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Garlic Yoghurt With Carrots – Sarımsaklı Yoğurtlu Havuç Salatası

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Turkish garlic yoghurt with carrots (sarımsaklı yoğurtlu havuç salatası or havuç tarator) is a meze dish that we usually only have the pleasure to eat in the home.

Garlic Yoghurt with Carrots
Our garlic yoghurt with grated carrots sprinkled with paprika and topped with walnut

You sometimes get to eat this tasty Turkish carrot salad on the Blue Bays boat trips around Fethiye.

But, for whatever reason, the Turkish restaurants we frequent in Fethiye never seem to have it available in their meze fridges.

This is despite it being so popular in the home kitchens of Turkish cuisine.

Garlic Yoghurt With Carrots – Sweet And Tasty

It’s a regular on our table at home because it’s a super tasty, great way to use up any surplus carrots lurking in the fridge.

If we’re shopping at Fethiye Market or Çalış Market, we always manage to buy far too much produce. So this delicious recipe comes in handy very often.

The sweetness of the grated carrot complements the flavour of the natural yoghurt, perfectly.

And, well, it just looks so appetising. The orange of the carrot mixing with the olive oil and creating a colourful garlic yoghurt dip.

Turkish Garlic Yoghurt With Carrots Meze Recipe
Yoğurtlu havuç – a perfect meze dish

You can never have too much yoghurt in a Turkish kitchen.

And we find garlic yoghurt with carrots an easy and interesting alternative to the multitude of other yoghurt-based Turkish meze recipes, such as cacık and haydari.

Sauté = Sweet

Perhaps because the carrots are not added to the yoghurt in their raw state – they’re sauteed first – once they’re added to the yoghurt, the new flavour is not dissimilar to home made mayonnaise.

Sautéing them brings out the natural sweetness of the carrots.

And it’s this sweetness that makes this Turkish carrot yoghurt dip stand out from other yoghurt-based meze plates.

Turkish Garlic Yoghurt Carrot Recipe
Saute your grated carrot in olive oil

How Do You Like Yours?

Carrots with garlic and yoghurt can be whatever texture you like. It’s all down to the amount of ingredients you use.

When you saute your carrots, it’s up to you how much olive oil to use. We use more than we used to in this recipe because our tastes have changed over the years.

We used to like a thick and creamy garlic yoghurt with carrots. But, these days, we prefer a looser consistency.

Take a look at other people’s yoğurtlu havuç and you might see a really runny consistency with lots of olive oil and few carrots.

Or you might see almost solid, creamy dips. Experiment with the consistency until you get the one to suit you.

Turkish Carrot Yoghurt Dip
Mix in your garlic and yoghurt when your carrots have cooled

When you saute your grated carrot for Turkish carrot yoghurt dip, you need to do it on a medium to low heat and stir them until the carrots sizzle lightly and start to soften.

Don’t let them go mushy. But you do want to take the crunch away.

For anyone like me who gets stomach upsets from raw carrot, sauteing them is your saviour.

Once the carrots have cooled, it’s just a case of mixing in the rest of your ingredients. And then transferring your garlic yoghurt with carrots meze into a serving dish.


We never used to add fresh dill to this carrot salad. But, as we said above, our taste buds have changed over the years.

We’re still careful with the dill though, otherwise it can be really overpowering. And then you lose the sweet taste of the carrots.

If you’re like us, add your dill a little at a time and keep doing a taste test.

If you’re leaving your garlic yoghurt with carrots in the fridge for a while before eating, bear in mind that the flavour of the dill will become stronger.


As with our other ingredients, it’s up to you how strong you like your garlicky yoghurt.

In Turkey, the garlic cloves tend to be big and meaty on locally grown bulbs.

Again, if you’re storing this carrot and garlic yoghurt dip in the fridge, the flavours will become stronger as time goes on.

Garnish & Serve

Garlic yoghurt with carrots also goes well with a sprinkling of paprika and topped with walnuts.

You can add it to your meze table along with lots of other tempting dishes or you can use it as a side or a filling.

We like to eat it with homemade köfte and we’ve also had it as a filling in a jacket potato; kumpir.

It works!

Oh, and if you know Turkish food, it doesn’t need us to tell you that a hot-from-the-oven homemade puffy bread is a perfect partner to this carrot and yoghurt dip!

Carrot & Yoghurt Dip – FAQs

How long does Turkish garlic yoghurt with carrots last in the fridge?

Yoghurt and lemon juice together preserve well. You can store your dip for around 5 days in an airtight container.

Can I use Greek yoghurt instead of Turkish yoghurt?

Yes. Both will do the same job in this salad dip. As long as it is thick and creamy.

Vegans can use vegan yoghurt.

Can I use fresh herbs other than dill?

If you don’t lime dill in your garliğic yoghurt with carrots recipe, you can leave the herbs out altogether or you can add some finely chopped parsley.

We also like to top our dip with walnuts, occasionally.

Turkish Garlic Yoghurt With Carrots – Our Recipe

Right, let’s get down to making this simple garlic yoghurt with carrots.

And, if you’ve never had the pleasure of tasting this before, we’re sure you’re gonna love it.

You will be making it again and again…

It’s a very quick and easy dip recipe. Perfect for special occasions or as a side dish to grilled meat for a mian course on busy weeknights.

And look at those lovely sunny colours once your yoghurt has taken on the carrot-infused olive oil.

Turkish Food - Yoğurtlu Havuç
A lovely bowl of (slightly spicy) yoğurtlu havuç
A shallow terracotta bowl with a yoghurt dip containing grated carrots. A spoon is laid on its side in the bowl.
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Turkish Carrot & Garlic Yoghurt Dip – Sarımsaklı Yoğurtlu Havuç Salatası

Garlic yoghurt with carrots is a favourite meze in our house. It's a quick & easy addition to your meze table.
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Course Meze
Cuisine Turkish
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Total Time 20 minutes
Servings 6
Calories 106kcal
Author Turkey’s For Life


  • 500 grams natural yoghurt
  • 4 medium carrots peeled & grated
  • 3 cloves garlic peeled & grated
  • ¼ bunch dill finely chopped
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • salt to taste


  • Gently heat your olive oil in a frying pan and then add your grated carrots.
  • Sauté on a medium heat until they begin to soften.
  • Add salt and stir.
  • Remove from the heat and allow to cool.
  • Once your grated carrot has cooled, add your garlic, yoghurt and dill. Mix everything together.
  • Do a taste test. Add more olive oil, salt or dill if you prefer.
  • Serve as part of your meze table or as a side to meat dishes.


  • As with all of our recipes, the calories per serving of garlic yoghurt with carrots is a general guide and will vary depending on the brand of yoghurt you use and how much olive oil you wish to add.
  • We use Turkish süzme (strained) yoghurt for this recipe. If you can’t get this where you are, Greek yoghurt is also good to use.


Serving: 1Calories: 106kcal
Tried this recipe?Please consider Leaving a Review!

If you want to get creative in the kitchen, we’ve got lots of Turkish recipes you can experiment with.

Afiyet Olsun!

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Wednesday 10th of October 2018

Now you mention it I realise that I only eat this on boat trips or at home too. I wonder why it isn't popular in restaurants?

Turkey's For Life

Thursday 11th of October 2018

Ha ha, same for you then, too. :D We asked a guy we know who owns a restaurant. He said garlic yoghurt and carrots is a basic meze. We said so are lots of other meze. He replied with, 'True.' :D


Sunday 21st of August 2016

We have a restaurant in Vaasa (Finland) that serves this type of carrot meze. I had to google for the recipe as it is delicious. I have been in Turkey twice and the food is just aaaaamazing!

Turkey's For Life

Friday 26th of August 2016

Great that you have a restaurant that serves this garlic yoghurt with carrots, Patricia. Yes, Turkish cuisine is definitely a favourite for us. Thanks lot or your comment :)


Wednesday 11th of November 2015

I thought I'd died and gone to heaven when we had this dish. I will definitely be trying to replicate it now that I'm home.

Turkey's For Life

Wednesday 11th of November 2015

Garlic yoghurt with carrots is a great meze dish, Leigh. We've refined this recipe over the years and will be updating it on the blog soon to make it even better. :)


Sunday 25th of October 2015

Mmm great recipe, tasted just like the one I tried in Turkey. was wondering what else you can put with it? Jacket potato sounds good, but what else??

Turkey's For Life

Monday 26th of October 2015

Hi Pip, Thanks a lot for your comment and glad you liked the recipe. Carrots in yoghurt is usually just eaten as part of a selection of meze dishes, especially when drinking rakı - it could be good if you've got friends round. Make a selection of meze dishes and have this as part of it. We often use yoğurtlu havuç and other meze dishes as sides to grilled meats, too. :)

Kaya Koyu Walker

Thursday 3rd of February 2011

I had this in Sivas a couple of years ago. It was 50/50 fried carrots and potato, like a Rosti, and had the garlic and yoghurt sauce with chilli flakes, mint and lemon.

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