Homemade Olive Tapenade Recipe

Olive Tapenade
Alexandra Grablewski / Getty Images
  • 10 mins
  • Prep: 10 mins,
  • Cook: 0 mins
  • Yield: 1 cup (16 servings)
Ratings (5)

Tapenade is a rich olive spread that was popularized in the Mediterranean and today it's a must-have condiment for many people throughout the world. It's incredibly easy to make at home and requires just a few simple ingredients. You'll also find it to be more economical than what you buy at the store, especially if you really love tapenade.

The recipe simply combines Kalamata olives and capers with lemon juice and olive oil. You can also add anchovy paste and black pepper to give it a little extra flavor. 

Tapenade is a requirement for the muffaletta sandwiches that are so famous in New Orleans. It's also become a great overall condiment for a variety of foods and snacks. 

What You'll Need

  • 20 olives (Kalamata, pitted and coarsely chopped)
  • 1 tablespoon capers (rinsed, drained, and chopped)
  • 1 teaspoon lemon juice (fresh)
  • 2 teaspoons olive oil
  • Optional: 1/2 teaspoon anchovy paste
  • Optional: black pepper (to taste)

How to Make It

  1. Combine Kalamata olives, capers, lemon juice, olive oil, anchovy paste, and pepper. Mix well.
  2. Refrigerate and use within two weeks.

How to Enjoy Your Tapenade

Tapenade is a very versatile condiment. While it is the signature ingredient for muffaletta and a favorite on panini, there are many more ways that to enjoy it.

It's very common for tapenade lovers to use it for bite-sized snacks and appetizers.

It's a popular spread for crackers, pita chips, and crispy bread. You can even enjoy it on your avocado toast or a bagel and enjoy a light breakfast or brunch.

Tapenade makes a great dip for vegetables, especially carrots, celery, broccoli, and cucumbers. Many people love the combination of tapenade and hummus as well.

It's very common for people to use tapenade as a condiment in the same way they would relish. Add it to your favorite sandwiches alongside or instead of mayonnaise. It's also a nice alternative or addition to garlic when mixed with mayonnaise in a traditional aioli recipe.

Tapenade can be an interesting addition to your favorite salads as well. You could incorporate it into a vinaigrette or thin it out with olive oil for a salad dressing. Caprese salad is a favorite for tapenade fans. If pasta is on the menu, toss it with light pasta for lunch or use it as the dressing for a pasta salad.

Once you fall in love with the flavor, you'll come up with even more ideas. For example, tapenade is an excellent alternative to marinara and other sauces on veggie pizzas. You might even consider adding a spoonful to your next omelet.