You can never have too many salad recipes, and this Best Cucumber Salad with Pickled Onions is quick, delicious and the perfect side for meat or fish.
I am anxiously awaiting the warm weather and grilling season. With that comes outside eating and LOTS of salads. Potato, pasta, and green salads are great, but sometimes you want a change of pace. This simple Cucumber Salad fits the bill, and according to my husband the best cucumber salad he has ever eaten. Easy to make, crisp and tangy. Perfect for hot weather meals like backyard BBQ’s and picnics.
When I was a child, my mom, aunts and of course baba ALWAYS had gardens. So many great vegetables were at our fingertips. It was like having a farmers’ market in your own backyard. Somehow the green thumb did not get carried along with me. I am not a gardener at all. Not even close.
However, I do recall having to pick the vegetables at “just the right time”, especially when it came to cucumbers. You see, my mom was adamant on the perfect size of cucumber to make dill pickles. I also remember she would just happen to go on vacation right around the time the “perfect cucumbers” would be ready.
So guess who she would leave in charge of this chore? Yup, me! Since I did not like spending time in the garden, this was not a chore I welcomed. If I left them for a day too long (heaven forbid), I would certainly hear about it when she got home.
If the cucumbers got too large, she would use them in a salad. You have probably eaten something similar? Her version consisted of cucumbers, onion, and mayonnaise.
Best Cucumber Salad Variations
If you search the web you will see so many variations for this simple cucumber salad. Russian, Greek, Italian, Thai, Scandinavian, I think every culture has a form of this kind of salad. Some are creamy, some are tangy, some are on the sweet side. The basic cucumber salad recipe includes:
Some cucumber salad recipes will add other items like onions, tomatoes or radishes. The cucumber can be peeled (or not), cut in circles or chunks. Seeded by removing the pulp (or not), and some people like to sprinkle salt over the cucumber slices/pieces and let them drain (sweat) for a few minutes to release excess moisture.
WOW, there are A LOT of variations for one humble salad. Yet they are all so simple to make, and the end result is a crisp, refreshing great side dish (or even a great lunch all on its’ own). Perfect with Grilled Chicken Skewers or Zucchini Burgers.
I took my mom’s version and switched it up. Since hubby does not like eating raw onion (even red ones), I used pickled onions instead (the secret to making this the best cucumber salad he has ever eaten). I replaced mayo with sour cream and seasoned with dried dill. I also used the salt method to get excess water out of the cucumber before mixing it all together.
Speaking of pickled onions, have you ever tried pickled eggs?
The result was a light, refreshing and tasty side dish to our grilled burger. Feel free to switch things up and use greek yogurt, fresh dill and raw onions. There is not a right or wrong way to make and enjoy this great salad.
This Best Cucumber Salad with Pickled Onions is quick to make, and the perfect party salad. Easy on the budget and you can make a HUGE batch in no time. I know this will be a staple this summer. Give this a try!
Do you have a cucumber salad recipe you love?
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Best Cucumber Salad with Pickled Onions
- 1 English cucumber
- 1/4 cup sour cream
- 1/4 tsp dried dill
- 1/2 cup pickled onions
- 1 tsp salt
Wash and slice the cucumber into 1/4" rounds. Place in a mesh sieve (over a bowl or in the sink) and sprinkle with the salt and mix a bit to distribute.
Let the cucumbers sit for 10-30 minutes (depending on how much time you have).
Mix the sour cream and dill in a bowl and set aside. Feel free to use more if you like.
Slice the pickled onions into thin strips, and place in a bowl.
Take the cucumbers out of the sieve, and place in either paper towels or a kitchen towel. Give this a good squeeze to release as much moisture as possible. Place the cucumbers in the bowl with the onions.
Add the sour cream mixture, stir to combine.
There is no right or wrong way to make this salad. Feel free to use yogurt, fresh dill and raw onions if you wish. If you don't have time to get moisture out of the cucumber...no problem. This recipe will still work just cutting the cucumber up and using as is. The choice is yours....have fun.