A cool and creamy cucumber yogurt sauce made with Greek yogurt, lemon, garlic, grated cucumber and fresh herbs.
Also known as tzatziki, this chilled sauce is great with salmon, pita bread, yogurt flatbread, grilled chicken, roasted potatoes and raw veggies.
This lemony yogurt sauce (or dip!) is an easy way to perk up dinner. My favorite time of year for cucumber yogurt sauce is summer, preferably while eating outdoors with a glass of chilled rosé in hand!
Yogurt + grated cucumber makes this sauce both creamy and light. Don't be stingy with the salt and garlic, and add plenty of fresh herbs. I usually add two types of herbs, dill and mint, but this yogurt sauce is also delicious with parsley or basil.
My favorite food to serve with this yogurt sauce is Mediterranean grilled chicken.
For another chilled sauce option, try this similar recipe for Tzatziki with sour cream.
You should also try horseradish aioli, which is a zippy, creamy sauce that has a slightly spicy kick.
Yogurt: Greek yogurt works best for this recipe because it's thick and creamy. Full-fat tastes best. You can use low or non-fat, but it will be tangier and less creamy.
Cucumber: Persian cucumbers have very few seeds and are less watery than other cucumber varieties, which make Persians a great choice for this sauce. You can use other types of cucumbers, but should scoop out the seeds before grating the cucumber.
Lemon: Adds bright, bold flavor
Fresh herbs: Dill and mint are a classic choice, but this sauce can also be made with basil or parsley. Use one type of fresh herb or blend two.
Garlic: One clove adds noticeable flavor, but you can add more if you love garlic. Make sure the garlic is very finely chopped so it blends into the sauce. A garlic press works well.
Salt: Just a pinch brings out the savory flavor of cucumber sauce.
How to Make Cucumber Yogurt Sauce
This sauce is a cinch to make!
Step 1: Use a box grater to grate the cucumber.
Step 2: Mix grated cucumber into Greek yogurt.
Step 3: Add lemon, garlic and salt.
Step 4: Gently mix in fresh herbs, like dill and mint. You can serve the sauce immediately or make it a few hours ahead of time so the flavors blend more.
For exact measurements and instructions, see the recipe card below.
Yes. The only difference is that tzatziki usually adds olive oil. Tzatziki is a sauce that originated from Southeastern Europe and Middle Eastern cuisines.
Without cucumber, this is just savory yogurt, which actually still tastes pretty great! Make sure to add plenty of fresh herbs and garlic if you're skipping the cucumber. If you're looking for a creamy sauce without cucumber, you might also want to try horseradish aioli.
Greek yogurt works best because the consistency is thick. Regular yogurt will give the sauce a very runny consistency.
No, you can use any of your favorite fresh herbs. Try mint, parsley or basil.
A creamy yogurt sauce can be served with hot food or with cold food. It makes simple dinners just a little bit fancier. Serve yogurt sauce with:
- Grilled or roasted chicken (try kefir marinated Greek chicken breasts)
- Pan-seared shrimp
- Roasted or grilled veggies
- Roasted potatoes
- Raw veggies
- Pita chips or potato chips
- Vegetarian Shawarma wrapped in pita bread
- Meatballs (especially lamb and turkey meatballs)
More Delicious Dips and Sauces
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Cucumber Yogurt Sauce Recipe
Cool and creamy cucumber yogurt sauce is an easy sauce to serve with grilled meat or salmon, roasted and raw vegetables, pita bread and pita chips.
I usually make cucumber yogurt sauce with dill and mint, but it’s also fantastic with fresh basil or parsley.
- Prep Time: 10
- Total Time: 10
- Yield: 4 to 6 servings 1x
- Category: Side Dishes
- Method: Stir
- Cuisine: Greek
- Diet: Vegetarian
- 1 cup plain Greek yogurt (I prefer full-fat)
- ¾ cup grated unpeeled cucumber (about 2 Persian cucumbers*)
- 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
- 1 garlic clove, grated or finely chopped
- ⅛ teaspoon salt, plus more to taste
- ¼ cup finely chopped fresh dill
- 1 tablespoon chopped fresh mint (optional)
*You can use a regular cucumber, but first cut the cucumber lengthwise and scoop out the seeds.
- Use the largest holes on a box grater (cheese grater) to grate the cucumber.
- In a medium bowl, mix together the yogurt and cucumber.
- Add lemon juice, garlic and salt.
- Stir in the fresh herbs.
This sauce will stay fresh and flavorful for up to 3 days in the refrigerator. Water will separate from the yogurt, so mix well before serving.
Keywords: cucumber yogurt sauce, dill sauce, tzatziki