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Classic French Salade Niçoise

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When the weather gets warm, an entree salad like Dorie Greenspan’s Classic French Salade Niçoise is both easy and delicious! Just make sure to have some canned tuna, anchovies, capers and olives on hand and you can whip up this fabulous French-inspired salad.

Classic French Salade Niçoise overhead shot on a white plate

Classic French Salade Niçoise

When we toured France last summer, I ate a Salade Niçoise at every port…and they were all different save for the inclusion of tuna, haricot verts, hard-boiled eggs, Niçoise olives, and potatoes.

I fell for each and every version. I have even made a modern version, as Dorie called it, a Salade Nicoise with ahi tuna. Scrumptious as well. There are numerous ways to tweak this classic French salad, from the dressing to what ingredients you choose to feature.

Classic French Salade Niçoise side view on a white plate.

Dorie’s Salade Niçoise Interpretation

Life has been chaotic, and I’m back in Denver again to visit my parents. I’m hoping by the time this post goes live, that my dad will be out of the hospital. So having a quick old favorite recipe to prepare this week was truly a blessing.

And Dorie did this one right. Besides the aforementioned ingredients, her salad contained tomatoes, capers, and anchovies.  As a child who used to eat chicken bouillon cubes, all these salty ingredients hit home. Pure comfort. A drizzle of a perfectly proportioned Dijon vinaigrette finished this vibrant masterpiece off.

Easily Adaptable French Salad

For those of you keeping track, I think Bill would eat this classic French salad Niçoise. There would be a little pile of anchovies, capers, and olives (he will eat the green, pimento-stuffed variety) on his plate, but no worries. I’d just add to my sodium load for the day and scoop them onto my plate. But to tell the truth, I didn’t even offer him any…I wanted this one all for myself!

Feel free to leave out any ingredient you don’t like and also buy the kind of tuna you prefer. I’m loving the jarred tuna in olive oil. Expensive, but terrific quality.

The vinaigrette recipe is a simple combination of red or white wine vinegar ( I used champagne vinegar), Dijon mustard, salt, pepper, and olive oil. You might also love this Hearts of Palm Salad, Avocado, Butter Lettuce Salad.

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Salade Niçoise featured image

Classic French Salade Niçoise

Dorie Greenspan's delicious version of this classic French salad!

Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Total Time 40 minutes
Yield 4 servings



  • 12 small potatoes, scrubbed
  • a couple handsful green beans
  • 4 hard-boiled eggs
  • 8 ounces jarred tuna (4 - 6 oz. each), packed in olive oil (try Tonnino for a quality experience)
  • salad greens
  • cherry tomatoes or regular tomatoes cut into chunks
  • small olives (Niçoise, but any will do)
  • capers (drained and patted dry)
  • anchovies (rinsed and patted dry)

Dijon Vinaigrette

  • 2 Tbsp. wine vinegar (red or white or sherry)
  • 1 shallot, finely minced
  • ¼ tsp. Dijon mustard
  • a couple pinches sea salt
  • a couple grinds of fresh black pepper
  • 4 Tbsp. olive oil


  1. Boil the potatoes in a large pot of salted water. Cook until they are tender enough to be pierced easily with the tip of a knife, 10 - 20 minutes. Scoop them out of the pot and put them in a bowl to cool.
  2. Blanch the green beans in the potato water until they are crisp-tender, about 4 minutes. Drain the beans and put them in a bowl of ice water to stop the cooking. Drain, then pat dry.
  3. Make the vinaigrette: Add vinegar, shallot, mustard, salt, and pepper to a small glass measuring cup or jar and let sit 10 - 15 minutes to mellow the shallot. Slowly drizzle in the olive oil while whisking constantly.
  4. Assemble the salad, on one large platter, or individual plates: salad greens, halved potatoes, green beans, halved eggs, tuna, tomatoes, olives, capers, anchovies and drizzle with the shallot vinaigrette.


Adapted from Dorie Greenspan's Around My French Table

Nutrition Information:



Serving Size:


Amount Per Serving: Calories: 718Total Fat: 23gSaturated Fat: 4gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 18gCholesterol: 214mgSodium: 315mgCarbohydrates: 93gFiber: 11gSugar: 8gProtein: 35g


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43 comments on “Classic French Salade Niçoise”

  1. I love how all your ingredients are placed together in their own sections. Beautiful!

  2. A pretty to look at, healthy and hearty meal:@)

  3. I adore Salade Niçoise and yours looks so pretty and tasty! Love the presentation as always 🙂 Hope life slows down a bit for you soon and that everything is okay with your dad.

  4. Beautiful Liz 🙂 I hope your dad is out of hospital soon and all is well XO

  5. I hope your Dad gets out of the hospital soon too, Liz. I loved Dorie’s version of the salad and smiled out loud at your comment about licking chicken bouillon cubes as kid. I had a similar fascination with them (and with maple syrup) when I was 4-5. 🙂

  6. Beautiful presentation and I hope your Dad is feeling better.

  7. Gorgeous, as always Liz. My mom used to give me bouilion and saltine crackers as a lunch when I was little. It probably influenced my salty side 🙂

    Sending best wishes for your dad.

  8. Wow, love your ‘classic’ presentation of Dorie’s recipe. Wishing your Dad a speedy recovery!

  9. How’d you make yours look so appetizing? Mine was fine, but nothing amazing. Hope everything goes well with your dad!

  10. We lived on Salad Niçoisse in France and a version of one in Italy. It’s one oft top ten lunches for sure. Your version is gorgeous, and I’m sure Bill regretted that you didn’t share.

  11. Beautifully composed salad, I love the textures!

  12. Ingenious idea to try out the Nicoise in every port, Liz. And I want a bite of your salad right now!

    P.s. Praying your father is feeling better and out of the hospital. Hope you’re taking good care of you, too =)

  13. Such a beautiful presentation,colorful and healthy salad !

  14. Your salad is gorgeous! Glad your dad is doing well and Lambeau too! Hope you get out of
    Denver before you are snowed in!

  15. This is one of my favorite salads. I make it with grilled tuna or salmon. Your looks refreshing and definitely well balanced.

  16. I do hope your father is better. You sure have had a busy time with your parents this year. I can’t believe you used to eat stock cubes – they’re so strong and salty! I love the look of your salad – it has so many of my most favourite ingredients; caperberries being at the top of the list xx

  17. Ooooo – that looks good. This is one of my favourite kind of salads! Your dressing sounds simple, bright and delicious too. Thanks!

  18. I adore salade nicoise, Liz and yours looks fantastic. I’ll eat whatever Bill won’t! As for your dad, I’m really hoping he’ll be out of the hospital too. I’m thinking of you and your family!

  19. aaah Lizzy this sald would be perfect right now :))

  20. Oh Lizzy my thought are with you and your dad. I love this salad too and it is a good one to eat during a stressful time, super healthy. Take care.

  21. You used to eat bouillion cubes? That’s hilarious,. I love this salad in any version, too. And your salad is arranged so beautifully! Hope that your dad continues to improve. Thinking of you, Liz.

  22. I first saw your version of this salade when you posted it on Facebook earlier in the week. It’s been an inspiration for my own composed salad this week. I have eaten my share of these masterpieces when I’ve been in France and, you’re right, each one is different. While I would prefer the rare slices of ahi, I followed Dorie’s recipe word for word. Love the capers and olives, shoved the anchoives aside. A lovely presentation, Liz. By now I hope you have gotten out of snowy Denver and are home in Indiana, safe and sound.

  23. It looks perfectly fresh and beautiful and no matter what version of this salad I see I love them all too

  24. I hope all is well with your dad and that you can enjoy your salad. My mother used to make this salad for my French grandmother quite often. We all enjoyed it but my gran was over the moon every time.

  25. I hope your dad is doing better! This salad is so pretty!

  26. I love how you have fanned out all of the ingredients so that each element is clear!

  27. 🙂 I hope everyone is well and life is going a bit more smoothly these days!

    I love that you just made this one for you, as many picky eaters as you have, I think you are well – entitled to make that decision! 🙂 And what a delicious one it is!

  28. It has been AGES since I last had a salade nicoise. I love how you plate the salad. Yum!

  29. Love this salad as there is always something for everyone! I’ve made it for bridal showers and everyone thinks it is to die for! Anyway, hope your dad is doing well!

  30. Beautiful salad , Lizzy ! Love how you plated it . Hope your dad is doing well !

  31. A beautiful presentation that looks absolutely delicious. Glad you enjoyed this one. Hope all
    is well with you Dad, that he will be feeling better and goes home soon.

  32. Perfect lunch! (and dinner)!

  33. I love Salade Niçoise . I hope your father is doing better. My thoughts are with you.

  34. Yup, this looks delicious! And healthy too. I would love to go to France and try different version, love it when food brings back old memories!

  35. This looks simply divine! Anchovies and olives would certainly be left on my husband’s plate – but I would eat both because I love this dish!

  36. It is so hard to make a really good Salade Nicoise! Your platter looks beautiful and I bet this recipe would not disappoint.

  37. Gorgeous liz!! This is delicious!!!! An Amazing looking platter

  38. I can’t say I’ve ever had such a fancy salad, Liz. Lucky you touring France. I got to see Paris for a few days when I turned 46 – this was en route from Cape Town, South Africa. Never travel French airlines though (note to self) – we had so many delays and we were exhausted! However, they did put us up in a nice hotel. 🙂

  39. Liz, one very lovely presentation of this clasic French sald – beautifully arranged and worth many repeats! It is wonderful to read that you certainly enjoyed this fabulous salad!
    Hope life is less chaotic this week – all the best and have a great Monday!

  40. Beautiful ingredients and really beautifully arranged!! Well done!

  41. I hope your dad is out of the hospital and doing well….I love your composed salad presentation – very pretty. I can’t believe you used to eat chicken bouillion cubes! Too funny.

  42. My thoughts and prayers are with you and your family, Liz. Hope your dad is doing better and leaves the hospital soon.
    Your salad is classically beautiful…this one was a hit with my Bill. He even loves anchovies!
    It was really wonderful to meet you, Bill and beautiful Katie in Seattle. Nice to finally get to put some faces on our Doristas.

  43. Your salad platter looks exactly like it was served for the Greek Gods on a sunny Sunday mid noon 🙂 Beautiful. Soul-soothing.

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