Tzatziki for Souvlaki

Tzatziki is one of the most popular appetizer from the Greek cuisine! Welcome in every occasion, with all dishes, refreshing, cooling (and thus great for summer), and so yummy! But one particular role of tzatziki is to accompany souvlaki.

Grilled, juicy, lean meat – pork or lamb preferably (but you won’t regret other combinations either) – with tzatziki is just a holiday for taste buds. Greeks used to pay much attention on their tzatziki but modern life style doesn’t leave them much time to make the “old recipe” every single time they are in a mood for a bowl of tzatziki. Still, whenever you have a chance to try that old one, made of home strained yogurt – don’t miss a chance. In addition to being perfect itself, it’s more than mesmerizing if eaten with souvlaki!

Strained yogurt definitely makes tzatziki what it is. Mind that Greek yogurt is a little bit different than yogurts in some other countries – it has particular density and texture. It slides through your mouth when you take a spoonful of it. Now you can imagine how it feels when eaten with meat! The point is that if, for some reason, you don’t like yogurt (no matter which one), you can try with sour cream as well.

Here, we will make our tzatziki for souvlaki with yogurt, and with the strained yogurt, to encourage you to try it at home.


Tzatziki for Souvlaki Recipe

  • Plain yogurt or strained yogurt if you can find it
  • 2 -3 cloves of garlic crushed
  • Cucumber
  • Olive oil
  • Salt (to taste)
  • Fresh lemon juice

If you are using the strain yogurt, you will have to make it a day before -or at least a few hours before – you plan to eat souvlaki. You need a strainer, covered by a sturdy paper (or cheese cloth if you can find it). Put the strainer in a bowl, and scope the yogurt from the tub into the strainer and let it in the fridge for 8 or 10 hours. Obviously, the easier way is to buy already strained yogurt from the market, but if you cannot find it, this is how you will make it. The best option is to prepare it before going to bed.

The following day, discard the water from the strainer and bowl, and place the yogurt in another bowl, where you will make the tzatziki. Now, shred the cucumber with a grater and squeeze the extra water out from the cucumbers. Add to the yogurt along with garlic. Salt to taste, add olive oil and finally, freshly squeezed lemon juice or vinegar. Mix well but don’t overdo it – and make sure that it’s dense enough. Tzatziki for souvlaki needs to be creamy enough! Grill your meat, cut some slices of tomato and onion, take some pita bread and your souvlaki is ready!

One Response to Tzatziki for Souvlaki

  1. Ale October 14, 2012 at 15:18 #

    I tripled this tzatziki recipe for teen son’s birthday deck party. Perfectly seasoned chicken, easy & fool-proof. for the Tzatziki sauce.
    I seeded the cucumber with a melon baller, but a teaspoon works too. Peel cucumber, cut in half lengthwise, scoop out seeds in a couple long strokes.

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