Greek-Style Seven Layer Salad Recipe

If you've ever enjoyed a seven-layer salad, then you know that the presentation can be just as exciting as the salad itself. As recipe developer Joe Dillard tells us, "This seven-layer Greek salad has all the best Mediterranean flavors packed into one party-sized salad," but in addition to its size and flavor, this recipe is also beautifully-presented in a trifle dish. Dillard is using a 128-ounce (16-cup) trifle bowl here, and tells us, "Trifle dishes are often associated with desserts, but they can be used to display beautiful large salads as well." He says that this type of bowl gives the best results for what he calls "a visually stunning presentation," but does allow that a large punch bowl or mixing bowl can be used if you don't happen to have a trifle bowl on hand.

While this recipe serves 10, Dillard notes, "The recipe can be scaled to fit a smaller dish by halving all the ingredients." As salads don't tend to make great leftovers, you may want to cut it back even farther if you're not feeding a crowd. But if you are feeding a crowd, then you can guarantee that this dish will please, both in flavor and in aesthetics.

Gather the ingredients for the Greek-style seven layer salad

For the salad itself, you'll start with a base of romaine lettuce, then pile on chickpeas, cucumbers, kalamata olives, grape tomatoes, and red onion slices before topping everything off with a layer of cheese. A note on the cucumbers: While Dillard says "English cucumbers are ideal because they are less watery and don't have large seeds," he adds that regular cucumbers will also work but suggests that you might want to de-seed these.

The dressing is a red wine/olive oil vinaigrette that also includes honey, lemon juice, and Dijon mustard. It's seasoned with oregano, salt, pepper — while suggested amounts are provided, you can, of course, adjust the spices to your own personal taste.

Build the salad layer by layer

The lettuce goes on the bottom of the salad bowl and is followed by a layer of chickpeas. Next comes cucumbers, then olives, and then tomatoes. The last vegetable layer on top of the salad consists of thin-sliced red onions. These make a nice platform for the feta cheese crumbles, which should be spread out so that they cover the top of the salad.

Dillard reminds us, "Be sure to layer each ingredient as evenly as possible," and "Pay close attention to the sides of the bowl as you layer." This, of course, is if you are using a see-through bowl and want the salad to look as pretty as possible.

Make the salad dressing

Combine all of the remaining ingredients to make the salad dressing. Although there's only a tiny amount of mustard being used here, not really enough to affect the flavor to any significant extent, Dillard does not advise leaving it out. Instead, he tells us that "Dijon mustard plays an important role as an emulsifier in the dressing" and explains that "it helps the olive oil and the acids in the dressing mix together more evenly."

Dress the salad

Optionally, top off the dish with some fresh sprigs of dill, then you're ready to dive into the salad. You can pour the salad dressing over the entire salad, although that's really only advisable if you're likely to be eating the whole thing at once. As an alternative, you can pour it over individual portions or even serve it on the side.

If you're concerned about presentation when serving the salad, Dillard has some advice for this, as well. "Take your serving utensil and place it straight down into the dish and grab the bottom layer," he says, "then pull upwards to collect each layer on top." As for the utensil, he suggests using either two wooden spoons or a pair of tongs. This salad, he says, is best eaten within 3 to 4 hours and might go well with a dish such as Mediterranean braised chicken thighs or spanikopita,

Greek-Style Seven Layer Salad Recipe
5 from 36 ratings
This Greek-style seven layer salad (almost) looks as good as it tastes.
Prep Time
Cook Time
Greek-style salad on plate
Total time: 10 minutes
  • 8 cups romaine lettuce, chopped
  • 2 (15.5-ounce) cans chickpeas, drained
  • 4 cups quartered English cucumbers
  • 1 (7-ounce) jar kalamata olives, drained and halved
  • 3 cups grape tomatoes
  • 1 medium red onion, thinly sliced
  • 10 ounces feta cheese, crumbled
  • ½ cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • ¼ cup red wine vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons honey
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice
  • ¼ teaspoon Dijon mustard
  • ¼ teaspoon dried oregano
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • ⅛ teaspoon ground black pepper
Optional Ingredients
  • fresh dill, for garnish
  1. Put the lettuce in a large, see-through bowl (a trifle dish works best) so that it evenly covers the bottom.
  2. Top the lettuce with an even layer of chickpeas, scattering them in an even layer.
  3. Layer the cucumber slices on top of the chickpeas, then follow with a layer of olives.
  4. Top the olives with the tomatoes, pressing down if necessary to fir them into the bowl.
  5. Finish off the salad with a layer of onions followed by a layer of feta to cover the top of the bowl.
  6. Combine the oil, vinegar, honey, lemon juice, Dijon mustard, oregano, salt, and pepper.
  7. Pour the dressing over the entire salad or reserve it to dress individual portions.
  8. Garnish the salad with dill, if desired, then serve.
Calories per Serving 355
Total Fat 21.7 g
Saturated Fat 6.2 g
Trans Fat 0.0 g
Cholesterol 25.2 mg
Total Carbohydrates 31.4 g
Dietary Fiber 8.0 g
Total Sugars 11.0 g
Sodium 686.4 mg
Protein 11.7 g
The information shown is Edamam’s estimate based on available ingredients and preparation. It should not be considered a substitute for a professional nutritionist’s advice.
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