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Cucumber Onion Salad

This Cucumber Onion Salad is a simple salad mixing together crisp cucumbers, thinly sliced red onion and tossed in a light tangy dressing with fresh dill. It makes a great side dish to bring to a get together, bbq or picnic. It pairs nicely with grilled meats and seafood!

Cucumber Onion Salad in a white bowl

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CUCUMBER ONION SALAD

As we approach the warmer months of the year light salads are always on rotation at my house.

I especially love this Cucumber Onion Salad because it is an easy side dish that is quick to put together and pairs nicely with so many different meals.

There is nothing like a refreshing cucumber salad in the summer.

As a family we enjoy cucumber. It adds a nice crunch and texture to any salad.

If you enjoy cucumber try this Creamy Cucumber Salad, Thai Cucumber Salad, Asian Cucumber Noodle Salad, Kale Cucumber Tabbouleh, or Tomato Cucumber Feta Quinoa Salad.

This salad mixes together sliced english cucumber, thinly sliced red onion with a tangy vinegar dressing and fresh dill.

It is a delicious side dish to pair with these Pork Chops, Lebanese Meat Pies, Easy Pan Fried Fish, Black Sea Bass or Greek Marinated Chicken.

In the warmer months we love to make this refreshing salad. It is one I will be serving at my next barbecue or party this summer!

Cucumber Onion Salad with spoons

WHY YOU WILL LIKE CUCUMBER ONION SALAD

EASY TO MAKE: Hands on preparation time is minimal with this recipe, only 20 minutes. It involves sweating the cucumbers to get rid of excess water and then toss everything together.

VERSATILE DISH: This light salad mixing fresh cucumbers and onions can be served with a variety of different main dishes. Try it with seafood, chicken, beef, or as a side with grilled meats at your backyard BBQ.

FEED A CROWD: This is a great way to feed a crowd on a budget. This salad uses simple ingredients and it can easily be doubled or tripled for a crowd.

Cucumber Onion Salad ingredients

RECIPE INGREDIENTS 

  • CUCUMBER: I like to use 2 large English cucumbers or 8 Persian cucumbers rather then regular cucumbers as they have thinner skins which you don’t have to peel. You can use any variety you like though.
  • SALT: I use sea salt both to salt the cucumber slices and also to season the salad dressing. The salt that you use to sweat the cucumbers before making the salad helps pull the excess water from the cucumbers.
  • ONION: I add a thin slices of red onion to the salad which has a lovely mild flavor. You can also use a sweet onion, vidalia onion or a white onion.
  • WHITE VINEGAR: I add white wine vinegar to the vinaigrette dressing. You can sub in red wine vinegar if you prefer.
  • HONEY: I like to use honey to add sweetness and balance the sour vinegar and salt in the vinaigrette. You could also use maple syrup, agave or regular sugar.
  • DILL: For the best flavor I like to use finely chopped fresh dill in the vinaigrette. You can sub in dried dill if that is what you have on hand.
  • BLACK PEPPER: Along with the sea salt, I like to add freshly ground black pepper to the dressing.
Cucumber Onion Salad in a white bowl

HOW TO MAKE THIS CUCUMBER AND ONION SALAD

PREPARING THE CUCUMBER SLICES:

PREPARING THE CUCUMBER AND ONION: Wash the cucumbers and slice off the ends. Using a sharp knife or mandoline slicer thinly slice the cucumbers into 1/4-inch thick rounds. 

SALT THE CUCUMBER: Place the sliced cucumbers in a colander and sprinkle with a pinch of salt. Let sit for 10-15 minutes to release some moisture. Transfer the drained cucumbers to a large bowl. 

Cucumber Onion Salad cucumbers in a strainer

Rinse with water to remove excess salt.

ADD THE ONION: Thinly slice the red onion and add it to the bowl with the cucumbers.

Cucumber Onion Salad in a white bowl

MAKE THE VINAIGRETTE: In a small bowl, whisk together the white wine vinegar, honey, chopped dill, 1/4 teaspoon salt, and black pepper until well combined.

Cucumber Onion Salad dressing in bowl

ASSEMBLE THE SALAD:

DRESS THE SALAD: Pour the salad dressing over the cucumber and onion slices and gently toss to coat everything evenly.

Cucumber Onion Salad with dressing on salad

CHILL & SERVE: Cover the salad bowl with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes to allow the flavors to meld. This can be made up to 2 hours in advance.

TASTE & ADJUST: Before serving, give the salad a taste and adjust seasoning if needed by adding a bit more salt or pepper.

Serve chilled, garnished with extra dill sprigs if desired.

Cucumber Onion Salad with spoons

RECIPE TIPS

SALTING THE CUCUMBERS: Don’t skip this step in the process, salting removes excess water from the cucumbers meaning you can store the salad for longer, without it becoming too watery.

CHECK THE SEASONING: Always check the salad for seasoning once it has been dressed and adjust with salt, pepper and vinegar if required.

STORAGE: Leftovers can be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days. The cucumbers may release more water over time so you may have to drain the salad before serving again.

WHY SALT CUCUMBER?

Cucumbers contain a lot of water, so salting the cucumber first will draw out the excess water, leaving you with a firm, dry slices of cucumber.

This works great in salads and stops your cucumber salad from becoming watery.

SHOULD I PEEL CUCUMBER FOR SALAD?

I use English cucumbers to make cucumber salad as they have a lovely thin skin which means you don’t have to peel them first. Persian cucumbers also work nicely.

If you use a regular cucumber I suggest peeling some or all of it.

Cucumber Onion Salad with napkin and spoons

MODIFICATIONS FOR THIS CUCUMBER ONION SALAD RECIPE

VINEGAR: Substitute white wine vinegar with apple cider vinegar, rice vinegar or red wine vinegar.

DILL: Dried dill can be used in place of fresh dill if needed, use about 2 teaspoons dried.

FRESH HERBS: Feel free to swap in other fresh herbs like fresh parsley, chives or mint.

VEGETABLES: You can add other fresh veggies you have on hand. Try bell pepper, tomatoes, radish or celery.

CHEESE: Add crumbled feta cheese or goat cheese for a Greek flair. You could also add in cubed mozzarella or sharp cheddar cheese or shredded cheese.

CITRUS: Substitute lime juice for some of the vinegar for a bright citrus note.

CHILI: For a touch of chili heat, add 1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes or thinly sliced jalapeño.

YOGURT: To make a creamy cucumber salad add a tablespoon or two of thick Greek yogurt, or sour cream to the salad dressing.

Cucumber Onion Salad in bowl

WHAT TO SERVE WITH THIS EASY CUCUMBER ONION SALAD

This easy side salad is the perfect side dish over the summer months, serve it gatherings with friends and family, at your backyard BBQ, or bring along to your next potluck dinner.

I live to serve cucumber and onion salad the year round, it works really well paired with seafood mains like this Air Fryer CodMediterranean Tuna Patties or this Baked Cod with Lemon Sauce

Over the summer months it is the perfect side to your summer barbecues, great with grilled meat like this Grilled Flank Steak with Dry RubGrilled Beef Kofta KebabsMediterranean Beef KabobsMoroccan Chicken Thighs, or these Grilled Chicken Thighs with Greek Marinade

OTHER EASY SALAD RECIPES YOU MIGHT LIKE:

MEDITERRANEAN BEAN SALAD

EASY LEBANESE SALAD

LEMON ARUGULA SALAD

MEDITERRANEAN FARRO SALAD

GREEK CHICKPEA SALAD

ZUCCHINI QUINOA CHICKPEA SALAD

Cucumber Onion Salad in bowl

Cucumber Onion Salad

Yield: 6
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Total Time: 20 minutes

This Cucumber Onion Salad is a simple salad mixing together crisp cucumbers, thinly sliced red onion and tossed in a light tangy dressing with fresh dill. It makes a great side dish to bring to a get together, bbq or picnic. It pairs nicely with grilled meats and seafood!

Ingredients

  • 2 large English cucumbers, thinly sliced into rounds
  • 2 teaspoons sea salt, divided
  • 1/2 medium red onion, thinly sliced
  • 1/4 cup white wine vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons honey
  • 2 tablespoons fresh dill, finely chopped
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

Instructions

    PREPARE THE CUCUMBERS:

    1. Prepare the cucumbers and onion: wash the cucumbers and slice off the ends. Using a sharp knife or mandolin slicer, thinly slice the cucumbers into 1/4-inch thick rounds.
    2. Place the sliced cucumbers in a colander and sprinkle with a pinch of salt. Let sit for 10-15 minutes to release some moisture. Transfer the drained cucumbers to a large bowl.
    3. Rinse with water to remove excess salt.
    4. Thinly slice the red onion and add it to the bowl with the cucumbers.

    FOR THE DRESSING:

    In a small bowl, whisk together the white wine vinegar, honey, chopped dill, 1/4 teaspoon salt, and black pepper until well combined.

    ASSEMBLE THE SALAD:

    1. Pour the salad dressing over the cucumber and onion slices and gently toss to coat everything evenly.
    2. Chill and serve: Cover the salad bowl with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes to allow the flavors to meld. This can be made up to 2 hours in advance
    3. Taste and adjust seasoning as needed.
    4. Serve chilled, garnished with extra dill sprigs if desired.

Notes

STORAGE: Leftovers can be stored covered in the refrigerator for up to 3 days. The cucumbers may release more water over time.

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