15-Minutes Calamari Salad Recipe – Delightful Seafood Dish

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I recommend trying homemade Calamari Salad Recipe for a refreshing dish. This salad combines tender calamari rings with a medley of crisp vegetables. You’ll want to dress it in a light, citrusy vinaigrette. One of the key ingredients, fresh herbs, enhances the flavor. Commonly, I add olives and capers for a briny touch. This salad is great to serve as an appetizer or a light meal, offering a delightful and healthy option.

Are you tired of the same old salads? Let’s venture into the world of unique flavors with a Calamari Salad Recipe

This dish, inspired by my travels across Middle-Eastern and European countries, offers a culinary twist. 

Plate and Salad

In bustling Mediterranean markets and quaint seaside eateries, I discovered the charm of this seafood delight. I was skeptical when a friend first served it at a dinner party. 

Yet, my perspective was transformed by the combination of tender calamari with crisp, fresh greens dressed in a zesty vinaigrette. 

This recipe isn’t just a crowd-pleaser; it’s a conversation starter. It’s perfect for those evenings when your family craves something different yet delicious. 

Let’s dive into preparing this exotic yet easy-to-make Calamari Salad that promises to bring a taste of my travels right to your table.

What Is Calamari Salad?

Calamari Salad is a delightful seafood dish, often featuring tender, lightly cooked calamari rings as its star ingredient. 

Calamari is commonly mixed with fresh, crisp vegetables like bell peppers, onions, and cucumbers in this salad. 

The salad is usually dressed in a light, citrus-based vinaigrette, enhancing the flavors with a tangy and refreshing note. 

Herbs like parsley or basil add a fragrant touch. This dish is a popular choice in coastal cuisines and Mediterranean-inspired menus.

Offering a fresh, healthy, and flavorful option for seafood lovers and salad enthusiasts alike.

What Is The Origin Of Calamari Salad Recipe?

The origin of Calamari Salad traces back to the Mediterranean region, a culinary hotspot known for its rich seafood traditions

Historically, coastal communities around the Mediterranean Sea have used calamari, a type of squid, as a staple in their diets. 

The recipe evolved as a way to enjoy this abundant local resource. Influenced by the diverse cultures of the Mediterranean, each region added its unique twist to the salad. 

Italian, Greek, and Spanish cuisines, in particular, have been instrumental in refining and popularizing the dish, blending local herbs, vegetables, and dressings to create the Calamari Salad we know and enjoy today.

Calamari Salad Recipe

Ingredients List

Red Onion, Minced1/4 Cup
Celery, Chopped1/2 Cup
Roasted Red Peppers, Chopped1/2 Cup
Fresh Parsley, Minced (No Stems)1/4 Cup
Garlic, Sliced1 Clove
Extra Virgin Olive Oil2 Tbsp
Lemons1 1/2
Red Wine Vinegar1 1/4 Tsp
Salt and Fresh PepperTo Taste
Fresh Squid, Tube and Tentacles Cleaned1 Lb

What Are The Variations Suitable For The Calamari Salad Recipe?

Calamari Salad is versatile, allowing numerous variations to suit different tastes and dietary needs.

Mediterranean Calamari Salad

Toss calamari with olives, tomatoes, and feta for a taste of the Mediterranean.

Grilled Calamari And Citrus Salad

Combine grilled calamari with citrus segments for a refreshing, zesty twist.

Spicy Calamari Mango Salad

Add diced mango and a hint of spice for a tropical and fiery kick.

Asian Sesame Calamari Salad

Infuse an Asian flair with a sesame soy dressing, crisp vegetables, and sesame seeds.

Avocado And Corn Calamari Salad

Creamy avocado and sweet corn complement the tender calamari.

Fennel And Orange Calamari Salad

Pair calamari with thinly sliced fennel and orange segments for a crisp and citrusy ensemble.

Cilantro Lime Calamari Salad

Refreshing cilantro and zesty lime add brightness to the dish.

What Are The Tips For The Calamari Salad Recipe?

  • Freshness is Key: Use fresh squid for the best flavor and texture. Fresh herbs and vegetables also make a significant difference.
  • Cook Calamari Just Right: Overcooking calamari can make it rubbery. It’s best cooked quickly over high heat for a tender outcome.
  • Balance Flavors: A good balance of acidity from lemon juice, vinegar, and salt and pepper enhances the calamari’s taste.
  • Chill Before Serving: Letting the salad chill in the refrigerator slightly allows flavors to meld together.
  • Customize to Taste: Feel free to adjust the ingredients and seasoning according to your preference.
  • Presentation Matters: Serve the salad on a bed of greens or with a lemon wedge for an appealing presentation.
  • Safety First: If preparing beforehand, store the salad in the refrigerator to keep it fresh and safe to eat.

Are There Any Unusual Or Exotic Ingredients That Work Well With Calamari Salad Recipe?

  • Capocolla: This Italian cured meat adds a savory, spicy touch.
  • Preserved Lemons: Common in North African cuisine, they bring a unique, intense lemon flavor.
  • Kalamata Olives: A Greek staple, these olives offer a rich, fruity depth.
  • Sumac: A Middle-Eastern spice, sumac adds a tangy, lemony taste.
  • Pomegranate Seeds: They contribute a sweet, tart crunch, and a vibrant pop of color.
  • Chorizo: A spicy Spanish sausage that can add a smoky, robust flavor.
  • Mango: For a sweet, tropical twist.
  • Saffron: This luxurious spice offers a subtle earthy flavor and a golden hue.
  • Fennel Bulb: Its licorice-like taste complements the calamari wonderfully.
  • Wasabi or Sriracha: For a spicy kick.
Bowl and Salad

Recipe Directions

  • Prepare the Squid: Rinse the squid thoroughly. Slice the tubes into 1/2-inch rings and leave the tentacles whole. Set them aside.
  • Make the Salad Base: In a medium bowl, combine the minced red onion, sliced garlic, chopped celery, chopped roasted red peppers, minced fresh parsley, olive oil, juice from 1 1/2 lemons, red wine vinegar, salt, and fresh pepper. Mix well.
  • Cook the Squid: Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add the squid (rings and tentacles) and cook for 2 minutes or until opaque. Be careful not to overcook.
  • Chill the Squid: Immediately transfer the cooked squid to the bowl of ice water to stop the cooking process and keep the squid tender. Let it cool for about 3 minutes.
  • Combine and Chill: Drain the squid well and add it to the salad base. Toss gently to combine all ingredients. Refrigerate the salad for at least 30 minutes to allow the flavors to meld.
  • Serve: Serve the Calamari Salad chilled, optionally garnishing with extra parsley or lemon wedges.

Healthy eating made easy .Try flavorful Calamari salad Recipe for an unforgettable seafood experience.

What Herbs And Spices Work Well In Calamari Salad Recipe?

  • Parsley: Offers a fresh, clean taste.
  • Basil: Adds a sweet, herbaceous note.
  • Mint: Provides a cool, refreshing touch.
  • Dill: Its delicate, slightly anise-like flavor complements the seafood well.
  • Cilantro: Brings a bright, citrusy profile.
  • Oregano: A classic in Mediterranean dishes, it offers earthy, slightly bitter tones.
  • Chili Flakes: For a hint of heat.
  • Paprika: A pinch can add sweetness and color.
  • Garlic Powder: For a milder garlic flavor.
  • Lemon Zest: Enhances the citrusy notes.
  • Cumin: Adds a warm, earthy spice.
  • Fennel Seeds: Their licorice-like flavor pairs well with seafood.
  • Saffron: Imparts a luxurious, subtle taste and aroma.
  • Black Pepper: Freshly ground for a spicy kick.
Calamari Salad Recipe

Nutritional Values

Calamari Salad is not only delicious but also nutritious. Thanks to the squid, it’s rich in protein and low in calories, making it an excellent choice for those monitoring their intake. 

The salad provides essential vitamins and minerals from the fresh vegetables and herbs

Olive oil adds healthy fats, particularly monounsaturated fats, which are beneficial for heart health. 

Furthermore, lemon juice offers a good dose of vitamin C, aiding in immune system support and skin health.

What Are The Total Calories In The Salad?

The total calorie count in Calamari Salad varies based on the specific ingredients and their quantities

However, a typical serving primarily comprises fresh squid, a lean source of protein, and various vegetables, which are naturally low in calories. 

When combined with olive oil and a light dressing, a standard serving of this salad can range from 150 to 250 calories. 

This makes it a healthy, low-calorie option ideal for those seeking nutritious yet flavorful meals.

Health Benefits Of The Calamari Salad Recipe

High In Protein

Squid is a lean protein source, essential for muscle building and repair.

Rich In Omega-3 Fatty Acids

Promotes heart health and brain function.

Low In Calories

This makes it an excellent option for weight management.

Source Of Essential Vitamins And Minerals

Including vitamin B12, zinc, and iron, which support immune function and energy levels.

Contains Healthy Fats

Olive oil provides monounsaturated fats, beneficial for heart health.

High In Antioxidants

Thanks to the fresh herbs and vegetables, which combat oxidative stress.

Good For Skin And Hair Health

Due to the presence of vitamins and minerals.

Aids Digestion

High in dietary fiber from vegetables.

Anti-inflammatory Properties

From ingredients like garlic and lemon.

Boosts Immune System

Vitamin C from lemon juice enhances immune defense.

Nutrition Table

Nutrition Table

What Dressings Are Best Served With Calamari Salad Recipe?

  • Lemon-Herb Vinaigrette: A classic choice, combining olive oil, fresh lemon juice, and herbs like parsley or dill.
  • Balsamic Reduction: Adds a sweet and tangy depth, great with Mediterranean-style salads.
  • Tahini Dressing: Creamy and nutty, ideal for adding a Middle Eastern twist.
  • Garlic Aioli: Provides a rich, savory element that complements the calamari.
  • Chili-Lime Dressing: Offers a spicy kick with a citrusy zest, perfect for a more adventurous palate.
  • Ginger-Soy Dressing: Ideal for an Asian-inspired version, blending soy sauce, ginger, and a hint of sweetness.
  • Caper and Anchovy Dressing: Briny and bold, enhancing the seafood flavors.
  • Creamy Yogurt Dressing: Light and refreshing, with a hint of garlic or cucumber.
  • Avocado Dressing: A creamy, healthy-fat-rich option that blends well with the calamari.
  • Citrus Vinaigrette: A blend of various citrus juices with olive oil for a bright, fresh dressing.
Calamari Salad Recipe

Calamari salad perfection: fresh, quick, and delicious – a culinary adventure for your palate.

Are There Any Unique Toppings That Can Elevate The Crunch Factor Of Calamari Salad?

  • Toasted Pine Nuts: Offers a nutty, buttery crunch.
  • Crispy Shallots: Thinly sliced and fried for a delightful texture.
  • Panko Breadcrumbs: Lightly toasted for an extra crispy element.
  • Sesame Seeds: Toasted, they add a subtle crunch and a hint of flavor.
  • Croutons: Homemade or store-bought for a classic crunchy bite.
  • Chopped Walnuts: Provides a rich, earthy texture.
  • Fried Capers: When lightly fried, they pop in flavor and texture.
  • Radishes: Thinly sliced for a peppery, crunchy addition.
  • Sunflower Seeds: A small addition for a big textural change.
  • Chow Mein Noodles: Offers an Asian-inspired crispy twist.
Salad Recipe

What Is The Difference Between Homemade And Store-Bought Calamari Salad Recipe?

  • Freshness: Homemade salads often use fresher ingredients, especially the calamari, which can significantly impact texture and flavor.
  • Customization: When preparing at home, you can tailor the recipe to your taste preferences, adjusting ingredients and seasonings.
  • Healthier Options: Homemade versions typically contain fewer preservatives and additives, making them healthier.
  • Cost-Effectiveness: Preparing the salad at home can be more economical than store-bought options.
  • Flavor Depth: Home cooking allows for better control over the cooking process, ensuring perfectly cooked calamari and well-balanced flavors.
  • Variety of Ingredients: You can experiment with a wider range of ingredients and unconventional additions at home.
  • Texture Control: Homemade salads can be adjusted for the preferred texture, especially regarding the calamari’s tenderness and the crunch of vegetables.
  • Portion Sizes: You can easily scale a homemade recipe to suit the number of servings needed.
  • Nutritional Control: You can make healthier choices, like using less salt or healthier oils, in a homemade version.
  • Enjoyment of Cooking: Making the salad at home can be a satisfying and enjoyable experience.

How Can You Store Or Preserve The Calamari Salad Recipe Leftovers?

  • Refrigerate Promptly: Store leftovers in the refrigerator within two hours of serving.
  • Airtight Containers: Use airtight containers to keep the salad fresh and prevent odor absorption.
  • Separate Components: Store the dressing separately from the salad to maintain texture.
  • Consume Quickly: Enjoy the leftovers within 1-2 days for the best quality.
  • Avoid Freezing: Freezing is not recommended as it can significantly alter the texture of the calamari and vegetables.
  • Keep Cold: Keep the salad cold if serving again, especially during gatherings.
  • Check Before Consuming: Always check for any signs of spoilage before eating leftovers.
  • Gentle Stir: Stir the salad gently before serving again to redistribute flavors.
Calamari Salad Recipe

Special Tools & Equipment List

  • Large Pot: For boiling the calamari.
  • Slotted Spoon: To remove the calamari from boiling water easily.
  • Mixing Bowls: Various sizes for preparing the salad and dressing.
  • Chef’s Knife: For chopping vegetables and herbs.
  • Cutting Board: Preferably separate boards for seafood and vegetables.
  • Citrus Juicer: To extract fresh lemon juice efficiently.
  • Measuring Cups and Spoons: For accurate measurement of ingredients.
  • Salad Spinner: Helpful for drying washed greens.
  • Vegetable Peeler: For any vegetable ribbons or garnishes.
  • Grater or Zester: For lemon zest or fine grating of garlic.
  • Whisk: For emulsifying the dressing.
  • Sieve or Colander: To drain the squid after boiling.
  • Ice Bath Setup: A bowl for ice water to cool the calamari quickly.
  • Salad Tongs: For mixing salad and serving the salad.

Frequently Asked Questions 

Can I Use Frozen Calamari For This Salad?

Yes, you can use frozen calamari. It’s a convenient option and widely available. Thaw it properly in the refrigerator overnight before use. 

Gently pat it dry to remove excess moisture before cooking. Keep in mind that the texture might slightly differ from fresh calamari, but it still makes a delicious salad.

How Can I Prevent The Calamari From Becoming Rubbery?

The key is in the cooking time. Calamari should be cooked briefly, usually just 1-2 minutes in boiling water. 

Overcooking is what leads to a rubbery texture. Immediately transferring it to an ice bath after boiling also helps to halt the cooking process.

Is Calamari Salad Healthy?

Yes, Calamari Salad is quite healthy. It’s rich in protein, low in calories, and includes a variety of vegetables. 

The olive oil provides healthy fats, and the lemon juice offers vitamin C. 

As with any dish, moderation is vital to manage calorie and sodium intake, especially with dressings and salt.

 What Are Some Good Side Dishes To Serve With Calamari Salad?

Calamari Salad pairs well with light, Mediterranean-inspired dishes. Consider serving it with crusty bread, a simple pasta dish, or a quinoa salad

It complements grilled vegetables, risotto, or a light fish dish for a more elaborate meal.

Can This Salad Be Made In Advance?

Yes, you can prepare Calamari Salad in advance. Letting it sit in the refrigerator for a few hours can enhance its flavors as the ingredients meld together. 

However, it’s best consumed within 1-2 days. If preparing ahead, consider adding the dressing close to serving time to maintain the best texture.

15-Minutes Calamari Salad Recipe - Delightful Seafood Dish

15-Minutes Calamari Salad Recipe – Delightful Seafood Dish

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Course: Salads


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This Calamari Salad Recipe is a delightful blend of tender calamari, crisp vegetables, and a zesty dressing, creating perfect flavors and textures. Ideal for a light lunch or as a sophisticated starter, it brings a touch of Mediterranean flair to any table. The salad is visually appealing and packed with nutrition, making it a healthy and satisfying choice.


  • 1/4 Cup 1/4 Red Onion, Minced

  • 1/2 Cup 1/2 Celery, Chopped

  • 1/2 Cup 1/2 Roasted Red Peppers, Chopped

  • 1/4 Cup 1/4 Fresh Parsley, Minced (No Stems)

  • 1 Clove 1 Garlic, Sliced

  • 2 Tbsp 2 Extra Virgin Olive Oil

  • 1 1/2 1 1/2 Lemons

  • 1 1/4 Tsp 1 1/4 Red Wine Vinegar

  • Salt And Fresh Pepper (To Taste)

  • 1 Lb 1 Fresh Squid, Tube And Tentacles Cleaned

Step-By-Step Directions

  • Prepare The Squid
    Rinse the squid under cold water.
    Carefully slice the squid tubes into 1/2-inch rings.
    Leave the tentacles whole.
    Set both aside on a clean plate.
  • Set Up Ice Bath
    Fill a large bowl with ice and cold water.
    This will quickly cool down the squid after cooking to stop it from overcooking.
  • Make The Salad Base
    In a medium-sized mixing bowl, combine the following ingredients:
    1/4 cup of minced red onion.
    1 clove of sliced garlic.
    1/2 cup of chopped celery.
    1/2 cup of chopped roasted red peppers.
    1/4 cup of minced fresh parsley (ensure no stems are included).
    2 tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil.
    Juice from 1 1/2 lemons.
    1 1/4 teaspoons of red wine vinegar.
    Salt and fresh pepper to taste.
    Mix these ingredients well and set the bowl aside.
  • Cook The Squid
    Bring a pot of salted water to a boil.
    Add the prepared squid rings and tentacles to the boiling water.
    Cook for about 1 to 2 minutes until the squid becomes opaque and tender.
    Be careful not to overcook the squid as it can become rubbery.
  • Cool The Squid
    Quickly transfer the cooked squid from the boiling water to the ice bath using a slotted spoon.
    Let the squid chill in the ice bath for a few minutes. This process stops the cooking and keeps the squid tender.
  • Combine And Marinate
    Drain the cooled squid well and add it to the bowl with the other prepared ingredients.
    Gently toss everything together to ensure the squid is well coated with the dressing and the flavors are evenly distributed.
    Cover and refrigerate the salad for at least 30 minutes to allow the flavors to meld together.

Recipe Video


  • Freshness Is Crucial: Use the freshest squid available for the best taste.
  • Cooking Calamari: Overcooking can lead to a rubbery texture, so keep the boiling brief.
  • Dressing: Prepare the dressing ahead of time to let the flavors meld.
  • Serving Temperature: Serve chilled for a refreshing experience.
  • Customization: Feel free to adjust the ingredients according to your taste or dietary preferences.
  • Allergens: Be mindful of seafood allergies when serving guests.

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