Skip to Content

çoban salatasi (Turkish Shepherd’s Salad) 

çoban salatasiçoban salatasi, which means shepherd’s salad, is a simple, everyday Turkish salad recipe that comes together quickly using common ingredients. This salad is delicious and refreshing, and like our recipe for Sumac Onions, pair it with everything! You can also feature it on a mezze platter with other small plates like Skhug, Piyaz, Butter Bean Hummus, pita, and marinated olives. 

Çoban Salatasi in a serving bowel.

What is çoban salatasi?

Light and crunchy, çoban salatasi (Cho-BAHN’ sah-lah-tah-SU’) is a staple in homes and restaurants in Turkey and the Middle East that prominently features cucumber and tomatoes. Serve the salad in the summer when the tomatoes are fresh and juicy.

What You Need to Make This Recipe

An image showing the ingredients for çoban salatasi.
  • Persian Cucumber: Persian cucumbers have the best crunch, which I love! 
  • Tomatoes: Roma tomatoes work best because they have less moisture than other varieties. Vine-ripe tomatoes or grape tomatoes cut in half are a great alternative.
  • Peppers: I use serrano chilies or green bell peppers, but if you have access to green Turkish chilies, use those instead. Radishes and Anaheim peppers also work well. 
  • Onions: I prefer red onion because the strong flavor compliments the salad; if you’re concerned about the sharpness, massage sumac into them to make them sweeter instead of sprinkling it over the top. You can also replace red onions with shallots or white onions.
  • Parsley: Garnish with flat-leaf parsley, or replace it with mint, depending on your preference.
  • Olive Oil: Be generous with the olive oil; since it is a prominent ingredient, I recommend using high-quality olive oil.
  • Lemon Juice: Lemon juice brightens the salad, but use red wine vinegar if you prefer something sweeter.
  • Sumac: Sumac is tart and sweet, making it the perfect way to finish the salad. Sumac is a popular Middle Eastern spice found online and in health stores. However, I recommend visiting a local Middle Eastern store to explore; the ground-up sumac berries give the dish its signature color and flavor. If you don’t have any one hand, use sweet paprika.

How to Make çoban salatasi

The full recipe with measurements is in the recipe card below.

Slice the cucumbers in half lengthwise. Then, use a spoon to scoop out the watery center. Slice the cucumbers into 1-inch pieces. Then, cut the tomatoes to the same size. Add them to a serving bowl.

Cucumber and tomatoes in a bowl.

Chop the red onion and serrano peppers into smaller pieces and add them to the bowl with the cucumbers and tomatoes.

Onion and peppers added to the tomatoes and cucumbers in a bowl.

Top the vegetables with parsley, olive oil, lemon juice, salt, and pepper; stir to combine. Garnish with a sprinkle of sumac, and enjoy! 

Dressing added to the Çoban salatasi in a bowl.

Preparation Tips

  • Since this is a classic summer salad, use fresh vegetables and herbs whenever possible.
  • Aim for an equal amount of tomatoes and cucumbers, and adjust the measurements in the recipe card according to the vegetable size you’re using. 
  • Cut the cucumbers and tomatoes to the same size for consistency. Onions and peppers should be smaller to complement each bite.

SEARCHING FOR MORE LIKE THIS? 

If you love this recipe, try one of these tasty salads!  

Çoban Salatasi in a serving bowel.

Serving Suggestions

What to do With the Leftovers

  • TO STORE – Keep the salad in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is Turkish Shepherd Salad made of?

Traditional çoban salatasi is a cucumber and tomato salad finished with a simple dressing consisting of olive oil and lemon juice- everything else is a bonus! 

Can this recipe be made ahead of time?

Yes, but don’t the dressing until you’re ready to serve.

You Should Also Try:

⭐️ Rate the Recipe 

Your feedback is valuable – It helps us improve and update our recipes, so we can provide delicious meals you love. Consider leaving a comment or rating below the recipes card, and feel free to share your adaptations or ask any questions. We cannot wait to hear about what you’ve made. 

Çoban Salatasi in a serving bowel.

çoban salatasi

Tressa Jamil
çoban salatasi, also called Turkish Shepherd’s Salad, is a simple, everyday vegetable dish that comes together quickly using common ingredients.
5 from 1 vote
Prep Time 10 mins
Total Time 10 mins
Course Appetizer, Lunch, Salad, Side Dish
Cuisine Turkish
Servings 4 People
Calories 133 kcal

Ingredients
  

  • 4 Persian cucumbers, 1-inch
  • 3-4 tomatoes, diced, 1-inch
  • 1 serrano chili or ½ green bell pepper, small diced
  • ½ onion, small diced
  • 3 tablespoons fresh parsley, flat leaf, chopped
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ¼ teaspoon pepper
  • sprinkle sumac

Instructions
 

  • Slice the cucumbers in half lengthwise. Then, use a spoon to scoop out the watery center. Slice the cucumbers into 1-inch pieces. Then, cut the tomatoes to the same size. Add them to a serving bowl.
  • Chop the red onion and serrano peppers into smaller pieces and add them to the bowl with the cucumbers and tomatoes.
  • Top the vegetables with parsley, olive oil, lemon juice, salt, and pepper; stir to combine. Garnish with a sprinkle of sumac, and enjoy! 

Notes

Preparation Tips:
  • Aim to have an equal amount of tomatoes and cucumber, and adjust my measurements according to the vegetable sizes you have access to. 
  • Cut the cucumbers and tomatoes to the same size for consistency. The onions and serrano chilies should be smaller to complement each bite.
  •  
 
Nutrition Disclosure:
  • The nutritional information shown is an estimate provided by an online nutrition calculator. It should not be considered a substitute for professional advice.

Nutrition

Serving: 1 ServingCalories: 133kcalCarbohydrates: 10gFat: 10gSodium: 299mgFiber: 2gSugar: 5g
Did you make this recipe? Let me know how it turned out for you! Leave a comment below and follow @thejamilghar or tag #thejamilghar on Instagram!
Recipe Rating