Flavors of Arabia: A Fresh and Tangy Salad Recipe

Arabic Salad

Flavors of Arabia: A Fresh and Tangy Salad Recipe
Region / culture: Arabia | Preparation time: 10 minutes | Cooking time: 0 minutes | Servings: 4


Arabic Salad
Arabic Salad

Arabic Salad, a vibrant and refreshing dish, is a staple in Middle Eastern cuisine. Known for its simple yet flavorful combination of fresh vegetables, herbs, and a zesty dressing, this salad is a perfect accompaniment to any meal or can be enjoyed on its own as a light and healthy option. The inclusion of zhoug, a spicy herb sauce, adds a unique twist, making this version stand out with its delightful kick.


The origins of Arabic Salad can be traced back to the Levantine and Mediterranean regions, where fresh produce plays a crucial role in daily cuisine. Over the years, variations of this salad have emerged across different Arabic countries, each adding its own local ingredients and flavors. The version with zhoug is a modern twist, incorporating influences from Yemeni cuisine to add depth and heat to the traditional refreshing salad.


How to prepare

  1. 1) In a mixing bowl, thoroughly combine the ingredients. Serve the mixture chilled.


  • For a twist, add diced avocado for creaminess or sprinkle with sumac for a tangy flavor. Incorporating cooked quinoa can transform this salad into a hearty main dish.

Cooking Tips & Tricks

For the best results, use the freshest vegetables you can find. Chopping the vegetables into fine pieces allows for a more integrated flavor experience. When dressing the salad, do so right before serving to maintain the crispness of the vegetables. If you're sensitive to spice, adjust the amount of zhoug to suit your taste.

Serving Suggestions

Arabic Salad can be served as a refreshing side dish to grilled meats, falafel, or kebabs. It also pairs beautifully with hummus and pita bread for a light and healthy meal.

Cooking Techniques

The key technique in preparing Arabic Salad is the fine chopping of the vegetables, which can be done with a sharp knife or a food processor for convenience. The dressing should be emulsified by whisking the olive oil and lemon juice together before tossing with the salad.

Ingredient Substitutions

If zhoug is not available, a combination of minced jalapeno, cilantro, garlic, and a pinch of cumin can be used as a substitute. Lime juice can replace lemon juice for a different citrus note.

Make Ahead Tips

The vegetables can be chopped and stored in the refrigerator a day ahead. However, it's best to dress the salad just before serving to maintain freshness.

Presentation Ideas

Serve the salad in a large, shallow bowl to showcase the vibrant colors. Garnish with additional fresh mint leaves and a drizzle of olive oil for an elegant touch.

Pairing Recommendations

This salad pairs wonderfully with Middle Eastern dishes such as lamb kebabs, chicken shawarma, or falafel. For a refreshing beverage, serve with mint lemonade or iced tea.

Storage and Reheating Instructions

Arabic Salad is best enjoyed fresh. However, leftovers can be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 2 days. It's not recommended to freeze this salad.

Nutrition Information

Calories per serving

A serving of Arabic Salad is low in calories, with approximately 120-150 calories, making it an ideal choice for those looking for a light and nutritious option.


This Arabic Salad is relatively low in carbohydrates, with the primary sources being the tomatoes, cucumbers, and onions. A serving contains approximately 10-15 grams of carbohydrates, making it an excellent choice for those monitoring their carb intake.


The olive oil in the recipe contributes healthy fats, with a serving of the salad containing about 7 grams of fat. These are primarily monounsaturated fats, known for their heart-healthy benefits.


While not high in protein, this salad provides a modest amount from the vegetables and herbs, totaling about 2-3 grams per serving. For a higher protein content, consider adding chickpeas or feta cheese.

Vitamins and minerals

Arabic Salad is an excellent source of vitamins A and C, thanks to the tomatoes, cucumbers, parsley, and mint. It also provides minerals such as potassium and iron, contributing to a well-rounded nutritional profile.


This recipe is free from common allergens such as nuts, dairy, and gluten (if you ensure the pita is gluten-free). However, always check the ingredients list of the zhoug to ensure it meets your dietary needs.


Overall, Arabic Salad is a nutritious, low-calorie dish rich in vitamins, minerals, and healthy fats. It's an excellent addition to any diet, providing a burst of flavor and nutrition with every bite.


Arabic Salad is a versatile, nutritious, and flavorful dish that brings the essence of Middle Eastern cuisine to your table. With its simple preparation and health benefits, it's an excellent choice for anyone looking to add a refreshing touch to their meals. Whether served as a side or a main, this salad is sure to delight with its vibrant flavors and textures.

How did I get this recipe?

The first time I saw this recipe, I was immediately drawn to it. It was a warm summer day, and I was visiting my friend Fatima's house for lunch. As soon as I walked into her kitchen, I was hit with the most incredible aroma. Fatima was busy chopping vegetables and tossing them together in a large bowl.

"What are you making?" I asked, intrigued by the vibrant colors of the ingredients.

"It's a traditional Arabic salad," Fatima replied with a smile. "It's a family recipe that has been passed down for generations."

I watched as Fatima expertly mixed together tomatoes, cucumbers, red onions, and fresh herbs. She then drizzled olive oil and lemon juice over the salad and tossed it all together. The final touch was a sprinkling of sumac, a spice I had never heard of before.

As we sat down to eat, I took my first bite of the salad and was blown away by the burst of flavors in my mouth. The tangy lemon juice, the earthy sumac, and the crisp vegetables all came together in perfect harmony. I knew right then and there that I had to learn how to make this salad myself.

Over the years, I have collected recipes from various places and people, but the Arabic salad has always held a special place in my heart. I could never quite replicate the exact flavor and texture of Fatima's salad, no matter how hard I tried. So, I decided to embark on a journey to discover the secrets of this cherished recipe.

I began by reaching out to Fatima's family members, hoping to learn more about the history of the salad and the techniques used to make it. I visited her grandmother, who greeted me with open arms and a twinkle in her eye.

"Ah, you want to learn the secret of the Arabic salad," she said with a knowing smile. "Come, sit with me and I will teach you."

For hours, I sat with Fatima's grandmother as she shared stories of her childhood in Lebanon and the role that food played in bringing her family together. She taught me about the importance of fresh, locally sourced ingredients and the art of balancing flavors in a dish.

As we cooked together, she showed me how to properly chop vegetables, how to season a salad just right, and how to present it in a way that would make it truly unforgettable. I felt like I was learning from a master chef, and I soaked up every bit of knowledge she shared with me.

After several days of cooking and learning, I finally felt confident enough to try making the Arabic salad on my own. I gathered all the ingredients and set to work in my own kitchen, channeling the memories of Fatima's grandmother and the love and care she put into every dish she made.

As I tossed the vegetables together and drizzled the olive oil and lemon juice over the salad, I could almost hear Fatima's grandmother's voice guiding me through each step. And when I took my first bite of the finished dish, I knew that I had finally mastered the recipe.

The flavors were just right, the textures perfectly balanced, and the memories of my time spent with Fatima's family flooded back to me. I felt a deep sense of pride and accomplishment as I sat down to enjoy the salad, knowing that I had truly captured the essence of this beloved recipe.

From that day on, the Arabic salad became a staple in my own kitchen. I would make it for family gatherings, dinner parties, and even just for myself on a quiet evening at home. And each time I served it, I would think back to the day when I first saw Fatima making the salad in her kitchen, and how it sparked a journey of discovery and connection that I will cherish forever.


| Arabian Recipes | Arabian Salads | Cucumber Recipes | Mint Recipes |

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