Tzatziki

Homemade Tzatziki Recipe -- super easy to make, and so good! | gimmesomeoven.com

Random fact about me:

I can accurately pronounce Spanish, Italian, French, German, Latin, and just about any other language if needed.

It’s one of the odd perks that comes from having been an opera major in college.  (Perhaps another random fact that you did not know about me.)  All vocal music majors are required to take a semester or two of a class called “Diction” where you learn how to pronounce just about any language imaginable with the help of the International Phonetic Alphabet.  The IPA doesn’t translate words for you.  It just tells you exactly how to pronounce them, which comes in helpful with singing songs and arias in various languages.  And nowadays, it comes in handy with learning how to pronounce foreign foodie words.

You know, like the Greek sauce we all love called tzatziki.

IPA: /tsaˈtsiːki/.

Many of you probably already know how to pronounce it.  But in case you don’t (which I know many don’t, based on all of the creative pronunciations I hear when people order at our local Greek restaurant), here’s a mini IPA lesson for the day.  Similar to the phonetic spellings in English dictionaries, each letter in the IPA alphabet represents a sound:

t = as in “ten”
s = as in “sell”
a = the vowel in “father”
i = the vowel in “beet”
k = as in “keel”

And the quote mark (‘) comes before the syllable that is stressed.

Put them all together, and you have…/tsaˈtsiːki/…tzatziki!  

Opa!  (Maybe you should become an opera major too.)  ;)

Homemade Tzatziki Recipe -- super easy to make, and so good! | gimmesomeoven.com

Well at least now if you see an IPA pronunciation listed in the dictionary, you’ll know what that means.  Just imagine decoding a 400-page textbook of foreign aria lyrics over the course of a semester…  At least those skills can still come in handy every now and then in the kitchen too.

Like when it comes to making and saying tzatziki.

I assume most everyone is familiar with the delicious Greek yogurt sauce that’s famous on gyros, burgers, falafel, salads, and in the dip aisle at Trader Joe’s.  And in a new taco recipe coming on the blog tomorrow.  Everyone loves tzatziki!  But what I think everyone doesn’t necessarily know is how ridiculously easy it is to whip up a batch homemade.

All you need are the ingredients above.

Homemade Tzatziki Recipe -- super easy to make, and so good! | gimmesomeoven.com

Basically all you do to make tzatziki is combine all of the ingredients in a bit bowl, and then stir to combine.

Homemade Tzatziki Recipe -- super easy to make, and so good! | gimmesomeoven.com

You can either spoon it onto whatever entree you may be making.  Or tzatziki sauce also stands well on its own as a tasty dip.  I like to drizzle mine with olive oil, crack a little fresh pepper on top, and poke a sprig of dill in the middle to make it look extra pretty.  Then just serve it up with whatever dippers you’d like — soft pita, crunchy pita chips, fresh veggie sticks, etc. — and you’re good to go.

Opa!  Tzatziki!  Enjoy!!!

Homemade Tzatziki Recipe -- super easy to make, and so good! | gimmesomeoven.com

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Tzatziki

Greek tzatziki dip is easy to make homemade with fresh ingredients, and it can be used in a wide range of dishes!

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups full-fat plain Greek yogurt
  • 4 garlic cloves, peeled and minced
  • 1 English cucumber*, seeded and grated (about 1 cup)
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh dill (not dried dill)
  • 1-2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice, to taste
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly-ground black pepper

Directions:

  1. Stir all ingredients together until combined. Taste and adjust seasoning if needed.
  2. Serve immediately, or refrigerate in a sealed container for up to 2 days.

*I recommend using an English cucumber so that you don’t have to worry about removing the seeds.  Feel free to peel it if you would like.  Also, if you would like a thicker sauce, feel free to squeeze the excess juice out of the shredded cucumber before adding it to the dip.

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If you make this recipe, be sure to snap a photo and hashtag it #gimmesomeoven. I'd love to see what you cook!

Homemade Tzatziki Recipe -- super easy to make, and so good! | gimmesomeoven.com

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99 comments on “Tzatziki”

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  8. I am making this and using it as a sauce for my shawarma! This is gonna be yummy!

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  10. you pronounce it with a Z sound or something like “tja tji kee”

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  15. A question! I have never made this because it has cucumber in it and cucumber absolutely does not like me!  I’ve eaten it in restaurants and loved it, before I knew it had cucumber in it.  Could I substitute shredded zucchini or yellow squash for the cucumber? I realize the flavor would vary a little, but I’m trying to find a way to make something similar but that will work for me!  Thanks for any suggestions!

    • Hi Beverly! Unfortunately the cucumber (and dill) is what makes the tzatziki taste like tzatziki. Since it’s such a key ingredient in this, we really don’t see how you could swap it out. You could certainly try it, but we wouldn’t really advise it — the zucchini or squash won’t have any flavor, and it would be a completely different dip. We’re sorry we can’t be more helpful here!

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  17. This is a great version of tzatziki! I love it! In Greece we make it without the addition of lemon!

  18. I think this dish improves with time! Like most dips, the flavors really need some time to marry. As tasty as it is on day one, the next day it is the BOMB. This is a great recipe.

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  22. This recipe is awesome! I made it last night but just did a half batch… which made more than enough for me! Eating it as a snack with Tostitos at my desk right now. Thank you so much!

    Rating: 5
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  24. The Cretan grandmother who taught me to make it always grated her cucumbers and then pressed them in a sieve to remove as much of the juice/water as possible before combining with the rest. Makes it a bit creamier, if a bit more effort. I also find it to be a superb and healthy topping for most kinds of sandwiches and wraps.

  25. Very nice thank you for that I love taziki

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  29. I’ve never seen a tzatziki recipe that doesn’t call for some method of removing as much liquid from the cucumbers as possible. I’ve seen people salt them in a strainer and let them sit to drain, squeeze them in cheesecloth or paper towels, etc., and oftentimes the seeds are removed because they are just too juicy. Otherwise, they say, the tzatziki separates into unappealing globs and rivers. I’m curious to know if that’s something you’ve never encountered when making it this way, or if you just stir it all back together, or what. I’ve always made sure to get every last bit of moisture out of the cukes and it can be time consuming; it would be nice to cut out the extra work, if the end product is just as good.

    • Hi Lizz! I’ve read that too, but have never drained mine and the texture of the sauce is always great! I do recommend using English cucumbers, which may help. :) Enjoy!

  30. Do you think I could make this with non-dairy yogurt, like say cashew yogurt? I have loved tzaziki for a long time, but had to give it up when I discovered a dairy allergy. I’m tempted to try it again, especially with your chicken suvlaki recipe. Just wanted some advice on the non-dairy yogurt part if you can give any… thanks!!

    • Hey there! Hmmm, we haven’t tried this with a non-dairy yogurt, so we’re not sure what that would be like, but there appear to be some vegan tzatziki recipes out there that use soaked cashews! Here’s one we found… We hope this helps!

  31. I made it! First time ever making Tzatziki. However, I omitted the olive oil as I wasn’t sure if it went in before or after. Looking at the photo it looked like it was added after. Anyway it was delish without the olive oil. I also drained the cuke as it was very watery and I saw this tip on another recipe.

    Rating: 4
    • Hi Silvia! We’re glad you enjoyed this, and that’s fine that you drained the cucumber (we just like ours a little thinner, so that’s why we skipped that step). As for the olive oil, we did mix it in with all of the other ingredients, but we also added a little drizzle of it on top so it looks more attractive in the photos. :) We’re sorry for any confusion!

  32. This is just perfect, best tzatziki I have had. I am one that can never follow a recipe perfectly, I always taste and have to make modifications. Not this time, it’s delectable just as is! This will be shared and made again and again.

    Rating: 5