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25 Mediterranean diet recipe ideas based on the one of the world’s most vibrant natural foods. Plan your menu with delicious recipes full of leafy greens, vegetables, beans, whole grains and pasta. Eat well, live well!
Let’s talk about the Mediterranean Diet — it’s been ranked as number one as an overall great way to eat, and for good reason.
Usually you see the the word “diet” and gear yourself up for deprivation — am I right?
I wish it weren’t so. For me the Mediterranean diet is all about eating for pleasure and well being. It’s probably my favorite way to eat, and my Mediterranean diet recipes definitely skew in that direction.
In other words, my easy Mediterranean diet recipes deliver vibrant flavor. These meals offer more of a lifestyle approach to food that is all about pleasure, and have been developed without an overall obsession with weight loss or health.
- Mediterranean Salad recipes
- Mediterranean Soup recipes
- Mediterranean Seafood recipes
- Mediterranean Chicken recipes
- Mediterranean Vegetarian recipes
- Mediterranean Pasta recipes
Yes, it’s also good for you. But the reason I love eating this way it really tastes good. Plus that means I enjoy pasta on a regular basis!
Many of the recipes I create here on Familystyle Food as well as in my cookbook approach cooking in the Mediterranean spirit. I grew up in Italian-American family with a great appreciation for food, which absolutely influenced my appetites.
What foods are part of the Mediterranean diet?
The soul of Mediterranean food comes from countries such as Greece, Italy, Spain, Portugal, North Africa and Turkey.
Mediterranean-style meals have a good balance of protein and carbs, so plan on:
- Plants: Lot of vegetables, fruits, nuts and grains
- Generous lashings of olive oil
- Seafood and shellfish of all kinds
- Cheese and dairy (in smaller amounts)
- Meats and poultry i(n smaller amounts)
- Wine: Yes, vino! In moderation, with meals
Why it’s so good
Filling your plate with the foods I listed means you’ll be eating an abundance of antioxidants, omega-3 fatty acids (from seafood and greens) and a minimal amount of saturated fats.
There’s no better way to keep your heart and soul in top shape! Scroll through this list of delicious dishes and plan your Mediterranean menu.
25 Mediterranean Diet Recipes
** Friendly reminder: I am a recipe developer, not a dietician. I’m sharing my top Mediterranean-inspired recipes but if you have specific goals be sure to consult with your health professional.
Mediterranean salad recipes
Simple Mediterranean salads composed of leafy greens, aromatic herbs and whole grains and dressed with delicious olive oil. Meal prep these salads for the week or serve alongside pasta, seafood or chicken.
- ISRAELI COUSCOUS SALAD
- MEDITERRANEAN FARRO SALAD
- TUSCAN KALE SALAD WITH ROASTED CHICKPEAS
- TAHINI CAESAR SALAD WITH OLIVE OIL BREADCRUMBS
Mediterranean Soup Recipes
Mediterranean-style soups are full of vegetables, beans and tasty broth. They tend to be the most delicious comfort food dishes ever!
- CHORIZO CHICKPEA STEW WITH GREENS
- ITALIAN MINESTRONE VEGETABLE SOUP
- PRESSURE COOKER PASTA FAGIOLI WITH KALE
- PAPPA AL POMODORO
Mediterranean Seafood Recipes
Fish are the backbone of Mediterranean cuisine. We love them all, including shellfish like shrimp, clams, mussels, and crab as well as flaky and firm fish like cod, halibut, sea bass, tuna and swordfish.
- TOMATO BASIL SHRIMP WITH CREAMY POLENTA
- GARLIC BUTTER SHRIMP PASTA
- PARCHMENT BAKED COD WITH FENNEL AND TOMATOES
- CALAMARI WITH PASTA AND TOMATOES
Mediterranean Chicken Recipes
Chicken is easygoing, perfect to pair with zesty Mediterranean diet marinades and bold seasonings — it goes with all the lemon, spices and seasonings we love!
- MEDITERRANEAN CHICKEN KABOBS WITH TAHINI SAUCE
- GREEK LEMON CHICKEN AND POTATOES
- LEMON ZA’ATAR CHICKEN
- MOROCCAN SHEET PAN ORANGE CHICKEN
Mediterranean Vegetarian Recipes
Do you want to eat more vegetables or are you following a plant-based diet? These dishes are flavor-packed, full of colorful bell peppers, tomatoes, leafy greens, mushrooms, eggplant and more:
- PARMESAN POLENTA WITH ROASTED VEGETABLES
- CHEESY BAKED STUFFED PORTOBELLO MUSHROOMS
- EASY BAKED RATATOUILLE
- MUSHROOM RAGU WITH POLENTA
Mediterranean Pasta Recipes
Pasta really is the perfect way to enjoy a balanced meal in one bowl — it could be my favorite thing to eat. These recipes feature pasta sauced with vibrant, hearty vegetables you’ll crave over and over.
- ROASTED VEGETABLE LASAGNA
- MUSHROOM BOLOGNESE PASTA
- PASTA ALLA NORMA (SPICY EGGPLANT PASTA)
- BUCATINI WITH SICILIAN ALMOND PESTO
- BURST CHERRY TOMATO PASTA WITH RICOTTA
25 Mediterranean Diet Dinners: Greek Chicken Thighs with Feta Cheese
- 8 (1.3 kg) bone-in, skin-on chicken thighs
- Kosher salt
- 1 tablespoon (15 g) all-purpose flour
- 2 tablespoons (30 ml) extra-virgin olive oil
- ¼ cup (60 ml) dry white wine
- ¼ cup (60 ml) fresh lemon juice
- 1 cup (240 ml) chicken stock, or water
- 3 plump garlic cloves, grated on a Microplane or pressed
- 2 teaspoons dried Greek oregano
- 1 teaspoon crushed red chili pepper
- ½ cup (75 g) Peppadew peppers, sliced in half
- 2 tablespoons (30 ml) Peppadew liquid
- ½ cup (100 g) crumbled feta cheese
- Chopped fresh oregano and/or dill leaves
- Pat the chicken pieces dry. Season them evenly with 2 teaspoons salt. If you have time, let the chicken sit uncovered at room temperature for 30 minutes.
- Heat the oven to 400 (200C) degrees.
- Sprinkle the flour over the skin side of the chicken. Heat the olive oil over medium-high heat in a large skillet or braising pan, preferably 12-inches in diameter with 2 or 3-inch sides.
- Put the chicken in the pan skin-side down and cook until the skin begins to brown and crisp, 10-15 minutes.
- Remove the chicken to a plate and drain off all but 1 tablespoon of the fat from the pan. Pour in the wine and let it bubble for a minute, scraping up any brown bits on the bottom of the pan.
- Add the lemon juice, stock, garlic, oregano and chili to the pan. Arrange the chicken skin-side up in the pan and cover. Bake for 25 minutes.
- Remove the pan lid and stir the Peppadew peppers and liquid into the chicken. Put the pan back in the oven and bake 20 more minutes, uncovered.
- Sprinkle the feta, fresh oregano and dill over the chicken and serve.
Karen’s Notes and Tips
- I highly recommend Peppadew peppers for this dish, but if you don’t have them, sub them out with an equal amount roasted red peppers, cut into bite-size pieces. If you’re using jarred peppers, drain them, but don’t use the liquid in the recipe — it’s not as tasty as Peppadew brine.
- If you’d like a mix of light and dark meat, use 4 chicken thighs and 2 halved bone-in, skin-on breasts instead of all thighs.
- Suggestion: serve the chicken with Toasted Orzo Salad with Chickpeas