Veggie Sandwich with Whipped Feta and Pepperoncini

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This veggie sandwich is absolutely packed with flavor and color! A rainbow of olives, carrots, tomatoes, basil, and pepperoncini, with creamy whipped feta and whole grain bread makes for a healthy satisfying meal any time of the day.

A close up of a veggie sandwich on a plate.
Photo Credits: Ali Redmond

Sometimes a salad, no matter how delicious, just doesn’t cut it for lunch. What if you could capture the flavors and textures of your favorite salad and make it into a satisfying veggie sandwich?

Turns out, it’s not so hard. First, I slather toasted bread with a simplified version of our Creamy Whipped Feta Dip made with tangy feta and Greek yogurt (no mayo necessary!) Next, I pile on a mixture of sweet grated carrots, biting red onions, briny olives, fresh basil, and spicy pepperoncini dressed with olive oil and vinegar. Top that with sliced ripe beefsteak tomatoes, crisp cucumber slices, and a handful of spicy arugula.

I’ll admit it’s a little sloppy. When you bite into this generous sandwich, you might want to lean over your plate to catch the tangy dressing that will inevitably drip out. But I promise you, the mess is worth it! It’s a nutritious vegetarian meal that feels hearty but won’t weigh you down.

Table of Contents
  1. Veggie Sandwich Ingredients 
    1. For the Whipped Feta Spread 
    2. For the Sandwich
  2. How to Make this Veggie Sandwich Recipe
  3. Substitutions and Ways to Mix it Up
  4. What to Serve with Veggie Sandwiches
  5. More Vegetarian Sandwich Recipes
  6. Veggie Sandwich with Whipped Feta and Pepperoncini Recipe
Ingredients for the veggie salad sandwich recipe including toasted bread, a carrot, red onion, peperoncini, kalamata olives, basil, red wine vinegar, olive oil, salt, pepper, cucumber, tomato, arugula, feta, greek yogurt and lemon.

Veggie Sandwich Ingredients 

You likely have most of the ingredients for this veggie sandwich on hand, or they’re easy to find. Make sure to buy fresh, in-season tomatoes, and basil that still looks lively (and see my suggested substitutions below). 

For the Whipped Feta Spread 

  • Greek yogurt: Adds tang and combines with the feta for a spread you’ll want to eat by the spoonful! 
  • Feta cheese: Salty, tangy, and creamy all at the same time. For the tastiest results, use a quality Greek sheep’s milk feta if you can find it, not the pre-crumbled type. 
  • Olive oil: Enriches the spread and imparts a depth of flavor. Use a high-quality extra virgin variety. 
  • Lemon zest: Lifts the richness and adds an aromatic quality. 
A piece of toast with the whipped feta spread and the Greek-style slaw on a cutting board with a knife. Next to this is a veggie sandwich on a plate and the rest of the slaw in a bowl.

For the Sandwich

  • Whole-wheat bread: Hearty whole-wheat bread is key to making this vegetarian sandwich feel satisfying. If possible, buy a fresh-baked loaf from your favorite bakery and cut it into thick slices. 
  • Carrots: While not traditional in a Greek salad, carrots add a hint of sweetness and contrast with the strong, briny flavors of the feta, olives, and pepperoncini.
  • Red onion: Sweet and mild enough to eat raw, red onion adds color and crunch to the sandwich. 
  • Peperoncini: It’s easy to find pre-sliced pepperoncini in jars these days. You won’t be sorry to have them around, as they are a quick way to perk up any sandwich or salad.
  • Kalamata olives: Briny Kalamata olives are traditional in a Greek salad, but any high-quality olive you have on hand will work. 
  • Red wine vinegar: Adds a dash of acidity.
  • Extra-virgin olive oil: Use full-flavor Greek olive oil, like our Private Reserve from Kyparissia.
  • Fresh basil leaves: This bright, fresh, and floral herb balances the peppery flavors of the arugula and pepperoncini.
  • Kosher salt and pepper: Salt is the surefire way to bring out the flavor of food, and pepper adds a welcome kick.
  • English cucumbers: I prefer English cucumbers (or the Persian type, if you can find them) because they are sweeter and less watery. If standard slicing cucumbers are all that’s available, peel their waxy skin before using.
  • Large Slicing Tomato: Look for locally-grown tomatoes when they’re in season. I especially like heirloom varieties like Beefsteak, Brandywine, or Black Krim. They have a more tomato-y flavor and add a nice pop of color. In a pinch, use Roma tomatoes.
  • Arugula: Peppery arugula adds a bite to this sandwich.
A veggie sandwich cut in half on a plate next to a cloth napkin.

How to Make this Veggie Sandwich Recipe

These sandwiches take minutes to prepare, and you can prepare the Whipped Feta Spread up to 5 days in advance. Here are the steps: 

  • Make the Whipped Feta Spread. Into the bowl of a large food processor fitted with a blade, tear 8 ounces of feta into large pieces. Add ¾ cup Greek yogurt and the zest of 1 lemon. Pulse to combine, then run the processor on low speed as you drizzle in 2 tablespoons of olive oil. Process until the feta is whipped to a smooth mixture.Whipped feta spread in a food processor.
  • Toast 8 slices of bread: If you have a large toaster oven, you might be able to do this in two batches. Otherwise, place all the slices directly on the oven rack and toast at 350°F until lightly toasted, about 10 minutes.
  • Meanwhile, make the filling, adding the veggies to a mixing bowl as you go. Peel and grate 1 carrot into the bowl. Thinly slice ½ red onion and 12 pitted Kalamata olives. Add ¼ cup sliced pepperoncini. Tear 16 basil leaves into small pieces. Stir in 1 tablespoon each olive oil and red wine vinegar and season with a pinch of salt and plenty of freshly ground pepper.Greek-style slaw in a bowl.
  • Slice the cucumbers and tomatoes: Slice ½ English cucumber into long, thin pieces. Remove the core of the tomato with a paring knife. Use a sharp, serrated knife to cut the tomato into thin slices.
  • Assemble the sandwiches: Spread the bread slices with the Whipped Feta Spread (you may have some leftover, but you can store it in your fridge for up to 5 days and use as a dip for veggies, chips, etc). Divide the carrot mixture over the bottom half of each sandwich, then layer with cucumber and tomato slices. Pile on fresh arugula and place the top halves of the bread slices on sandwiches. Press down firmly on each sandwich and slice in half with a serrated bread knife. Enjoy! An overhead photo of 4 pieces of toast, one with whipped feta, one with Greek-style slaw, and two that are plain.

Substitutions and Ways to Mix it Up

This sandwich will easily earn a spot on your rotation as-is, but has a lot of lasting potential if you mix up the flavors from time to time. Some ideas: 

  • Add protein: While this sandwich is flavorful and filling without meat, sliced grilled chicken breast or steak makes a great addition. 
  • Change the greens: Spicy watercress or mizuna can stand in for arugula, and though it doesn’t have the same spicy flavor, romaine would add a nice crunch. If you have any watercress leftover make watercress soup!
  • Vary the herbs: Fresh parsley, mint, or oregano are good options.
  • When it’s not tomato season: I love vine-ripened tomatoes when they are in season, but will go many months tomato-free because I find green-house varieties lackluster! During those sad months, I’d advise swapping out the tomatoes with sliced roasted red peppers, which you can find jarred in most grocery stores.
  • Swap the bread: Instead of whole-wheat bread, use a toasted split baguette, focaccia, or warmed pita bread.
A veggie sandwich on a plate in front of a bowl of the Greek-style slaw.

What to Serve with Veggie Sandwiches

Nothing goes better with a sandwich than pickles! I love these extra-crunchy, homemade Quick Pickled Cucumbers because they have so much more flavor than store-bought. Bursting with fresh garlic, dill, and traditional pickling spices, they are a cinch to make and last up to two months in the fridge.

For an easy weeknight meal, I’d pair these sandwiches with Easy Greek Red Lentil Soup. Featuring quick-cooking red lentils, this creamy soup is brightened with cumin, oregano, and lemon. It’s also a great way to add healthy protein to a vegetarian meal. 

If you’re packing up these sandwiches for lunch, you won’t get too many complaints by tucking in a sweet treat like these no-bake Chocolate-Covered Dates with Almonds. To drink, try a refreshing, antioxidant-rich glass of ice-cold Karkade (Hibiscus Tea).

More Vegetarian Sandwich Recipes

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For the Whipped Feta Spread

For the Sandwich

  • Make the whipped feta spread. In the bowl of a large food processor fitted with a blade, combine the feta, Greek yogurt, and lemon zest. Pulse to combine, then run the processor on low speed as you drizzle in enough olive oil to make a good consistency (about 2 tablespoons). Process until the feta is whipped to a smooth mixture.

  • Dress the veggies. Grate the carrot on the large holes of a box grater and transfer to a small bowl. Add the red onion, peperoncini, olives, and basil. Toss to combine, then stir in the vinegar and olive oil and season with a pinch of salt and plenty of freshly ground pepper.

  • Assemble the sandwiches. Spread the bread slices with Whipped Feta Spread (you may have some leftover, but it keeps for 3 days and makes a great dip for raw veggies or to spread on toast). Divide the slaw over the bottom half of each sandwich, then layer with tomato and cucumber slices. Pile on arugula and place the top halves of the bread slices on sandwiches. Press down firmly on each sandwich and slice in half with a serrated bread knife.

  • Don’t skip toasting the bread slices! Toasting bread helps dry it out – making it more able to absorb moisture and lessening the chance of biting into a soggy sandwich.
  • Getting ahead: The Creamy Feta Spread can be made beforehand and stored in the fridge for up to five days. But it’s best to prepare the vegetables the day you plan to eat the sandwiches, as they will not hold up for more than a few hours.
  • If you’re packing these sandwiches for a lunchbox or picnic: Leave out the sliced tomatoes (or replace them with roasted red peppers), as they will start to release water and break down quickly.
  • The nutritional information is calculated as if you’re using the entire batch of feta spread, you likely won’t do that so the calories and fat are actually lower for each sandwich than is listed. 
  • Visit our shop to browse quality Mediterranean ingredients including olive oils, honey, jams, and spices.

Calories: 372.9kcalCarbohydrates: 36.5gProtein: 24.6gFat: 15.5gSaturated Fat: 5.7gPolyunsaturated Fat: 1.5gMonounsaturated Fat: 4.3gCholesterol: 32.8mgSodium: 980.3mgPotassium: 404.9mgFiber: 5.4gSugar: 9.4gVitamin A: 3264.9IUVitamin C: 15.4mgCalcium: 184.5mgIron: 2mg