Russian salad, also known as Olivier Salad, or Salad Olivier, is a traditional salad in Russia. It is creamy, tasty, easy to make, and impossible to resist when you are offer a second helping. It is also popular in Israel, Iran, Mongolia, and South American countries like Brazil, Uruguay, Colombia, and Argentina. Potatoes, carrots, pickles, mayonnaise, onions, chicken, and eggs are typical ingredients, although the ingredients vary from place to place. The original Salad Olivier was invented in the 1860s and the original recipe was a closely guarded secret, although we do know it featured veal tongue, grouse, lettuce, caviar, capers, smoked duck, and crayfish tails. Take a look at our recipe and you will see none of those ingredients in it!

That is because when gourmet recipes get popular, the ingredients are usually replaced by ones which are more seasonal, locally available, less rare, or more affordable. That is what happened with Russian salad, although we can safely say the modern Russian salad is equally delicious, and the flavors and textures combine like a dream, making this a wonderful side dish to serve with your barbequed meat, poultry and seafood. In fact, this creamy salad goes with just about everything and even if you make a huge bowlful of it, it will still disappear fast.

Modernization of Salad Olivier

Cheaper ingredients were used in post-revolutionary Russia, including sausage or chicken instead of grouse, hard-boiled egg instead of crayfish, and peas and cucumbers rather than capers and olives. Sometimes it is molded in aspic. The most modern version features peas, egg, carrot, dill pickles or cucumber, chicken, and a mayonnaise-based dressing. The dish is popular in Spain, where it is known as ‘ensaladilla rusa’ and Greece, where it is called ‘rossiki salata’ locally. The salad is usually made without meat in Slovenia and Croatia, where it is known as French salad, and you can find it in cafes and truck stops all over Europe where it is often unfortunately prepared with basic ingredients and cheap mayonnaise-type dressing.

This salad is very tasty and it can be put together in advance, so if you are preparing all your side dishes in the morning, marinating your meat, putting all the finishing touches to your cookout, that is fine. When your guests arrive in the afternoon, you can fire up the grill and get the meat cooked to perfection, then bring out the salads from the refrigerator. If you are serving this with chicken, we suggest omitting the chicken from the salad. If you are serving it with beef or burgers, either leave the chicken in or omit it, as you prefer. Leftover Russian salad will keep for a few days in the refrigerator although you are unlikely to have leftovers.

Authentic Russian Salad Recipe
Summary: This delicious Russians salad has chicken, eggs, carrots, peas, potatoes, and onion, in a herby mayonnaise dressing. It goes beautifully with any kind of barbequed meat or fish.
Cuisine: Russian
Recipe type: Side Dish
Serves: 6
Prep time: 
Total time: 
  • 1 cooked, chopped chicken breast
  • 2 chopped hard-boiled eggs
  • 2 boiled, chopped carrots
  • ½ cup cooked peas
  • 3 boiled, chopped potatoes
  • 1 finely chopped green onion
  • ½ cup mayonnaise
  • 1 teaspoon black pepper
  • Juice of ½ lemon
  • ¼ cup finely chopped pickles or cucumber
  • 2 tablespoons milk
  • 1 teaspoon white sugar
  • ¼ cup plain yogurt
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 2 tablespoon chopped fresh cilantro or dill
  1. Combine the chicken, eggs, carrots, peas, potatoes, pickles, and green onion.
  2. Whisk the mayo with the milk and yogurt until well combined.
  3. Mix in the salt, sugar, lemon juice, and pepper.
  4. Pour the dressing into the chicken mixture.
  5. Stir gently to combine.
  6. Taste the salad and adjust the seasonings if necessary.
  7. Sprinkle over the cilantro or dill and stir.
  8. Chill for a few hours before serving.

Photo Description:

This is a popular salad not only in Russia but in many European counties as well as all over South America. The chicken, potatoes and vegetables blend beautifully with the creamy mayo-based dressing, and the delicate flavor of this side dish means it pairs wonderfully with chicken, steak, burgers, grilled fish, seafood, or anything else you are cooking on the barbeque. Present in on a bed of salad leaves and/or fresh herbs, like you see in the photo, or just as it is. Russian salad is very easy to make, and you can tweak it if you want to swap the chicken for beef or simply leave out the meat altogether.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

17 + fifteen =

Rate this recipe:  

Sign up to our newsletter!

Custom Search
Christine Szalay-Kudra

My name is Christine and I am delighted to welcome you here. Easy Barbeque Recipes aims to demystify the world of barbequing and turn anyone into a brilliant backyard chef regardless of culinary knowledge or past cooking experience. Cooking with fire is not only an easy cooking method but it is the original cooking method. An open fire was used to cook before there were such things as ovens, microwaves or crockpots. Barbequing is not just a cooking method either. It is a social event. Inviting friends over and grilling food for them is always fun and adding home-cooked food to any party is a surefire way to please a crowd. Nothing beats the incredible flavor of flame-grilled food, and you can barbeque all kinds of ingredients and recipes, including meat, poultry, fish, seafood, veggies, and even pizza.


Tasty Query - recipes search engine