Simple Cucumber and Tomato Salad Recipe with juicy tomatoes, crunchy cucumbers, sliced red onion and fresh dill will become your go-to side dish year-round. It goes with everything!

This tasty salad recipe with cucumber and tomatoes is a staple in our house alongside chickpea salad and lettuce salad.

Cucumber and tomato salad with red onion and dill in white bowl.

This cucumber and tomato salad is something I ate every other day during the summer as a child. Grandma also loved to make creamy cucumber tomato salad when she had sour cream on hand and this simple cucumber salad just to add a variety to meals.

Cucumber tomato salad is the most popular summer salad recipe in Ukraine, Russia and many other Slavic countries. I also believe this fresh salad combination is incredibly popular all over the globe. With its own regional twist, of course. Because it’s that good! It’s healthy, affordable, and easy to make any time of the year.

I love to make this easy recipe during summer with my homegrown cucumbers and tomatoes or farmer’s market produce. However, we make this great side dish all the time! There is nothing more cheerful on a dreary rainy winter night than a bowl of fresh tomato cucumber salad.

Ingredients You Will Need

The key to making this cucumber and tomato salad recipe is to select ripe tomatoes and crispy cucumbers at the grocery store. And I am also using one ingredient that makes salad special but you can omit it.

Here are the simple ingredients you will need:

Olive oil, cucumbers, toasted sesame oil, dill, tomatoes, red onion, salt and pepper.
  • Cucumber: I like to use long English cucumber or pickling cukes because you don’t have to peel skin of a cucumber. Select firm, plum and fresh cucumbers.
  • Tomatoes: My preferred store-bought kind of tomatoes is “tomatoes on the vine”. During summer, any heirloom tomatoes, beefsteak tomatoes or Roma tomatoes in season will be great. Cherry tomatoes or grape tomatoes are great too.
  • Onion: I prefer to use red onion or shallots in fresh salads, as they aren’t as harsh. But yellow onion or white onion would also work. Alternatively, you could omit it entirely.
  • Dill: It’s a classic herb for my Eastern European version of simple cucumber tomato salad recipe. Alternatively use fresh parsley, fresh cilantro, fresh basil leaves or scallions for a punch of fresh flavor.
  • Olive oil: I like good quality extra virgin olive oil for a simple dressing. Bonus is we do not have to make it separately.
  • Toasted sesame oil: This is one of my secret dressing ingredients that is reminiscent of unrefined sunflower oil we always used to dress up this refreshing salad. You can omit it and use more of olive oil, it’s not a deal breaker.
  • Salt and black pepper.

Variations and Add-Ins

Because of the simplicity of this tomato and cucumber salad recipe, there are tons of ways to adjust it and use as a foundation to layer other fresh and tasty ingredients!

  • Acid: Add a splash of your favorite vinegar like red wine vinegar, white wine vinegar, white vinegar or apple cider vinegar. Or squeeze fresh lemon juice or lime juice for a zing.
  • Creamy: Make it creamy with plain yogurt or sour cream and omit the oils like I do in creamy cucumber salad.
  • Cheese: Toss in crumbled feta cheese or mini bocconcini (mozzarella balls) like I do in Italian chopped salad.
  • Seasonings: Add 1 tablespoon of Italian seasoning to the dressing.
  • Avocado: Add diced avocado and make it a cucumber tomato avocado salad. The sky’s the limit!
  • Bell peppers: They add crunch, fiber and nutrients. Use one chopped yellow bell pepper or red bell pepper to add sweet and fruity flavor. Green bell pepper adds grassy, more bitter taste I personally love.

How to Make Cucumber and Tomato Salad

The key to making this cucumber and tomato salad is to prep it right before serving. That’s when its fresh ingredients truly shine!

Chopping cucumbers on a cutting board with a knife.

The process is really very simple. All you have to do is chop the tomatoes and cucumbers into same sized pieces, ensuring the even distribution of ingredients in every bite. Make sure your knife is sharpened because there is nothing worse than a dull knife squishing juicy ripe tomatoes.

I do not peel regular cucumbers unless it is full grown garden cucumber that has thick and bitter skin. Or any cucumber with a tough skin. No fun to eat that.

Drizzling sesame oil over a bowl with tomato, cucumber, red onion, dill and spices.

Then, finely slice the red onion and transfer all three to a large serving bowl. Chop the dill.

We never made the dressing separately, there is no need. Add the oils, salt and pepper to the bowl and toss lightly.

Stirring cucumber tomato salad in white bowl with wooden spoon.

With soft salads like this cucumber tomato onion salad, it’s best to toss them gently with a large spoon rather than using tongs. Start in the middle of the bowl going under all ingredients with a large spoon, and rotate the bowl as you keep stirring. This will help you avoid squashing the tomatoes or bruising any ingredients.

Then taste your cucumber and tomato salad and adjust any of the seasonings, if necessary.

Recipe Tip

I have to stress that it’s best to eat this salad within a few hours of making it. That’s when it tastes fresh and crunchy!

Cucumber and tomato salad with red onion and dill in white bowl.

Can I Make It Ahead?

Yes, for sure. If you want to prepare the cucumber and tomato salad in advance, add veggies and fresh herbs to a large bowl. Cover and store in the refrigerator for up to 24 hours. When you’re ready to serve, add olive oil, toasted sesame oil, salt, and pepper.

As soon as you add the salt, pepper and oil to the salad, it will encourage the veggies to release their juices. Otherwise, keep salad ingredients “dry” and you can make it ahead for sure. It literally takes one minute to season the salad!

What to Serve Cucumber and Tomato Salad with?

Honestly, this cucumber and tomato salad is one of the most versatile salads on the blog and can be served with practically any main dish.

Here are some of my favorite suggestions for this refreshing side dish:

To enjoy leftover salad, I recommend using some rye bread or other crusty bread to dip into all the juices at the bottom of the bowl. I did that all the time as a child and my goodness, it’s delicious!

How Long Will It Last in the Fridge?

As both cucumber and tomatoes have high water content, this salad with cucumber and tomatoes can quickly go limp. For that reason, it’s best to enjoy it at soon as possible.

Though it can last 1-2 days in the fridge. If you want it to last as long as possible, only season the salad with dressing just before serving.

FAQs

Do I have to peel cucumbers for the salad?

If you are using long English cucumber, you don’t have to peel it. Just wash it well. Also no need to peel skin of smaller cucumbers and Persian cucumbers. You only have to peel tough skin on field cucumbers and some homegrown cukes.

What’s the best way to prepare tomatoes?

Make sure to use sharp knife. There is no need to de-seed tomatoes, just make sure to cut them into even bite-sized pieces. Slice cherry tomatoes and grape tomatoes in halves.

Can you use dried dill in this cucumber and tomato salad?

I do not recommend it. Dried dill tastes very different from fresh dill. Instead use any other fresh herbs you like and have on hand.

More Easy Salad Recipes to Try

You might also enjoy my list of 52 healthy salad recipes!

Cucumber and tomato salad with red onion and dill in white bowl.
Cucumber and tomato salad with red onion and dill in white bowl.

Cucumber Tomato Salad Recipe

Cucumber and Tomato Salad Recipe with juicy tomatoes and crunchy cucumbers will become your go-to side dish year round. This cucumber tomato salad goes with everything!
4.96 from 25 votes
Servings 8 servings
Calories 88
Diet Low Calorie
Prep Time 15 minutes
Total Time 15 minutes

Ingredients 
 

Instructions 

  • In a large bowl, add cucumbers, tomatoes, onion, dill, olive oil, toasted sesame oil, salt and pepper.
  • Stir gently from the bottom in the center of the bowl until well combined.
  • Salad tastes best when served immediately.

Video

Notes

  • Store: Refrigerate salad for up to 24 hours.
  • Make Ahead: Refrigerate all vegetables in a bowl covered. Then add oils, salt and pepper right before serving.
  • Best tomatoes to use: In summer heirloom varieties, and tomatoes on the vine when it comes to store-bought.
  • Don’t add the salt too early. As soon as you add the salt, the juices from the tomato and cucumber will start to release.
  • Substitute for toasted sesame oil: Use more of olive oil.
  • Add garlic: Tiny grated garlic clove will add a lot of flavor.

Nutrition

Serving: 1cup | Calories: 88kcal | Carbohydrates: 6g | Protein: 1g | Fat: 7g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Sodium: 151mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 3g
Course: Salad
Cuisine: Ukrainian
Author: Olena Osipov
Did you make this recipe?Mention @ifoodreal or tag #ifoodreal!

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About Olena

Welcome! I grew up in Ukraine watching my grandma cook with simple ingredients. I have spent the last 11 years making it my mission to help you cook quick and easy meals for your family!

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Comments

  1. 5 stars
    just read a couple of the comments and find it strange that people make comments that have nothing to do with the recipe.i chanced on your site and found this salad at odds with the usual salads i make in SCOTLAND and i will say i found them very much to my taste.your variations on your recipes are your culture and i for one like the variations. keep up your recipes and thank you very much.

  2. 5 stars
    was funny not to use lettuce for this salad but it works.really enjoyed this dish and made a chicken side dish which went down well.will now use your other salad recipes.thanks.

  3. 5 stars
    Absolutely delicious! The sesame oil with minimal vinegar is a great spin on the traditional, vinegary tomato and cucumber salad.

    My veggie fussy bestie adored it!

  4. 5 stars
    Super good especially when I use tomatoes and cukes from my garden as Ukrainian usually do! Yum!

    1. So glad you enjoyed this jewel of a salad, Vicky! Yes, quality veggies make all the difference in this salad!

    1. Laughter is healthy, so please laugh often. In fact, this is a Ukrainian way of making a salad that each culture and country has their own version of. There are many recipes that share same base ingredients with variations for each region. I am sharing this salad from my childhood how we ate it in Ukraine. Simple Google search reveals different versions of basic cucumber tomato salad. This is Ukrainian way. What do you find funny about it, Nina?

      1. 5 stars
        Everything is Ukrainian nowadays. Even this salad which is eaten casually by hair of the world differently became Ukrainian ๐Ÿ˜‚

        1. Yep. My Ukrainian cucumber tomato salad. Made differently by my part of the world where I am from and therefore called Ukrainian. And please note, I am from Ukraine and you are on my website where I can share any recipes I want, especially Ukrainian. I can call even chicken noodle soup Ukrainian cause it is my Ukrainian grandma’s soup. Now, if I were a black woman from let’s say Georgia, posting Ukrainian recipes, you could get on the rant train. But for now, Andrew, you go it right and if you have any issues with current political situation and would like to express your frustrations, websites like CNN and Foxnews are best places for you to have a discussion with like minded folks. Here we talk about recipes. Hope this helps and have a great weekend!

  5. 4 stars
    Great – I halved the recipe. I didn’t have fresh dill so used dry. Didn’t have toasted sesame oil, but had regular sesame oil. Really enjoyed the ease and taste. I’m single so don’t often buy heads of lettuce because I end up throwing half of them out. Have enough cucumber and tomato to try it tonight with sour cream. Thanks!

  6. 5 stars
    Hi Olena,
    I am so grateful to have found your website where I can put healthy but easy meals on the table.This recipe was simple but wonderful. Like your vegetable soup also 5 stars which I made in my dutch oven and the delicious and healthy slower cooker recipes. I have always loved the concept of the slow cooker but have never found recipes that were truly healthy and with simple healthy ingredients until your recipes which are amazing. They are what I have always wanted simple ingredients that I understand and are healthy. I am so happy that I found your website it is a game changer for me. I am going to do the freezer meals that your husband raved about as much as he did his truck. I am going to make them in the slow cook but am thinking of getting an instant pot for Christmas. It is so nice that you can make these recipes with either method. Since I just found your website I hope you are still actively giving tips and recipes every week. I know even more people will benefit from your website during these times. I have already shared your website with my sister, her husband Josef was born in the Ukraine and I will be sharing it with other friends and family . Thank you for reading my very long winded comment and God bless you, your husband and boys. PS Believe it or not I rarely subscribe or comment as I have here.

    1. Hi Kate! Thank you for taking the time to send me a message. I really appreciate it! I hope you will continue to enjoy my recipes ๐Ÿ™‚

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