Salad nicoise recipe is a classic French salad that is full of tuna, potatoes, tomatoes, olives and eggs. This recipe includes a flavorful fresh herb vinaigrette that you’ll want to eat on everything!
Ingredients for Salad Nicoise Recipe
For the Nicoise Salad:
- Hard boiled eggs – Boil the eggs any way you like, but I like to cook them in my Instant Pot. After peeling the eggs, cut them into quarters lengthwise.
- Red potatoes – Red potatoes hold their shape better after cooking, so they’re great for salads.
- Green beans – Steam the green beans until they are bright green and “just” tender. Your salad will have a nice, hearty crunch!
- Tuna fish – You can use your favorite brand of canned tuna in this recipe. The vinaigrette dressing gives the tuna a burst of additional flavor.
- Spring greens – Any kind of fresh greens will work! I like to use a classic spring mix.
- Cherry tomatoes – Adds a splash of color and sweetness to the salad.
- Nicoise olives – These olives have an intense, savory flavor. If you can’t find nicoise olives, kalamata olives are a good substitute.
For the Fresh Herb Vinaigrette:
- Red wine vinegar
- Garlic clove
- Dijon mustard
- Dried thyme
- Salt and pepper
- Basil leaves
- Extra-virgin olive oil
How to Make the Herb Vinaigrette
- Add the shallot, garlic, mustard, thyme, salt and pepper to your blender or small food processor.
- Pour the oil into the blender in a slow, steady stream, with the blender running on low speed. Then, continue blending until emulsified.
- Add basil and parsley, then pulse a few times until finely chopped.
- Transfer the dressing into a jar and set aside.
How to Make a Nicoise Salad
- Place a steamer basket inside of a large pot with an inch or two of water. Bring water to a slow boil. Add the green beans and cook until they are bright green and crisp tender.
- Place the potatoes into a large pot and add cold water to cover. Bring to a boil and cook until potatoes are tender and pierce easily with a fork. Drain the potatoes and transfer to a bowl. Allow them to cool slightly before slicing into chunks. Drizzle some of the fresh herb vinaigrette over the potatoes and toss to coat.
- Add the tuna to a bowl and drizzle with some of the vinaigrette. Use a fork to gently flake the tuna.
- Toss greens with a few tablespoons of the vinaigrette until lightly coated.
To serve the salad:
- Divide the greens amongst individual plates
- Arrange the beans, potatoes, tuna, eggs, tomatoes, and olives over the greens in a pretty layout.
Tip: Tossing the potatoes with some of the fresh herb vinaigrette when they’re still warm allows them to absorb the flavor. The dressing also adds a much-need flavor boost to the canned tuna!
Can I make the salad ahead of time?
The herb vinaigrette dressing can be made up to 3 days in advance. In addition, you can also cook the eggs, green beans and potatoes in advance. Then, simply store them in the refrigerator until you’re ready to assemble the meal.
What can I serve with salad nicoise?
What should you make for DINNER TONIGHT?
Check out my Gluten-Free Tried-and-True Dinner Recipes!
Salad Nicoise (with Fresh Herb Dressing)
Fresh Herb Vinaigrette:
- 1/4 cup red wine vinegar
- 1 shallot, chopped
- 1 small garlic clove, minced
- 2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
- 1/4 teaspoon dried thyme
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon pepper
- Salt and fresh ground black pepper
- 8 fresh basil leaves
- 1/4 cup parsley
- 3/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
For the Salad:
- 4 hard boiled eggs, quartered
- 1/2 lb red potatoes
- 2 handfuls of green beans
- 2 5 oz cans of tuna
- 10 ounces spring greens
- 1 cup cherry tomatoes, halved
- 1/2 cup nicoise olives, or kalamata
Fresh Herb Vinaigrette:
- In a blender or small food processor, add the vinegar, shallot, garlic, mustard, thyme, salt and pepper. With blender running slowly pour in the oil and blend until emulsified, about 15 seconds.
- Add basil and parsley and pulse a few times until finely chopped. Pour into a jar and set aside.
For the Salad:
- COOK THE POTATOES: Place potatoes in cold water to cover. Bring to a boil and cook until tender. About 15-20 minutes until they pierce easily. Drain potatoes and transfer to a bowl. Let cool slightly then cut into chunks. Toss with 1/4 cup of the fresh herb vinaigrette.
- STEAM THE GREEN BEANS: Place a steamer basket in a large pot and bring water to a boil. Add the green beans and cook until they are bright green and just tender, about 5-7 minutes.
- Toss the tuna with 2-3 tablespoons of the vinaigrette, gently flaking apart with a fork. Toss greens with a few tablespoons of the vinaigrette until lightly coated and divide amongst individual plates. Arrange potatoes and beans, tuna, eggs, tomatoes, and olives over greens. Serve and enjoy!