By Cassie Johnston
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This concoction is painfully simple. Which I personally think is the mark of a really good seasonal recipe. In the summer, onions and cucumbers are so fresh, sweet and delicious, you really want them to shine through. And this cucumber onion salad recipe does just that.
I’ve been eating this salad for as long as I can remember! It’s a classic in our family, and a great way to use up a bumper crop of summer cukes.
This is a no muss, no fuss recipe! It’s just a quick and easy summer side dish that’s a perfect last-minute addition to any of your summer cookout menus. Chances are, you already have everything you need to make it in your kitchen.
When it comes to the yogurt, honestly, any kind of plain yogurt will do the trick. I’ve done this with plain Greek yogurt (full fat, reduced fat, and nonfat). I’ve done it with regular yogurt. I’ve done it with soy yogurt. I’ve done it with coconut milk yogurt. I’ve done it with sour cream even. It’s *really* hard to mess this dish up!
I do recommend looking for Vidalia onions for this dish. They are much sweeter and milder than your standard yellow or white grocery store onions. I’ve done this dish with “regular” onions in the past, and it works, but the onions are definitely the predominant flavor. If regular onions are all you have kicking around, I’d recommend letting the salad rest in the fridge for an hour or two before serving—the vinegar in the dressing will help to mild out the tang a little.
When it comes to the cucumber slices, you may notice that they have a neato little pattern in the peel. To get that pattern, all you have to do is run along the peel of a cuke with a fork before slicing.
This not only makes for wicked pretty slices of cucumber, but the little ridges also help the yogurt dressing to adhere to the cucumber slices—meaning you get more of the tangy deliciousness in each bite.
Speaking of slicing, I highly recommend using a mandolin slicer for this salad. I’ve done it with a regular ole knife and cutting board before, and it’s a lot less tedious if you use the right tool for the job. I normally set my mandolin to medium slices for cucumbers and then thin slices for the onions. Enjoy!
5 from 3 reviews
A Simple Cucumber Onion Salad is best made in summer, when the vegetables are at their peak freshness and their flavors can really shine through.
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Can I come to your garden? I am SOOOOO JEALOUS. I grew cucumbers in a pot last year, but never made anything with them, because I love cucumber so much, and totally eat them plain. Like an apple.
Absolutely! Come visit. :) I eat cucumbers plain, too. SO. GOOD.
TOTALLY not a stick-to-the-menu person!! I am all over the place. :)
Grooves in the cucumber? I’ll have to try that! I have about 8,000 pickling cucumbers that I bought at the farmers market (and that’s what’s left after already making 2 huge jars of pickles!).
I don’t know if I told you this- but you look SO pretty in the “bio” photo on the sidebar!
Thanks, lady! :) What kind of pickles are you making?
This is one of my all-time favorites down to the little fork trick. I usually salt the cucumbers and let them drain in a colander for a while. So much water comes off, it keeps the yogurt/sour cream from getting watery. Not that it ever lasts that long.
Oooh! Awesome tip! Thanks. :)
I was always told that putting grooves in the cucumbers makes you burp less after eating them, especially with homegrown ones. I have no idea if that’s true. I’m satisfied with the pretty-ness factor! :)
Yum! My hubbys grandpa makes something similar and it’s delicious! I love the dill and the tanginess of the vinegar!
Nice. Another simple variation is to make the dressing out of a little mayo, or yogurt, or sour cream and a little fruit juice apricot, peach or pear work best.
This is probably one of the few summer dishes that I’ve been making for as long as I can remember. I grew up on an ewe farm in southern Michigan and our summer gardens were ginormous. While my mother taught my sister how to actually COOK, and can, and preserve, etc. I learned all the quick stuff. Mom said it was because when I decided I was hungry, I was hungry NOW! And since we weren’t allowed to eat between meals, by asking me to collect, clean, and cut stuff up from the garden, and put together the simpler dishes, I could *sneak* my snack from the slices! Tus I was the weird kid who loved raw veggies INCLUDING broccoli and “color flower”. =) I never thought about it as a recipe though as I’ve always made it from memory, almost from instinct, until a friend asked me for the recipe. Thank goodness people like you record this stuff! THANK YOU!
Like you I always made it with sour cream until a couple years ago when I switched for the same reason. I have never used, or thought of using vinegar though. My dish ends up w/ a lot of milky cucumber ‘juice’ in the bottom of the bowl so I would fear adding a liquid would make it runnier? I’ll have to try a little vinegar next time. Of course, I’ll have to try apple cider vinegar. ANY excuse I can find to use raw AC vinegar w/ the mother – I’ll take it!
When I only have a half hour or so before people will be eating it, I use onion powder vs. onions because for some folks the fresh cut, raw onions are too strong or can cause really bad heartburn. By cutting the onion slices in long, thin strips and letting it chill for, no less than, a couple hours, it allows the sour cream or yogurt to work on the onions and make them a little more palatable and the overall dish even more flavorful.
I love this recipe! I’ve been making it since you first published it and I love everything about it. A summer staple in our house.
My mom makes another version of this cucumber salad. We call it “Sour Cream and Cucumbers.” It makes a delightful summer salad, perfect for any BBQ.
to prevent your cucumbers from being bitter: cut the tip off one end and rub them together. It will draw a milky white substance or a gel like substance to the end. wipe it off and continue until it is gone. This is what causes your cucumbers to be bitter. Then peel, slice, whatever and enjoy
I had never heard that!
My recipe is with the sour cream salt and pepper. We have always sliced the cucumbers sprinkled them with salt and set aside for awhile to drain some water off, otherwise the dressing gets real watery. This way the dressing stays thicker and sticks to the cucumbers and onions better. I don’t use vinegar, but I will try with fresh dill. I love dill.
Awesome combination of wellness and good taste! This salad will surely complete vegan diet meal so I could go out my way feeling fit and fabulous. Lately, I’d been busy preparing vegan recipes that I could eat in a week. Looking online, from foodies blogs helped me out plus it kept my motivation to continue this intensive fitness goal of mine. Cucumber has always been my favorite because it could be included both in main dishes and desserts. This salad is also great in keeping my immune system strong.
Thanks for recipe salad is good for health with dinner lunch any time we take it.
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