Taramosalata / Ταραμοσαλάτα (Greek Fish Roe Dip)

Salty! Creamy! Delicious! Taramosalata, or ‘taramasalata’ as I often see it written (Greeks never call it taramasalata!) is a Greek fish roe dip made from salted and cured roe (usually cod), bread, onion, lemon juice, and olive oil. It is commonly served as a meze – the small dishes served to accompany drinks – and it is one of my favorite Greek dips (Sorry, tzatziki!). The dip is eaten throughout the year, but it is especially popular on ‘clean Monday’: the first day of the Great Lent for the Greek Orthodox church, commencing the 40-day fast that ends on Easter. On this particular day taramosalata is served with a traditional flat bread named lagana, and is usually accompanied by other meze such as olives, gigantes (butter beans), and octopus, or squid.


Some years ago around the time of clean Monday I tasted taramosalata for the first time (sadly, I had neither tasted it nor heard of it before coming to Greece). Naturally, I immediately fell in love with the creamy texture and salty, slightly fishy flavor (reminiscent of cured anchovies)! I have to admit though that I have tasted many disappointing taramosalata as well: some are not salty enough (I prefer it very salty, though not everyone does), some too gloopy, others too vinegary, and there was even this one time where we were served taramosalata as a complimentary appetizer at a restaurant and we had to ask the waiter what we were served… it had no discernable flavor and was definitely lacking in roe.


I have been told that it’s also better to avoid the bright pink taramosalata that is sold commerically at supermarkets, because it is chemically dyed and often made with a lesser quality red-colored roe. The high quality taramosalata is the white variety that is made with ‘white’ (though pinkish in color) roe; the price of the orange roe is around 4 euro per kilogram, while its around 16 euro per kilogram for the white. Go figure! That’s why I never buy this chemically colored taramosalata at the supermarket and once you’ve made it yourself at home you will never want to go back either! It’s incredibly easy to make and it takes less than 10 minutes!

Advertisement -- Continue Reading Below


My recipe here requires a food processor, which I find the easiest and quickest way of making taramosalata (no need to finely grate the onion, as many other recipes require!), but you can also use an immersion blender and a bowl, a blender, or you can even use a pestle and mortar… if you want to be traditional… but slow.

The recipe below is for a salty and strongly flavoured taramosalata – just the way I like it! If you prefer a milder version use two-thirds the amount of fish roe, or add more bread, or a combination of the two. The bread can also be substituted by a mashed potato. Just play around with the ingredients until you figure out the perfect balance between flavours according to your preference!

[some of the measurements in the recipe below have been slightly adjusted on 03.03.2020 to make the taramosalata just slightly less salty (though still strong)]


Taramosalata / Ταραμοσαλάτα (Greek Fish Roe Dip)

0.0 rating
  • DF
Dip made with fish roe
  • Difficulty:Easy
  • Prep Time:5 mins
  • Cook Time:5 mins
  • Serves:10
  • Freezable:No

Nutrition per portion

  • 200g white bread, crust removed
  • 150g salted cod roe, or carp roe (tarama), or use less for a milder flavour
  • 1/2 small yellow onion, chopped
  • 1 - 2 garlic cloves
  • 75ml lemon juice (juice of 1 large, or 2 small lemons)
  • 200ml virgin olive oil, or more as needed
  • Some capers, or a black olive for decorating (optional)
  1. Cut the crusts off the white bread.
  2. Shortly soak the 200 grams of crustless bread in water. Slightly squeeze out the excess water.
  3. Put the bread in a food processor together with the fish roe, lemon juice, garlic and the chopped onion. Blend until relatively smooth.
  4. Gradually add the olive oil whilst mixing the ingredients until you get a smoother, almost creamy consistency. Use a little more olive oil, or a bit of water if necessary.
  5. Serve several scoops of the taramosalata on a plate, or in a bowl if you plan on serving all. You can decorate the dish with some capers and/or a black olive if you like.
Note: This recipe is for an entire bowl of taramosalata that can be eaten throughout the week, or served at a party. Top off leftover taramosalata with some olive oil and it can be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 5 days.  

Leave a Reply

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