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Classic Russian Salad Recipe: A Delicious and Versatile Dish

russian salad

Russian salad, also known as Olivier salad, is a popular dish that originated in Russia. It is a delicious and hearty salad made with a combination of vegetables, meat, and a creamy dressing. This article will guide you through the steps to create a mouthwatering Russian salad at home. Whether you’re hosting a party or simply want to indulge in a tasty and nutritious meal, this recipe will not disappoint.



The history of the Russian salad, also known as Olivier salad, can be traced back to the 19th century in Russia. The salad was created by a French chef named Lucien Olivier, who was working at the Hermitage restaurant in Moscow.

Lucien Olivier’s salad quickly gained popularity among the restaurant’s patrons and became a signature dish. The original recipe of the salad was a closely guarded secret, known only to Lucien Olivier himself. It was said to contain a combination of ingredients like veal tongue, caviar, grouse, and crayfish.

However, after Lucien Olivier’s retirement, the recipe of the salad was entrusted to Ivan Ivanov, the chef who took over the restaurant. Ivanov made some modifications to the original recipe, making it more accessible and affordable to the general public.

The salad gained further popularity and became a staple dish in Russian cuisine. It was especially favored during special occasions and celebrations. The Russian salad made its way into households and was often prepared during festive seasons like New Year’s Eve and Christmas.

Over time, the salad underwent various adaptations and modifications to suit different tastes and ingredients availability. The original recipe, with its luxurious ingredients, gave way to more accessible ingredients like potatoes, carrots, peas, eggs, and mayonnaise. These ingredients became the core components of the modern-day Russian salad.

Today, the Russian salad is enjoyed not only in Russia but also in many other countries around the world. It has become a popular dish on restaurant menus and is often served as an appetizer or a side dish. Its versatility allows for endless variations and additions, making it a customizable and flexible recipe.

The Russian salad’s rich history and evolution showcase its enduring appeal and ability to adapt to changing times and tastes. It remains a beloved dish that embodies the fusion of culinary influences and the creativity of chefs and home cooks alike.


StepTime (Approx.)
Boiling the Vegetables20 minutes
Preparing the Dressing5 minutes
Combining the Ingredients10 minutes
Serving and Presentation5 minutes
Total Cooking and Preparation40 minutes

Please note that the cooking and preparation times provided are approximate and may vary depending on individual cooking techniques and equipment. It’s always a good idea to keep an eye on the cooking process and adjust the timings accordingly to achieve the desired results.


IngredientsQuantity (for 2 servings)
Potatoes3 medium
Green peas1 cup
Cooked chicken breast1 cup
Boiled eggs1 cup
Pickles1 cup
Mayonnaise½ cup
Sour cream2 tablespoons
Dijon mustard1 tablespoon
Salt and pepperTo taste

Please note that the quantities provided in the table are for a serving size of 2 people. You can adjust the quantities according to your preference and the number of servings you require.


  1. Boiling the Vegetables
    • Start by boiling the potatoes and carrots until they are tender.
    • Once cooked, let them cool and then dice them into small cubes.
  2. Preparing the Dressing
    • In a bowl, mix the mayonnaise, sour cream, Dijon mustard, salt, and pepper.
    • Stir well until all the ingredients are combined, creating a creamy dressing.
  3. Combining the Ingredients
    • In a large mixing bowl, combine the diced potatoes, carrots, green peas, chicken breast, boiled eggs, and pickles.
    • Gently mix all the ingredients together, ensuring they are evenly distributed.
  4. Serving and Presentation
    • Transfer the Russian salad to a serving dish.
    • Garnish it with some fresh herbs, such as parsley or dill.
    • You can also add a sprinkle of paprika for a touch of color.
  5. Enjoying the Salad
    • Serve the salad chilled and enjoy the flavors and textures of the delicious Russian salad.

Please follow these steps carefully to prepare a delightful Russian salad. Adjust the seasoning and presentation according to your personal preference.

Equipment Required

Nutrition Information

Nutrition InformationAmount per Serving
Serving Size1/2 cup (approximately)
Total Fat12g
– Saturated Fat2g
Total Carbohydrate18g
– Dietary Fiber3g
– Sugars4g

Please note that the nutrition information provided is approximate and may vary depending on the specific ingredients and brands used. It’s always a good practice to refer to the packaging labels of the individual ingredients and make adjustments as needed to accurately track your nutritional intake.


  • Adjusting Seasoning:
    • Taste the dressing before combining it with the salad ingredients and adjust the seasoning according to your taste preferences. Add more salt, pepper, or even a dash of lemon juice for some tanginess if desired.
  • Chilling the Salad:
    • Ensure that the salad is well chilled before serving. This will enhance the flavors and allow the dressing to meld with the ingredients.
  • Uniform Dicing:
    • Take care to dice the boiled vegetables (potatoes and carrots) into evenly sized cubes. This will ensure consistent texture and appearance in the salad.
  • Make-Ahead Option:
    • You can prepare the individual components (boiled vegetables, diced chicken, etc.) ahead of time and assemble the salad just before serving. This can save you time and make meal planning easier.
  • Garnish and Presentation:
    • Experiment with different garnishes to enhance the visual appeal of the salad. Fresh herbs like parsley or dill make excellent choices, or you can add a pop of color with a sprinkle of paprika.
  • Texture and Crunch:
    • If you enjoy additional crunch in your salad, you can add some toasted nuts (such as walnuts or almonds) or even crumbled bacon as a topping.

Pros & Cons

✔️ Delicious and flavorful❌ High in calories
✔️ Versatile and customizable❌ Contains mayonnaise
✔️ Nutritious and balanced❌ Not suitable for vegans
✔️ Easy to prepare❌ May not be liked by picky eaters
✔️ Great for parties and gatherings❌ Requires refrigeration before serving


In conclusion, the Russian salad is a delightful and versatile dish that brings together a harmonious blend of flavors and textures. With its combination of boiled vegetables, diced chicken, eggs, and a creamy dressing, it offers a delicious and satisfying culinary experience.

This recipe allows for customization and variations, making it suitable for different dietary preferences and occasions. Whether you’re hosting a party, looking for a nutritious meal, or simply craving a flavorful salad, the Russian salad is an excellent choice.

Preparing the Russian salad is relatively easy and requires basic cooking techniques. By following the step-by-step directions provided, you can create a homemade version of this classic dish that will impress your family and friends.

So, why not give it a try? Gather the ingredients, dice the vegetables, and mix them with the flavorful dressing. The result will be a delectable salad that is sure to please your taste buds and leave you craving for more.

Whether enjoyed as an appetizer, side dish, or a light meal, the Russian salad is a true crowd-pleaser. Its rich history and adaptability reflect its enduring popularity worldwide. So, embrace your culinary creativity, savor the flavors, and enjoy the experience of preparing and indulging in this delightful Russian salad.

Don’t hesitate any longer. Get in the kitchen, grab your ingredients, and start creating a delicious homemade Russian salad that will leave a lasting impression on your taste buds. Enjoy the journey of culinary exploration and the satisfaction of sharing a delightful dish with your loved ones. Bon appétit!


  • Potato Origins 🥔
    • Did you know that the Russian salad’s key ingredient, potatoes, originated in South America? They were introduced to Europe in the late 16th century and quickly became a staple in Russian cuisine, eventually making their way into this beloved salad.
  • A Globally Beloved Salad 🌍
    • The Russian salad is not just popular in Russia. It has gained immense popularity worldwide and is enjoyed in various countries under different names, including “Olivier salad” in many Eastern European countries and “Ensaladilla Rusa” in Spain.
  • The “Olivier” Connection 🍽️
    • The Russian salad is named after its creator, Lucien Olivier, a Belgian chef who served it at his Moscow restaurant in the 1860s. The original recipe was a closely guarded secret, with each chef adding their own unique twist to it.
  • A Salad Fit for Royalty 👑
    • The Russian salad gained fame not only among the general public but also among royalty. It is said that Tsar Nicholas II of Russia and Queen Victoria of England were among the esteemed figures who relished this delectable salad.
  • Russian Salad, Hollywood Style 🎬
    • The Russian salad made its mark in Hollywood too! In the 1945 movie “Christmas in Connecticut,” the Russian salad played a prominent role as one of the cherished dishes prepared for a festive gathering, adding to its global recognition and popularity.


Can I make a vegetarian version of the Russian salad?

Absolutely! You can omit the chicken breast and add more vegetables like corn or bell peppers to create a delicious vegetarian Russian salad.

How long can I store Russian salad in the refrigerator?

Russian salad can be stored in the refrigerator for up to 3 days. Ensure it is kept in an airtight container to maintain freshness.

Can I use store-bought mayonnaise for the dressing?

Yes, you can use store-bought mayonnaise for convenience. However, making homemade mayonnaise can add a unique flavor to the salad.

Can I use leftover roasted chicken instead of boiled chicken breast?

Certainly! Leftover roasted chicken can be a great addition to the Russian salad, providing a different flavor profile.

Is Russian salad suitable for a picnic or outdoor event?

Yes, Russian salad is an ideal dish for picnics or outdoor events. Just ensure it is properly chilled and stored in a cool place.

Can I substitute sour cream with Greek yogurt in the dressing?

Yes, you can replace sour cream with Greek yogurt for a lighter dressing option without compromising taste.

Can I add additional vegetables or ingredients to the salad?

Absolutely! Feel free to add your favorite vegetables, fruits, or even nuts to customize the Russian salad according to your preference.

Can I make Russian salad ahead of time?

Yes, you can prepare the individual components ahead of time and assemble the salad just before serving to save time and make meal planning easier.

Can I freeze Russian salad for later use?

It is not recommended to freeze Russian salad as the texture and consistency of the ingredients may be compromised upon thawing.

Can I use a different type of mustard instead of Dijon mustard?

Certainly! While Dijon mustard adds a unique flavor, you can substitute it with other types of mustard based on your preference and availability.