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Italian Olive Salad

Olive Salad, a light and tangy salad with green olives, crunchy celery, onion, and carrot combined with a simple white wine vinaigrette. An easy, refreshing starter or appetizer that pairs perfectly with a glass of crisp white wine.

Green olive salad in a grey bowl.


If you need an easy appetizer this Italian olive salad is one of the easiest. It has a mix of delicious flavors and textures – a little tangy with crunchy vegetables and delicious green olives.

This is an antipasto we would serve on a warm day before serving the other courses. It’s light and refreshing, a delicious way to start a meal. Or, just enjoy it on its own with some focaccia or other bread and, of course, a glass of cold wine.

Like most Italian dishes, this olive salad is simple but so delicious – the perfect flavor combination.


  • Large green olives unpitted
  • Chopped celery
  • Chopped onion
  • Chopped carrot
  • Olive oil
  • White wine vinegar
  • Salt
  • Oregano
  • Hot pepper flakes
olives in a grey bowl, some olive salad & a slice of bread on a grey plate.

How to Make It

Combine all of the ingredients in a bowl and toss to combine. The red pepper flakes are optional and can be omitted if you don’t like them. The salad is nice with a little kick of heat, so just a pinch is enough.

Chopped veggies & plain green olives in a grey bowl.

You can serve the salad right away, but it’s even better when it’s been chilled and the flavors have had a chance to mix together and develop. So, I usually make it a few hours in advance.

All the ingredients for the salad in a white bowl.

Why use unpitted olives?

Olives that are unpitted are firmer and keep their structure better than pitted ones. Pitted ones tend to be soggy and limp, which is not what we want for this salad. I preferred large green olives under water rather than oil for this recipe, but oil will also work, just drain them well.


  • You can chop the vegetables to a size you like, but I prefer them on the smaller side.
  • This salad is all about the olives so choose a ones that are a good quality brand.
  • If you have leftovers, store them in an airtight container and keep them in the refrigerator for four to five days.
Olives in a grey bowl with some on a grey plate with a slice of bread.


Is olive salad healthy?

Olives have healthy fats and combined with the vegetables the salad is healthy and light.

Can you use black olives for this recipe?

You can use whatever olives you like. It’s a good idea to use unpitted olives and if you opt for black olives you can’t go wrong with kalamata olives.

Can you use a different kind of vinegar?

White wine vinegar works very well because it’s light and tangy. You can change the flavor of the salad and use balsamic vinegar or red wine vinegar. Feel free to experiment!

This salad is wonderful all year round but especially during the warm summer months. We love to enjoy it outside with our glasses of wine. It’s even better to share it with friends and family. Enjoy!

More Salad Recipes

Salad in a grey bowl.
Green olive salad in a grey bowl.

Italian Olive Salad

Rosemary Molloy
Olive Salad, an easy salad with green olives, crunchy celery, onion, and carrot combined with a simple white wine vinaigrette. It is a refreshing appetizer.
Prep Time 15 minutes
Total Time 15 minutes
Course antipasto, Appetizer
Cuisine Italian
Servings 4 servings
Calories 162 kcal


  • 9 ounces large green olives (250 grams)
  • 2-3 tablespoons chopped celery
  • 2-3 tablespoons chopped onion
  • 2-3 tablespoon chopped carrot
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon wine vinegar (white)
  • 1-2 pinches salt
  • 1 teaspoon oregano
  • 1-2 pinches hot pepper flakes (if desired)


  • In a medium to large bowl toss the olives with the chopped celery, onion and carrot add the olive oil and wine vinegar and toss to combine. Add the salt, oregano and hot pepper flakes, combine well. Serve.


Leftovers should be stored in an airtight container and refrigerated. It will keep for up to 4-5 days.


Calories: 162kcal | Carbohydrates: 4g | Protein: 1g | Fat: 17g | Saturated Fat: 2g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 2g | Monounsaturated Fat: 12g | Sodium: 1099mg | Potassium: 77mg | Fiber: 3g | Sugar: 1g | Vitamin A: 1538IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 47mg | Iron: 1mg
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  1. What kind of olives are you using. There are several different kinds. I grew up eating these and had to buy at an Italian market. Can’t remember the name, they always knew what we wanted. Not all green olives work for this.

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