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The Best Turkish Salad Recipes – Our Favourites

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When you’re eating out in local Turkish restaurants – or if you’re lucky enough to be invited to eat in Turkish home – more often than not, the table will include Turkish salad recipes of some description.

A portrait image of a Turkish mixed salad. Onion, parsley, tomato and a wedge of lemon are visible.
A Turkish table almost always has a salad

And you’re going to be in for a treat!

Whether it’s a Turkish breakfast spread, a simple bowl of Turkish soup, a lunch of pide or lahmacun – or some meaty delights at the kebab restaurants, a healthy salad will always appear as part of your table setting.

In the world of Turkish cuisine, Turkish salads are omnipresent; lighting up the table with an exhibition of vibrant colours.

Liver shish kebabs with lavaş bread and salad plates in the background.
A good kebab salon will give you salad plates – and sometimes, turşu – with your kebab

So much so that when we’re watching international TV cookery programmes and there’s a feast of food that looks more than good enough to eat on the table, I’m scanning the scene before us.

Where’s the salad? It’s not complete if the salad doesn’t feature.

So, it’s only right that we have a list of of the famous – and some not so famous favourites – Turkish salad recipes.

These are our personal favourites which are regulars on our home menu.

From a simple side dish to a more substantial main course, we’re sure there are salads out there that just about anyone can get along with, including those of you who are looking for vegetarian and vegan dishes.

Yes, some of the salad ingredients make for great summer salad recipes.

But don’t be fooled into thinking these dishes are just for the hotter summer months.

Turkish salads are enjoyed year round, whatever the local weather may be.

And, after living here for so long, a good Turkish salad on the table is a staple for us, too.

We love to eat seasonally so some of our salads tend to change depending on the time of year.

A huge pile of salad leaves & herbs.
We love the abundance of salad leaves and fresh herbs on some stalls

And it might be that we make a famous traditional Turkish salad or we allow ourselves to be influenced by what we’ve seen more recently in local Fethiye restaurants and get a little creative.

Chefs are experimenting all the time with different ingredients and there are some really great dishes out there at the moment.

Well, let’s face it, it’s not difficult to be creative and have a salad on the table most of the time when the local markets have stalls piled high with crisp fresh herbs and fresh vegetables and fruits.

We know we’re lucky to have all those main ingredients so easily accessible.

But the Turkish salads below are still relatively easy to make at home, wherever you’re based.

As with any of our lists, this won’t be set in stone.

There’s always something new to discover and make.

So we have no doubt we’ll be learning more new Turkish salad recipes in the future.

When it comes to Turkish salad recipes, it’s difficult to know where to draw the line.

But, we’ve done exactly that. Mostly…

There are oodles of delicious meze plates that are dips. And small side dishes that are sometimes described as salads.

If there’s something you can’t see on our list below, you might find it in our full collection of Turkish recipes.

Much as we love it, the famous favourite carrot and garlic yoghurt dip (havuç tarator) isn’t in the list, for example.

For us, that’s more of a dip than a salad.

So, that’s our line of thinking with our list.

And all that’s left now is to say: let’s get the chopping knives out and create a flavour-packed world of colour with some some tasty Turkish salads…

We just have to begin proceedings with the famous Turkish shepherd's salad, aka choban salad (çoban salatası).

Not just one of our favourites but a favourite for many!

1
A bowl of finely chopped salad taken from above. Peppers, tomatoes, onion and cucumber are visible.
Shepherd’s Salad Recipe (Turkish – Çoban Salatası)
This super tasty and healthy salad is also known as choban salad – from its Turkish name, çoban salatası.
Check out this recipe

A perfect match with lamb dishes.

We love the colours in our next salad; Gavurdağı salatası.

Red onion, fresh tomatoes and the vibrant green of the chopped fresh parsley contrast wonderfully.

Be generous with the pomegranate molasses (nar ekşisi) in this one!

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A glass oval bowl of finally chopped salad. Red onion, tomato, fresh green herbs and tomato is visible. The photo is taken from above.
Gavurdağı Salad – A Tomato & Walnut Salad
Gavurdağı Salatası is a healthy tomato & walnut salad that goes perfectly with grilled meat dishes. If you love strong flavours, Gavurdağı Salad is the one for you.
Check out this recipe

If you love a hot and spicy addition to your meals, this ezme salad makes a great side dish.

Again, this has to be right up there amongst the most loved Turkish salad recipes.

Not the quickest dish to make – this is a finely chopped salad – so make a batch to keep in an airtight container in the fridge so you can enjoy it over a few days.

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Turkish Spicy Antep Ezmesi Recipe
Antep Ezme Recipe – Hot & Spicy Turkish Tomato Salad
This Turkish ezme recipe uses light, healthy ingredients and the end result is a delicious spicy tomato salad.
Check out this recipe

Definitely a favourite for us and best friends with köfte: piyaz has main ingredients of white beans and hard-boiled eggs.

Our recipe is a regional version from Antalya. An optional extra is to top with black olives.

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White bean salad with cherry tomato, sliced onion and sliced, har boiled eggs
Antalya Usulü Piyaz Recipe
This white bean salad recipe makes a perfect accompaniment to köfte but is also a tasty addition to your meze table.
Check out this recipe

This next group of Turkish salads is perfect for the hot summer months either as a side or as a more substantial main meal.

Our main salad ingredients of potatoes, chickpeas, lentils, pasta and bulgur wheat fill us up.

Chilli / hot red pepper flakes can be used to add a little heat to these, if you like. We like!

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Turkish potato salad with slices of spring onions, red peppers and chopped parsley leaves
Turkish Potato Salad Recipe (Patates Salatası)
A classic recipe for potato salad that’s perfect for your Turkish meze table.
Check out this recipe
6
Easy Green Lentil Salad
Turkish Green Lentil Salad Recipe
A light, healthy & refreshing salad that is tasty year round – but perfect in summer.
Check out this recipe
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A circular bowl photographed from above. The bowl contains bulgur wheat, wedges of cherry tomatoes and sliced onions.
Kısır – Turkish Bulgur Wheat Salad Recipe
A light bulgur wheat salad perfect for summer and packed with zingy flavour
Check out this recipe
8
A chickpea salad bowl viewed from above. Red onion slices, lumps of white cheese and tomato are in the salad.
Chickpea Salad – Nohut Salatası
This healthy & simple chickpea salad is refreshing. But, at the same time, filling. It is perfect for hot summer months. Chickpea salad can be eaten alone or as a snack.
Check out this recipe
9
A section of a salad of broad beans, orzo and red, charred, chopped chillies.
Broad Bean Salad Recipe With Orzo
This healthy broad bean salad bursts with the colours and flavours of springtime. Enjoy as a main meal, an accompaniment or as a meze.
Check out this recipe
10
A bowl of orzo pasta salad taken from above. Red peppers, sweetcorn and chopped dill pickle are visible.
Turkish Orzo Salad Recipe – Arpa Şehriye Salatası
This summer orzo salad is tasty, healthy and cooling on a hot day. Serve it as a meze, a side dish or as a main meal.
Check out this recipe

And then there's our go to Turkish salad for when the heat has really sapped away all energy and appetite – time for a seasonal fruit salad.

White cheese (feta cheese) and blue cheese used in the two recipes in this article.

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A salad of melon, chunks of blue cheese, scattered with cashew nuts and torn mint leaves
Galia Melon Salad With Cheese & Cashews
This galia melon salad is light and refreshing for the hot summer months. It’s also packed with nutritional content and the addition of nuts and cheese makes it a more substantial meal.
Check out this recipe

We're diving into a forest of green with these next Turkish salads.

Fresh lemon juice and garlic add lots of extra flavour whilst those essential pomegranate molasses in the salad dressing take things to a whole new level.

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Turkish Purslane And Tomato Salad
Turkish Purslane & Tomato Salad
This purslane & tomato salad makes a perfect side dish for summer meals. Add some cheese and walnuts to make it a meal.
Check out this recipe
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Broccoli florets in a brown clay pot with a garlic dressing over them. The photo is taken from above.
Turkish Broccoli Salad Recipe (Brokoli Salatası)
This Turkish broccoli salad recipe is simple & healthy but, most of all, it tastes fantastic! Serve as a side or as part of your meze table.
Check out this recipe
14
Cooked spinach stems topped with chopped garlic dressing
Spinach Stem Salad
This is a basic meze dish that is both healthy and a celebration of the spinach stems that you might normally throw away.
Check out this recipe
15
A circular blue bowl with mung beans, avocado slices, broccoli chunks and parsley leaves.
Healthy Seasonal Mung Bean Salad Recipe
This healthy and delicious mung bean salad recipe gives us a big bowl of seasonal green. We have used fresh, springtime ingredients to compliment our cooked dried mung beans.
The beauty of this green mung bean salad is you can change around the other salad ingredients according to the season. We've added some suggestions for alternative ingredients in the FAQ section of the article.
Check out this recipe

And, last but not least, we know we said we were staying away from anything that is more of a dip than a salad…

But we do love aubergine recipes and the clue is in the Turkish name; Patlıcan Salatası. This is the very tasty aubergine / eggplant salad.

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Close up of aubergine salad on top of a slice of toast
Roasted Aubergine Salad Recipe
This healthy roasted aubergine salad recipe is a regular in the Turkish meze fridge in restaurants. A great addition to your table at home in the summer months.
Check out this recipe

As we said, we’ll be adding more to this list of Turkish salads as and when we prepare new ones.

But, for now, whether you’re holding a dinner party for friends or making a quick weeknight meal, add one of these delicious salads into the mix.

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