This Jerusalem Salad (Israeli Salad) is a simple chopped salad packed with fresh herbs, Persian cucumbers, and juicy cherry tomatoes. Enjoy as a side dish or folded in a warm pita with Chicken Kofta Kebabs and Lemon Dill Yogurt Sauce for a delicious lunch or dinner option.
📋 About the Recipe
- Ready in 20 minutes. This salat katzutz (chopped salad) is quick enough for weeknights and simple enough for novice chefs.
- Easy to feed a crowd. Jerusalem salad is great to pair with practically any meal and is easy to make last minute. Try my Kosher For Passover Cheesecake for dessert too!
- Customizable. Similar to my Cranberry Pecan Chicken Salad and Apple, Avocado, and Arugula Salad, you can adjust the ingredient measurements in this Mediterranean Jerusalem salad to make it your own and use up what's already sitting in your refrigerator.
A few notes about the ingredients:
- Tomatoes - Sweet cherry tomatoes are my favorite to use because they are easy to cut and are typically sweeter than other varieties. If necessary, you can use any tomato on hand chopped into small chunks.
- Red onion - Sliced raw red onion adds the best tangy, sharp bite. If you like the flavor of red onion but want it to be less strong, soak the sliced red onion for 20 to 30 minutes before tossing it in the salad.
- Cucumber - Persian cucumbers are the best to use in Jewish cucumber salad because they are less bitter and have thinner skin. If you are unable to find Persian cucumbers, they can be substituted with another variety like English cucumbers.
- Mint and parsley - Fresh mint and parsley are both cool and sweet tasting and perfectly tie together the many flavors in this Israeli salad.
- Chop the vegetables and herbs. Chop the tomatoes, cucumbers, red onion, red bell pepper, parsley, and mint and add to a medium sized mixing bowl.
- Toss in lemon juice, salt, pepper, and oil. Allow the parsley cucumber salad to sit for 5 minutes so the flavors meld together.
- Serve the Jerusalem salad while fresh to prevent it from getting soggy.
⁉️ Substitutions and Alterations
- Use any tomatoes you like. Cherry tomatoes are my recommendation, but you can also use heirloom or another juicy variety.
- Use any bell pepper you have on hand. Green bell peppers will have a more bitter flavor and orange and yellow peppers will be more sweet.
- Adjust the amounts of each ingredient to your liking. Add more fresh herbs, more cherry tomatoes, etc. Make this salad your own.
- Dried herbs are not recommended. Their flavor profile is quite different and won't work well in this fresh salad.
- Add chickpeas to make a heartier, protein-packed Jerusalem salad.
❄️ How to Store
To store: Serve Jerusalem salad immediately. This Israeli side dish is best when eaten fresh.
To prep ahead: If you would like to prep this kosher salad for hosting a lunch or a Jewish holiday, prep the vegetables ahead of time and store separately from the dressing. Toss the Israeli salad together right before serving for best results.
The way you want to chop the vegetables is really up to you. You can cut the vegetables into thin slices and larger chopped pieces, or you can dice everything into a smaller, uniform chop. Depending on how you plan to serve the salad, you can change the way you chop the vegetables.
Cucumbers are originally from India, but there are varieties native to Israel as well. You can use any cucumber available to you, but I recommend using mini Persian cucumbers in Jerusalem salad for best results.
The vegetables in Israeli salad will be the most crisp and fresh when served immediately after preparing. Leftovers will last in the refrigerator for 2 to 3 days but keep in mind that once the salad is dressed, the vegetables will become softer.
💭 One More Tip
Slice the red onion really thin! Large pieces of raw onion are overpowering and can make it difficult to enjoy the rest of the flavors in the Jerusalem salad. If you have trouble slicing onions thinly with a chef's knife, try using a mandolin or a food processor with a slicing blade.
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Jerusalem Salad (Israeli Salad)
- 25 cherry tomatoes, cut in half about 1 cup
- 6 mini cucumbers, sliced about 3 cups
- 1 red bell pepper, seeded and diced about 1 cup
- ¼ red onion, thinly sliced about ½ cup
- 2 tablespoons fresh parsley, chopped
- 8 big leaves of fresh mint, sliced thinly into ribbons
- 2 ½ tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice about 1 lemon
- ½ teaspoon kosher salt
- ¼ teaspoon black pepper
- ¼ cup olive oil
- Chop all the vegetables and herbs. Add to a medium bowl, along with the lemon juice, salt, pepper, and olive oil. Gently stir to combine.
- Allow to sit for at least 5 minutes before serving so the flavors can blend together. However, this salad is best when served fresh.
- Cherry tomatoes are preferred for a sweeter flavor. Mini cucumbers are preferred because they're typically less bitter and have thinner skin.
- Use any color bell pepper you prefer.
- Make sure to slice the onion thinly so you don't bite into a large piece of onion.
- Always use fresh lemon juice for best flavor.
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