Creamy, rich, thick, and white, Tzatziki Sauce is a traditional Greek dip that is made using thick and creamy yogurt, herbs, and cucumber. Here is how to make it. Try my Falafel, Baba Ganoush and Hummus recipes if you like Middle Eastern Food.
An interesting and delicious dip can add so much flavor to even a simple starter.
And therefore, whenever I host a party, there are at least 2 – 3 dips on the table. These dips along with the appetizers make it look even more appealing.
I also make these dips and store in the refrigerator, so that whenever I am hungry I can just take out some crackers and enjoy with these inviting dips.
Tzatziki is one such dip, that is my absolute favorite to make during house parties.
It is a versatile classic dip that goes with crackers, fried starters, nachos, and almost everything.
It is a traditional Greek dip/sauce that is served at Greek restaurants and is also known as yogurt and cucumber sauce.
It’s a refreshing chilled sauce, dip or spread.
Also known as cacık or tarator, this is usually found in Southeast European and Middle Eastern cuisines.
Here are some more dips, that you can try for your house parties – Hot & Cheesy Mexican Corn Dip, Best Mutabal, Mango Chilli Sauce, Yogurt Dip With Mint And Garlic, Jalapeno Garlic Feta Dip, and Refried Bean Dip.
What is Tzatziki?
It is a creamy Greek yogurt-based dip, made using yogurt, cucumber, olive oil, fresh herbs, such as dill or mint, garlic, lemon juice, and salt.
This easy to make homemade dip is healthy and versatile.
You can put it together in no time with just eight ingredients and requires zero cooking.
All you need is good quality ingredients and a little time.
Tzatziki sauce can be compared to the Indian raita, except the only cucumber is the vegetable used in the preparation, and olive oil gives it an added flavor.
In some organic stores, readymade sauce is available, but nothing tastes better than homemade.
It is also my quick go-to for thickening up meat dishes, is low on carb and gluten-free too.
How to pronounce it?
It is pronounced as Tsaht-ZEE-kee or tsah-see-key.
There are various pronunciations available on Google, but the most authentic are these two.
How does it taste?
It is a garlicky yogurt dip with a strong flavor from dill and crunch from yogurt.
It is mildly sour, salty, and refreshing in taste.
Tzatziki is a refreshing dip/sauce and can be used with anything and everything.
Cucumber and zingy lemon give it a refreshing flavor, while Greek yogurt makes it light and fluffy.
The ingredients to make this dip are very basic and are found in most kitchen.
Here is a list of ingredients that I use to make Tzatziki sauce.
Greek Yogurt: I have used Greek yogurt to make the dip. If Greek yogurt is not available, you can use hung curd.
To make hung or strained yogurt, hang the regular yogurt in a muslin cloth for an hour and use it.
Use vegan yogurt if you are on a vegan diet. You can replace yogurt with sour cream as well.
Cucumber: To make this dip, English cucumber is the best. I have used finely grated English cucumber.
If you can’t find English cucumber, use fresh cucumber that is available. Remove all the seeds from it and then use them.
Garlic: Garlic is the hero ingredient in this dip. Use freshly minced garlic to get the best result. The longer it stands in the yogurt, the better it tastes and its sharp taste mellows downs.
Fresh Dill: Use fresh dill leaves to add the best flavor and crunch. It’s important that you add dill leaves right before serving to avoid its strong flavor to overwhelm the rest.
Pro Tips by Neha
- Make sure you drain out the water from the grated cucumber.
- You can squeeze out the liquid using a cheesecloth or leave it in a mesh sieve overnight.
- If you are in a hurry, then squeeze out all the water using your hands.
- Garlic is the hero ingredient in this dip. The longer it stands in the yogurt, the better it tastes and its sharp taste also mellows downs.
- If you have time on hand, mix all the ingredients except cucumber and dill leaves and leave it overnight in the refrigerator.
- It makes the yogurt flavorful and the water from the cucumber will be drained out meanwhile.
- It’s important that you add dill leaves right before serving to avoid its strong flavor to overwhelm the rest.
- If Greek yogurt isn’t available and you need to make tzatziki, you can use sour cream instead.
- Just use an equivalent quantity of sour cream to the yogurt and follow rest of the recipe as is.
- You have your tzatziki ready.
If you are a vegan or making this dip for someone who is vegan, you are in for a treat. It’s super easy.
Just replace Greek yogurt with an equal amount of coconut yogurt, cashew yogurt or any other vegan yogurt and make a dairy-free Dip.
You can also make vegan tzatziki using tofu as the base. Just blend tofu in a blender until smooth.
Then add all the remaining ingredients as mentioned in the recipe below and your vegan dip will be ready in no time.
Can you freeze it?
You can freeze tzatziki, but it is not preferable. As cucumber will lose its crunch and dill will overpower all the other flavors.
Yogurt will become sour with time. Therefore, it is better to not freeze it.
How long can you refrigerate Tzatziki?
You can make it ahead of time and store it in an airtight glass container in the refrigerator.
Consume it within 2 to 4 days.
It is a versatile dip that can be served with anything and everything.
This tangy and delicious Tzatziki can be spread over some homemade warm bread!
You can serve it with snacks and appetizers. It is mostly served as a meze (cold appetizer) or a side dish.
You can even serve it with roasted or grilled vegetables, chips, nachos or finger food at any party or dinner.
Serve it with warm pita bread or any other bread, sliced vegetables, grilled or roasted chicken.
You can serve it with gyros, pita sandwiches, shawarma, chips, meze platter, or Mediterranean baked potatoes. You can even use it as a sandwich spread.
Step by Step Recipe
Mix cucumber with 1/2 tsp salt and keep aside for 10 minutes.
Squeeze the cucumber and keep aside.
Add all the ingredients in a bowl and mix well.
Tzatziki Sauce Recipe
- 1/2 cup English Cucumber (Grated)
- 1 cup Greek yogurt
- 1/2 tsp Garlic (Minced)
- 2 tbsp Fresh dill (Chopped)
- 1 tbsp Lemon juice
- 1 tbsp Extra virgin olive oil
- Salt (To taste)
- 1/4 tsp Black Pepper Powder
- Mix cucumber with 1/2 tsp salt and keep aside for 10 minutes.
- Squeeze the cucumber and keep aside.
- Add all the ingredients in a bowl and mix well.
- Refrigerate the dip for up to 2-3 hours.
- Serve with pita chips or nachos.