A cold Bulgarian cucumber soup perfect for warm summer nights


Of course, I had to include a cold cucumber soup in my “5 Surprising Cucumber Dishes from Around the World” series! This classic dish is seen around the globe in countless different countries, but I truly enjoyed this refreshing Bulgarian version called tarator. I loved the texture and the use of spices, both of which really elevated this yogurt-based soup.

This tarator recipe comes from Elena in Bulgaria, where many people enjoy this dish during the summer when it’s especially hot outside. Made from cucumber, yogurt, garlic, dill, olive oil, salt, and pepper, this fresh, light soup is sometimes consumed from a cup as a refreshment (which I may or may not have done)! Elena would make tarator while she studied abroad in England, as it was easy to make with simple ingredients. 

 I agree with Elena that this recipe is very simple to make. Do note that chopping the cucumber into bits instead of shredding it is essential; the satisfying crunch of each chunk makes this soup satisfying, and shredded pieces would get stuck in your teeth! In addition, don’t skip over the garlic and salt, as these flavors sing through the subtle yogurt and cucumber flavors to create this fabulous brightness, sourness, and spiciness. 

Tarator is an excellent example of a tasty, refreshing, and convenient dish. I would even liken it to tzatziki in soup form! I loved the overall taste (the dill in particular, as I’m sure you know), and I couldn’t help but try it out of a cup—I gulped it down! And I feel like every region has its own version of yogurt soup, so I would love to hear about yours in the comments.

You should try this if you’re looking for a creamy yet light dish that doesn’t feel too heavy. I even added tarator to my summertime-quick-hot-night meal roster! Let me know how you like it.

Watch the Video


  • 1 cup Plain Greek Yogurt
  • 2 Cucumbers
  • 2 Cloves of Garlic
  • Dill to taste
  • Water
  • Salt and Pepper
  • Chopped Walnuts for garnish if you want


  • Peel the cucumbers, cut them into very small cubes or grate them on a large grater and place them in a suitable bowl or deep dish.
  • Add the crushed garlic, finely chopped dill, salt and pepper
  • Add yogurt and water to get a thick soup consistency
  • Serve chilled, top with more dill or walnuts if you like them!


Recipe inspired by Bulgaria Travel
Course: Dinner, Lunch
Region: Europe
Diet: Gluten Free, Hindu, Vegetarian
Keyword: Crowd-pleaser


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