13 In Sauce

Cucumber and Yogurt Dill Sauce (Tzatziki)

We love cooking in the Mediterranean style, especially Italian and Greek. If you’ve eaten much Greek food, you’ve likely encountered an addicting yogurt and cucumber sauce called tzatziki. This delicious sauce is used for dipping pita or veggies as an appetizer, or on gyros.

While most recipes for tzatziki are pretty standard and don’t vary too much, for some reason we’ve never quite found one that has the right taste. We’ve now finally found one we like, thanks to 101 Cookbooks.

We took the original recipe and modified it to use not only mint from the out-of-control patch behind our garage, but my new declared favorite and theme for the week, dill!  We liked this recipe because of its flavor, and also since it was easier than previous ones we’ve tried (and involves no waiting time — though waiting a bit after mixing definitely helps to meld the flavors).

We make no claims that this is an authentic Greek version – we just liked the taste! It’s one take on a standard concept, but feel free to let us know other tips and tricks (we’re sure Greek grandmothers know best!).

You can use this sauce in a variety of ways – as a dip, on sandwiches or salads, or it would even go well with fish. We used it to make this Greek grilled portabello sandwich, and it was delicious!

Our Herb Series
Grilled Greek Portabello Sandwich with Tzatziki and Feta
Chickpea and Vegetable Salad with Yogurt Dill Dressing
Garlic Herb Focaccia Bread
Lemon Mint Slush
Scrambled Eggs with Fresh Herbs
Strawberries with Balsamic, Greek Yogurt and Mint (and Video)
How to Start Growing Herbs (Video)
How to Chiffonade (Video)

Cucumber and Yogurt Dill Sauce (Tzatziki)
What You Need
  • 1 7-ounce container of Greek yogurt
  • ½ cucumber
  • 1 clove garlic
  • ¼ cup fresh mint
  • ¼ cup fresh dill
  • Splash of lemon juice or white wine vinegar (optional)
  • Several pinches kosher salt
  • Fresh ground pepper
What To Do
  1. Cut the cucumber in half lengthwise, use a large spoon to scoop out the seeds. Grate the cucumber using the largest size on a box grater until you have ½ cup. Squeeze to remove excess liquid.
  2. Mince the clove of garlic. Chop the fresh mint and fresh dill.
  3. Combine ½ cup shredded cucumber, garlic, mint, and dill with the Greek yogurt. Add several pinches kosher salt and fresh ground pepper. Taste, and adjust seasonings as desired. Add a splash of white wine vinegar or squeeze of fresh lemon juice, if desired.
Inspired by 101 Cookbooks


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  • Reply
    June 12, 2012 at 10:36 pm

    Yep, finding just the right amount of each ingredient is hard to do, but these are all the ingredients in my tzatziki sauce. I definitely think using fresh dill and good fresh mint is the key!

  • Reply
    Courtney Jones
    June 12, 2012 at 10:57 pm

    Yum! The addition of mint and dill is very nice. LOVE your herb series!

  • Reply
    Katrina @ Warm Vanilla Sugar
    June 13, 2012 at 5:37 am

    I still haven’t made tzatziki and I NEED to! It’s soooo good!

  • Reply
    June 13, 2012 at 9:55 am

    This is fabulous! Ooom Pah to tzatziki!

  • Reply
    June 13, 2012 at 11:24 am

    I love using this to marinate and grill chicken. I’ll have to try out this recipe and see how it compares. I’m sure it will be great!

  • Reply
    June 13, 2012 at 12:26 pm

    I love this recipe. I just tried a cucumber dip recipe from Food.com and I will definitely try this one. I’ve been into dips lately. Thanks so much and I love your site, it’s so cute.

  • Reply
    Gourmet Goddess
    June 14, 2012 at 1:37 pm

    I recently discovered your site and love it .

    When I read that you were making tzatziki – I held my breathe . You see I am Greek and I get mad when people mess up simple recipes .

    However you nailed it , for once I am reading that you “grate” the cucumber , many recipes say that you dice – this is not the correct way. I actually grate mine on the box grater , I then give it a gently squeeze, then place it in a paper towel in a sieve and allow to strain overnight in the fridge . It has the correct amount of moisture and dryness , does this make sense ? I would also recommend using the Fage 0% strained yoghurt – it is the perfect consistency .

    My only omission from your recipe would be dill – I prefer it with just mint . Oh , and by the way , whatever cucumber juice collects in the container is a perfect “shot” of refreshment .

    Happy Grilling and Cooking !!!


    • Reply
      June 20, 2012 at 5:44 pm

      Thank you! Glad to hear a Greek approves :) Yes, the original recipe I worked from only had mint, but I couldn’t resist adding the dill :)

  • Reply
    June 15, 2012 at 9:00 am

    Hi there!

    Errr…well, actually, the vinegar is mandatory and there should definitely be olive oil in it too. Dill is used quite often but mint isn’t. Pepper is not used at all.

    A typical recipe contains strained full fat yogurt, grated and drained cucumber, olive oil, vinegar, finely chopped garlic, salt and chopped dill.

    I have never, ever had tzatziki with lemon juice and I should know as I was born and still live in Greece.

    Your use of mint is intriguing though and I shall definitely try it!

    • Reply
      June 20, 2012 at 5:48 pm

      Thanks for the feedback! Looks like you and Gourmet Goddess will have to duke it out on the mint versus dill :) I saw lemon in some recipes so I added it as optional, but I didn’t include it in our recipe — glad to know that was more traditional without!

    • Reply
      July 22, 2013 at 4:08 pm

      How much olive oil would you suggest adding to tho recipe?

  • Reply
    Kristina Fox
    October 7, 2012 at 7:19 pm

    I just found your website (and this recipe) today. I made it for tilapia gyros and the combination tasted fantastic! I’m a beginning blogger and found your blog to be inspirational. Keep up the good work! (I’m definitely going to purchase the new cookbook!)

  • Reply
    February 24, 2014 at 6:41 am

    I first tasted it in Athens! And my husband and I love it.
    Thank you for the recipe. I will try it tomorrow – without
    lemon and mint.

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