Tzatziki

If you live in Utah or have lived there (or even if you’ve visited), I’m sure you’re familiar with places like Crown Burger (which is hands-down the most popular), Burgers Supreme, and Apollo Burger. They’re part steak fries and flame-broiled burgers and part gyros and baklava, but no matter what you get, it’s awesome.
 
When I was pregnant with my daughter, my OB/GYN’s office was just down the street from what was, in my pregnant (at the time) opinion, the best Apollo Burger (the one on State Street in Orem, a few blocks north of Center Street, if anyone’s interested…) I would always go to my appointments hungry (you weigh less that way) and then swing by Apollo Burger for a kid’s meal or a gyro afterwards. Not such a big deal when you’re just going to monthly appointments, but when you start going every week (or more), going to those doctor’s appointment hungry isn’t gonna help that scale much…
 
 
My favorite part of the gyro is the tzatziki. If you’re not familiar with tzatziki, it’s a creamy, cucumber-y, savory sauce that goes on top of a gyro (basically, a pita filled with Greek-seasoned lamb or chicken). But guess what? You can also dip vegetables, pita wedges, crackers, or flatbread in it. I had some of this on hand a little while back and made a roasted vegetable pizza and dipped the pizza in it and it was awesome. You could even use it as a salad dressing–super versatile and healthy.
 
Speaking of yogurt…there’s a lot of Greek yogurt out there and it feels like the scene is always changing, but when it comes to plain Greek yogurt, there’s a lot of great stuff out there–Chobani, Stonyfield, Oikos–but Fage is consistently my favorite. So. There’s that for what it’s worth.
 
This recipe is super easy–like, you’re 5 minutes away from eating tzatziki and pita chips for breakfast. Not that I would know from any firsthand experience. You’re going to need plain Greek yogurt, 3 green onions, a clove of garlic, some dill weed (dry is fine–dill is one of those herbs that tastes just as good dry as it does fresh and you can use the same amount of fresh or dry), about 1/2 of a medium cucumber, and some kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper.
 
 
Tzatziki-1
“How do I seed a cucumber?” you ask. Glad you asked! Slice the cucumber in half lengthwise and then insert the tip of a small spoon into the seed membranes of the cucumber. Apply enough pressure until you reach some resistance and then drag the seeds out with the spoon. Super easy.
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Chop the cucumber, green onions…
 
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and mince up that clove of garlic.
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Add the dill weed…
 
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and season to taste with kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper.
Quick and Easy Tzatziki from Our Best Bites
Try to stop eating it, I dare you.
Quick and Easy Tzatziki from Our Best Bites
 

 

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Quick and Easy Tzatziki


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Description

A quick, refreshing dip or sandwich spread!


Ingredients

  • 1 1/2 cups plain Greek yogurt (that’s 2 6-oz. containers)
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1/2 medium cucumber, peeled, seeded, and chopped
  • 3 green onions, firm ends finely chopped
  • 1 teaspoon dill weed
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste

Instructions

  1. Mix ingredients together and season to taste. Can be stored up to three days.

Notes

  • This is delicious with vegetables, on burgers, pitas, in 7 layer dip, or with chips, pita chips, or crackers.
  • Prep Time: 5

 
Sara Wells
Meet The Author

Sara Wells

Sara Wells co-founded Our Best Bites in 2008. She is the author of three Bestselling Cook Books, Best Bites: 150 Family Favorite RecipesSavoring the Seasons with Our Best Bites, and 400 Calories or Less from Our Best Bites. Sara’s work has been featured in many local and national news outlets and publications such as Parenting MagazineBetter Homes & GardensFine CookingThe Rachel Ray Show and the New York Times.

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Questions & Reviews

  1. I love this sauce… gonna have to make it to go with my lamb burger pitas.

    Oh and I am making that green enchilada sauce this weekend. I can hardly wait!

  2. I will definitely have to try this. I love tzatziki! We usually buy some because I'm lazy, but it really is better to make it yourself. Have you ever had lamb shawarma? It's Lebanese, but is also great with tzaziki and pita. It's meat marinated overnight in a spice mixture (think cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves and cardamom) and then we grill it in one of those grill pans. I'll make it next week with your tzaziki and post the recipe on my blog.

  3. I have loved Tzatziki but my love got deeper when I went to Greece last year! Being in Greece was amazing so I think back to that everytime I have some Tzatziki or a Gyro. so beautiful to hear Gyro pronouced correctly too!

  4. I have a recipe like this but I just pop everything in the blender for the sauce. I like it smooth and creamy.

  5. A great tip with the cucumber is to toss it with a little salt and let it sit in a strainer for 30 minutes. It draws out a ton of water so the Tzatziki stays nice and thick and doesn't water down after sitting!

  6. Grew up in Orem and Love Apollo, Crown and Burger Supreme. One of the many places we have to visit when we go home. Why doesn't Idaho have something like this?

    If you do not want to be fancy and need to use what is around I have made the sauce with 1 cucuber, good old plain yougurt, garlic salt, and dill. Taste good.

    Thanks for reminding me of something different. We always seem to get in ruts when it comes to eating.

  7. I don't usually post, I am so glad you are doing some Greek recipes.

    I just wanted to let everyone know that if you aren't able to find Greek yogurt you can strain regular yogurt as a substitute. Here's a link on how to do it
    http://greekfood.about.com/od/greekcookingtips/ht/strainyogurt.htm

    Sometimes this is what I have to do if I can't find any Greek yogurt in my Kansas grocery store (which is most of the time).

    Crystal

  8. My husband worked at a mediterranean restaurant in Las Vegas, Paymon's (gotta have their athens fries if you ever go and if you can make up a recipe for it I will love you forever). Miss it now in Georgia!

    But where were you last month when I was getting all my free Greek yogurts?

  9. I'll have to try this recipe. I like the tzatziki at Daphne's (a chain in Southern California and maybe elsewhere).

    Do you make yogurt cheese? If so, what do you use to strain the yogurt? Thanks!!

  10. One of my favorite foods when I was pregnant was a spicy gyro at a tiny little greek place waaay too close to my office. It had tzatziki, hot sauce, and feta on it that all mixed together into the most amazing sauce ever! And I'm so with you on going hungry to appointments to weigh less 🙂

  11. Kate I love greek food too! We go eat greek at least once a week. Saganaki and taramosalata and dolmada mmmm. A meze plate alone and I am in heaven. I just got the most fabulous Greek cookbook by Michael Psilakis, if you love Greek food you should check it out.

  12. I've been shopping around for a good homemade sauce recipe for the falafels that I make. The few other recipes I've tried haven't worked so great. This one looks awesome. So, maybe it's not suppose to go on a falafel, but I think it's close enough, and I really like tzatziki sauce.
    Thanks for sharing!

  13. I LOVE THIS! I love it for dipping bread in – and its the BEST for dipping grilled meats! We do kabobs every other week when its not frezzing outside.

    I have tried lots of different recipies and have found that SHREDDING the cucumber is best, and letting it sit in a strainer for an hour before mixing it in helps the sauce stay nice and thick.

    You can do the yogert too if you cant find one of the real thick greek brands…LOVE IT!

    Im so excited for the lamb!

  14. I love tzatziki and we eat it often! I am not sure what the difference is but we make souvlaki all the time here. A Gyro to me is the shaved lamb that comes off the spit and souvlaki is the marinated meat threaded onto a skewer and grilled and served in a pita with lettuce, tomato, tzatziki, red onions and feta. Yummy! Now I want some …. maybe for dinner …. thanks for the recipe!

  15. so glad you posted this! My husband loves the med salad at Noodles & Co. and when I searched for the recipe it included tzatziki for the dressing – and I had no idea what that was! Now I can make med salad and gyros! Thank you!!

  16. Why oh why must you talk about Burger Supreme when I'm pregnant??! What I wouldn't give for a pastrami burger and onion rings right now! Anyone want to FedEx one to me??

  17. If you are ever in downtown SLC area, The Other Place is a FANTASTIC greek restaurant. They are on 3rd east and 5th south. I don't get by there very often, but I still crave their gyros ( I prefer the chicken). It's soooo good!

  18. Oh thank you! I love gyros! I grew up outside of Chicago and there are a lot of great Gyros places there.. here not so much. Will have to try this.

  19. I love tzatziki and knew it was simple to make, but never had a recipe for it. Thanks for sharing.

  20. one of the best things about utah is the cheap, delicious greek food. my favorite is greek souvlaki. and now i'm hungry for it at 8:20 in the morning!

  21. Okay, I know it's Arby's take on the gyro, but it's a nice change from the regular roast beef. Just another option for you!

  22. no need to tell me twice. i finally conviced my hubby to try a gyro there the other day. lucky duck . . . works half a block away from apollo in draper.

  23. Katrina–it's on about 400 N. and State Street in Orem on the right side of the road if you're heading north. Also awesome? The cheeseburger kid's meal. Seriously, it's the perfect amount of food, so good, and it's CHEAP!

  24. ugh . . . this looks so yummy right now! do i really have to wait around for you to post the lamb recipe? where's apollo burger in provo . . . i need to know these things. {it's sad that i have no idea . . . } it's quarter to 8 in the morning and you already have me starving!