A Summer Salad with Grilled Halloumi

Halloumi is an interesting cheese that hails from Greece, or Cypress, more specifically. It has a unique, almost rubbery-dense texture, and a salty flavor. I sometimes wonder why I enjoy it!

My favorite cheeses are by far softer cheeses, especially Époisses, Reblochon, Raclette, Saint Felicien, and Brie, which all are French and cow’s milk-based.

But being an equal opportunity cheese lover, I embrace all cheeses, no matter the hardness and the milk source. My only exception is casu marzu, a cheese I refused to eat when in Corsica. Funny story if you’re not squeamish.

Haloumi was originally made from goat and sheep milk, but the only one I can find locally is made with cows’ milk. The cheese is unique in that it has a high melting point, so it can be grilled or even fried, without the cheese melting.

Halloumi has many different names, including grilling cheese, bread cheese, Leipäjuusto, and Finish Squeaky cheese. No matter the name, they are all a semi-hard, unripened brined cheeses.

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When making salads during the summer months, my go-to cheese is feta. It’s flavorful and goes so well with vegetables and vinaigrettes.

But adding Halloumi to a salad goes beyond crumbling some cheese on top of a salad. It’s so meaty in texture that it’s almost like a meat substitute.

For today’s salad, I used simple salad ingredients, grilled Halloumi, and a parsley vinaigrette.

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I began by adding some mixed greens, grated carrots, quartered tomatoes and toasted pine nuts to two plates. There were some sliced sweet chile peppers saved for serving time.

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The parsley vinaigrette was made with olive oil, apple cider vinegar, garlic, salt, and as much flat-leafed parsley that I could shove into the little blender!

To prepare the cheese, I heated a grill over high heat, brushed with a small amount of olive oil. I sliced the 10 ounce slab of cheese horizontally, then in to 12 pieces. I placed the slices of cheese in the hot grill, and as soon as they warmed and had grill stripes, I placed the slices on the salads.

I topped the salads with the chile pepper slices and served the salads while the cheese was still warm.

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The parsley vinaigrette added freshness to the salad, without overpowering the mild-flavored cheese.

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It’s interesting how firm the cheese remains, even when warm. You definitely need a knife if you serve the Halloumi cheese in strips or slices.

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If you’ve never experienced Halloumi, or bread cheese, I highly suggest giving it a try. It will never replace a good Brie, but it’s not supposed to!

By Published On: August 1st, 201659 Comments

About the Author: Chef Mimi

As a self-taught home cook, with many years in the culinary profession, I am passionate about all things food-related. Especially eating!

59 Comments

  1. thecompletebook August 1, 2016 at 7:07 AM - Reply

    Divine, divine, divine.
    :-) Mandy xo

  2. Travel Gourmet August 1, 2016 at 7:10 AM - Reply

    Lovely salad. It’s taken mea while to appreciate Halloumi but I’m a fan now :)

  3. Kiki August 1, 2016 at 7:26 AM - Reply

    Looks very delicious, I love halloumi, and I’m going to try your parsley vinaigrette – I’m always on the lookout for new ones that aren’t too acidic and this sounds like just the thing.

    • chef mimi August 1, 2016 at 7:27 AM - Reply

      Thank you! It’s a very simple vinaigrette – you could even do a white balsamic to sweeten it a bit. But garlic and parsley are the most important ingredients!

  4. fatsochef August 1, 2016 at 9:42 AM - Reply

    I loved Halloumi the first time I tried it 12 years ago and never looked back! It’s good with so many things but I eat it on it own mostly😄!

    • chef mimi August 1, 2016 at 10:49 AM - Reply

      Interesting! It’s a little too bland for me to eat it as is, but I did some of the grilled pieces in the vinaigrette and it was heavenly!

  5. Liz @ spades, spatulas, and spoons August 1, 2016 at 9:51 AM - Reply

    Halloumi is the most amazing cheese. Wonderful recipe, thank you for reminding me of it as I haven’t used it in awhile.

    • chef mimi August 1, 2016 at 10:48 AM - Reply

      I know – I kind of forget about it too. But it’s pretty wonderful!

  6. Sumith Babu August 1, 2016 at 9:53 AM - Reply

    Working in Cyprus, I started loving halloumi cheese. Especially when it is grilled. Thanks for sharing this lovely salad Mimi.

    • chef mimi August 1, 2016 at 10:48 AM - Reply

      Oh I bet it’s even better made with sheep’s milk!

  7. cheri August 1, 2016 at 11:17 AM - Reply

    Never tried Halloumi cheese, will have to give it a go, love how you used it in this wonderful summer salad.

    • chef mimi August 1, 2016 at 2:28 PM - Reply

      THank you! Be prepared – it’s rubbery!

  8. anotherfoodieblogger August 1, 2016 at 12:27 PM - Reply

    I love that you grilled this kind of cheese! Your salad looks mouth-watering. I’ll have to see if we have that kind of cheese around here. Trader Joe’s or Whole Foods maybe?

    • chef mimi August 1, 2016 at 2:29 PM - Reply

      I bet it’s sold everywhere, especially if I can find it where I live. JJust be prepared for different names!

  9. Tasty Eats Ronit Penso August 1, 2016 at 12:59 PM - Reply

    Such a great looking salad and how funny to see this – as I’ve just made a salad with fried Haloumi for lunch.. :)

    • chef mimi August 1, 2016 at 2:30 PM - Reply

      Oh funny! It’s a great salad addition, isn’t it? Almost like adding slices of steak!

  10. aranislandgirl August 1, 2016 at 5:18 PM - Reply

    I love halloumi and will definitely be adding way more parsley to my vinaigrette. :)

    • chef mimi August 1, 2016 at 5:26 PM - Reply

      Hahahaha! I love the freshness!

      • aranislandgirl August 1, 2016 at 5:29 PM

        I have sooooo much of it in the garden and my children just pick it and nibble. So it’s a no brainer here…thanks for the great idea!! Curious, what do you see as the main difference between flat and curly parsley?

      • chef mimi August 1, 2016 at 7:10 PM

        none. Most people say that Italian parsley has more flavor, but I’ve actually nibbled on both, and I can’t tell the difference. So I use curly parsley just as often as flat-leaf. And if anything, I’ve had some flat-leaf that was just bland. Of course, it probably depends on the source, and many other things…..

  11. Linda Duffin August 2, 2016 at 4:12 AM - Reply

    That parsley vinaigrette is a stroke of genius! It brings the whole dish to life and I’ll bet it danced on the tongue. Lovely. And I agree with you about parsley: if you pick it fresh from the garden there’s no taste difference, imho. Lx

    • chef mimi August 2, 2016 at 6:20 AM - Reply

      Thank you LInda. I love to play with vinaigrettes, and one with parsley is so good with tomatoes, avocadoes, potatoes, eggs…

      • Linda Duffin August 2, 2016 at 6:58 AM

        I love that glowing colour.

  12. ladyredspecs August 2, 2016 at 5:47 AM - Reply

    Your salad makes me long for the return of summer, it looks delicious. Haloumi is so under rated.

    • chef mimi August 2, 2016 at 6:19 AM - Reply

      I guess I would say it’s under rated as well. It definitely has its place!

  13. Lisa @ cheergerm August 2, 2016 at 5:56 AM - Reply

    Love Haloumi as well Mimi. Looks like we are on a ‘cheese roll’ if you pardon my pun. This salad looks fresh and tasty. (Was that Corsican cheese the one that has maggots in it?)

    • chef mimi August 2, 2016 at 6:18 AM - Reply

      Yes. Maggots. Millions of them.

      • Lisa @ cheergerm August 2, 2016 at 6:22 AM

        Saw it on a TV food show once and never forgot it, I gather you didn’t partake. 😂

      • chef mimi August 2, 2016 at 7:16 AM

        I had just turned 18. But even now I couldn’t do it. The post is quite funny – it’s called Cheese Lover. It’s about the only cheese I never loved, even though I never tried it!

  14. chezlerevefrancais August 2, 2016 at 9:00 AM - Reply

    Love it! Very pretty recipe too. At the risk of sounding boring I can’t buy it but I do have a book on how to make it so you’ve inspired me to have a go now Mimi!

  15. The Gourmet Gourmand August 2, 2016 at 10:53 AM - Reply

    This salad is beautiful Mimi!!!!! I actually have never prepared halloumi myself, but it’s a goal for me this summer. Thanks for the inspiration.

    • chef mimi August 2, 2016 at 2:47 PM - Reply

      Thank you! It’s very different, but you’ll love it!

  16. love in the kitchen August 2, 2016 at 12:01 PM - Reply

    I actually love halloumi and this salad is so visually beautiful Mimi – I’ll definitely make this.
    I do remember that story about the disgusting maggoty cheese. I’ll at least try most things, but I would never be able to stomach that!

    • chef mimi August 2, 2016 at 2:47 PM - Reply

      I wonder who that first person was – “let’s let flies lay eggs on our wheel of Pecorino…”

  17. Elaine @ foodbod August 3, 2016 at 3:15 AM - Reply

    Lovely salad, I love the dressing :)

  18. cookingwithauntjuju.com August 3, 2016 at 5:00 AM - Reply

    Beautiful salad Mimi – I keep seeing recipes using Halloumi and I do need to try it. You like it because it’s “cheese”.

    • chef mimi August 3, 2016 at 7:41 AM - Reply

      It is definitely cheese, but very different. Definitely try it!

  19. kitchenriffs August 3, 2016 at 12:05 PM - Reply

    There are very few cheese I don’t like, and halloumi is wonderful. I particularly like it as an ingredient in a salad — such a nice way to use it, don’t you think? This looks wonderful — thanks.

    • chef mimi August 4, 2016 at 7:12 AM - Reply

      I do love it in salads – it’s almost like having pieces of steak in a salad!

  20. Cocoa & Lavender August 4, 2016 at 11:00 AM - Reply

    Looks absolutely amazing!

  21. thatssojacob August 5, 2016 at 12:33 AM - Reply

    Holy crap, I haven’t had Halloumi since I was in Cyprus 6 years ago – and I live 15 minutes from a Carr Valley Cheese outlet shop! Thanks for letting me know where/how I can find this, Mimi! You’re an inspiration.

    • chef mimi August 5, 2016 at 10:06 AM - Reply

      Well I don’t know about that, but YOU’RE WELCOME!!!

  22. ChgoJohn August 8, 2016 at 11:07 AM - Reply

    Love halloumi but never have tried it grilled. I think it’s my basic fear of gumming up the grates/grill pan. This looks so good, though, that I think it’s time to face my fear. :)

    • chef mimi August 8, 2016 at 7:56 PM - Reply

      I “grilled” some last night for friends, and I just used a cast iron skillet. It worked perfectly. I think for the blog I wanted the grill marks! Totally unecessary!

  23. Frank Fariello August 8, 2016 at 4:21 PM - Reply

    Halloumi sounds nice. In Italian cooking we make something similar with smoked or unsmoked scamorza, grilled or griddled over greens and sometimes topped with a slice of prosciutto or a few anchovy fillets. One of my favorite quick meals–which we had just last night, as a matter of fact. I’ll have to try halloumi to see how it compares..

    • chef mimi August 8, 2016 at 7:56 PM - Reply

      Scamorza- okay, a cheese I haven’t heard of! It does sound similar…

  24. ruthann1 August 11, 2016 at 2:42 PM - Reply

    I’m looking into some new salad recipes that will work in my new, very serious diet. The parsley vinaigrettes sounds perfect and I love bread cheese. Thank you so much!
    RuthAnn Ridley, inspiringcuisine.com

  25. ashu@ashstylegourmet August 17, 2016 at 9:07 AM - Reply

    Hello Mimi, Love grilled Halloumi, the salad looks perfectly my kinda food that I love to eat, the pictures left my mouth watering! :) ashu

  26. Sophie33 August 24, 2016 at 1:03 PM - Reply

    I love a good grilled Halloumi salad any day especially on these hot summer ‘s days! Your salad looks just stunning & fabulous, love that dressing too! :)

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