Grilled cucumber is tender, juicy, and downright delicious in this vegetarian summer salad that’s perfect for cookouts. Fresh mint, feta cheese, and sliced almonds add bursts of flavor and texture. A squeeze of lemon juice and a drizzle of olive oil round out the dish!
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One of our first experiences dining out in over a year was at Martina, a restaurant in southwest Minneapolis. It was so fun being in the presence of others and enjoying a meal we didn’t make ourselves! I’m sure many of you can relate to this sentiment.
I had one of the best mushroom pastas I’ve ever tasted [my One Pot Mushroom Spaghetti is a close second, though ;-)], and we split a side of the charred cucumbers for the table. See where I’m going with this story?
Yep, the charred cucumbers at Martina are the inspiration for this grilled cucumber recipe! It had never really crossed my mind that you could grill cucumbers until I visited the restaurant.
Not only can you cook cucumbers on the grill, but you absolutely should. They are so delicious! I paired them with feta cheese and fresh mint, like the dish at Martina had, and added some sliced almonds and a simple olive oil lemon dressing.
What do grilled cucumbers taste like?
Grilled cucumbers are still fairly crunchy but become slightly tender. The cooking process elevates their juiciness, and they have a yummy charred taste from sitting on the grill.
How to Make Grilled Cucumber
- Slice the cucumbers in half lengthwise, then cut those pieces in half crosswise. Use a spoon to scoop out the seeds in the middle of each piece. Brush the pieces with olive oil, and sprinkle with salt and pepper.
- Grill the cucumbers for 2 to 3 minutes on each side until slightly charred. Remove from the grill.
- When the cucumbers are cool enough to touch, slice them into half-moon pieces.
- Add them to a mixing bowl with the other ingredients, stir, and serve!
- Cucumbers are easier to grill in long pieces than small ones. I cut my cucumbers into eight pieces, but feel free to change up the size and shape of your cucumbers depending on what kind you have.
- You can place cucumbers directly on grill grates or cook them over mesh mats. I like to cook veggies on mats to avoid them sticking to the grates or falling through the cracks.
- Grilled cucumber salad is best enjoyed right away. Leftovers can be stored in an airtight container in the fridge for a day, but they don’t keep well for longer periods.
- Feel free to mix up the ingredients if you want different flavors or have other options on hand. You could sub fresh basil or parsley for the mint, use goat cheese instead of feta cheese, and sub pumpkin seeds for the almonds (good for making this nut-free).
- Serve this grilled cucumber dish with another one of my grilled dishes: Halloumi Sandwiches with Veggies and Pesto, Grilled Stuffed Mushrooms with Caprese Salad, or the Grilled Cod Foil Packets with Vegetables. It would also be a great side to the Sweet Potato Black Bean Burgers or Black Bean and Beet Burgers.
More Cucumber Recipes
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Grilled Cucumber with Mint and Feta
- Preheat the grill to medium-high heat for 10 minutes while you prepare the cucumbers. Oil the grates with a wad of paper towels coated in oil or cooking spray (hold them with tongs while you do this). Alternatively, you can use mesh grill mats to prevent sticking.
- Prepare the cucumbers by peeling them then slicing in half lengthwise. Slice the two halves in half again crosswise, so that you have four long pieces per cucumber and eight total. Use a spoon to scoop out the seeds and discard. Brush each piece of cucumber with olive oil, and season with salt and pepper.
- Place the cucumbers on the oiled grill (or on mesh grill mats), and cook for 4 to 6 minutes on each side or until charred to your liking. Depending on your grill, it may take up to 10 minutes on each side to get a good char. Remove and let cool for a few minutes while you prepare the other ingredients.
- In a small bowl, whisk together the rest of the olive oil and lemon juice. In a separate bowl, combine the chopped mint, feta cheese, and almonds.
- When the cucumbers are cool enough to touch, slice them into half-moon pieces. Add the pieces to the bowl, drizzle with the olive oil lemon mixture, and toss until combined. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
- This dish is best enjoyed right away. Leftovers will only keep well for about a day in the fridge.
- Feel free to sub other herbs for the mint (basil, parsley, even dill) or goat cheese crumbles for the feta cheese. To make this nut-free, sub pumpkin seeds for the almonds.
Enjoy this summery side dish! – Lizzie