Taramasalata: How to Make Greek-Style Taramasalata

Taramasalata is a Greek meze made of tarama, cod, carp, or grey mullet, salted and cured roe combined with olive oil, lemon juice, and a starchy foundation of bread or potatoes.

Variants may include garlic, lemon juice, spring onions, or peppers, almonds, or vinegar. Traditionally, you eat taramasalata in Greece on Clean Monday, which is Lent’s first day.

Taramasalata can also be bought pre-made in various Turkish and Greek markets, but due to large quantities of food coloring, it is not well received and results in an odd pink color of the dish.

Greek-Style Taramasalata

  • Author: Romae Chanice Marquez
  • Recipe Category: Appetizer
  • Cuisine: Greek

Taramasalata is a specialty Greek and Turkish dish consisting of mashed potatoes mixed with lemon juice, olive oil, breadcrumbs, and fish roe, usually made from cod, carp, or mullet. Usually, the dip is served as an appetizer or a meze platter. The whole preparation and cooking time is 30 minutes. This recipe is suitable for eight servings. 

 Taramasalata can also be bought pre-made in various Turkish and Greek markets. Photo credits: @dinewithdina / Instagram.com

Greek-Style Taramasalata Ingredients

  • 70 g breadcrumbs
  • 80 ml lemon juice
  • 300 ml water
  • 120 g cod roe paste
  • 650 ml vegetable oil

Greek-Style Taramasalata Instructions

Step 1: Breadcrumbs should be weighed and mixed with water and lemon juice.  Mix it in a food processor with the cod roe paste after it has soaked for at least fifteen minutes.

Step 2: Mix at maximum speed until it is completely smooth.

Step 3: Begin adding the oil very slowly. The mixture will be broken if you add in too much oil at once.

Step 4: Serve immediately or store for later in the refrigerator.

Greek-Style Taramasalata Additional Information

  • Per serving, this recipe has 145 calories, 14 g of total fat, 3 g of carbohydrates, and 2.1 g of protein.
  • The total cook time is 30 minutes. 
  • This recipe will make eight portions. 
  • The popular Greek meze, Taramasalata, is a mixture of names from three cultures. The Turkish and Greek “tara” and “tarmac” mean “fish roe.” The rest of the term is the Italian “insalata”. Thus “fish roe salad” will be a direct translation.

About Greek-Style Taramasalata

Salată de icre is also popular in Romania and Bulgaria as a similar dip or spread. It is made with a pike or carp roe, but usually with sunflower or vegetable oil rather than olive oil, sometimes with a white bread thickener. It is produced in large quantities and is widely available in grocery stores and supermarkets, as well as being made at home, where chopped onions are usually added.

Greek cuisine has some 4,000 years of culinary tradition and is part of Greece’s history and culture. With the season and its climate, its flavors shift. Historically, Greek cooking, a precursor to Western cuisine, spread its culinary influence across Europe and beyond. This is demonstrated by several types of sweets and cooked foods it has influenced in different cuisines.

Depending on the country or culture that makes it, there are many types of roe used in this dish. Traditionally it’s carp, gray mullet, or cod smoked roe. Based on the culture of the person cooking the sauce, the latter is then combined with different ingredients. A starchy foundation of bread or a gluten-free blend of potatoes with lemon juice and olive oil are the staple ingredients. Almonds are also included at times.

Image source: bbc.co.uk


Greece has an ancient culinary tradition that dates back many millennia. Greek cuisine has evolved and absorbed many influences over the centuries and has inspired other cuisines themselves. For more international recipes, click here.

Featured Image: @rivercottagehq / Instagram.com, @whippedtheblog / Instagram.com