This post may contain affiliate links. Please read my disclosure policy.

Refresh your summer dishes with this tangy, cool, and light yet creamy Tzatziki Sauce recipe made with freshly grated cucumber, tart Greek yogurt, and gorgeous fresh herbs.

Even better, this flavor-forward cucumber yogurt sauce recipe is quick and easy to prepare. Just chop up some delicious produce, combine the ingredients, and you’ll have a tangy, garlicky sauce in just minutes.

tzatziki sauce in a bowl with a mint sprig garnish with a linen napkin and wood spoon on a table.

Herbs, fruits, and veggies are at their peak as summer comes to a close. Take advantage of this time by creating this versatile and tasty Tzatziki sauce.

Perhaps the best thing about Tzatziki sauce is that it is so versatile and easy to prepare. In less than 10 minutes, you have a cool and refreshing sauce with all the summer flavor you could ever ask for.

Tzatziki is the perfect sauce to pair with so many different veggies, sandwiches, and other unique dishes, like my favorite Grilled Greek Chicken Kabobs.

Additionally, this tzatziki sauce recipe blends beautifully with my flavorful Chicken Shawarma Wrap or these delicious Greek Turkey Burgers — YUM!

What is Tzatziki Sauce?

Tzatziki is a traditional sauce most associated with Greece. However, variations of this salted cucumber sauce are served all over the Middle East and the Mediterranean.

A classic tzatziki sauce is made with creamy and light strained yogurt from sheep or goat’s milk with summery herbs like mint and fresh dill.

In the United States, it’s challenging to locate a Greek yogurt made from milk other than a cow’s. So, this recipe won’t be entirely traditional but still makes for the best homemade version you can find!

ingredients for Tzatziki Sauce on a cuttiing board.

Key ingredients & substitutions for Tzatziki Sauce

  • Greek yogurt — Plain Greek yogurt is the creamy and tangy base for my Tzatziki recipe. For the fullest flavor and texture, avoid choosing the low-fat alternative — full fat is best.
  • Cucumber — A beautifully ripe, medium English cucumber is a must for any tzatziki sauce. Ensure the cucumber you pick out has no soft spots or discoloration.
  • Mint — Fresh mint leaves lend a cooling taste to the overall flavor of the sauce. When in a pinch, you can try carefully adding a drop of peppermint oil or basil leaves. However, no alternative will attain quite the same flavor of minced mint leaves.
  • Garlic — Add in some subtle spice with minced garlic cloves. If you can’t get your hands on fresh garlic, you can substitute it with garlic flakes or garlic powder for a similar effect.
  • Lemon — Choose a ripe and juicy lemon to squeeze for fresh lemon juice. Bottled lemon juice is a suitable alternative; however, the fruit is always preferred.
  • Olive Oil — Any variation of olive oil will do the trick. But if you want the best flavor, I recommend using extra-virgin olive oil.
  • Salt — Finally, you’ll need just a dash of kosher salt. You may use table salt if you prefer.

How to make Tzatziki Dip

Serve Tzatziki sauce in all kinds of unique ways — as a light dip for raw or roasted veggies or on top of a freshly grilled burger.

a halved cucumber with the seeds scooped out and a spoon on a cutting board.

STEP 1 | Prep the ingredients

Start by slicing the cucumber in half and use a spoon to scoop out any seeds. Then, grate the unpeeled cucumber with a box grater and squeeze out the moisture.

You’ll also want to mince the garlic cloves and fresh mint leaves. And for the last of your prep, squeeze the lemon for the correct amount of lemon juice.

tip

  • To remove excess moisture from the grated cucumber, wrap it in a cheesecloth or thick paper towel and squeeze. You can also place the cucumber in a fine mesh colander and use the back of a spoon to press out the moisture.

a bowl of greek yogurt with shredded cucumber and chopped mint on top with a lemon and salt bowl to the side on a table.

STEP 2 | Mix it all together

To a small mixing bowl, add the Greek yogurt, minced garlic, lemon juice, olive oil, and salt. Stir the ingredients until you achieve a smooth, even texture.

Then, fold in the grated cucumber and freshly minced mint leaves.

tip

  • If you don’t have any tools to squeeze your fresh lemon juice, here are some tips to make your job easier and get the most from your lemon. First, microwave the lemon for just 15 to 20 seconds. Then, roll the lemon on the countertop, applying gentle pressure. These two methods will help loosen the membranes and soften the lemon, making it easier to squeeze and get the most juice!

stirring together the ingredients for Tzatziki sauce in a glass bowl.

STEP 3 | Chill

Tzatziki sauce is best enjoyed chilled. So, transfer the mixture into an air-tight container and allow it to sit in the refrigerator until you are ready to serve it up!

If you’d like, you can drizzle with a bit more olive oil to top off the sauce when it’s time to dive into the creamy goodness.

tzatziki sauce in a bowl with a mint sprig garnish with a linen napkin and wood spoon on a table.

Frequently asked questions

Is tzatziki sauce spicy?

The classic flavors of traditional tzatziki are more tangy, cool, and garlicky—not spicy. However, you can kick up the heat by adding a bit of your favorite hot sauce, chili powder, or extra black pepper.

Is tzatziki sauce gluten-free?

The simple answer to this question is yes; tzatziki sauce is naturally gluten-free! Although, if you have a severe allergy to gluten, you’ll want to double-check the Greek yogurt brand you buy to ensure it isn’t cross-contaminated with any products containing gluten. 

Can you store this tzatziki sauce recipe for later?

If you have leftovers or want to prepare this tzatziki sauce ahead of time, you can store it in the refrigerator. Place the sauce in an air-tight, glass container and keep it refrigerated for up to 4 days.

dipping a pita triangle into a bowl of tzatziki sauce.

Serving suggestions

  • Add it to a platter with fresh carrot sticks, celery, pita bread or chips, bagel chips, crunchy peppers, and more!
  • Drizzle the tzatziki sauce on chicken kabobs, falafel, gyros, burgers, baked potatoes, salad, or flatbread.
  • Brighten up any dish with fish, chicken, or lamb, like my Rosemary Garlic Broiled Lamb Chops.
  • You can even dip your French fries in this tangy and creamy tzatziki sauce.

Behind the recipe: Tzatziki Sauce

When seeing a tzatziki sauce recipe, most people think of classic Greek cuisine. However, tzatziki is also served all over Turkey, Cyprus, and other Mediterranean and Middle East countries.

From town to town, you may notice different variations and take on this traditional and versatile cucumber and yogurt sauce.

Particularly in Greece, refreshing Tzatziki sauce is a staple at just about every restaurant. In fact, it’s served for breakfast, lunch, and dinner!

Please share!

Your shares are how this site grows and I appreciate each one. Do you know someone who would enjoy this recipe? I’d love it if you would share it on Facebook or on your favorite Pinterest board!

a bowl of cucumber sauce garnished with fresh mint spring.

Tzatziki Sauce

Tzatziki is the perfect sauce to pair with so many different veggies, sandwiches, and other unique dishes, like my favorite Grilled Greek Chicken Kebabs.
3 from 2 votes
Prep Time 20 mins
Cook Time 10 mins
Marinate 4 hrs
Total Time 4 hrs 30 mins
Course Condiments & Sauces
Cuisine Mediterranean
Servings 8 servings
Calories 30 kcal

Equipment

Ingredients
  

  • 1/2 medium cucumber seeded and grated
  • 3/4 cup plain Greek yogurt 6-oz. container
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 medium garlic clove minced
  • 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice
  • 1 tablespoon fresh mint minced

Instructions
 

  • Slice the cucumber in half and use a spoon to scoop out the seeds. Grate the unpeeled cucumber with a box grater, and squeeze out the moisture.
  • To a small bowl, add the yogurt, garlic, lemon juice, olive oil and salt, stirring until smooth.
  • Fold in the grated cucumber and mint. If desired, drizzle with a bit more olive oil when ready to serve.

Notes

  • To remove excess moisture from the grated cucumber, wrap it in a cheesecloth or thick paper towel and squeeze. You can also place the cucumber in a fine mesh colander and use the back of a spoon to press out the moisture.
  • If you don’t have any tools to squeeze your fresh lemon juice, here are some tips to make your job easier and get the most from your lemon. First, microwave the lemon for just 15 to 20 seconds. Then, roll the lemon on the countertop, applying gentle pressure. These two methods will help loosen the membranes and soften the lemon, making it easier to squeeze and get the most juice!

Nutrition

Serving: 1gCalories: 30kcalCarbohydrates: 1gProtein: 2gFat: 2gSaturated Fat: 0.3gPolyunsaturated Fat: 0.2gMonounsaturated Fat: 1gTrans Fat: 0.001gCholesterol: 1mgSodium: 153mgPotassium: 50mgFiber: 0.1gSugar: 1gVitamin A: 36IUVitamin C: 1mgCalcium: 25mgIron: 0.1mg
Keyword chicken kabobs, cucumber sauce, Greek, lemon, yogurt
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was.
sheila thigpen in her kitchen

About Sheila Thigpen

Recipe Developer, Food Photographer, Food Writer

Sheila Thigpen is the publisher of Life, Love, and Good Food — a Southern food blog — and the author of Easy Chicken Cookbook and The 5-Ingredient Fresh and Easy Cookbook. After 20+ years in the publishing industry, she retired in 2018 to focus on her own creative endeavors full time. She and her husband live near the beautiful Smoky Mountains and have a precious little granddaughter who has stolen their hearts. As an influencer, Sheila has collaborated with brands like Creamette, Kroger, HERSHEY’S, Hamilton Beach, Garafalo Pasta, OXO, Smithfield, Valley Fig Growers, and more.

One Comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

Recipe Rating




This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.