Refreshing Mediterranean flavored carrot salad with feta and kalamata olives comes together quickly and stores well, making it a great make-ahead option for picnics, camping, and potlucks. This is such a terrific way to use inexpensive carrots in a way everyone will love!
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Can the humble carrot really be the star of a salad? Um, yes - if it is this salad. I love Mediterranean flavors of lemon, feta, and olives, so this salad ranks up there as one of my favorites of all time. Really.
For those of you who've been around for awhile, or who use our menus, this actually isn't a surprise because it's been featured in many of the meal plans. Why?
Second, let's be blunt: carrots are cheap and available year around. Organic carrots from Costco are a great deal, and we've found them to be consistently sweet and tasty. (See the other things we regularly buy from Costco here.) Since they come in a big bag (okay, actually a huge bag that we have to split up to even fit in our fridge, ha!) we pretty much always have carrots around.
But the main reason we all love this salad is because it's just really, really good. As in, I leave my name on the leftovers and if anyone takes it they're in trouble, kind of good.
Carrot Salad with Feta & Olives Recipe
This salad is versatile, too, bridging the seasons. It's equally good in the winter next to roasted chicken and potatoes as it is in the summer alongside grilled sausages.
The Kalamata olives and the feta both contrast nicely with the sweet carrots and sometimes spicy onions. And the lemon based dressing just makes it refreshing. And that's basically the ingredients - all pantry and fridge staples (if you're like me and always have olives and feta on hand!).
Do you have to grate the carrots?
Just like these garlic-lemon baked carrots, grating the carrots seems to bring out the sweetness, so I would say yes, as opposed to simply slicing carrots. This is one reason I love my food processor - it makes grating of carrots super quick and easy.
Is this a mayonnaise based dressing?
No, I prefer carrot salad recipes without mayonnaise, just like I do cabbage slaws (check out the salads archives for many versions of vinaigrette based slaws).
Have I sold you yet on this simple, inexpensive, yet delicious salad?
Then how about how easy it is to make:
- Grate all the carrots in a food processor (about 3-5 minutes).
- Chop the onions and olives (another 5 minutes).
- Toss it with the dressing and remaining ingredients (5 more minutes).
Delicious, real food ready in 15 minutes or less. Now I have you, right? I hope you find this no added sugar, vinaigrette dressed carrot salad as yummy as we do!
Carrot Salad with Feta & Olives
- 6 large carrots
- 1 medium onion preferably sweet
- 1/2 cup Kalamata olives
- 1 cup crumbled feta cheese
- 1/4 cup fresh lemon juice
- 1 clove garlic minced
- 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 teaspoon ground cumin
- 1/3 cup olive oil
- 1/4 cup chopped parsley
- Trim and peel the carrots and grate them in a food processor (or by hand if you'd like - it'll just take longer); add grated carrots to a large bowl.
- Chop onion and olives and add to carrots along with the crumbled feta.
- In a small bowl or 1-cup glass measure whisk the lemon juice, garlic, salt, pepper and cumin together. Add the olive oil and whisk until completely combined and creamy.
- Pour the dressing over the ingredients in the bowl and mix well. Serve garnished with chopped parsley.
Adapted from Sunset
This recipe has been updated - it was originally published July 2014.
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