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Mediterranean Chopped Salad

$7.74 Recipe/$1.93 Serving

Chopped Mediterranean salad is the perfect lunch or dinner. This delicious salad is simple yet flavorful and easy to make. Ready in just minutes, this Mediterranean chopped salad is vegan, gluten free and dairy free.

Chopped Mediterranean Salad in a white bowl over blue napkin.

Why you will love this recipe

  • Simple, healthy and delicious, this chopped Mediterranean salad is packed with flavor and great for a light lunch or dinner.
  • Make this your own! Add pasta, feta, or your favorite veggies.
  • Great salad for parties, cookouts or summer brunches! This salad can sit for a few hours in the fridge, so it’s great to make ahead! Also since there is no mayo or dairy, this salad does well outside for cookouts and picnics.
Ingredients for Mediterranean Chopped Salad.
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Ingredients

Dressing

  • Red wine vinegar: red wine vinegar is a classic Mediterranean salad ingredient. You could also use lemon juice for a different twist on this meal that would still be delicious.
  • Extra virgin olive oil: olive oil is a critical ingredient in Mediterranean cooking.
  • Dijon mustard: Dijon mustard helps the dressing emulsify and the salty flavor adds depth to the dressing.
  • Salt and spices: Italian seasoning and dried oregano: I love this combo of Italian seasoning + dried oregano for Greek or Mediterranean dressing.

Salad

  • Cucumber: I like to use English cucumber for salads, as the skin is thin and much easier to digest. Also the seeds of English cucumber are small, so there is no need to scoop out the seeds before serving. Tip:  Be sure to wash the cucumber before use (even though it’s typically sold in a plastic wrapping).
  • Grape or cherry tomatoes: I like to use grape or cherry tomatoes because they typically have less seeds and are not as watery as full tomatoes when chopped up. Feel free to use whatever tomatoes you have on hand.
  • Bell pepper: Yellow, red, orange bell pepper would all be great in this salad. The bell peppers provide crunch to the salad.
  • Kalamata olives and capers: These help to add a salty, briny flavor to the salad. Since this salad doesn’t have any cheese, getting that salty bite from olives and capers really helps to balance out the flavor of the veggies.
  • Flat leaf parsley: This helps to add a fresh pop of flavor to the salad. I prefer flat leaf parsley for this (curly parsley is too strong for me).
  • Chickpeas: You can use chickpeas, white beans, or sliced almonds or cashews in place of the chickpeas.

How to make Mediterranean chopped salad

Start by mixing the dressing together. You can either mix it together in a small bowl or jar or make the dressing in the bottom of the bowl you plan on mixing the salad together in.

Next wash and chop all the veggies (cucumber, tomato, bell pepper). You want bite size pieces for all the veggies. When cutting the cucumber, don’t slice it too thin or it will wilt in the dressing. Add the veggies to a large bowl.

Slice the pitted olives in half and chop the capers. Add to the veggies in the large bowl.

Finely chop the flat leaf parsley by running your knife through it a few times back and forth on the cutting board.  Add to the veggies and olives/capers mixture.

Drain and rinse the chickpeas (optional). Be sure to rinse them well before adding to the bowl with the rest of the ingredients.

Pour the dressing over and mix all the ingredients together in a large bowl. Continue to stir for 1-2 minutes to ensure all the veggies are coated before storing in the fridge at least 15 minutes (2 hours is best).

Serve cold or at room temperature.

Steps on how to make a Mediterranean Chopped Salad.
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Top tips

  • Be sure to slice the cucumber thicker than your typical salad since this sits in dressing for some time. If you slice the cucumber to thin, it will get watery and start to wilt.
  • If you choose to make this pasta salad or quinoa salad, you will want to add an additional 1 tbsp. red wine vinegar, 1/2 tbsp. olive oil and .25 tsp. salt.
  • If you need to prep this salad ahead of time, wait to dress the salad until about 2 hours before serving, this way the flavors have time to come together but the veggies doesn’t get too soggy.

Other additions:

  • Veggies: artichoke hearts (canned, jarred), hearts of palm, red onion, green onion, roasted red peppers, zucchini, broccoli, baby spinach, chopped romaine lettuce, pepperoncini peppers
  • Herbs: Fresh mint, cilantro, chives, oregano
  • Protein: Shredded chicken, 10 Minute Italian Chicken, Salmon, Shrimp, Balsamic Tofu, Lentil Pasta, Chickpea Pasta, quinoa
  • Healthy fats: Avocado, feta cheese, hemp hearts

Ways to serve this salad

This salad is great as a main salad or appetizer on it’s own. Some great ways to make it a meal include:

  • Serve with hummus or baba ganoush, veggies and your favorite pita or tortilla chip
  • Serve on a wrap (pita, collard greens, gluten free tortilla) with hummus or mashed avocado.
  • Add rice or quinoa to make a grain bowl. You could also add a cooked protein or falafel to this as well (see above for ideas)
  • Serve with cooked and cooled pasta or quinoa for pasta salad or quinoa salad.
Wooden spoon in a bowl of Mediterranean Chopped Salad.

How to store leftovers

If you know you are going to want leftovers of this salad, be sure to cut the cucumber in large enough chunks that it doesn’t get wilty and lose all the texture as it sits in the vinaigrette.

This salad can be stored in the fridge for 2-3 days once combined.

You can also chop all the veggies ahead and make the dressing ahead and store them separately if you want to ensure the texture of the veggies when serving.

I do not recommend freezing this salad.

Substitutions

  • Red wine vinegar: I love red wine vinegar in Greek salad dressing recipes. You could also use white wine vinegar or the juice of a large lemon in place of the red wine vinegar. Use balsamic if you want a more Italian spin on this salad.
  • Extra virgin olive oil: Olive oil is critical to Mediterranean cooking. If you don’t have extra virgin olive oil, you could use avocado oil in place of the olive oil.
  • Dijon mustard: this helps to emulsify the dressing (make the fat in the olive oil take on the water in the vinegar and make a thicker dressing). You can simply omit if you do not have Dijon mustard. You may need to add an extra pinch of salt to make up for omitting the mustard.
  • Spices: Italian seasoning can be replaced with ½ tsp. dried basil, ¼ tsp. dried parsley and ¼ tsp. dried oregano. If you don’ have dried oregano on hand, simply omit it from the dressing.
  • Cucumber: You could also use zucchini in place of the cucumber for a similar look but the flavor of the salad would be different. You could use any of the veggies listed above as well in place of the cucumber.
  • Tomatoes, Bell Pepper: See the list of veggies above for other ideas to replace the tomatoes or bell pepper with.
  • Olives, capers: This adds a salty kick to the salad and helps to balance out all the veggies. You could use more capers (if you don’t love olives) or more olives if you don’t have capers on hand. You could also use feta cheese if you are not dairy free.
  • Flat leaf parsley: This helps add a fresh pop of flavor to the salad. If you don’t have flat leaf parsley, you can use fresh mint, fresh oregano (only 1 tsp) or chopped chives in place of the parsley.
Dressing being poured into a bowl of salad.

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Chopped Mediterranean salad in a large bowl before stirring.

Mediterranean Chopped Salad

$7.74 Recipe/$1.93 Serving
Mediterranean Chopped Salad – Vegan, Gluten Free, Dairy Free, Quick – Ready in just minutes this is the perfect light lunch or dinner. Great for parties, cookouts and picnics too!
5 from 2 votes
Print Pin Save Rate
Course: Lunch, Salad
Cuisine: Greek, Mediterranean
Keyword: greek chopped salad, mediterranean chopped salad
Prep Time: 8 mins
Total Time: 8 mins
Servings: 4 servings

Ingredients

  • 1 large English cucumber, chopped - $0.99
  • 1 pint grape or cherry tomatoes, chopped - $2.49
  • 1 large bell pepper (yellow, orange, red), chopped - $1.29
  • 1/4 cup Kalamata olives, pitted and chopped - $0.75
  • 2 tbsp capers, chopped - $0.16
  • 2 tbsp. chopped flat leaf parsley - $0.25
  • 1.75 cups chickpeas (1 15 oz can, drained and rinsed) - $0.99

Greek Dressing

Instructions

  • Combine all the ingredients for the dressing in a jar, bowl or at the bottom of the bowl you will be tossing the salad in.
  • Chop all of the veggies into bite size pieces. Note, be sure to chop the cucumbers a bit thicker than usual as the vinegar dressing can make them watery if they are too thin. Add the veggies to a large bowl.
  • Rinse and drain the chickpeas, add them to the bowl with the veggies.
  • Cut the olives in half and finely chop the capers and flat leaf parsley. Add to the bowl with the veggies and chickpeas.
  • Pour the dressing over the veggies if you prepared it in a separate container. Stir well for 1-2 minutes ensuring all the veggies are well coated in dressing.
  • Let the salad sit at least 15 minutes (best is about 2 hours) to let all the flavors come together. Serve cold or at room temperature.

Notes

Other additions:
  • Veggies: artichoke hearts, hearts of palm, red onion, green onion, roasted red peppers, zucchini, broccoli, baby spinach, chopped romaine lettuce, pepperoncini peppers
  • Herbs: Fresh mint, cilantro, chives, oregano
  • Protein: Shredded chicken, 10 Minute Italian Chicken, Salmon, Shrimp, Balsamic Tofu, Lentil Pasta, Chickpea Pasta, quinoa
  • Healthy fats: Avocado, feta cheese, hemp hearts
Store in the fridge up to 3 days once the dressing has been added. 
To make ahead, chop the veggies and make the dressing but do not combine until about 2 hours before serving. 
See how I calculate food cost.

Nutrition Information

Nutrition Facts
Amount per Serving
Calories
213
Fat
 
7
g
Carbohydrates
 
31
g
Fiber
 
8
g
Sugar
 
9
g
Protein
 
9
g
Where does nutrition info come from? Nutrition facts are provided as a courtesy, sourced from the USDA Food Database.
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