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Tzatziki

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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.)  ;)

Tzatziki Recipe | 1-Minute Video

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

  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Total Time: 10 minutes
  • Yield: 0 About 3 cups 1x

Description

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


Ingredients

Scale
  • 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)
  • 12 tablespoons fresh lemon juice, to taste
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly-ground black pepper

Instructions

  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.

Notes

*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.

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

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Recipe rating

133 comments on “Tzatziki”

  1. An opera major? Gee whizz! :)
    This looks fantastic – I love my tzatziki with on a pita with roasted eggplant. I’ll be trying out your recipe soon, thanks.

  2. Tzatziki is my husbands all time favorite thing to put on sandwiches! Usually I buy a massive jar at Costco…and it goes bad before he can eat it all. So, this recipe is perfect as I can make less at a time! Pinned :)

  3. Tzatziki is my happy place. <3

  4. And now I’m craving falafel so that I have an excuse to make this. Sounds amazing!

  5. Mmm homemade tzatziki is THE BEST. I would put this on everything :)

  6. Tzatziki reminds me of my mom, she always made it for us as kids for a dipping sauce with french fries, haha! Love this!!

  7. Looks delighftul Ali! I’ve gotta give this version a try.
    Mmm….

  8. My favorite! I love anything with cucumbers in it, and this is another one.

  9. I could eat this with a SPOON, but you know, toasted pita would work too ;)

  10. Oh my gosh, this is stunning. I need it for lunch!!

  11. I know exactly what you mean – growing up taking vocal lessons and taking linguistics in undergrad for fun has given me the same language talent. No idea what I’m saying, but It sounds pretty good.

    • The music major in the Italian 101 class I took at college was the same way … I don’t think she was actually conjugating the verbs half the time, but she sounded great doing it lol!

  12. Okay, this looks so delicious and I’ve never even heard of it before. I love dips and pita bread and can’t wait to try it out. I even have everything I need to make it right now. WIN!

  13. I will try this recipe. I usually make a version of this to cool down Indian food.

  14. Reeeeally pretty, Ali! You are my new food photography hero. :)

  15. You just made this tzatziki recipe ROCK!

  16. Now not only can I eat it, but can pronounce it correctly too!

  17. Gorgeous, Ali! This is one of my favorite dips, spreads…whatever you want to call it!!

  18. Love tzatziki! Your recipe looks so fresh and easy to mix up. Thanks for sharing! I think I’ll pass on being an opera major though; trust me, everyone will appreciate my decision:)

  19. Your phonetics would have been complete if you had included what tzatziki “sounds like” in a plain english word(s).
    How did an opera singer wind up in cooking? I know that I occasionally break out in song when I’m cooking so I guess the two go together. I haven’t tried your recipe yet but it looks delicious.

  20. I love tzatziki! This recipe looks simple and easy. And the photo is lovely! I have everything already, going to try it this week! Thanks for sharing.

  21. Wow pretty sure I never would have passed that linguistics course in college! This tzatziki looks amazing! Thanks so much for sharing, it’s one of my favorite dips/sauces!

  22. Yum, just made this. Delicious. Waiting for some homeade pita
    bread to rise and I’m all set.

  23. Your photos are always so beautiful! : ) Tzatziki is definitely one of my very favorites!

  24. I’m amazed by your photography skills! Looks amazing!

  25. I first discovered tzatziki in Berlin as a sauce on doner kabobs. It changed my world. I’ve never made it before, but I may need to start!

  26. Recipe for the bread please??? (A)

    • Oooh, I actually don’t have a recipe for pita yet on the site. There a bunch around if you Google it. I bought mine from our neighborhood market.

  27. This is one of my favorite dips! Gorgeous! Pinned!

  28. You were an opera major? Wow #funfact! Your tzatziki looks amazing! I was just eating at a Greek place last weekend and feeling the need to make tzatzki myself. You have clearly done all the heavy lifting for me! It looks amazing! How did you get your cucumber that thin? Did you use the second smallest holes on a box grater?

  29. Great photos and you get the recipe just right! I have seen many tzatziki recipies that miss one ingredient or another but your’s is just right! Try it with fried zuchinies! In Greece they go hand in hand. :)

  30. this cucumber looks grated..is it?

  31. This post makes me smile so much! I was a vocal major in college and worked my way through college at a Greek restaraunt. Diction, IPA, tsasziki, countless hours of pronunciation translation–it’s all very reminiscent of that time in my life. can’t wait to make this recipe and bust out my old IPA text books. :) 

  32. This is the best tzatziki recipe! Thanks for sharing!~ 

  33. I made this tonight to go with your homemade falafel recipe.  Oh my goodness…why have I never had this before?  It was so so good!!  I will be making this again as a dip for veggies!

  34. Made this today for a party and it was amazing! I used it in a 7 layer Greek dip instead of using cream cheese and it was a great substitution. Great recipe! 

    • Thanks Brandy, I’m so glad it was a hit! And I’m super intrigued by that 7-layer Greek dip, that sounds KILLER!

  35. Delicious!! Opa is right!! I used to work at a Greek Diner and this was my go to favorite with a pita. Delish!! Thanks for sharing your recipe. :)

  36. Another thing to make with all the cucumbers I’m growing!

    • Woohoo! We bet it will be incredible with fresh cucumbers from the garden, how cool! : )

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

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

  39. 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!

    • Beverly – Usually the seeds are the issue for people so you could try removing them and see if that helps. You could also try adding a little cucumber juice to flavor probably. Of course you could omit the cucumber entirely and just make a tasty Garlic-Lemon-Dill Yogurt sauce but it will not remotely be Tzatziki since cucumber IS the main flavor.

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

  41. 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.

  42. 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!

  43. 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.

  44. Very nice thank you for that I love taziki

  45. 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!

  46. 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!

  47. 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.

    • 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!

  48. 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.

  49. I have made this recipe for awhile now . It is excellent , the only thing I do is I use English cucumber I peel it and seed it . Also I drain it in paper towels for about 15 minutes and squeeze out the water of the cucumber . My son has Crohn’s disease , and he loves this recipe . He also puts all of the ingredients in his vitamix , so there is no lumps of any ingredients .
    Excellent Recipe !! Thank you

  50. Ran it through the food processor for EXTRA easy preparation. I also used 1tsp dried dill. It was sooooooo good!