This simple Persian cucumber tomato salad recipe or salad Shirazi is so fresh and flavorful. This salad comes together easily as a side dish or an appetizer with just a few ingredients. Here's how to make Shirazi salad that's refreshing and healthy.
What is Salad Shirazi?
Salad-e Shirazi, salad Shirazi or the Persian cucumber, tomato, and onion salad is a light and refreshing salad. This salad is believed to have originated in Southern Iran, in a beautiful city called Shiraz, hence the name Shirazi.
It's popular in Iran and across the world with many variations. But basic ingredients like cucumber, tomato, onion and herbs remain the same.
This light and healthy Persian salad is great for summer or it can be eaten all year round. It's a great appetizer and makes an awesome topping for chicken, fish or a side with grilled dishes. I love to serve it with my Air Fryer Chicken Breast or Air Fryer Salmon.
Why We Love This Recipe:
- Simple ingredients
- Fresh, flavourful and healthy
- Easy to make
- Great summer salad or appetizer
Ingredients and Notes
Cucumbers - Choose Persian cucumbers or English cucumbers. You'd need about 3 to 4 Persian cucumbers or one English cucumber. These are seedless cucumbers with a thin skin. Peel the cucumbers if you want to but I leave it on. Avoid field cucumbers with waxy, thick skin.
Tomatoes - You'd need firm tomatoes with fewer seeds. Heirloom, vine-ripened or Roma tomatoes would be ideal.
Onion - Red onion and green onions.
Lime juice - You can use lime or lemon juice for acidity. For an authentic Shirazi salad, use sour grape juice (ab ghoreh) or verjuice, if you can find them.
Fresh herbs - you can use fresh mint, fresh parsley, cilantro or dill.
Dried herbs - dried mint is essential to this salad. This is what differentiates the Shirazi salad from other similar salad recipes out there.
Olive oil - a traditional Shirazi salad is made without any oil, but adding extra virgin olive oil gives a bit of body to the dressing.
How To Make Salad Shirazi
A full printable version of this recipe with ingredient measurements is available at the bottom of this post.
STEP ONE: Finely dice the cucumber, red onion, and tomatoes. Slice the green onions thinly. If the tomatoes are a bit juicy, remove the extra liquid and seeds before dicing them.
STEP TWO: Combine chopped vegetables in a large bowl with chopped fresh parsley and dried mint.
STEP THREE: In a small bowl, whisk olive oil, lime juice, salt, and black pepper. Add the citrus dressing to the salad and mix lightly to combine. You can use the salad right away but let it marinate for an hour or two in the fridge for maximum flavor. Taste and adjust seasoning if you need to before serving
Tips For The Best Persian Salad
Uniform in size. It's best if the finely chopped vegetables are of the same size. You can use a mandolin or similar equipment with a dicing attachment.
Marinate. Let the salad marinate for an hour or half an hour minimum for the flavors to meld.
Check seasoning. Taste and adjust seasoning before serving: add more salt or lime juice.
How To Store
It's best to enjoy this Persian cucumber salad fresh while the vegetables are still crunchy.
If you have any leftovers, you can store them in an airtight container in the fridge for one or two days maximum. Please note that the vegetables will soften and release juices while they sit in the fridge.
How To Serve Salad Shirazi
This Persian salad will be a great addition to any meal. Here are some of my favorite ways to use it.
- Serve alongside white rice and other meat-based dishes like they traditionally do in Iran.
- This salad pairs well with grilled dishes.
- As a topping on chicken breast or white fish.
- As an appetizer with Air Fryer Pita Chips.
More Salad Recipes You'll Enjoy:
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Salad Shirazi (Persian Cucumber Tomato Salad)
- 3 Persian cucumbers 1 English cucumber
- ½ red onion medium-sized
- 3 tomatoes roma
- 2 stalks green onion
- 3 tablespoon chopped fresh parsley or fresh mint
- 2 teaspoon dried mint
- 1 tablespoon lime juice
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ½ teaspoon black pepper
- Finely dice the cucumber, red onion, and tomatoes. If the tomatoes are a bit juicy, remove the extra liquid and seeds before dicing them. Slice the green onions thinly.
- Combine chopped vegetables in a large bowl with chopped fresh parsley and dried mint.
- In a small bowl, whisk olive oil, lime juice, salt and pepper. Add the dressing to the salad and mix lightly to combine.
- The salad can be used right away but for maximum flavor, let it marinate for an hour or two in the fridge.
- It's best to enjoy this Persian cucumber salad fresh while the vegetables are still crunchy.
- Store any leftovers in an airtight container in the fridge for one or two days maximum. Please note that the vegetables will soften and release juices while they sit in the fridge.
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