Cucumber, Fruit or Vegetable?

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Fruit or a vegetable? Technically, the cucumber is a fruit because it contains the seeds to reproduce, but typically cucumbers are grouped and grown with veggies due to their use. If you are a true cucumber lover, does it really matter? Cucumbers may not be a nutritional powerhouse but it does have many only notable attributes!

  • Raw cucumber, when applied on the skin, can help reduce heat and inflammation. The cooling and cleansing property of cucumber makes it good for skin. It is a diuretic.
  • Fresh cucumber juice or water infused with fresh cucumber slices, can provide relief from heartburn, acid stomach, gastritis and even ulcers. It has also been known to be beneficial for those suffering from lung, stomach and chest problems. Daily consumption of the cucumber juice or water can aid in controlling cases of eczema, arthritis and gout.
  • Women have long used a cucumber slice over the eyes to sooth and reduce swelling.
  • The potassium in cucumber makes it useful for those combatting high and low blood pressure.
  • Cucumber juice is said to promote hair growth, especially when it is added to the juice of carrot, lettuce and spinach.

Give some of these fresh cucumber recipes a try!

I love all things salt and vinegar, so these were a must, you can do the same with zucchini, squash, new potatoes, and other fresh vegetables.

Salt & Vinegar Cucumber Chips


  • 1 large thick skinned fresh cucumber, or the equivalent of small ones
  • 1½ tablespoons white distilled vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • ¼ teaspoon garlic powder


  1. Preheat oven to 225° and lightly grease two large baking sheet with parchment. Using a mandolin or a sharp knife, cut cucumber into slices ⅛” thick.
  2. Pat cucumbers dry with paper towels and place in a medium bowl. Add vinegar, salt, and garlic powder and toss to combine.
  3. Place cucumbers in an even layer on prepared baking sheets. Bake until dried out, 1 hour and 30 minutes, flipping halfway through. Remove cucumbers from tray as the start to crisp and allow others to keep baking.

Yields 1 cup cooked chips.

Pointed Cabbage and Cucumber Slaw


  • 3 cups thinly sliced cucumbers
  • 3 cups thinly sliced pointed cabbage
  • ¼ onion, thinly sliced
  • ¼ cup seasoned rice vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil


  1. Combine vegetables and onion in a medium bowl; season generously with salt. Let sit about 8-10 minutes, they will release their moisture.
  2. Pour off all excess liquid and add vinegar and oil; toss to coat. Taste and season with more salt if needed.

I like to make the slaw a few days ahead and chill until serving.

Feta Dip Topped with Cucumbers and Tomatoes


  • 12 ounces Feta cheese
  • 1 cup plain Greek yogurt
  • 1 8 ounce block cream cheese
  • ¼ cup extra virgin olive oil, some additional for drizzling
  • Juice and zest of 1 lemon
  • Salt
  • Crushed Red pepper flakes
  • 2 tablespoon freshly chopped dill, additional for garnish
  • ½ cup chopped cucumber
  • ½ cup halved cherry tomatoes
  • Pita Chips for serving


  1. In a large bowl using a hand mixer, beat feta cheese, Greek yogurt, cream cheese, oil, lemon juice and zest until fluffy and combined. Season with salt and red pepper flakes and stir in dill.
  2. Transfer dip to a serving bowl and top with cucumber, tomatoes, dill, and a drizzle of oil.
  3. Serve with pita chips.

Serves 8.

Ginger Salmon with Cucumber Lime Sauce

(Modified from a Taste of Home Recipe)


For the Sauce

  • 1 tablespoon grated lime zest
  • ¼ cup lime juice
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons white wine vinegar
  • 2 teaspoons sugar
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon freshly ground pepper
  • ⅓ cup chopped fresh cilantro
  • 1 tablespoon finely chopped onion
  • 2 teaspoons minced fresh ginger
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 2 medium cucumbers, peeled, seeded and chopped

For the Salmon

  • ⅓ cup minced fresh ginger
  • 1 tablespoon fresh lime juice
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon freshly ground pepper
  • 10 salmon filets


  1. Place the first 13 ingredients in a blender. Cover and process until pureed.
  2. In a small bowl, mix ginger, lime juice, oil, salt and pepper. Rub over flesh side of salmon fillets.
  3. Lightly oil the grill rack. Place salmon on rack, skin side down. Grill, covered, over medium-high heat 10-12 minutes or until fish just begins to flake easily with a fork. Serve with sauce.

Serves 10. Each serving contains Calories 327, Fat 20 g., Cholesterol 85 mg., Carbohydrates 7g., Fiber 1 g., Protein 29 g., Sodium 372 mg.

Chicken Cucumber Pita Pockets


For the Pita

  • 2 cups cooked chicken breast, chopped
  • 1 large cucumber, peeled and chopped
  • 1 (2 ¼ ounce) can sliced ripe olives, drained
  • 1 medium fresh tomato, chopped
  • 1 small red pepper, chopped
  • ½ cup cubed cheddar cheese, I like to use Feta
  • ¼ cup chopped red onion
  • 12 pita pocket halves

For the Dressing

  • ¾ cup mayonnaise
  • 1 tablespoon dry ranch dressing mix
  • 1 tablespoon prepared Italian salad dressing
  • ¼ teaspoon garlic powder
  • ¼ teaspoon black pepper


  1. In a large bowl, combine the first 7 ingredients. In a small bowl, combine the ranch dressing, mayonnaise, Italian dressing, garlic powder and pepper; pour over chicken mixture and toss to coat.
  2. Fill each pita half with a scant ½ cup chicken mixture.

Serves 6. 2 pita halves contain Calories 445, Fat 22 g., Cholesterol 49 mg., Sodium 37 g., Carbohydrates 37 g., Fiber 2 g., Protein 22 g.

Cucumbers make a great vessel for serving salads and other treats, my favorite is tuna salad, give this quick easy recipe a try;

Tuna Salad Cucumber Boats

4 medium boats, washed and dried


For the tuna salad

  • 12 ounces solid white albacore tuna in water
  • 3 tablespoons nonfat plain Greek yogurt
  • 2 tablespoons mayonnaise, olive oil mayonnaise is good in this recipe
  • ½ cup diced red onion
  • ½ cup diced celery
  • 2 tablespoons capers, drained
  • ½ lemon, juiced
  • 1 teaspoon fresh dill
  • 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
  • ¼ teaspoon salt to taste


  1. Combine all of the ingredients for the tuna salad.
  2. Slice the cucumbers down the middle lengthwise. Using a spoon, gently scoop out the insides. Discard (or compost) the scooped seeds and set the remaining cucumber halves aside.
  3. Scoop the tuna salad into the boats, serve.

Serves 4, two tuna boats equals one serving.