Cucumber Salad with Mint
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This sweet and tangy cucumber salad is the perfect light side when grilling or picnicking.
This is my go-to cucumber salad for summer picnics and BBQs. It is simple yet addictively good — and it improves if you make it ahead of time. What else can you ask for?
What You’ll Need to Make Cucumber Salad with Mint
I like to use English cucumbers, which are also called seedless, European, burpless, or hothouse cucumbers, as opposed to regular cucumbers. The advantage is that they’re typically wrapped in plastic instead of waxed to protect the skin and keep moisture in, so you don’t need to peel them. They’re also slightly sweeter with fewer seeds.
You’ll notice that I use a combination of olive oil and vegetable oil. Sometimes the flavor of olive oil alone can overpower so I like to cut it with a milder tasting oil.
How To Make Cucumber Salad with Mint
Begin by halving the cucumbers and scraping out the seeds with a teaspoon.
Slice the cucumbers and toss them with salt in a colander. Let them sit in the sink for about 30 minutes to drain the water out. This will prevent the cucumbers from getting soggy and the dressing from turning watery. Tap the colander against the sink to release excess water, then transfer the cucumbers to a clean dish towel.
Blot dry as best you can.
Meanwhile, temper the red onions by soaking them in ice water for about ten minutes to tame their bite. Works like a charm! (This step is optional; I don’t care for raw onions.)
Drain the onions and blot them dry with a paper towel, then combine them in a bowl with the drained cucumbers, mint, vinegar, oil and seasoning.
Cover and let stand in the refrigerator for at least 20 minutes to allow the flavors to marry. Serve cold and enjoy!
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Cucumber Salad with Mint
This sweet and tangy cucumber salad is the perfect light side when grilling or picnicking.
- 2 English (or hothouse) cucumbers
- 1 teaspoon salt
- ¼ cup chopped red onions
- ¼ cup white wine vinegar
- 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
- 2½ teaspoons sugar
- ¼ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- ¼ cup chopped fresh mint
- Cut the cucumbers in half lengthwise. Use a teaspoon to scrape out the seeds, then cut into thin slices. Toss the cucumbers with the salt in a colander. Let drain in the sink for at least 30 minutes.
- Meanwhile, soak the red onions in a small bowl of ice water for ten minutes, then drain in a fine mesh strainer. Blot dry with a paper towel.
- Tap the cucumber-filled colander on the base of the sink to release any excess water. Lay a clean dish towel flat on the counter, and then dump the cucumbers over top. Use the edges of the towel to blot the cucumbers dry.
- In a medium bowl, toss the cucumbers, onions, white wine vinegar, olive oil, vegetable oil, sugar, pepper and mint. Cover and let stand in refrigerator for at least 20 minutes or up to 12 hours. Before serving, taste and adjust seasoning, if necessary. Serve cold.
- Make-Ahead Instructions: This salad can be made up to 12 hours ahead of time. Cover and refrigerate until ready to serve.
- Per serving (6 servings)
- Calories: 108
- Fat: 9g
- Saturated fat: 1g
- Carbohydrates: 6g
- Sugar: 4g
- Fiber: 1g
- Protein: 1g
- Sodium: 391mg
- Cholesterol: 0mg
This website is written and produced for informational purposes only. I am not a certified nutritionist and the nutritional data on this site has not been evaluated or approved by a nutritionist or the Food and Drug Administration. Nutritional information is offered as a courtesy and should not be construed as a guarantee. The data is calculated through an online nutritional calculator, Edamam.com. Although I do my best to provide accurate nutritional information, these figures should be considered estimates only. Varying factors such as product types or brands purchased, natural fluctuations in fresh produce, and the way ingredients are processed change the effective nutritional information in any given recipe. Furthermore, different online calculators provide different results depending on their own nutrition fact sources and algorithms. To obtain the most accurate nutritional information in a given recipe, you should calculate the nutritional information with the actual ingredients used in your recipe, using your preferred nutrition calculator.
Gluten-Free Adaptable Note
To the best of my knowledge, all of the ingredients used in this recipe are gluten-free or widely available in gluten-free versions. There is hidden gluten in many foods; if you're following a gluten-free diet or cooking for someone with gluten allergies, always read the labels of your ingredients to verify that they are gluten-free.
When you call for salt in your recipes, are you using kosher or table salt since the measurements will be different? Thanks so much!!! Love your recipes!
Hi Laura, When a recipe of mine says salt in the ingredient list, I am referring to regular/table salt. If it calls for something else like kosher salt, I will specify that in the recipe. And so glad you like the recipes! 🙂
Thank you for this amazing and refreshing salad! I also added a little bit of dill and used agave syrup instead of sugar. Came out fantastic!
This salad is perfect! So quick and tasty, and everyone loves it.
Thank you in general for the many many wonderful recipes, as a working mum of four I really appreciate how simple you make it to prepare quick, healthy and delicious meals. At least once a week I think to myself, thanks, Jenn! Your creamy potato soup from the Weeknights/Weekends book is my picky 13-year-old daughter’s very favourite meal :).
Best wishes, Mags
Jenn, can you let this sit overnight
Hi Carol, This is really best eaten the day it’s made because the cucumbers will get a bit soggy the longer they sit. You can definitely get away with 12 hours, but I’d try to avoid storing it for much longer than that.
Just loved the salad. My only mistake was using the mint from Trader Joes, not as fresh as what the produce market has…kind of dried out. Next time, and there will be many next times,,, Thanks Jenn, your salads are always so good.
This is delicious! Such a great mix of flavors, so light and refreshing. Just what I was looking for. I paired it with the Broiled Salmon with Thai Sweet Chili Glaze from this site (also a 5-star recipe). I used dill because I had plenty, but will use mint next time. And there will be a lot of next times for this yummy side dish. Thanks!
Made per the recipe except I used Vidalia onion, didn’t soak it and I made half the recipe. It was okay. I never scrape the seeds out for other cucumber salad recipes or treat the cukes with salt. I didn’t find doing so to be an improvement and it was a lot of fuss. I might make this again but will skip these added steps.
I’m not crazy about mint, used fresh dill instead (same amount). Used all olive oil b/c that’s my fave. Otherwise, followed recipe exactly as written. This salad is worth the effort! It goes great with Jenn’s steakhouse burgers or grilled chicken. It’s light and crunchy…nice alternative to heavier sides like potato salad, pasta salad, etc. I made it four times in the last two weeks!
I made this salad today, and my sister and her husband ( along with us) raved about it!
It is fresh and light. Just delicious. All of the recipes I’ve made from your web site have been wonderful. More to come! Thank you Jen
This looks so fresh and I would like to pair it with your chicken tikka masala recipe. However, I do not like onions if they are not cooked. (Even if they are soaked) Would this recipe still work well if I just omitted the red onion? Would I need to make any other alterations if I did that? Or are there other vegetable sides that you would recommend to pair with the chicken tikka masala?
Hi Heather, it’s fine for you to omit the onions if you really don’t enjoy them raw. If you like shallots or chives, feel free to add them. If you’d like to consider other options, roasted asparagus, or curried carrots would also pair nicely with the chicken.
In your “About” section, you state: “On occasion, I’ll adapt a recipe from another source or share favorites from my cookbook collection (sources are always cited within the recipe post and on the printed recipe).” It would be nice if you cited the original recipe, as yours was copied word for word: https://www.seriouseats.com/cucumber-and-mint-salad-recipe
Hi Lydia, that’s actually my recipe that I shared with Serious Eats. You can find my name under the recipe title. 🙂
Had to look–Yup–its your recipe 🙂 Used Mango White Balsamic vinegar and Persian Lime olive oil (So I omitted the sugar) and it was fantastic. Will definitely be making this again!
Jen, thank you for so generously sharing so many amazing and reliable recipes with us, for free. So many of us have adopted them into our weekly routines, and I hope you know how grateful we are! You not only test and perfect them before release, but also offer helpful tips and basically improve our cooking skills with every recipe. I love this summer salad – great way to use my English cucumbers while keeping the mint in my garden in check – and this morning my husband made your egg bites. Absolutely delicious! Cannot wait to make them when the kids visit.
I LOVE this salad. I chop the cucumbers a little finer….add more mint….but the result is the same. This is always a crowd pleaser. Making it for Easter lunch! All ages love this salad. Thank you!
Can small amount of dried mint be substituted if fresh isn’t available? If so, what would be your recommended amount? We love your Chicken Tikka Masala and would like to try this too. All you recipes are great!
So glad you like the recipes! 🙂
I really like this with fresh mint, but if you don’t have access to it, dried should work. When substituting dried herbs for fresh, the rule of thumb is to use 1/3 of the amount, so you’ll need a heaping tablespoon. Please LMK how it turns out with the dried.
Was headed to a dinner party where Indian cuisine was on the menu. This salad was a perfect counter balance for the spicy meal! Delicious!
So good. I tasted this as I made it and wasn’t over the moon about it. Put it in the fridge to marinade before dinner. By the time I pulled it out a few hours later it was so different. All the flavors had time to come together and it was so good. My husband said whatever you send with me for lunch tomorrow please make sure I get some of that.
Thanks for another winner!
Hi! Can I use another herb for this salad that’s not mint? Thanks! Can’t wait to try it
Hi Carol, flat-leaf parsley would work as a replacement for the mint. Hope you enjoy!
So good! Didn’t realize English cucumbers vary so much in size. I had to run back to the store for more! Wish the recipe had specified large cucumbers. Guests loved it!
Fresh and delicious!
I’ve been making this salad almost every week. The kids love it and it is so fresh and delicious, the mint really changes the cucumber flavor along with the red onion. My 17 year old son suggested adding manouri cheese and it paired well since the cheese is very mild.
This is a winner!! I’ve made this a number of times now, and it’s a hit with everyone who’s tried it. I used apple cider vinegar because I don’t have white wine vinegar—and don’t want to crowd my cabinet 😉 I found that you don’t need the sugar with apple cider vinegar. I’m making it again this weekend for a July 4th picnic because it’s been requested! Thanks for another awesome recipe!
Thanks! I added farro and followed your suggestion! It was a great success! (I made a lot: multiplied the recipe by 4, the dressing by 6 and added 4 cups of farro -which were measured precooking.) YUM!!!
Glad it came out well farro — thanks for reporting back!
Hi Jenn! I LOVE this site and have made many recipes. I love them because I just want something I can follow to a T and trust it will be great. Yours always are excellent in this respect. Regarding this recipe, I wonder if I can add a grain to this to bulk it up, like farro or quinoa? And if I should adjust any ingredients if I do? Thanks!
Hi Lisa, So glad you like the recipes! If you want to add a grain to this, I may make 1.5 times the dressing as the grain will soak up a good bit of it. Hope that helps!
This is a lovely & light side salad for just about any meal. If you’re sensitive to raw onions, soaking them in water is essential to avoid tummy pains. Next time I think I’ll try adding fried cubes of halloumi cheese before serving!
Just fished making this again. I must have made this over a dozen times since the summer. I absolutely love this salad. I used to have leftover cucumbers just going to waste from not using it all in other recipes. Not any more. I never have leftovers as I usually buy them just to make this salad. I’ve halved and quartered this recipe easily. I also use more mint.
I love this light, refreshing side dish. I made it according to recipe and noticed two lone radishes in my fridge, so I added those. It was great and had an extra layer of flavor!
I commend you on the thorough steps, great photos, and the inclusion of wonderful mint to the recipe. I make something similar but have always used fennel or dill, so this is a refreshing option. I am soooo surprised, however, to see that you use Wesson oil. I have been a ‘health nut’ for 50 some-odd years, and it has been proven that vegetable oils such as this are horribly unhealthy. I will make your recipe and use equal parts of olive oil and avocado oil. I may also use one of my special flavor-infused olive oils as a variation, such as a lemon or coconut infused olive oil. What has been the most helpful aspect of your recipe is how you’ve prepared the onion and cucumbers. Onions can overwhelm, but they do ‘marry’ cucumbers so well, and soaking them seems just the thing to do!
(I deducted a star because of the Wesson oil!
This recipe is amazing and our go to summertime salad when we have fresh cucumbers from our garden. Delicious and always a crowd pleaser!
So healthy and refreshing for a summer day—would go with anything for lunch or dinner
What and how much substitute for sugar?
Hi, I’ve never made this with anything but sugar, but I suspect you could use honey here. I’d recommend about 1.5 teaspoons. Enjoy!
Great recipe: easy, tasty, simple ingredients & can be made ahead. Served along your Chicken Tikka Masala(also 5 star)….it was a very good supper. Thanks, Jenn!
This salad was so great. I was a bit apprehensive about the mint but followed the recipe exactly, and it was perfect. The whole family really enjoyed this. It paired perfectly with the chicken Tikka masala we made with your recipe! Thank you!
Good morning all, I thought I’d make a comment from across the pond. I tried this recipe for a small gathering of five yesterday, it went down really well with everyone. My neighbour has mint in his garden and I help myself whenever I need to. His mint is double mint and it’s excellent in everything especially Pimms. Maybe you could look for some of that and try it. I find that American recipes use a lot more sugar and salt than we do so I adjust accordingly, but this recipe was spot on. I also made Jenn’s black bean and sweet corn with lime vinaigrette. It was very good but we like lime so used a bit more of that with a bit less salt. We all adjust to suit our own families I suppose. I really enjoy trying different things so have enjoyed this website immensely. Take care everyone in these strange times. Dottie