Top 5 Best Mediterranean Side Dishes and Appetizers You Should Try

As you make your journey into the world of Mediterranean cuisine, it’s important to have a good knowledge of which side dishes and appetizers can take your culinary experience to the next level. Here are five Mediterranean side dishes and appetizers you should try next time you go to a Mediterranean restaurant.


This famous salad has a bold, but satisfying taste due to its use of dynamic ingredients including parsley, tomatoes, mint, olive oil, and lemon juice. It is popular in countries such as Lebanon and Syria, as well as other parts of the Eastern Mediterranean. Tabbouleh is great for pairing with falafel, another popular Middle Eastern dish.

Baba Ganoush

Baba ganoush, also spelled “baba ghanoush,” is a popular dip that uses an eggplant and olive oil base paired with seasonings such as lemon juice and tahini. It is best enjoyed by dipping pita bread or pita chips into it before the main entree comes out. This savory dip will whet your appetite and get you ready to enjoy the heavier meat-based dishes in Mediterranean cuisine.


Hummus is an icon of Mediterranean cuisine worldwide. Its popularity as a condiment and dip for pita bread and even regular crackers cannot be understated. This chickpea-based blend is a versatile addition to your meal, and chances are that you’ll be dipping both your meat and your bread into a dish of hummus throughout your lunch and dinner.


Moutabal is similar to baba ganoush because it is an eggplant-based dip, but its ingredients are slightly different and its spice levels are considerably higher. Moutabal is made using ingredients such as salt, garlic, and yogurt. If you’re looking for a dip that is creamier and slightly more intense than baba ganoush, look no further than moutabal.


Contrary to the image of yogurt as a sweet snack in the Western world, Labhneh blends strained yogurt, dried mint, and olive oil for a mix of salty, savory, and creamy flavors. You can eat it on its own as a dip or as part of dishes like shawarma bowls or kebab plates.

You can sample some of the best Mediterranean side dishes at restaurants like Manakish Oven & Grill, a restaurant providing Middle Eastern food in Walnut Creek, Pleasant Hill, and Concord, CA. Manakish also offers catering for Mediterranean food in Concord, CA and neighboring cities.