Greek Pita Salad

Quick note: In case you were as enamored as I was with all the suggestions for pizza toppings a few weeks ago, I compiled the inspirational combos into one document for easy downloading and pizza planning. To access it, click on this post about pizza toppings and it will be waiting for you right above the comments. I made three of the awesome ideas this weekend myself, in fact (a Thai style pizza with zucchini, sweet Thai chili sauce, onions, chicken and cheese; amped up BBQ chicken pizza with feta and cilantro; and the spicy sweet potato, bleu cheese, bacon combo – I could barely handle the deliciousness!).

Ok, enough about pizza. This salad is one you want to add immediately to your summer repertoire of refreshing, healthy, yummy salads. Not only would it be spectacular as a main dish served with grilled chicken, if desired, but you’ll be the popular kid at the party next time you bring this as a side dish offering. It’s unique and flavorful and hoard-the-bowl-worthy. I served it last week when we had company and was devastated each time anyone at the table dug in for seconds.

Greek Pita Salad

The toasted pita flatbread pieces (I used this homemade version since I had a few stockpiled in the freezer), seasoned with a bit of oregano and olive oil, are like little bits of heaven in each bite. Crunchy on the outside, chewy on the inside, the bread is what makes this salad exceptional. I know you know that I despise sogginess in bread – I surprised myself with my adoration of this salad, helped along by stirring the golden pita pieces into the salad right before serving (and since the bread has been crouton-ized in the oven, it helps stall the soggy factor even more).

It’s an insanely glorious combination with a ton of wow factor since it resides outside the box of the typical summer pasta salad – and yet, quite honestly, I think I’ll be enjoying this most often at home. Alone. You know, so I don’t have to feel guilty for giving anyone dirty looks when they take that last divine scoop that rightfully belongs to my soul.

One Year Ago: Berries on a Cloud {Best Dessert of the Summer!}
Two Years Ago: Honeydew, Blueberry and Mango Salad with Lime-Ginger Reduction
Three Years Ago: Smothered Pork Chops {Slow Cooker}

Greek Pita Salad

Yield: Serves 6

Greek Pita Salad

If you think you might have leftovers of this glorious salad, serve it by tossing each individual serving with the toasted bread (instead of stirring the bread into the large bowl of salad). Soggy pita bread does not a yummy salad make. When eating the leftovers, do the same thing and toss a few pieces of the leftover bread with the portion of salad you want to enjoy.

Ingredients

    Dressing:
  • 2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1/2 teaspoon Dijon mustard
  • 3 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 4 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 clove garlic, minced or pressed
  • 1/2 teaspoon sugar
  • Pinch of salt and pepper
  • Toasted Pitas:
  • 4 6- to 8-inch pita flatbreads (not pita pockets), I use this homemade version
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
  • Pinch coarse kosher salt
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • Salad:
  • 1 15-ounce can chickpeas (or garbanzo beans), rinsed and drained
  • 1 cup black or kalamata olives, halved
  • 1 cup diced cucumber, peeled or unpeeled, your choice
  • 1 pint cherry tomatoes, halved
  • 1 cup crumbled feta cheese

Directions

  1. Whisk all the dressing ingredients together until well combined. Set aside (the dressing can be refrigerated, covered, for several days).
  2. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.
  3. Tear each pita bread into 1-inch pieces onto a rimmed baking sheet. Toss the torn bread pieces with the oregano, salt and olive oil. Bake for 10-15 minutes, stirring once or twice, until the bread is toasted but not burned.
  4. In a large bowl, toss all the salad ingredients together with the dressing (whisk the dressing to recombine if it has been sitting for a while). Let the salad sit for 10-15 minutes with the dressing.
  5. Stir in the toasted pita bread right before serving giving the salad a good toss to mix everything together. Depending on the size of your pita flatbreads that you tore into pieces, you might want to stir in the bread gradually so the salad isn't overwhelmed by bread. Serve immediately.
http://www.melskitchencafe.com/greek-pita-salad/

Recipe Source: adapted from Meadowbrook Farm (via my cousin Julianne who raved about it)

23 Responses to Greek Pita Salad

  1. That looks awesome! I love Greek salads, this variation sounds very delicious. Love the addition of pitas! :)

  2. This salad looks amazing! I love the combination of the ingredients and am definitely going to try the recipe!

  3. Sheila says:

    Sweet Thai chili sauce pizza . . . .you ROCK, Mel! Thank you again for all your hard work to make your site even more wonderful for all of us. All the pizza combos just a click away. Another no oven, healthy recipe. I always have a variety of Mel breads in the freezer. Now I need to change my weekly meal plan to incorporate Greek salad and Thai chili sauce with chicken within. I think Tuesday’s Southwest salad and Saturday’s turkey burgers are going to be put on hold.

  4. katie says:

    Looks delicious. And since our AC is not working, this might save me tonight because I have left over chicken. What would happen if I used pita chip instead of toasting the pita bread? Would it be an abomination?

    • Mel says:

      katie – Totally worth a try on the pita chips – be sure to report back if you do! They might be a bit crispier than the pita bread which retains a slight chewiness inside after toasting.

  5. Now this is a salad I can totally get behind — cheese and bread. YESSSSS.

  6. Amanda says:

    I’ve got a stockpile of flatbread in the freezer as well, what a great use for them :)

  7. Kim in MD says:

    I love everything about this salad, Mel!

  8. Sara k says:

    This is great, Mel! My son’s birthday is coming soon and I wanted a salad for the grownups that went with pizza. This will be perfect! I might serve a bowl of fresh salad greens too and make extra dressing. Thanks!

  9. Julianne says:

    Hooray! I made this yet again today (it’s becoming a weekly staple) and thought, I really hope this makes MKC, because it is gooooood. And then I got on the computer and found this recipe looking right back at me today.

    On the pitas: my store doesn’t sell anything but pita pockets (and I’m just not going to make them from scratch, let’s be honest), so I buy the pockets, then pull each pocket apart, to basically make two flat pita halves. Then I cut up the pitas with my kitchen scissors and toast for 10 minutes at 400. This salad is fantastic!

  10. Greek pizza is one of my favorite, but this salad looks like a must-try. I never would have thought to use pita for croutons. Thanks for the recipe!

  11. ann wank says:

    I am 100% Greek and I made this for the family and it was a big hit, although I used my own Greek dressing recipe which has been handed down for years. I grilled some Greek chicken and diced it up, too. Really an easy go-to dish. I also added a bit of diced red onion to give it a more traditional Greek Village Salad taste.

  12. This is like greek panzanella. What a great idea for a summer side. YUM! It has all of my faves.

  13. Great recipe! Perfect salad for summer :)

    Happy Blogging!
    Happy Valley Chow

  14. stephanie says:

    I ate this last night, excited that I had all the ingredients… except pita bread. I enjoyed it as a side without the pita croutons but I’ll definitely try it again with. I added diced red onion to the ingredients. It’s almost good enough without any dressing (although even better with). During the summer I make panzanella a bunch so I’m looking forward to this sort of Greek take on it. Today for lunch I’m going to eat leftovers on a wheat tortilla spread with hummus (I know, great idea:)

  15. Rachel says:

    Made this for dinner tonight, minus the chickpeas (didn’t have any) and olives (not a fan), plus some leftover turkey breast. SO very delicious! Thanks for the recipe!

  16. i can’t wait to try this recipe this summer!

  17. The Omnivore says:

    This sounds great! How important is the sugar in the dressing?

  18. Erika says:

    This was really delicious! Served w grilled chicken. Was an easy & super yummy dinner. I used store-bought naan breads to make it easier (plus I already had in the freezer). And the leftovers the next day were amazing too (thanks for the reminder to save the pita bread toasts separately).

  19. Melissa says:

    This is amazing!!! I cannot stop eating it. So good!!!

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