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Kalyn's Kitchen

Not-so-Dumb Salad with Cucumber, Tomato, Avocado, and Balsamic Vinegar

Not-so-Dumb Salad with Cucumbers, Tomatoes, Onions, Avocado, and Balsamic Vinegar is an amazing recipe I got from a reader named Lisa! This amazingly simple and delicious salad is Low-Carb, Gluten-Free, Paleo, Whole 30, South Beach Phase One, and Vegan! Use the Diet-Type Index to find more recipes like this one.

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Not-so-Dumb Salad with Cucumbers, Tomatoes, Onions, Avocado, and Balsamic Vinegar found on KalynsKitchen.com

There are a lot of salads with tomatoes and cucumbers on this blog.  That’s partly because I love tomatoes and cucumbers and grow them in my garden every year.  To me that combination just screams summer, but I also eat tomatoes and cucumbers all year (whenever I can get good flavorful tomatoes and Persian cucumbers from Costco.)  So when a reader from Hawaii named Lisa sent me her recipe that she called “dumb salad” and said it was something she made often, I was interested.

Lisa discovered this combination when she was going out of town and needed to use what was on hand, and I promise you, this salad idea that combines cucumbers, tomatoes, onion, avocado, and balsamic vinegar is not dumb at all!  That’s why I had to re-name it Not-so-Dumb Salad with Cucumber, Tomato, Avocado, and Balsamic Vinegar! Of course, only make this when you have fresh flavorful tomatoes, but I loved the combination of flavors, accented with just a little good sea salt and some coarse ground black pepper.  And I also love the idea of a salad with no added oil except the “good fat” from the avocado.

Lisa invited me to change it up a bit, but really I didn’t change it much except to sub diagonally-sliced green onions for the sweet onions she used.  I was making more than I’d eat right away, so I also tossed the avocado with just the tiniest bit of lemon juice to make sure it didn’t go brown.  Lisa’s friends suggested adding lots of chopped herbs, and I’m thinking mint, basil, or parsley could also have a supporting role in this salad if you wanted to add them, but for my first time I just made the salad like Lisa does and happily gobbled it up for lunch!

Not-so-Dumb Salad with Cucumbers, Tomatoes, Onions, Avocado, and Balsamic Vinegar found on KalynsKitchen.com

I used my first garden cucumber which I combined with two Persian cucumbers.  You could also use one large European cucumber instead of three small ones. Not many tomatoes yet around here, so I used sweet Cherubs tomatoes from Costco.  This is something I buy over and over.  (Cherubs has never paid me or sent tomatoes, I just like their product!) I cut the green onion in diagonal slices to make about 1/4 cup, but more would be okay too.

You need one perfectly ripe avocado, diced into smallish pieces. I tossed the avocado with just a couple of teaspoons of lemon juice to keep the leftovers from turning brown.  (I’m guessing 99% of the time you make this it will all be eaten right away, so feel free to skip this step if that’s the case.) Gently toss together the cucumbers, tomatoes, onion, and avocado, then dress with just enough good quality balsamic vinegar to coat the veggies.  Season to taste with good sea salt and fresh ground black pepper and enjoy!

More Tasty Salads with Cucumbers and Tomatoes:

Tomato, Cucumber, and Radish Salad with Yogurt and Tahini Dressing from Kalyn’s Kitchen
Tomato Cucumber Salad from [No Recipes]
Cucumber and Tomato Salad with Marinated Garbanzo Beans from Kalyn’s Kitchen
Heirloom Tomato and Cucumber Salad from Ciao Florentina
Vegan Tomato Salad with Cucumbers, Avocado, Cilantro, and Lime from Kalyn’s Kitchen

Not-so-Dumb Salad with Cucumbers, Tomatoes, Onions, Avocado, and Balsamic Vinegar found on KalynsKitchen.com

Not-so-Dumb Salad with Cucumber, Tomato, Avocado, and Balsamic Vinegar

This amazingly simple and delicious salad I got from a reader named Lisa is definitely not a dumb idea for a tasty salad!


  • 3 small Persian cucumbers or garden cucumbers
  • 1 cup diced tomato or cherry tomatoes
  • 1/4 cup thinly diagonally sliced green onion or thinly sliced sweet onion (or more)
  • 1 avocado
  • 2 tsp. fresh lemon juice (optional, for tossing with avocado)
  • about 1 T good-quality balsamic vinegar
  • sea salt and fresh ground black pepper to taste


  1. Cut cucumbers in half lengthwise, then slice into half-moon slices.  (I never peel Persian cucumbers, but if you use other cucumbers you might want to peel some of the skin off in stripes before you slice them.)
  2. Dice tomatoes or cut cherry tomatoes in half to make one cup.  (Only make this salad when you have flavorful fresh tomatoes.)
  3. Diagonally slice green onion or slice onion to make 1/4 cup, or more if you like onion.
  4. Peel and cut up the avocado into small cubes.
  5. Combine the cucumber, tomato, onion, and avocado in a plastic or glass bowl and gently toss together.
  6. Add a small amount of balsamic vinegar, enough to barely coat the veggies, and toss again.  (I used about a tablespoon of vinegar, which was plenty.)
  7. Season to taste with your favorite sea salt and plenty of fresh-ground black pepper.
  8. If you’re making more salad than is going to be eaten right away you can toss the avocado with a few teaspoons of fresh lemon juice so they don’t turn brown, but this is best freshly made.
  9. If you like it as much as I did, you probably won’t have leftovers no matter how much you make!


This recipe created by a reader named Lisa who lives on Maui.

All images and text ©

Low-Carb Diet / Low-Glycemic Diet / South Beach Diet Suggestions:
This Salad with Cucumbers, Tomatoes, Onions, Avocado, and Balsamic Vinegar is perfect for most types of low-carb eating plans, including Paleo. Everything in this salad is a perfect low-glycemic and low-carb ingredient for the South Beach Diet. Avocado is a limited food for South Beach, so keep that in mind.

Find More Recipes Like This One:

Use the Recipes by Diet Type photo index pages to find more recipes suitable for a specific eating plan. You might also like to Follow Kalyn’s Kitchen on Pinterest to see all the good recipes I’m sharing there.

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56 comments on “Not-so-Dumb Salad with Cucumber, Tomato, Avocado, and Balsamic Vinegar”

  1. Love all of the ingredients! Great summer salad!

  2. Hope everyone else enjoys this as much as I did. And Sally, I love the idea of avocado just becoming part of the dressing; might have to experiment with that.

  3. This is going to be lunch today! I can't wait!

  4. It is truly amazing how the simplest ingredients are life's greatest pleasures. This is my kinda healthy salad 🙂

  5. I love the simplicity of this salad and the ease with which it can be made. I share your love of tomatoes and cucumbers and this salad would quickly disappear in my kitchen. Have a wonderful day. Blessings…Mary

  6. No, not dumb. Looks wonderful. I love simple salad like this one. Looks like a perfect combo for sure!


  7. I've been getting TONS of cukes from my CSA and don't know quite what to do with them! I'm thinking this salad is gonna be it!

  8. Definitely a winner of a salad, Kalyn!

    I once made (by accident, I should add) a salad dressing with mashed avocado, lime juice, and a touch of white balsamic vinegar – it turned out soooo good! The avocado kind of melted, and indeed, no need for extra fat

    I am making your version for our dinner tomorrow!

  9. I'm glad people are liking this, and it's fun to hear more variations too. I think there are so many combinations with cucumbers and tomatoes that are good. Lisa called this Dumb Salad in the e-mail she sent me, but it's not dumb at all!

  10. I think this would be good with a lime vinaigrette, too. I don't follow SB, so I don't know if you use honey or not, but I make a dressing that is 3 parts oil, 2 parts vinegar or citrus juice and 1 part honey with salt and pepper to taste. I know the lime version is good with avocado, so I'll bet it would be good with this as well.

  11. I wasn't a fan of avocado's until recently, but since becoming a vegan, they've added that 'creamy' texture a lot of foods are missing. I'm really looking forward to trying this. Thanks!

  12. This is truly one of my favorite salads ever. I cannot wait until our garden tomatoes are ripe — hopefully in the next couple of weeks!

  13. I wouldn't call it a dumb salad either. Sometimes the best dishes use just a handful of top quality ingredients. Your salad looks wonderful and I just want to dive right in!

  14. Omg I make a salad like that all the time! Sometimes I add feta cheese and other times mozzarella cheese. I change up the veggies as well but it's basically the same thing. A couple times I mixed the balsamic with some Italian dressing and it's soooo good! One of my favorite salads.

  15. Not dumb at all! I eat this basic salad, without the onions, several nights a week for dinner. If your balsamic is sweet enough, you definitely don't miss the oil.

  16. Dumb? Hardly!

    PS We are heart-broken, the cucumbers worms have invaded and destroyed this year's crop. We'd only been eating them for about a week and now, no more. Boo hiss.

  17. I love avocados, too, but I eat too much of it when I get a chance especially, when I mix it with milk and sugar so it's quite counterproductive in my trying to lose weight. This recipe however sounds deliciously healthy. Thanks for sharing, Kalyn and Lisa. Why is it called "dumb salad" though?

  18. I wouldn't call it a dumb salad at all. It has some of my favorite ingredients and I just love balsamic vinegar dressing. It pops up the flavor of these vegetables.

  19. Sounds delish! Reminds me of this salad: http://whatscookinwithmary.blogspot.com/2010/09/simple-tomato-salad.html
    I love a simply dressed salad in the summer. So refreshing!!

  20. The title immediately caught my attention. A lovely, refreshing and beautiful salad like this one has nothing dumb about it:)

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