Tzatziki (Yogurt & Cucumber Dip)

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Tzatziki is a refreshing and good-for-you yogurt and cucumber dip. Serve it with pita, grilled meats, gyros, or just eat it with a spoon!

Tzatziki is a refreshing yogurt and shredded cucumber dip popular in Greece and the Middle East.  It is typically served as part of a meze, as a side dish to grilled meats, or with gyros. I personally think it’s good enough to just eat with a spoon. It’s good for you, too.

What You’ll Need To Make Tzatziki

ingredients for tzatziki

Tzatziki should be made with thick Greek yogurt yogurt. Many recipes call for straining it, but I don’t find it necessary.

I like to make tzatziki with English (or hothouse) cucumbers, the long, thin cucumbers that come wrapped in plastic. Because their skin is thin and unwaxed, English cucumbers do not need to be peeled — makes it easy.

wild mint in garden

Tzatziki is traditionally made with mint or dill. I prefer the flavor of mint (plus, as you can see, I have a wee bit of a wild mint situation in my garden) but feel free to substitute fresh dill if you like.

How To Make Tzatziki

seeding the cucumbers

Begin by seeding the cucumber. Simply cut the cucumber in half lengthwise, and then use a small spoon to scrape the seeds out. Next, shred the cucumber on a box grater or in a food processor.

shredded zucchini on cutting board

Cucumbers are filled with water, which will dilute the tzatziki if you don’t wring it all out. I first use my hands to squeeze out as much liquid as possible, then I wrap the shredded cucumber in a dish towel and wring again.

shredded cucumber wrapped in dish towel

Combine the yogurt, shredded cucumber, garlic, olive oil, salt, pepper and mint in a mixing bowl.

tzatziki ingredients in mixing bowl

Mix to combine.

mixed tzatziki

Taste and adjust seasoning, if necessary. That’s all there is to it!

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Tzatziki (Yogurt & Cucumber Dip)

Tzatziki is a refreshing and good-for-you yogurt and cucumber dip. Serve it with pita, grilled meats, gyros, or just eat it with a spoon!

Servings: 2 cups
Prep Time: 20 Minutes
Total Time: 20 Minutes

Ingredients

  • 1½ cups plain 2% Greek yogurt (I use Fage)
  • 1 medium English or hothouse cucumber, seeded, coarsely grated and squeezed as dry as possible (about 1 cup)
  • 2 small garlic cloves, minced
  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • Scant ¾ teaspoon salt
  • ¼ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh mint

Instructions

  1. Combine all ingredients in a medium bowl and mix until well combined. Taste and adjust seasoning if necessary (I often add a generous pinch of sugar to balance the flavors). Cover and chill until ready to serve. Before serving, drizzle with a bit of olive oil and sprinkle with fresh mint, if desired.

Nutrition Information

Powered by Edamam

  • Serving size: 1/4 cup
  • Calories: 77
  • Fat: 5 g
  • Saturated fat: 1 g
  • Carbohydrates: 4g
  • Sugar: 3 g
  • Fiber: 0 g
  • Protein: 6 g
  • Sodium: 223 mg
  • Cholesterol: 3 mg

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.

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Comments

  • Hi Jenn
    My whole family LOVES your books and blog! I was wondering whether half mint half dill would work. Also l was wondering if this dip has to be made the day of or how many days it can keep in the fridge. Thank you for your inspiring work! These days, we could all use more enjoyment (read excellent food) with family and friends!

    • — S from DC on May 28, 2022
    • Reply
    • Hi S, So glad you like the books and the blog — thank you for your support! 🙂 I think the cucumber has the best texture when the dip is made fresh. That said, it’s still delicious the next day so feel free to make it a day ahead if necessary.

      • — Jenn on May 31, 2022
      • Reply
  • Writing from Greece where I’d just like to add that full-fat strained yogurt is the only way Greeks would make this, and it absolutely requires a fair bit of vinegar to have the appropriate tang! The addition of vinegar may be the reason you want to do a bit of extra straining of the yogurt: it should be almost cheese-like when it’s ready to be made into tzatziki.

    • — Anna on December 6, 2021
    • Reply
  • I make this minus the mint (mainly because I don’t generally buy it). It’s amazing!! My son, who usually doesn’t eat many dips or yoghurt loves this & can’t get enough when I make it. Thank you for sharing 😄

    • — Bec on October 22, 2021
    • Reply
  • I was wondering if this recipe has a strong yogurt flavor/smell and if so what do I do to change that?

    • — Heather on July 27, 2021
    • Reply
    • Hi Heather, this does contain a lot of yogurt, but with the other ingredients, I don’t think the taste/smell is overpowering. Hope you enjoy if you make it!

      • — Jenn on July 27, 2021
      • Reply
  • Have not yet tried this recipe, but I plan to very soon. Ingredients list 2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh mint (I plan to use dill instead). Then the instructions say sprinkle with fresh mint, if desired. My question is do you add the 2 TBLSs of whatever you are using to the actual recipe or are those 2 TBSPs of mint or dill what you sprinkle on only if desired at the end?

    • — Karen Bashak on June 24, 2021
    • Reply
    • Hi Karen, the 2 tablespoons of mint go into the tzatziki. If you’d like, you can sprinkle with a little additional mint. Hope that clarifies and that you enjoy!

      • — Jenn on June 25, 2021
      • Reply
  • I have made this several times. This is a very simple and delicious recipe and always a crowd pleaser! Thank you for another excellent recipe reminding us it’s the simple things in life that delight the most!

    • — Betsy on May 14, 2021
    • Reply
  • I always joke that my parenting responsibility is to ensure my children know how to make a good guacamole before leaving home but my 12 yr old insists he needs to master tzatziki! Pure goodness in a bowl.

    • — Yvonne on March 17, 2021
    • Reply
  • Another great recipe to use up cucumber & mint before they languish away in the fridge. Makes a good amount for Greek style pitas & tasty with some veggie sticks for a snack.

    • — Geraldine on February 2, 2021
    • Reply
  • Another great recipe to use up cucumber & mint before they languish away in the fridge. Makes a good amount & great with veggie sticks as a snack next day.

    • — Geraldine on February 2, 2021
    • Reply
  • This is so healthy and delicious. The second time making it, I altered by tripling the fresh mint, adding the zest of a lemon, then adding a good Tablespoon of fresh lemon juice to the recipe. I’m a lemon nut, so I had to try it. I ate it atop a few chopped tomatoes and on lentil soup. Tomorrow it’s going in with canned flaked tuna over some mesclun greens. Thank you for publishing such delicious recipes.

    • — Margaret McAndrews on January 31, 2021
    • Reply
  • The best Tzatziki recipe! I make it to go with Lentil Soup. Or to garnish hummus. Or just eat by the spoonful! I did not remove the seeds–just shredded and squeezed with the tea towel. Critical step!

    • — Margaret McA on January 29, 2021
    • Reply
  • Hi Jenn. I made your Middle Eastern Chicken Kebabs last week and so darn delicious. I’m planning to make them again next week for a girls weekend. I’d like to serve it with the Tzatziki but not sure if I should do the mint or dill. Thoughts?

    • — Lori on October 16, 2020
    • Reply
    • Glad you liked the kebabs! I’d suggest the mint as that’s how I’ve tested the recipe, but I’m sure this would be good with dill too. 🙂

      • — Jenn on October 16, 2020
      • Reply
  • I made this today and followed the recipe except for using 0% instead of the 2%, because that is what I had. I was not familiar with tzatziki before making this. I’ve been eating it with store bought baked pita chips, and I think it is quite yummy. I like that it is so healthy, so I will definitely make it again.

    • — Laurie W on August 31, 2020
    • Reply
  • I just made this and could eat the whole bowl. I used 0% Fage Greek yogurt instead of 2%. Delicious!!!

    • This was delicious. Used dill but will try mint next time. Really good with the Greek chicken. I did eat some leftover with a spoon the next day. Yum lol.

      • — Kerry Hampstead on January 28, 2021
      • Reply
  • Made this tzatziki to go with lamb and beef koftas (normally just chop some cucumber and add to mint and yoghurt). It was delicious – found myself simply eating up the tzatziki with pita before remembering to save some to eat with the kebabs as well. Removing seeds and squeezing out water makes all the difference and increases flavour. Thoroughly recommend

  • One of the best Tzatziki recipes I have come across. And I have tried many. I made it to go with the Middle Eastern Lamb Kofta and Zucchini Fritters with Feta. I also made the Israeli Salad with Feta – all from this site!! Sooo good. Everything was wonderful!!

  • Hi Jenn, I loved this very simple and delicious recipe! This will become a staple in our household. We normally have fat free Greek yogurt in our fridge which I used for this recipe, used dill instead of mint and added an extra garlic clove (we are garlic lovers) and it turned out delicious! I love that this can be a very healthy. We have eaten this with pita chips and over your kofta recipe which by the way was AMAZING!

  • Hi Jenn! I am making falafels today and wanted to make tzatziki to serve it with. However, I just realized I don’t have Greek yogourt at home…is there any chance I can replace it by sour cream or regular yogurt? Thank you!

    • Sure, I’d go with the sour cream. Hope you enjoy!

  • I made the dip and it is wonderful! How long will it last in the refrigerator?

    • Glad you liked it! I’d say it should last up to about 3 days.

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