Tzatziki is a creamy cucumber and dill sauce that most of us associate with its long association with the delectable gyro sandwich. If you have not tried tzatziki or it has been too long since you have sampled a gyro, you may be surprised to find out just how quickly and easily you can pull together your own homemade “Greek gyro sauce” that works as well with vegetables, pita chips, and grilled meat as it does on the Mediterranean’s finest sandwich.
My personal recipe for tzatziki sauce is a little heavier on the garlic than is traditional, but you’ll find around here that there is no such thing as too much garlic. If, however, you don’t want to kill vampires with your breath, feel free to cut back to two cloves. Play with your food and make this sauce your own, and soon you’ll be wowing the neighbors with your very own homemade tzatziki recipe to go with everything from chicken gyros (chicken gyro recipe) to potato chips.
Tzatziki Sauce Ingredients
- 16 oz Greek Yogurt
- 1/2 English Cucumber, Peeled and Shredded
- 4 Cloves Garlic, Minced Fine
- 2 1/2 Tbsp Lemon Juice
- 1 Tbsp Extra Virgin Olive Oil
- 2 Tbsp Chopped Fresh Dill
- 1/2 Tsp Sea Salt
- 1/4 Tsp White Pepper
How to Make Tzatziki Sauce
Peel your English cucumber, then split it lengthwise. Using a small spoon, scrape out the inner seeds. Our tzatziki recipe uses English cucumbers rather than the more common hothouse variety because English cucumbers are larger and have fewer seeds. Fewer seeds in the cucumber mean less work for us, and less work is the mantra of lazy gourmets everywhere.
Grate your cucumber using the large holes on a box grater.
Place the cucumber in a tea towel or a piece of cheesecloth and squeeze to drain as much liquid as possible. Our tzatziki recipe depends on this step in order to give us a creamy sauce that will stand up to a few days in the refrigerator (if it lasts that long). Skip this step and over the next few hours, enough moisture will seep out of the cucumbers to turn our beautiful sauce into a watery mess. In other words, don’t skip this step.
Add the lemon juice, olive oil, salt, pepper, and garlic to a bowl and whisk to combine.
Add your two cups of Greek yogurt to the bowl and whisk to combine. If you can’t find Greek-style yogurt, you can make something similar by lining a colander with two layers of cheesecloth and letting two and a half cups of regular yogurt drain for about three hours.
If you skip this step, the final product will by thin and runny, rather than the thick, luscious homemade tzatziki we’re aiming for.
Finally, stir the drained cucumber and dill into the final sauce. Taste for final seasoning, but remember that the flavors will meld and deepen after a few hours covered in the refrigerator.
Tzatziki Sauce Calories
What did you think of my tzatziki recipe? Did you make any interesting modifications? Let me know in the comments below.