The beautiful bounty of summer vegetables rarely needs much adornment and this Crispy Crunchy Cucumber Salad is a classic example of simplicity allowing the vegetable to shine.
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You just need some cucumbers and red onion and for the dressing, you only need olive oil, red wine vinegar, and sea salt and freshly ground pepper.
The secret to this salad is in the cutting!
I use a mandoline to cut the cucumber into 1/16-inch slices. Yes, that's thin. But I love the super thin slices for this salad. If you don't have a mandoline, use a sharp chef's knife, work slowly, and cut the slices as thinly as possible.
You can also cut the onion on the mandoline, but I'm not that brave! I definitely use my chef's knife for that.
What kind of cucumbers can I use?
The simple answer is "any variety that you like"!
- These are standard cucumbers which are not my preference, but they came in my produce delivery. Standard cucumbers usually have large seeds and if there seems to be an inordinate amount, I'll cut the cucumber in half lengthwise and scrape them out before slicing.
- English cucumbers are delicious! They are sweeter and have small seeds, if any at all.
- I LOVE Persian cucumbers! They are small, always crunchy, and delicious.
- Whatever variety you use, you'll need 1.5-2 pounds.
To peel or not to peel ...
I recommend not peeling or only peeling strips. There is so much nutrition in the peel and I opt to keep it! Besides that dark green adds so much beauty to this salad!
Is red onion required?
Of course not. You could opt for a sweet variety like Walla Walla or Vidalia. You can even use a white or yellow onion. I use the red because it is so pretty. And it tastes good, too!
How to serve Crispy Crunchy Cucumber Salad
You can eat this salad on its own ... as I often do on a hot summer day! It's also delicious with sandwiches, piled on salmon burgers, accompanying grilled salmon or roast chicken. And don't throw that juice away! Drink it straight up, or use it in a cocktail with sparkling water. I know sounds strange, but it's really refreshing!
Other salads you might like:
Crispy Crunchy Cucumber Salad
- 3 medium cucumbers 1½-2 pounds
- 1 small red onion
- ¼ cup olive oil
- ⅓ cup red wine vinegar
- Sea salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
- Using a mandoline, slice the cucumbers about 1/16 of an inch thick. If you don't have a mandoline, slice them as thinly as possible with a chef's knife.
- Cut the onion into quarters and slice each quarter as thinly as possible. If you're brave enough, you can do it on the mandoline.
- Pour the olive oil and red wine vinegar over the thinly sliced cucumbers and onions. Stir to coat the slices well. Add salt and pepper liberally to taste.