Mediterranean salads are packed with flavor and heart-healthy nutrients. For this reason, these salads are ideal for a family dinner.
What’s nice about this salad is you can easily personalize the ingredients on each family member’s plate. I have one daughter who doesn’t care for cheese, so I would leave off the feta on hers.
On top of that, they’re budget friendly. So all the way around, they’re a win.
My husband and I enjoy having a variety of dinners. We try to switch things up in order to balance our diet.
For example, one night, we might have homemade bean soup.
After all that deliciousness, we might either resort to a calmer comfort food such as this chicken rice casserole. Or we might go in the other direction with this layered Mexican salad with black beans.
Best Mediterranean Salads in Florida
My family used to live in Pinellas County, Florida, close to the Sponge Docks in Tarpon Springs. One of the things we loved about the area was the strong Greek culture … and of course, the food. I love all Greek food—especially the Mediterranean salad.
Since there are so many restaurants in Tarpon Springs, we tried to sample a variety. However, there was one place we kept going back to because my husband loved the bakery.
One of the things we enjoyed was the spoonful of deliciousness they buried beneath the vegetables. Surprisingly–at least the first time we had it–there was a mound of potato salad smack dab in the middle.
I like Greek pastries too. However, when I found out I needed to cut out gluten, I wasn’t able to enjoy them anymore. Such a bummer!
On a more positive note, I didn’t have to cut out the salads. The only thing I had to do was make sure mine didn’t have croutons, which wasn’t a problem.
As long as it has feta cheese, I’m happy. And you can count on there being plenty of feta in a Greek restaurant.
A great date night with my husband is to start with a walk along the Tarpon Springs Sponge Docks. Afterward, we enjoy choosing a restaurant based on what we’re in the mood for.
I typically get soup and a salad, but there are times when I get a dish with lamb. I used to finish with baklava, but now I’m more likely to have Greek-style rice pudding.
What Goes in Mediterranean Salads?
Mediterranean salads can be made up of a variety of vegetables, meats, olives, and cheeses. Some might even have potato salad.
That said, some of the most popular and common items include lettuce (of course), tomatoes, black olives, and chicken. I like to top mine with feta because that adds depth to the flavor.
To me, it’s not an authentic Mediterranean salad without Greek dressing and pepperoncini. I also enjoy anchovies, but because my husband doesn’t care for them I leave them off.
Most of the time, I add sliced bell peppers, but I didn’t have any for this salad.
Another thing you can add is a handful of these roasted tomatoes. I didn’t use them this time, but they’re really delicious.
How to Make Mediterranean Salads with Chicken
Since I always have some sort of lettuce on hand, I use whatever I have. I like chopping it into smaller pieces because I don’t like flinging oily Greek dressing around with a too-big bite.
Secondly, cut boneless skinless chicken breast into bite-size pieces. Then season it with thyme, oregano, and basil, and a little bit of salt and pepper. After that, cook it in a pan with olive oil.
While the chicken is cooking, put all of the other ingredients in wide salad bowls. As soon as the chicken finishes cooking add it to the top.
It’s good as is, but I just happened to have some feta cheese crumbles. Bam! That immediately elevated it to the highest level of Mediterranean salads.
If you have leftover rotisserie chicken, you may add that instead. However, you’ll have to steam the chicken pieces in the seasonings if you want the Mediterranean flavors.
Food Blogs I Follow
I’m such a foodie, so I love reading recipes and looking at pictures of new dishes. Here are some of the blogs I enjoy:
Back to My Southern Roots
Julia’s Simply Southern
Big Bear’s Wife
Mrs. Happy Homemaker
Sweet Little Bluebird
Miz Helen’s Country Cottage
The Country Cook
Mediterranean Salad in Tarpon Springs
If you ever have the opportunity to visit Tarpon Springs, take it. They have some of the best festivals with boatloads of sponges and delicious Greek food.
While you’re there, make sure you get a salad. Without a doubt, you’ll go home with some of the best memories to share with friends and family.
Other Main Courses
Although this Mediterranean salad is a great main course, it can also be served as a side salad. Add the salad to the chicken creole, sesame ginger ribs, or the shepherd’s pie, and you’ll be a kitchen hero.
- 4 cups of romaine lettuce chopped into bite-size pieces
- 1 cup of cooked chicken (any other meat can be substituted)
- 8 kalamata olives
- 8 black olives
- 8 cherry or grape tomatoes
- 1 bell pepper cut into rings
- 4 tablespoons of feta cheese crumbles
- 8 pepperoncinis
- Greek salad dressing to taste
- Divide the lettuce evenly into 4 bowls.
- Place the chicken (or other meat) on top of the lettuce.
- Add all of the vegetables and olives.
- Drizzle your desired amount of salad dressing over the salad.
- Sprinkle feta cheese crumbles over the top.
If you don't have leftover meat, cook bite-size chicken pieces seasoned with thyme, oregano, basil, salt, and pepper in a small amount of olive oil. This adds even more Mediterranean flavor to your salad.
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Nutrition InformationYield 4 Serving Size 1
Amount Per Serving Calories 219Total Fat 13gSaturated Fat 4gTrans Fat 0gUnsaturated Fat 9gCholesterol 40mgSodium 1996mgCarbohydrates 15gFiber 4gSugar 9gProtein 12g