Tangy with the bright flavor of yogurt coupled with the briny notes of feta cheese, this Greek Yogurt Dip makes an easy appetizer that you can throw together in under ten minutes. Plenty of fresh herbs and a good dose of lemon and olive oil bring big flavor to a simple recipe.
What is it?
This Greek Yogurt Dip combines both Greek-style strained yogurt with crumbled feta cheese and fresh herbs, olive oil and lemon juice. The combination is tart, salty, with an herbaceous edge. And since this recipe is made with yogurt, it's naturally rich in beneficial bacteria that help to support gut health and immune system function (1, 2).
What's in it?
- Greek-style strained yogurt is rich in protein and has a thick texture. While you can purchase it at the grocery store, I recommend making homemade yogurt and then straining it for a few hours to achieve the characteristic thickness you'll need in this recipe. You'll also avoid any additives or thickeners found in some commercial brands.
- Feta cheese has a tart, briny flavor which gives a pleasant salty edge to the dip. Traditionally, the cheese is made with ewe's milk, giving the cheese tremendous flavor. Look for an imported, sheep's milk cheese where possible.
- Lemon juice and zest lend a little zip of acidity to the dip, amplifying the tartness of the yogurt and feta.
- Extra virgin olive oil is rich in monounsaturated fats as well as various antioxidants, and it helps to soften the feta cheese so that you can incorporate it more easily into the yogurt.
- Green herbs include scallions, parsley, chives, and dil. The herbs give the dip a bright flavor.
How to serve it
The dip is perfect for carting to a summer picnic or setting on the table before dinner. Serve it with crackers or sliced vegetables such as cucumbers, carrots, kohlrabi, or radishes. You can also thin the dip with additional lemon juice or yogurt, and drizzle it over roasted vegetables.
Bob's Red Mill recently released a new line of oat crackers. They're gluten-free, have a gorgeous crisp crunch. We paired this Greek Yogurt Dip with their rosemary variety - its herbal flavor balances beautifully with the green herbs in the dip.
Tips for a delicious dip
As with most dips, this version is straightforward to make. You'll mix all the ingredients together, spoon the dip into a bowl and serve; however, there's a few tips to keep in mind.
- Use full-fat yogurt, as it has a richer flavor and creamier texture.
- Chop the herbs very finely. If you chop them too coarsely, it will impact the texture of the dip.
- Use a food processor to make a paste from the feta before incorporating the cheese into the yogurt, otherwise the texture of the dip will be clumpy.
- Fold the feta and herbs into the yogurt by hand. If you use a blender or food processor, it may cause the yogurt to thin and lose its body, resulting in a texture that resembles salad dressing rather than dip.
Greek Yogurt Dip Recipe
For the Dip
- 8 ounces feta cheese (crumbled)
- 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- ¾ cup yogurt (strained or Greek-style)
- 1 medium lemon
- 1 teaspoon finely ground real salt
- 3 medium green onions (sliced thin)
- 2 cloves garlic (minced)
- 3 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
- 2 tablespoons chopped fresh dill
- 2 tablespoons chopped fresh chives
- ¼ teaspoon ground black pepper
- Bob's Red Mill Oat Crackers
- Sliced Cucumbers
- Sliced Radishes
- Carrot Sticks
- Combine the feta cheese and olive oil into a food processor, and process until it forms a smooth paste and begins to clump together.
- Spoon the yogurt into a medium mixing bowl. Grate the lemon zest over the yogurt, and then cut the lemon crosswise and squeeze the juice into the bowl. Spoon in the feta paste, salt, green onions, garlic, parsley, dill, chives and black pepper. Fold them together until incorporated into the yogurt, and serve.
Add sun-dried tomatoes. Blend up to ¼ cup oil-packed sun-dried tomatoes with the feta cheese until they form a paste, and then incorporate that into the yogurt dip.
Try different herbs. This recipe is flexible, and you can adjust it to your liking using different herbs. Mint and dill work well together, as do basil and oregano. Minced shallot is nice in combination with flat-leaf parsley and tarragon.
Add roasted red peppers. Fold roasted red pepper purée into the dip. Keep in mind that roasted red peppers tend to have a high water content and may thin the yogurt, so add less yogurt.
Stir in turmeric powder and add chopped fresh cilantro and mint in place of the other herbs. Garnish with nigella seeds.
You can keep the Greek Yogurt Dip up to 1 week in the fridge.
Keep it in the fridge for up to 1 week, or store in a cooler packed with ice for up to 4 hours.
Owing to the presence of fresh herbs, this yogurt dip doesn't freeze well.
No. Dairy is the primary component of this dip. You can substitute goat's or sheep's milk yogurt for the full-fat Greek yogurt or swap a goat's milk or cow's milk feta for the sheep's milk cheese if you prefer, but dairy remains the foundation of the dip.
Yes. You can substitute ⅓ the amount of dried herbs in place of fresh, so you would use 1 tablespoon dried parsley, and 2 teaspoons each of the dill and chives. Allow the dip to sit for 20 minutes before serving to allow the herbs to reconstitute a bit.
Try these yogurt recipes next
- Kok, Car Reen, and Robert Hutkins. “Yogurt and other fermented foods as sources of health-promoting bacteria.” Nutrition reviews vol. 76,Suppl 1 (2018): 4-15.
- Adolfsson, Oskar et al. “Yogurt and gut function.” The American journal of clinical nutrition vol. 80,2 (2004): 245-56.