditional Greek salad sounded ideal.

    But the block is 200g (I live in the middle of the EU; we use metric here). A blander recipe from the BBC also calls for four tomatoes, but only 85g of feta. A recent comment explains how to use a block of 200g, so I will go with that recipe and add a green bell pepper.

  2. This salad looks so good. I have been wanting to try it for some now. I am home bound right now and cannot seem to get all the ingredients at the same time. When I am able to get out on my own, it will definitely be on my table.

  3. 5 stars
    Great meal. Simple and quick to make. I couldn't do it fifteen minutes, but from start to finish (including clean up) it took me a half hour. I often make a dish that is close to this with tuna. Onion, black olives, tomato, tuna, cheese, salt, pepper, EVOO and red wine vinegar. The next time I make my tuna dish I am going to use this as my base, the cucumber and bell pepper will make a nice addition.

  4. Just a note for a correction. In the recipe itself at the bottom of the page, as far as I can tell, you soak the onions but then you never drain and blot and add them back to the salad.

  5. 5 stars
    Great salad, I will be missing all the great summer tomatoes as the weather gets colder here. I have a question for you about feta cheese. I always buy feta in a block that indicates it’s imported from Greece. I do like feta but have always found it to be a much drier cheese and a bit salty. That is until recently. When picking up cheese last week I took a bit longer to look at all the feta cheese that was for sale. One container was marked as being aged, was only sheep’s milk, where others are sheep and goats milk,, and the container had a short explanation on the side of the container about what the. Greek government requires. So decided to try it. Now this feta was the best I’ve ever tasted, it was creamy and not salty as some other feta. Suzy could you give us a 101 on different feta cheese. You always refer to feta as “ creamy” and wondered iif what I bought is more like what you are referring to having.

    1. Thanks so much for sharing, Marie! As far as feta cheese go, I typically use blocks of feta which I find tastier and more creamy than crumbled feta...Greek or Bulgarian feta are two of my favorites.

      1. Hi Suzy,
        Im am a chef and this is always my go to salad.
        I use fermented apple cider vinegar as a base with greek EVOO.
        In regards to the FETA cheese - I use Danish Feta which is salty sweet and creamy. Is this similar to the Bulgarian Feta you mention.

    2. Marie,I live on the Greek island of Corfu..This is a tip I was given by a local man in our village..If the feta is too salty,place it in a plastic dish ( with a lid ) add water put it in fridge for 24 hours and the salt will come out of the cheese..Also if it's not salty enough,do as above but add salt and then soak it for 24 hours..Whatever method you use place it of some kitchen paper to let any excess water drain from the cheese..When I've done this,I then put the cheese in a container and sprinkle Oregano (Rigani in Greek ) then pour some Olive oil over it all and leave for a few hours or longer to let flavours develop..My friend ( Spiros ) has been doing this for many years and it works..Enjoy..

  6. 5 stars
    This is the easiest and best salad ever! Depending on what I have on hand, I add or leave out things, but the absolute must have are the cucumbers and tomatoes. Mostly I use red bells for the peppers because they are sweeter, and I'll sometimes sprinkle with chives instead of onions. If I'm in the mood for the kalamata olives I throw them in, but not always. And I've started not salting it because its so stinking good without the salt! I might use baby mozzarella balls instead of feta, but not always. And I frequently leave off the dressing. No matter. This salad is a WINNER no matter how I change it up. What a diverse and delicious salad to have with the menu. It goes with everything! (I even eat it with breakfast.)

  7. 5 stars
    Excellent! I just want to specify 2 things: 1. do not use Roma tomatoes 2. Greeks like to salt the cut tomatoes in the beginning to release their juices because in the end, they like to mop up the juices, dressing, etc with a chunk of bread ( they even have a name for it, I think it's called: "pepare")

  8. 5 stars
    Best Greek salad EVER!! I’ve made countless times and now to have a Greek salad in a restaurant just won’t compare because they don’t do the ‘Traditional’ version (no lettuce). So easy to make too!

  9. Nothing beats the traditional and original Greek Salad. I had the taste of this awesome flavor at El Greco. A friend and I dine-in there through their special dine-in offer. The experience and taste was unbelievable. Their Greek Salad is a big thumbs up to me.

  10. 5 stars
    This is my favorite salad. When I bring it to barbecues people always ask for the recipe. You are the best Suzie!

  11. 5 stars
    I made this salad for a Greek friend, actually, and served it for lunch with your wonderful homemade pita bread recipe! She was so pleased with the salad and said it was very similar to what her mom makes. Big THANK YOU for such a wonderful and simple recipe.

  12. People will do themselves a favor buying superb heirloom tomatoes instead of fake ones. To my astonishment Trader Joe's sells a 2 pound clamshell for $5 and they've been excellent every time I got them. Also, only "English" cucumbers will do or Persian small ones. It's salads like this for which I use my remaining artisan olive oil bought on a French farmer's market in Provence. I had hope to go back to buy more alas Americans are not welcome coming from the world's center of infection.