Mar 13

Hungarian Cucumber Salad {Uborka Saláta}

Cucumber Salad Recipe (Uborka Saláta)

Though cucumbers are not quite in season yet, I've been craving this light and creamy cucumber salad that has been making an appearance on our dinner table at family gatherings -- and for no special reason at all -- for about as long as I can remember.

It's the perfect accompaniment for the Virtual Easter Dinner that I'm participating in, and for those of you watching your wallets, it's a relatively frugal recipe as well.

Virtual Easter Dinner Potluck

The cast of characters in this recipe includes fresh cucumbers, a large onion, and sour cream, among a few other staples that you likely already have in your pantry right now.

Slice up both the cucumbers and the onion very thin.

You could use a mandolin or a food processor if you prefer, but I opted to do it by hand, as that was the way I learned this recipe many years ago.

Then you give them a generous salting and let them marinate for about an hour. The salt will help draw the water out, and giving them a good stir every so often will help this process along.

Now it's time to get your hands a little dirty! Reach in and grab a handful of the cucumber and onion mixture and squeeze out as much water as you can. Get the kids involved in this step -- trust me, they'll love it. Continue to do this for the rest of the mixture.

Whisk together the sour cream, vinegar, water, and ground pepper to taste, and stir together with the cucumber mixture. You can serve it right away, or refrigerate it for a couple of hours to help temper the onion if you're not a fan of raw onions. I like to sprinkle a little paprika on top for presentation, but it's not a necessary ingredient.

Hungarian Cucumber Salad

Hungarian Cucumber Salad

This light and creamy cucumber salad has been making an appearance on our dinner table for about as long as I can remember.


  • 3 cucumbers
  • 1 large onion
  • salt
  • 1 cup sour cream
  • 3 tablespoons vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons water
  • freshly ground black pepper
  • paprika


  1. Peel the cucumbers and slice both the cucumbers and onions very thin.
  2. Place them in a large bowl and salt them generously. Allow them to marinate for about one hour.
  3. Grab handfuls of the cucumber and onion mixture and squeeze as much water out as you can.
  4. Whisk together the sour cream, vinegar, water, and freshly ground pepper to taste. Stir into cucumber mixture.
  5. Serve immediately or refrigerate to mellow. Sprinkle paprika over the top for presentation if desired.

by Tara | 19 comments

  • mihla

    I've been making these for years, but never thought of squeezing out excess moisture. I always just sprinkled the cucumbers with salt and let them set for awhile, then pouring off the water. But, they always ended up too watery anyway.

    Thanks for the tip!

  • HoosierHomemade

    Looks yummy! Thanks for sharing Tara!

  • Tiffany

    That sounds like a perfect springtime salad and a nice complement to other Easter dishes.

  • Cindydickerson

    Your making me hungry! It looks so good.

  • Elke

    I add to mine Dillweed and then it's the German Version and so good also.

    • Tara @ Unsophisticook

      That sounds like a tasty variation -- will have to try it!

  • Laura

    I have similar cucumber salad that I love but it doesn't have the creamy aspect. Gonna have too try this one.

  • Peboes

    Love the recipe! Been making it for years. Guess where I got the recipe???????

    • Tara @ Unsophisticook

      Actually, now that I think about it, I'm not sure where it originated! I remember grandma and grandpa both making it, but I'm not sure which side of the family it came from...

  • Danielle Turner

    I love that you can make this with just a handful of ingredients. Sounds delicious!

  • Linda Kyle

    I've made a similar Mix but with a Different Vinegar. I cant wait to Use Your Recipe with my Slightly Sweet *RICE WINE VINEGAR* - it's sounding Delicious!

  • ahorne

    The first part of this recipe is exactly like my grandfather's recipe for cucumber salad; instead of mixing in sour cream, he added vinegar, oil, and sugar.  I've made the sour cream version before without salting and squeezing.  Will give it a try. Thanks!

  • Sarah

    I would like to know if it could be made 3 days earlier since we are going to our Hungarian family reunion and would like to make it ahead of time?

    • Tara @ Unsophisticook

      Sarah, I wouldn't recommend making it more than a day ahead of time. The cucumbers will still let off some water after it's made, which will cause the "sauce" to separate after some time goes by. It's a staple at our reunions!

  • Nilufer

    We have an Indian version of this. We use lemon juice instead of vinager, yoghurt in place of sour cream, and finely chopped mint and cilantro. Ours is called "Raita" Then we sprinkle ground cumin. Similar idea, and super refreshing! I'll have to try yours now!

  • Jim

    loved this recipe, but I added 2 good sized soup spoons of hellmans mayo, yummy!!

  • Christine

    I really just want to thank you. My mother made this salad when I was growing up and I always loved it. She passed 15 years ago, and for the life of me I couldn't remember this recipe. Thank you for sharing this.

  • Wendy All

    This is similar to my Hungarian grandmother's recipe. She used to pride herself on how thin she could slice the cucumbers. I disagree with adding black pepper to the recipe, it can overwhelm the subtlety of the paprika.

    I also remember my grandmother using a little fresh dill in the recipe, her family was from the more northern region of Hungary.

  • Violet

    I just made this tonight! My favorite salad. I use a mandolin to slice it very thin and it works quickly. I also will substitute green onion for the yellow sometimes as my hubby is not very fond of raw onions. I made chicken parikash with noki to go along with it, My favorite Hungarian meal! It was fantastic!

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