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This olive salad recipe is a tangy, textural explosion of olives, giardiniera, and pimentos: the secret weapon for any sandwich! It’s a symphony of briny, crunchy, and sweet bursts in every bite.

Olive Salad

Welcome to the condiment of your dreams: olive salad! Imagine: olives, pimentos, giardiniera, and capers, mixed with olive oil, vinegar, garlic and herbs. When we saw this idea as the key condiment on a muffuletta sandwich, we had to try it out. And it’s true: this recipe is the secret weapon for any sandwich! It’s a symphony of briny, crunchy, and sweet bursts in every bite. Use it on sandwiches, as a spread or dip as an appetizer, or even a pizza topping.

Ingredients for this olive salad recipe

This olive salad recipe is the key component in a muffaletta sandwich, an iconic New Orleans food invented at the Central Grocery. It layers Italian meats like ham, salami, capicola and mortadella with mozzarella and provolone on fresh baked muffaletta bread. The key to the sandwich is the olive salad, a briny condiment that adds a pop to each bite! Alex tasted this classic sandwich on a trip to New Orleans and has been talking about it ever since.

You can use this olive salad on a homemade muffaletta, but it’s the perfect condiment for any type of sandwich: it truly goes with anything! Here are the ingredients you’ll need for olive salad:

  • Castelvetrano olives (or other ripe green olives)
  • Kalamata or black olives
  • Pimento or roasted red peppers
  • Giardiniera
  • Capers
  • Garlic
  • Fresh oregano
  • Red wine vinegar
  • Olive oil
  • Salt and pepper
Castelvetrano Olives

A few ingredient notes

This olive salad is best with a mix of olives. We like the flavor of Castelvetrano olives, a green olive variety grown in Sicily with a signature rich, buttery flavor and crisp texture. They have a mild and fruity flavor.

This recipe is slightly expensive with all of the ingredients noted. If you prefer, you can omit the giardiniera and add enough olives and peppers to total another 1 cup. Or, you can simply scale down the other ingredients: use 1 garlic clove, 2 tablespoons capers, and 1 ½ tablespoons each red wine vinegar and olive oil.

Storage info

This olive salad recipe stores for up to 1 month refrigerated. The olive oil solidifies when cold, so allow it to stand for about 5 minutes before using.

Olive Salad recipe in jar

Ways to use olive salad

While the olive salad was invented for the muffaletta sandwich, it’s a versatile condiment that works for many other uses! The recipe is vegan, so it’s great for jazzing up vegan and vegetarian sandwiches. Or use it as an appetizer! Here are a few ideas for ways to use olive salad:

More olive recipes

Love olives and other briny condiments? Here are a few more recipes you’ll love:

This olive salad recipe is…

Vegetarian, vegan, plant-based, dairy-free and gluten-free.

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Olive Salad

Olive Salad


  • Author: Sonja Overhiser
  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Cook Time: 0 minutes
  • Total Time: 10 minutes
  • Yield: 3 cups 1x

Description

This olive salad recipe is a tangy, textural explosion of olives, giardiniera, and pimentos: the secret weapon for any sandwich! It’s a symphony of briny, crunchy, and sweet bursts in every bite.


Ingredients

Scale
  • 1 cup Castelvetrano olives (4.9 oz dry weight jar), pitted and chopped (or other ripe green olives)
  • ½ cup kalamata or black olives, pitted and chopped
  • ⅓ cup pimento or roasted red peppers (4 oz jar), chopped
  • 1 cup giardiniera (12 oz jar)*, chopped
  • 3 tablespoons capers
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 teaspoon minced fresh oregano
  • 2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 pinches kosher salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper

Instructions

  1. Stir together all ingredients. Serve immediately or for enhanced flavor refrigerate 3 days. Serve on sandwiches (like a Muffuletta or other), as a dip with crostini, or as a pizza topping.
  2. Stores refrigerated for 1 month (allow to come to room temperature for 5 minutes before serving). 

Notes

* If you prefer, you can omit the giardiniera and add enough olives and peppers to total another 1 cup. Or, you can simply scale down the other ingredients: use 1 garlic clove, 2 tablespoons capers, and 1 ½ tablespoons each red wine vinegar and olive oil. 

  • Category: Condiment
  • Method: No Cook
  • Cuisine: Condiment
  • Diet: Vegan

Keywords: Olive salad, olive salad recipe

About the authors

Sonja & Alex

Hi, we’re Alex and Sonja Overhiser, married cookbook authors, food bloggers, and recipe developers. We founded A Couple Cooks to share fresh, seasonal recipes for memorable kitchen moments! Our recipes are made by two real people and work every time.

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