Easy Tzatziki Recipe

5 from 12 votes

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My Easy Tzatziki Recipe is a constant staple in my house. Tzatziki, also known as tarator or cacık, is served as a dip, soup, or sauce and is found in the cuisines of Southeast Europe and the Middle East. It is made of thick yogurt (usually strained or diluted), mixed with cucumbers, garlic, salt, olive oil, sometimes with vinegar or lemon juice, and fresh herbs such as dill, mint, parsley, or thyme. It takes 5 minutes to make and is the most refreshing dip or side to any dish. 🤤

When my family and I lived in Greece 🇬🇷 we ate tzatziki with every meal and it’s one dip I will never get sick of. In Bulgaria, we have our own yogurt dips, salads, and cold cucumber soup known as Tarator, so our cuisines are very similar. Most countries around the Balkans, Mediterranean, and Middle East have their own take on yogurt dips and salads that are similar. It makes me incredibly happy to see similar versions shared around the world. Food is love and food is what unites us all 🌎❤️.

Why You’ll Love My Easy Tzatziki Recipe

There are good reasons that so many cultures across the world have a version of this beloved recipe: it’s easy, refreshing, healthy, budget-friendly, versatile, and is the perfect accompaniment alongside so many dishes. You can’t go wrong serving this easy tzatziki recipe in sandwiches 🥪, wraps 🌯, on burgers 🍔 and gyros, and alongside grilled fish, meats, vegetables.

How to Prepare My Easy Tzatziki Recipe

🥒 Grate the cucumber. Then squeeze out all the excess moisture using a cheesecloth, nut milk bag, or clean hands.

🥣 Add the yogurt to a large bowl, along with the grated cucumber, garlic 🧄, lemon juice 🍋, and dill, and season with salt. Stir well.

🫒 Drizzle the olive oil and garnish with olives, if you like, then serve and enjoy!

Nonna’s Tip

Squeeze the cucumbers over a bowl to catch the excess moisture. Save the cucumber juice for enjoying as a healthy drink 🥤. Cheers!

Easy Tzatziki Recipe

Variations and Substitutions for Easy Tzatziki Recipe

  1. In place of of dill you can also use other fresh herbs 🌱, such as mint, parsley, or thyme, or a combination of all three.
  2. Instead of grating the cucumber, try a chunky tzatziki and cut the cucumber into small bite-size pieces.
  3. Try red wine vinegar, white wine vinegar, or sherry vinegar instead of lemon 🍋 juice.
  4. If you can’t find thick Greek or Balkan-style yogurt, you can make your own by straining plain yogurt overnight in clean cheese cloth or a nut milk bag.
  5. Rather than store-bought pita chips, serve with homemade warm pita bread.

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Common Questions

Does the cucumber have to be grated? Why?

Grating the cucumber adds delicious texture and distributes the ingredient evenly throughout the tzatziki. It’s important to grate on the largest holes of a cheese grater; anything smaller will yield a soupy mess. You can certainly cut the cucumber into small cubes instead, but that will change the texture of the dish.

Can I make this vegan?

Yes, you can certainly make this recipe vegan by using plain vegan yogurt.

Can I make this with vinegar?

If you don’t have a lemon, or you prefer to use vinegar, use about 1 tablespoon of vinegar instead of lemon juice.

How far in advance can this be prepared?

This dip thickens up after about 24 hours in the fridge. It’s best served freshly made or after 24 hours, but leftovers can also be stored for over a week.

what kind of cucumber should i use?

I like using peeled English cucumbers, but you can also leave the skin on. Any variety of cucumber is fine, and I also like Persian.

Easy Tzatziki Recipe

Easy Tzatziki Recipe

Tzatziki, also known as tarator or cacık, can be served as a dip, soup, or sauce and is found in the cuisines of Southeast Europe and the Middle East. It takes 5 minutes to make and is the most refreshing dip or side to any dish.
5 from 12 votes
Course: Appetizer, Side Dish, Snack
Cuisine: Greek
Servings: 4
Author: The Modern Nonna
Prep Time: 5 minutes


  • 1 English cucumber, peeled if desired
  • 2 cups plain Greek yogurt, or Balkan-style yogurt
  • 1 to 2 cloves garlic, grated or minced
  • ½ lemon, juiced
  • ¼ cup dill, finely chopped
  • salt, to taste
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • olives for garnish, optional


  • Grate the cucumber using the largest holes on your cheese grater. Squeeze all the excess moisture out of the grated cucumber. You can squeeze it out using a nut milk bag, a kitchen towel, a cheese cloth, or just clean hands. This step will ensure a thicker dip. Alternatively, you can finely chop the cucumber.
  • Add the yogurt to a large bowl, along with the grated cucumber, garlic, lemon juice, and dill, and season with salt. Stir well.
  • Drizzle the olive oil over the dip for presentation and garnish with olives, if you like. Serve right away or store it in the refrigerator in a glass Tupperware. The dip should last up to 10 days. Enjoy!



Calories: 109kcal, Carbohydrates: 8g, Protein: 11g, Fat: 4g, Saturated Fat: 1g, Polyunsaturated Fat: 0.4g, Monounsaturated Fat: 3g, Trans Fat: 0.01g, Cholesterol: 5mg, Sodium: 40mg, Potassium: 295mg, Fiber: 1g, Sugar: 5g, Vitamin A: 313IU, Vitamin C: 12mg, Calcium: 134mg, Iron: 1mg

Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.

Additional Info

Course: Appetizer, Side Dish, Snack
Cuisine: Greek
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Hi! I'm Sneji. Nice to meet you!

I am more commonly known as “The Modern Nonna” on social media where I create easy home cooked meals with a modern twist. I was born and raised in Sofia, Bulgaria and learned how to cook at the best culinary school in the world – my grandma’s kitchen. I lived in Greece on the Island of Crete with my parents for a while and then moved to Toronto, Canada when I was in grade 5. I started to really cook and experiment with food 11 years ago when I was 21 years old. Everything I currently know is a reflection of some part of my life…

Keep up to date with me on social media! Follow @themodernnonna

5 from 12 votes (5 ratings without comment)

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  1. 5 stars
    Hello Sneji,
    This recipe was so delicious and impressive; the family is still talking about it the next day.
    Thank you!

  2. 5 stars
    Hi Sneji,

    Your dip is delicious. We make authentic falafel and would like to feature your recipe on our website. We will make sure to give you credit on our website.

    Can we use your recipe?

    Thank you.

  3. 5 stars
    very good and easy recipe, great substitute for the store bought mix of ingredients.
    next time I will just start with one clove of garlic though, I LOVE garlic but 2 is a bit much based on the size of cloves i had.

    definitely will be making again!

  4. 5 stars
    Can we rate it 500/5 😉
    Made it as an appetizer and it was a huge hit with some warm crusty bread. Only bad part is I forgot to take a picture.

  5. 5 stars
    Our family loves this tzatziki! We’ve made it at least 8 times, it’s super easy, and it tastes better than store bought!

    We typically served with Greek chicken and vegetables over quinoa or rice. We don’t need to alter anything with this recipe.

    1. I love to hear it, Michelle! Thank you so much! I love that your family enjoys it together! Thank you for your review. ❤️🥰

  6. 5 stars
    Saw this recipe on Instagram and I can truly say it takes only 5 minutes! I timed myself. I didn’t even prep ingredients or lay anything out beforehand. I love the idea of grating it, I usually only chop them. Rather than using a cloth— I just squeezed them in my hands. So good! Thank you

  7. Made this tonight for the 1st time to go along with the chicken souvlaki skewers. Super easy to make and absolutely delicious. I have never been able to find good tzatziki in stores. I now have found a recipe that is as good as the sauces I’ve had at my favourite Greek restaurants. Thank you Modern Nonna for sharing.