Easy Cucumber Salad – Eating Bird Food

This cucumber salad combines crisp cucumber slices with red onion tossed in a simple vinegar dressing. It’s refreshing, easy to make and the perfect summer side dish.

If you have a garden that’s overflowing in cucumbers this cucumber salad recipe is for you! It’s seriously so easy to whip up. All you need are cucumbers, onions and a simple vinegar dressing… that’s it!

The inspiration for this salad came from my childhood. My mom would make a very similar cucumber salad and bring it to all the summer parties, so I’m continuing the tradition!

Why You’ll Love This Recipe

  • The combination of crisp cucumbers and a tangy vinegar dressing creates a salad that is refreshing and perfect for hot summer days.
  • You only need 6 main ingredients and a few minutes to whip this salad up!
  • It pairs great with just about anything, making it a versatile side dish.
Ingredients measured out to make Easy Cucumber Salad: cucumber, red onion, vinegar, water, salt, pepper and maple syrup.

Ingredients Needed

  • cucumbers – the star of the show! Cucumbers bring a refreshing crunch to this salad. I used English cucumbers, but feel free to use whatever variety you have available to you.
  • red onion – thinly sliced red onion adds a pop of color and a slight bite.
  • white vinegar – what gives this salad its characteristic tang.
  • water – used to dilute the vinegar for a milder flavor.
  • maple syrup – a touch of natural sweetness to balance out the flavors.
  • salt and black pepper – for seasoning.
Collage of four process photos showing how to make Cucumber Salad: tossing red onions and cucumbers in a bowl with homemade dressing.

How to Make

This cucumber salad recipe couldn’t get any easier to make!

Start by thinly slicing the cucumbers and onions using a sharp knife, then add them to a large bowl.

Next, whisk the vinegar, water, maple syrup, salt and pepper in a separate small bowl.

Pour the dressing over the cucumbers and onions and toss to combine. You can serve the salad immediately or place it in the fridge to sit for 1 to 2 hours before serving. This allows the cucumbers to soak up more of the dressing. Serve with a slotted spoon when ready, and enjoy!

A cucumber salad in a large white bowl on a wooden cutting board.

Notes & Substitutions

Red onion – If you’re not a fan of red onion, feel free to use a yellow instead!

Add veggies – I love the simplicity of this salad, but if you want to add more veggies go for it! Bell peppers, cherry tomatoes, whatever sounds good to you!

Add fresh herbs – I love adding fresh herbs to my dishes and I’ve found that fresh dill pairs nicely with this salad, but feel free to use parsley or mint.

White vinegar – Apple cider vinegar will work as a good substitute for white vinegar.

A cucumber salad in a white bowl with sliced cucumbers, red onion, and a vinaigrette.

What Type of Cucumber is Best to Use?

I used English cucumbers for this salad as they’re typically sweeter, have fewer seeds and thinner skin. That said, you can use whatever variety of cucumber you want! Persian cucumbers or regular cucumbers will both work for this recipe. Just a note, that if you use Persian cucumbers, which are much smaller, you’ll want to double the amount that you use.

Do I Need to Peel The Cucumbers?

That’s totally up to you! I didn’t peel my cucumbers for this salad, but if you prefer to peel your cucumbers, go for it!

A cucumber salad in a white bowl with sliced cucumbers, red onion, and a vinaigrette.

What to Serve This Cucumber Salad With

This cucumber salad is a great summertime side dish for potlucks or BBQs. Here are some ideas on what to serve this salad with:

How to Store

This is a great make-ahead recipe for all your summer parties! Store this cucumber salad for up to 3 days in the fridge in an airtight container.

Just a note that the cucumbers will release water as they sit, so the salad might become more liquidy over time. It’s a good idea to give your salad a good stir before serving if it’s been sitting for a while.

Be sure to check out all of the cucumber recipes as well as the full collection of salad recipes on EBF!

  • Add cucumbers and onions to a medium bowl.

  • Whisk together vinegar, water, maple syrup, salt and pepper in a small bowl.

  • Pour dressing over the cucumber and onion mixture and toss to combine. Serve immediately or let soak for 1-2 hours in the fridge to let the cucumbers soak up the dressing more. Serve with a slotted spoon.

Serving: 1/4 recipe | Calories: 29kcal | Carbohydrates: 7g | Protein: 1g | Sodium: 294mg | Potassium: 171mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 4g

Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.

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