This easy homemade tzatziki is made with plain Greek yogurt and garden-fresh cucumbers, and is a delicious dip or sauce.
I didn't plant cucumbers this year.
Because every year, without fail, my super sweet cucumber-growing family and friends send their extra veggies to my cucumber-loving husband. And that's exactly what happened this year.
What do we do with all the cucumbers?
The husband happily devours them raw. He quick-pickles them. And we make homemade tzatziki sauce.
This healthy homemade tzatziki is easy to make, and is delicious on all the things. Spread it on a gyro, use it as a sauce for a veggie burger, or (my favorite), eat it with fresh veggies.
What is Tzatziki Sauce?
Tzatziki is a Greek sauce made with plain Greek yogurt, cucumber, and garlic.
Should I Use Regular Cucumbers or English Cucumbers?
Either! In this recipe, I use regular garden cucumbers. Because that's what I have on hand all summer long.
If you prefer English cucumbers, they'll work perfectly here too.
Can I Use Regular Yogurt instead of Greek Yogurt?
You can-- but it will take a lot longer to strain.
Greek yogurt is regular yogurt that has been strained to remove the whey. That's why it's thicker, and less watery.
When you make homemade tzatziki, the cucumber will add more watery liquid to the sauce, which you'll strain off. If you start with regular yogurt, you'll need to strain your tzatziki for about a day instead of 2 hours.
Can I Use Homemade Greek Yogurt?
Of course you can! Learn How to Make Greek Yogurt.
Creamy Homemade Tzatziki
I prefer my tzatziki to be silky and creamy, so I blend everything up in a blender.
If you like a little more texture in your homemade tzatziki, you can grate or dice the cucumber and garlic, and stir everything together.
Do I Have to Strain my Homemade Tzatziki?
Yes-- I recommend straining the tzatziki for the creamiest sauce.
I especially recommend it if you put the ingredients in a blender. Blending the cucumber releases more water into the sauce than grated or strained cucumber.
If you don't want to strain the tzatziki, check the recipe card notes for tips.
- 1 cucumber (medium-size)
- 2 cups plain Greek yogurt
- 2 cloves garlic (peeled)
- ½ lemon, juiced
- ½ teaspoon sea salt (to taste)
- 1 teaspoon olive oil (optional)
- 2 sprigs fresh dill, roughly chopped
- Peel the cucumber, and scoop the seeds out with a spoon.Tip: The seeds and skin can add a bitter flavor to the sauce. Make sure not to skip this step!
- Add the cucumber, yogurt, garlic, lemon juice, and salt to a blender or food processor. Blend until creamy. (The sauce will be very runny at this point.)No Blender / Food Processor Alternative: Finely dice or grate the cucumber and garlic, and stir the ingredients together with a spoon.
- Strain the sauce for at least 2 hours by pouring it into an ultra fine mesh sieve or a mesh sieve lined with 2 layers of cheesecloth. Place the sauce in the fridge while it strains.
- Just before serving, drizzle the sauce with olive oil (optional), and garnish with fresh dill.
- Leftovers / Make Ahead: This sauce is best the first day, but can be refrigerated and used for 2-3 days.
- Use store-bought yogurt (it has added thickeners)
- Use grated or diced cucumber instead of blended. Wrap the cucumber in a towel, and wring out any excess water.
- You should still allow the sauce to rest for 2 hours in the fridge.
- Veggie Dip
- Chip Dip
- Add to a gyro (Greek classic)
- Add to a veggie burger