Some studies have shown that those who follow a Mediterranean diet regularly have up to a 40% lower risk of heart disease!
With its heavy emphasis on fruits, vegetables, fish, olive oil, nuts and grains, the Mediterranean diet has been shown to be one of the healthiest and most effective diets around.
It’s easy to see why it’s such a fan favorite; Mediterranean cuisine is varied and delicious, making this healthy eating style an incredibly easy lifestyle to stick with for years to come.
Here are the top 10 best Mediterranean dishes to make at home.
Tabbouleh is a traditional Mediterranean dish made with finely chopped parsley, mint, tomatoes, and cracked wheat. Unlike other salads on a traditional Mediterranean diet, tabbouleh isn’t too heavy on dressing; it’s all about simplicity.
Feel free to add more lemon or herbs if you prefer a more lemony flavor! Plus, when you make your own homemade tabbouleh from scratch it has fewer calories than most store-bought varieties. And be sure not to confuse tabbouleh with tabouli!
2) Tahini Sauce
Most Mediterranean dishes contain tahini, a creamy paste made from sesame seeds. Tahini makes a great base for sauces, soups and salad dressings.
It’s particularly good with warm or roasted vegetables like broccoli or cauliflower, baked eggplant or tempeh. You can also use it as a dip for raw veggies or pita bread.
Hummus is a Mediterranean dish often made with garbanzo beans, olive oil, and tahini. It’s simple enough to make yourself but can also be found in many grocery stores or restaurants these days.
Although hummus doesn’t contain any dairy, it does have lots of healthy fats that are good for your heart and immune system, along with protein from both of its main ingredients.
When buying store-bought hummus, make sure you read labels carefully; some brands add unhealthy additives like added oils.
If you prefer your hummus without preservatives and other added ingredients, it’s easy to make it homemade; just use roasted garbanzo beans and mashed up cauliflower as a tahini substitute if needed!
If you like eggs, hash browns and spicy tomato sauce, then shakshuka is a dish that you’ll definitely want to try. It’s made with eggs poached in a thick tomato sauce along with vegetables.
Many people love it so much that they have it for breakfast or brunch! However, shakshuka is also popular as an appetizer (similar to tapas) or even a light meal for dinner.
This dish is traditionally made with red peppers and spicy jalapeno but you can use any type of pepper you prefer. There are also many variations of meat added depending on your preference, which makes shakshuka a versatile and easy recipe to make at home.
5) Fattoush Salad
This traditional Lebanese salad is perfect for a simple meal or a side dish. Fattoush, translated as crumbled, is traditionally made with pieces of pita bread.
This lighter version replaces it with chopped vegetables and herbs tossed in olive oil and lemon juice. The tartness of the lemon balances out any strong flavors in your salad mix!
Here’s how to make fattoush salad: Chop up a cucumber, red onion, grape tomatoes, fresh parsley and mint leaves into small cubes. Set aside.
6) Baba Ghanoush
Baba ghanoush is a favorite Mediterranean dish that’s traditionally made with eggplant. The eggs are mixed with lemon juice, olive oil, tahini, garlic and other spices and then pureed.
Because it contains such rich flavors, baba ghanoush goes well as a dip or spread on pita bread or served with crackers as an appetizer.
It can also be served as a side dish alongside hummus or stuffed into pita bread along with meat and veggies for lunch or dinner.
7) Halloumi Cheese
Halloumi is a semi-hard, unripened brined cheese that originated in Cyprus. This firm, salty cheese contains high levels of protein and low amounts of fat and carbohydrates.
It is normally fried in a pan until golden brown or eaten raw with dips. When cooking halloumi, it should be flipped frequently until all sides are golden brown and crispy.
With only 71 calories per 100 grams, halloumi is an excellent source of protein; in addition to its nutritional benefits, it’s also delicious.
In fact, once you try halloumi fried or baked in a few minutes with just your oven, there’s no going back!
The best dish is Greek. Tzatziki is a yogurt-based sauce used in Mediterranean dishes that can be served as a spread or dip. The sauce is made with cucumbers, garlic, and herbs like dill and mint.
Use it on chicken kebabs or as a side for hummus and pita bread. You can make your own Tzatziki by combining plain yogurt, olive oil, lemon juice, salt, pepper, dill weed and mint leaves in a blender until it becomes smooth and creamy. This recipe makes two cups of Tzatziki sauce. It will last four days in your refrigerator if you make it early enough.
9) Pita Bread Pitas With Vegetables and Cucumber Dip
Pita bread is a great option for Mediterranean dishes. Like many other Mediterranean foods, it’s high in protein, thanks to its wheat content.
It also has soluble fiber, which can help keep you full between meals. You can serve pitas with almost any type of vegetable or dip.
In fact, they make a perfect complement for hummus and baba ghanoush recipes. For an added layer of flavor and crunch, try serving them with roasted vegetables such as eggplant or zucchini slices.
Cut your vegetables into bite-sized pieces that will fit inside your pita bread easily, and then toss them with a little bit of olive oil and roast them in your oven until they reach golden brown perfection.
Moussaka is an Eastern Mediterranean dish of layers of roasted eggplant and sautéed ground beef or lamb, covered with a creamy béchamel sauce and baked.
Originally from Turkey, but also popular in Greece, Bulgaria, Albania and other Balkan countries. For vegetarian moussaka, substitute finely chopped mushrooms for the meat.
Serve over rice or pasta for a hearty main course. Prepare Time: 20 minutes Cook Time: 1 hour Total Time: 1 hour 20 minutes Servings: 4-6 servings Calories per serving: 282kcal Ingredients 2 pounds Eggplant (chopped into large pieces) Olive Oil Chopped Garlic Oregano Sautéd Ground Beef.
With so many delicious Mediterranean dishes out there, it can be hard to choose which ones to make at home. This list of the top 10 best Mediterranean dishes will give you some inspiration in choosing what’s right for your family and lifestyle while giving you the chance to try new things and expand your culinary horizons.