Authentic Greek Tzatziki

I learned how to make this Tzatziki recipe while I was visiting Athens – everyone who tries it tells me that it’s the authentic recipe they were looking for!

Authentic Greek Tzatziki Dip - learned in Athens!

Let me start by apologizing for not posting this sooner. I know I’ve promised you all sorts of Greek recipes, so starting today I am going to deliver!  First things first…. Tzatziki.

This is a classic Greek appetizer (or “meze”) made from thick strained yogurt, cucumber, garlic, olive oil, and fresh dill. It’s super simple to make and a hit at any get-together!

Authentic Greek Tzatziki Dip - learned in Athens!

When we were in Athens, the husband and I decided to take a cooking class on preparing classic Greek dishes. One of the first things we made in that (six-hour + exhausting + amazing) class was this Tzatziki!

I made a few adjustments to suit my taste (mainly because I don’t like a TON of dill in my Tzatziki), but feel free to experiment with your own amounts of each ingredient!

First, check out this rare and precious photo:

Anetta from The Wanderlust Kitchen

It’s rare and precious because:

  1. I’m actually in the photo (I’m usually behind the camera), and;
  2. I’m wearing nail polish.

Don’t you just love my go-to vacation look? I call it haggard-chic.

Authentic Greek Tzatziki

Right, so back to this recipe. Here are a few tips and tricks I picked up in class:

  • Make sure your grated cucumber is well-drained. If you have time, you can drain it in cheesecloth or a fine mesh sieve overnight.
  • If you’re in a rush, you can use your hands to squeeze the liquid out of the cucumber.
  • The longer the garlic rests in the yogurt, the less sharp bite it will have and the better it will taste.
  • For  best results, combine all of the ingredients except for the cucumber and let it rest overnight in the fridge while your cucumber is draining.
  • Add the dill at the last minute so it doesn’t overwhelm the rest of the flavors.

Authentic Greek Tzatziki

This is so tangy and delicious; perfect spread over some warm pita bread!

Authentic Greek Tzatziki

While you’re at it, why not plan a fun little dinner party with a menu of Greek Mezes? I’d start with this Potato Skordalia, Classic Greek Salad, and Greek Feta and Red Pepper Dip.

If you have leftovers, make these adorable little Tzatziki Bites with Greek Salsa!

I’d love for you to keep in touch! You can enter your email address right here to get new recipes sent to you once per week. Join me on Facebook and Pinterest!!

Here’s Your Recipe!

Authentic Greek Tzatziki
Serves: 6
  • ½ a large cucumber, unpeeled
  • 1½ cups plain full-fat Greek yogurt
  • 2 large garlic cloves, finely minced
  • 2 Tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 Tablespoon white vinegar
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 1 Tablespoon minced fresh dill
  1. Grate the cucumber and drain through a fine mesh sieve overnight in the fridge.
  2. Combine the yogurt, garlic, oil, vinegar, and salt in a large bowl. Cover and refrigerate overnight.
  3. Transfer the grated cucumber and fresh dill to the yogurt mixture and stir to combine. Serve chilled with pita bread for dipping.

She learned how to make it while visiting Athens - this is the best way to make REAL authentic Greek tzatziki! I love that you can make it ahead of time and it just keeps getting tastier. Saving this one!


  1. Tammi says

    I totally agree with you on the amount of dill! Question, did you use a seedless cucumber or a regular one that you deseeded (is that even a word?) yourself? Also, what is on that hot pan your husband is steadying for you? Looks like something I would grab immediately!

  2. says

    Yummy! Pinned! I could eat this every day! LOL, you are so cute – nail polish and you in the photo. I know, I don’t think I have a single photo of me on the blog in any of the recipes. I’m a slave behind the camera.;)

  3. Dalila says

    This looks amazing! I can’t wait to try it!

    Random question – What class did you take while in Athens? My fiance and I will be going there for our honeymoon and we would love to do something like that while we’re there!

    • says

      Oh, bummer!! That’s so strange. Maybe you can look on a brand’s website to see which stores carry their products? For Tzatziki, my favorite is Fage yogurt :)

      • says

        Hi, Ella! Yes, normal Greek yogurt should be “full fat.” I just wanted to make sure no one tried making it with non-fat yogurt!

  4. jenny says

    Do you have to strain the yogurt? Several other recipes require to strain greek yogurt so I wasnt too sure.


    • says

      Hi, Jenny! Greek Yogurt is already strained, so you don’t need to strain it again. If you are using regular yogurt, you would need to strain it until it reaches the thickness of Greek yogurt :)

  5. Azure Skye says

    Used your recipe the other day for my lamb burger patties. Oh what a hit! EVERYONE had multiple helpings, and it tasted even better the next day.

    Thank you! This is the best recipe by far!

    • says

      Hi, Jennifer! Pinterest only shows the ingredient list for food pins, so for any recipe you’d need to click through to the website to read the instructions. Let me know how you like the Tzatziki!

  6. Mr. T says

    Hi Jennifer.. as an authentic Greek, it was refreshing to see an actually accurate method for making tzatziki… This is how I was taught to make it as well. Beats all the other “just throw everything in a blender” recipes all over the place.

    The only minor thing I would mention is that I salt the cucumber while it’s draining to help pull the water out.. otherwise perfect.

    Good job

  7. Chris Metcalfe says

    Hey there !!! All sounds great. A question though . Vinegar or lemon juice ????? Also a tip..Cut your cuke in halfe length wise , scoop out the seeds then salt well and place up side down on paper towels.. This should cut the drying time considerably ..
    Doing up a crown of lamb to night … Oh Yea..

  8. Anna Evan says

    Great recipe, it tasted wonderful. Better than the one we get at the restraunt. Once again, I got a little too excited with the garlic tho. ;(

    If you use a deseeded English cucumber and press/ squeeze it until all the liquid comes out, then you don’t have to wait overnight. Salting the cucumber a tiny bit helps to draw out the liquid faster too. Plus English cucumbers just taste better imo.

  9. Miss D says

    Hi Anetta,
    Love your tzatziki recipe!!
    Was wondering if you have a recipe you prefer for making pastitsio? I used to work at a Greek owned restaurant and they would make it only for special occasions, but would never give up the recipe!

  10. Corey says

    I used to make tzatziki for a restaurant I worked at. I loved the tzatziki there and I was also our official taster because I ate so much of it and knew how to correct any issues it had. Unfortunately, I was very good at making it by the gallon but could never get it right in smaller batches at home. I tried your recipe (with lemon instead of vinegar) and it tasted exactly like what I used to make at work. Thank you so much for this recipe! It’s the best tzatziki I’ve had in years.

  11. says

    LOVED your tzatziki Anette! LOVED IT!
    At last, a proper tzatziki, just the way we make this in Greece. The only difference is that we mostly use red wine vinegar here, instead of white, but the taste is pretty much the same. And we NEVER use lemon, like we’ve seen in Americanized versions of tzatziki.
    EXCELLENT work, 11/10!
    Panos and Mirella, from Athens, Greece.

  12. Aly says

    This is by far the BEST tzatziki EVER!!!!!!

    I tried it on grilled chicken the other night and it was out of this world.

    Thank you, You rock!!!!!

  13. Sarah says

    Hello – thanks for this. I did a lot of research before a big Greek dinner party, and this is the recipe I chose to use! I used english cucumbers which I seeded and salted, but I omitted the vinegar as my yogurt was already quite sour and I thought it would be too much. I got pressed yogurt from a greek shop that is almost as thick as cream cheese!

    Everyone loved it, I quote “you’ve ruined me for all other Tzatziki!”

  14. Ella says

    Hey Anetta! How long does the tzatziki store in an airtight container for? This looks so yummy! I can’t wait to try it!

  15. Kasandra says

    This is the only tzatziki recipe I make (and I’ve made it so many times). It’s so delicious and easy to prepare! Thank you for this! :)

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