A Fattoush Salad (basically a bread salad) is a Middle Eastern staple and the lemon and mint dressing just brings it all together. This crunchy and zesty chopped salad is topped with homemade baked pita chips, making it a great way to use up stale pita bread. A great fridge clear out salad and a welcome addition to a BBQ or picnic.
What is a Fattoush salad?
The fattoush salad was born out of not wanting pita bread to go to waste. So, instead of throwing it away, people made it the star of another dish. Fattoush salad is basically a toasted pita salad and that is music to our ears.
Ingredients for this salad will vary wherever you see it, as the leftover pita was thrown together with whatever other leftover or seasonal ingredients were on hand. So, feel free to change it up and use what you have. It usually has a lettuce base with cucumber and tomatoes and a herby lemon dressing.
Why you will love it
- A light a fresh salad - The base of this dish is chopped salad and mixed with the lemon dressing it's a really light and fresh salad.
- Just 157 calories a bowl - Even with the pita bread it is a low calorie salad, but still filling.
- A great way to use up stale pita bread - Don't let any pita bread go to waste and use it up in this Fattoush salad.
- A delicious side to chicken dishes - This goes so well with chicken skewers. We have added serving suggestions below.
- Pita breads - This salad is a great way to use up leftover pita breads.
- Olive oil - Try to use a really good quality olive oil, as it makes up the base of the dressing and you can taste the difference.
- Ground sumac - Pronounced soo-mak, it is made from the dried and ground berries of the wild sumac flower. It is a tangy spice with a sour, acidic flavour reminiscent of lemon juice.
- Romaine lettuce - This adds lots of texture and crunch to the salad. You could swap it for another lettuce, however it wouldn't be as traditional.
- Cucumber - We used a standard English cucumber, however other varieties of cucumber would work. We didn't peel ours, however you could if you could if you don't like the skin.
- Tomatoes - Use the juiciest and ripest tomatoes that you can find. We used Roma tomatoes, however you could use basic salad tomatoes or even cherry tomatoes.
- Red onion - This adds some crunch and colour to the salad. However, if you can't tolerate raw onion, like many people can't, then you could soften it a little in a pan first.
- Radishes - Another way to add crunch and colour, as well as a nice peppery flavour. You could leave these out though.
- Lemons - A must in the dressing as it really lightens the whole salad up.
- Fresh parsley and mint - These add so much fresh flavour to the salad.
A full ingredients list with measurements is in the recipe card below.
Step by step
Prep: Preheat your oven to 190°C/375°F/Gas 5.
One: Put the chopped pita, 1 tablespoon olive oil and 1 tablespoon sumac into a baking tray season with salt and mix well. Put into the oven for 10-15 minutes until crispy. Set aside. You could fry the pita chips in a pan with some olive oil instead.
Two: In a bowl, mix together the rest of the olive oil, lemon juice, salt, pepper, garlic, sumac, parsley and mint and mix well.
Three: Chop all the salad
Four: Put the salad ingredients in a large bowl and pour over the dressing. Mix well.
Five: Divide in to bowls and top with cooked pita chips.
This is a herb packed dressing, and we aren't complaining about that. We mixed together some really good quality olive oil with loads of lemon juice (the more the better I say), a pinch of salt and pepper, a little garlic, sumac and a lot of chopped mint and parsley.
Not heard of sumac before? It's a really versatile spice that is popular in Middle Eastern cuisine and has a subtle lemon flavour to it, but less tart. It's a delicious addition to a salad dressing.
Baked pita chips
What adds a nice bit of extra crunch to this salad is the baked pita chips. One piece of advice - make loads extra as they are great for dipping in to hummus and tzatziki.
A great way to use up pita bread that is going a bit stale, chop them up in to random bits and then mix with a little olive oil, salt and sumac and then put them in the oven for 10-15 minutes until they are nice and crispy. Try not to eat them all before they get on the salad!
What to serve with a Fattoush Salad
This is a really versatile salad. If you want to keep it traditional, then it is great served with any Middle Eastern dishes. We love to serve this with chicken skewers or halloumi vegetable skewers. It's also delicious with our Vegetable Packed Koftas.
Store: If you do have any leftover fattoush salad, then it will keep in an air tight container in the fridge for up to 24 hours, but it will start to get very soggy. If you haven't tossed the salad with the dressing, then it will store in an air tight container for up to 4 days.
Freeze: We wouldn't recommend freezing this as salad does not defrost well.
Yes, you can make it in advance. However, we would recommend only adding the dressing just before serving so it doesn't get too soggy. You can chop everything up and keep it in a bowl in the fridge, with the dressing ready made too, and then mix together just before serving.
Yes, you can save yourself some time by using store bought pita chips, however these won't taste as good and they are pretty expensive to buy, but really cheap to make.
If you use gluten free pita bread and make sure that there is no cross contamination, then this can be gluten free.
Yes, this is a delicious vegan salad.
You can easily double this recipe. Just make sure that you have a bowl big enough to mix everything together.
More salad recipes
- 2 Pitta bread - cut into chunks
- 1 tablespoon Olive oil - for the pita
- 3 tablespoon Olive oil - for the dressing
- 1 tablespoon Sumac - for the pita
- 1 tablespoon Sumac - for the dressing
- 1 Romain lettuce - chopped
- 0.5 Cucumber - cut in to chunks
- 3 Tomatoes - diced
- 0.5 Red onion - thinly sliced
- 6 Radishes - chopped
- 2 Lemons - (juice only)
- 1 pinch Sea salt and black pepper
- 2 Garlic clove - crushed
- 20 g (0.33 cups) Fresh parsley - finely chopped
- 10 g (0.25 cups) Fresh mint - finely chopped
- Preheat your oven to 190℃/170°C(fan)/375℉/Gas 5.
- Put the 2 Pitta bread (chopped), 1 tablespoon Olive oil and 1 tablespoon Sumac into a baking tray and mix well. Put into the oven for 10-15 minutes until crispy. Set aside.
- In a bowl, mix together 3 tablespoon Olive oil, juice of 2 Lemons, 1 pinch Sea salt and black pepper, 2 Garlic clove, 1 tablespoon Sumac, 20 g Fresh parsley and 10 g Fresh mint and mix well.
- Put 1 Romain lettuce, 0.5 Cucumber, 3 Tomatoes, 0.5 Red onion and 6 Radishes into a large mixing bowl and pour over the dressing. Mix well.
- Divide into bowls and top with cooked pita chips.
- You could add some crumbled goats cheese for extra flavour and creaminess.
- Add some extra protein by throwing in some cooked chickpeas or lentils, but still keeping it vegetarian.
- Make extra pita chips and dip them in hummus and tzatziki.
- Use the best quality olive oil that you can afford. It really makes a difference to the taste of the dressing.
- Add some extra flavour and colour by sprinkling some pomegranate on just before serving.
The nutritional information provided is approximate and is calculated using online tools. Information can vary depending on various factors, but we have endeavoured to be as accurate as possible.