Looking for real, traditional Mediterranean food? Here is a collection of authentic Mediterranean food recipes. These are from a variety of different Mediterranean countries. Some of these are our own recipes, but many of them have been given to us by friends and colleagues who live in the Mediterranean, or have spent considerable time living and eating there. Even though these recipes are from different Mediterranean countries, they all have one thing in common, they all use extra virgin olive oil. Most of the vegetable and bean dishes included are dripping in liquid gold. This is one of the reasons why they taste so good. Another thing in common is that these recipes aren’t difficult to make. Many of them are one-pot meals which makes them great for feeding your whole family. You can create an entire Mediterranean feast using a few recipes from this list. You can have a lot of variety because some recipes use quite a bit more spices than the others, like the tagine recipe for example. There is also recipes for everyone in here because there are vegan, gluten-free, vegetarian, and anti-inflammatory options. The first recipe you see below is a traditional Greek salad recipe, because what’s more authentic in Mediterranean cuisine than that? I hope you enjoy the rest of the recipes and share them with your friends and family! Kali Orexi! (Bon Appetit in Greek)
Authentic Greek Salad (Horiátiki Salata)
In 2014, I visited Greece for the first time. I had waited my entire life to eat real Greek food seeing that I’m half Greek. I was also hoping to collect some authentic Mediterranean Diet recipes. I arrived in Athens and was set to go on a study tour throughout the country. I got to my hotel and the study group was waiting for me to go to dinner together. I put my luggage in my room and we walked through the busy streets to a traditional Greek taverna. The waiter brought us bread with extra virgin olive oil to dip. The oil was so good. Then he brought the greek salad. This was a moment I will never forget. I took one bite of a red, juicy tomato slice and I thought to myself “What have I been eating my whole life?!” This was the sweetest, most flavorful, deep red, and beefy tomato I had ever sunk my teeth into.
Armenian Losh Kebab (Lamb and Beef Burgers)
The losh kebab is a large burger made with fifty percent lamb, fifty percent beef. It is mixed with amazing herbs, spices, and chopped white onion. It’s an absolute flavor bomb. There is lots of fresh parsley and onion chopped up and mixed into the beef and lamb burgers. I also notice a slight tomatoey flavor which is from the tomato paste. For spices, the main note I taste is cumin, which is so delicious in grilled meat recipes. The losh kebab is cooked to your liking. I personally like mine a little pink in the middle because it stays juicy that way. If you like it cooked well done that obviously works great too.
Black Eyed Peas with Fresh Dill, Olive Oil and Orange Slices
Black eyed peas with Fresh Dill, Olive Oil and Orange Slices is one of my all-time favorite Mediterranean Diet recipes. How can you go wrong with fresh dill, fresh parsley, green onions, orange slices, and 1 cup of extra virgin olive oil. As you prepare this amazing dish, I would highly recommend resisting the urge to cut back on the olive oil. As you simmer the ingredients, the oil cooks into the beans and herbs and what is left thickens to make a flavorful gravy. This is a traditional vegan dish from the island of Crete and works great with a vegan salad.
Egyptian Lentils with Rice and Pasta (Koshari)
Koshari, also spelled Kushari, is the national dish of Egypt. It is one of the best Mediterranean diet recipes for using up things in your pantry. You can find Koshari in food carts and restaurants all over Egypt (and now you can make it in your own home!). This dish requires cooking everything separately and assembling it all at the end. Koshari is great because it’s cheap to make, very filling, and equally flavorful. The crispy, fried onion topping is optional, but traditional and gives this recipe a nice crunch!
Eggplant, Lentils, and Peppers cooked in Olive Oil (Turkish)
Recipe by Ozlem Warren.
Aubergine is the king of vegetables in Turkey. Like a tomato, it is actually classified as a fruit because it has seeds. This is one of my favorite and scrumptious Turkish eggplant recipes. Eggplant, Lentils and Peppers cooked in olive oil, also known as Mercimekli Mualla is from Antakya and has been cooked in the southern Turkish kitchens for generations. Dried mint and olive oil flavour the green lentils and aubergine/eggplant beautifully. We make this recipe using the Turkish Zeytinyaglimethod (Vegetables cooked in olive oil) and it’s important to let the dish cool in the pan so it can rest and the flavors develop. Passed on to me by my grandmother and mother, I share this recipe with you in the hope you enjoy it as much as we all do.
Tortilla Española (Potato Omelet – Spain)
Recipe by Bill Bradley, R.D.
Tortilla Española, like many of my favorite Mediterranean dishes, is simple and has only a few ingredients. But when the ingredients are potatoes and onions fried in a lot of olive oil, eggs, salt and pepper, what could be better? Not many foods deserve the word “rustic” more than Tortilla Española, and when combined with some freshly baked bread, it is truly one of the culinary treasures of the Mediterranean.
Shakshuka (Eggs Poached in Spicy Tomato Sauce – Morocco)
Recipe by Bill Bradley, R.D.
One of my favorite breakfasts is this Moroccan shakshuka recipe; fresh tomatoes stewed in olive oil, cumin and smoked paprika; with a jalapeño pepper thrown in for extra flavor and topped with poached eggs. It is a filling Sunday morning kind of meal that is most satisfying if you have nothing especially important to do afterwards. The extra juiciness of this meal lends itself to bread dipping whether it be a slice of whole grain baguette or a gluten-free cornbread.
Briam – Baked Vegetables in Olive Oil (Island of Ikaria-Greece)
Recipe by Bill Bradley, R.D.
Briam is an oven-baked dish of fresh vegetables, herbs, olive oil, and an optional feta cheese. It is one of the most classic dishes of the Mediterranean Diet. This version was served to us at a seaside taverna on the island of Ikaria, a fiercely self-sufficient and proud island that has the highest rate of people who live to be over 100. As my wife Christine and I sat enjoying the immense view of the Aegean Sea, we were treated to some of the best briam I had ever tasted. After speaking to the woman who makes this satisfying dish, I quickly realized 3 mistakes I had made when preparing this dish at home: