Olive Marinate

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Appetizers | Olive Marinate Image

(Italian marinated olive appetizer)

Marinated olives are a popular snack and antipasto in Italy. Olives are popular all around the Mediterranean coast. They make a great addition to any Spanish, Italian, North African, Greek or Provençal meal.

Image Creative Commons by prakhar

Makes about 4 cups


  • Cracked green olives -- 2 cups
  • Black olives -- 2 cups
  • Olive oil -- 1/2 cup
  • Red wine vinegar -- 1/4 cup
  • Garlic, minced -- 2 tablespoons
  • Herbs and seasonings (see variations)


  1. Mix all ingredients together in a large bowl. Chill in the refrigerator for a few hours to let the flavors mingle.
  2. Serve chilled or at room temperature as an appetizer or accompaniment to cocktails.


  • French (Olives marinées): use black niçoise olives, thyme and a little lavender.
  • Greek: use black Kalamata olives and dried oregano and thyme.
  • Italian (Olive marinata): use chopped rosemary, thyme and peppercorns.
  • North African (Mslalla): use oil-cured black olives and substitute lemon juice for the red wine vinegar. Stir in cumin seeds, coriander seeds, lemon and orange zest and crushed red pepper.
  • Spanish (Aceitunas aliñadas): use paprika, cumin seeds and peppercorns.
  • If you like, you can use all green or all black olives.
  • Here is a list of the most popular herbs and seasonings mixed with marinated olives. Mix and match to suit your own taste.
    • Bay leaves
    • Cardamom seed
    • Cracked black pepper
    • Crushed red pepper
    • Cumin seed
    • Fennel seed
    • Lavender
    • Lemon, lime or orange zest
    • Oregano
    • Paprika
    • Rosemary
    • Sun-dried tomatoes
    • Thyme


  • Do not used canned olives for this recipe! (Unless you have no shame.)
  • Marinated olives will stay fresh for 1-2 months if stored in the refrigerator.
Your rating: None Average: 3.9 (25 votes)

are you allowed to use olives

are you allowed to use olives from a jar? if not, where do get your olives from/where do you think olives come from?

Are you allowed to use canned olives?

Good question. I was thinking on that same line. In my area there are only canned olives. Am I allowed to use them? Sure, who's going to stop me? Besides they do say to use canned ones only if you have no shame. I have no shame. Besides, I can't get any other kind.

Canned Olives Bad

Olives in a jar are just fine. Black olives from a can are just too processed and taste like metal. I can't recommend them in good conscience.

If you can only find canned olives in your area, and you still really want marinated olive, order them online. Here's a good variety of olives you can buy through Amazon. Some of the items are large bags, but page through and you'll find some nice little jars to try.

How much of the different

How much of the different herbs should you use?

Herb Amounts

The amount really depends on your taste, but I would say 1 to 2 teaspoons of dried herbs or spices and around 1 tablespoon of fresh herbs would be a good start.