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How To Use Yogurt as a Condiment

September 23, 2014

As a defiant response to Sad Desk Lunches, the Food52 team works to keep our midday meals both interesting and pretty. Each week, we'll be sharing our happiest desk lunches -- and we want to see yours, too. This post was brought to you by our friends at Real California Milk.

Today: Yogurt makes its way into our lunches, and we're not mad about it. 

Yogurt for Lunch

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Yogurt is an old standby for breakfast, and how could it not be? Even a mostly-asleep person can prepare it: spoon it into a bowl (or just eat it out of the tub); sprinkle on granola or berries; spoon into yawning mouth. 

Lunch, however, is ripe for the yogurt-ing, and not the fail-safe, fool-proof method just described. No, yogurt has a higher calling as the most versatile condiment in your fridge. Whether it's a dab or a dollop, a spread or a sauce, yogurt adds tang, creaminess, and balance to the spiciest, crunchiest, happiest desk lunches. Here -- we'll show you. 

Lentil Tacos

Lentils Folded into Yogurt, Spinach and Basil Two Pea Chicken Pesto Salad  

  • Now that you've gotten to know your yogurt, it's off to the races. First, give your mayo a rest: Yogurt makes a great unifying ingredient to sub into your salads, be they chicken, tuna, or lentil-based
  • Yogurt is perfect served alongside a spicy rice dish, like this megedarra or a curry over basmati rice. There's just something about chewy little grains mingling with yogurt that makes our hearts sing.  
  • When in doubt, dip it. Yogurt is a perfect complement to these lamb meatballs, which are packable as can be, and gets along great with two of its best friends, pita and eggplant

Eggplant Dip with Yogurt

  • Bored of your same-old salad dressing? Yogurt will come to the rescue. Crunchy vegetables like cucumber and bell pepper do well in a coat of creamy, tangy yogurt -- try stirring in some herbs, lemon juice, or olive oil. Or all three.
  • Yogurt is incredibly spreadable, especially in wraps or sandwiches with a bit of a kick. These lentil tacos -- topped with a tahini-yogurt mixture -- are the perfect thing to fuel your afternoon. 

Dilled, Crunchy Sweet Corn Salad with Buttermilk Dressing

How do you use yogurt in your lunches? Tell us in the comments! 

This post was brought to you by Real California Milk representing California’s more than 1500 dairy families. Get more ideas for lunch from them here

See what other Food52 readers are saying.

  • Noghlemey
  • Lauren Kelley
    Lauren Kelley
I'm a former Food52 Julia Child Food Writing Fellow now studying law so I can make food fairer, more delicious, and more sustainable for everyone. I was born and raised in Montreal (mostly on poutine and matzoh ball soup), but in my heart I am an Italian grandma—I live on pizza and make a mean eggplant parmesan.


Noghlemey July 12, 2016
Iranian use yogurt for centuries and in many different ways. As a side dish/condiment with our stews and rice dishes. We use to marinate different types of meat. To make salad dressings, dessert & drinks. We also use yogurt to make the stews and the list continues. :)
Lauren K. September 24, 2014
I used to get so confused about what to eat/cook if sour cream was missing from my fridge. Now, it's yogurt. I use it in...everything.