Olive Tapenade is a salty appetizer that can be presented all by itself with crackers or as part of a charcuterie board. No matter how you serve it, this fresh and easy to make spread is always a party favorite and garners tons of compliments! It’s briny, yet freshly flavored and is great for serving all year round.
Three different types of briny olives are served with salty capers, sweet dates, garlic cloves and more in this classic Olive Tapenade recipe! This spread really is what dreams are made of if you’re an olive lover like me.
If you’ve never had it before, Olive Tapenade is a spread that was first created in France that highlights everything you love about olives! Warning – one bite is NEVER enough.
Typically, you see Olive Tapenade presented at spring and summertime soirees, but I love to enjoy it all year round. After all, I can always grab some good olives at my local grocery store, so why not?!
Once you whip up this easy appetizer recipe and try it, you’ll see why I’m so hooked. It’s perfect for enjoying on a Crostini with a cocktail when you need to treat yourself!
Olive Tapenade feels pretty fancy to serve, but it’s actually SO easy to make and it’s concocted with simple pantry staples. It’s a great recipe to toss together just before the party starts since it requires minimal effort, no time at all, and very little clean up.
It’s a true hassle-free recipe that you can make on super short notice. And yes, it pairs well with essentially every wine and cocktail you can think of… I may or may now know from experience.
How to Make Olive Tapenade
Plug in the food processor and let it do all of the work for you!
- Chop up the ingredients. Add the olives, capers, dates, garlic, Italian seasoning, parsley and basil to the bowl of your food processor. Pulse a few times to chop everything up.
- Add the remaining ingredients. Pour in the clementine juice and olive oil. Scrape down the sides of the bowl and put the lid back on the top. Pulse again until you achieve the desired consistency.
- Serve and enjoy! Transfer your Olive Tapenade to a serving bowl and garnish with parsley, olives, and a drizzle of olive oil. Serve it immediately or store for later.
How to Achieve the Desired Consistency for Olive Tapenade
You can have a chunkier or smoother tapenade! It’s all tasty to me. I prefer the consistency to be a bit chunky, but it’s also pretty great when it’s smooth as well. Here’s how to master your desired consistency:
For a chunkier Olive Tapenade, pulse the food processor between 10-15 times and scrape down the sides as needed.
For a more smooth and spreadable Olive Tapenade, run the processor on low until a paste forms. Be sure to stop and scrape down the sides of the bowl once or twice.
Can I make Olive Tapenade ahead of time?
In an airtight container in the fridge, you can store Olive Tapenade for up to 1 week. That means it’s a wonderful make-ahead recipe!
If you do go in and scoop a little tapenade out of the container at a time, make sure you’re doing so with a clean utensil. Any new bacteria that’s introduced to the dish could cause it to spoil.
I do not recommend freezing tapenade! It’s best served chilled or freshly blended. It will not thaw well.
How do I serve Olive Tapenade?
Be the host with the most when you make these easy vegetarian dips and spreads!
Get the Recipe: Olive Tapenade
- 1 cup Green Pitted Olives
- 1 cup Black Pitted Olives
- 1/2 cup Kalamata Pitted Olives
- 2 tablespoons capers, drained
- 1/4 cup Pitted Dates
- 3 garlic cloves
- 1 tablespoon Italian Seasoning
- 1/4 cup fresh parsley
- 1 1/2 tablespoons fresh basil
- 2 tablespoon fresh clementine juice, or orange juice
- 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
- 1/2 teaspoon fresh ground black pepper
- 1 food processor
- In the bowl of a food processor, add the olives, capers, dates, garlic, Italian seasoning, parsley and basil.
- Pulse the food processor a few times to chop up and mix the ingredients together.
- Add the clementine juice and olive oil. Scrape down the sides of the bowl and replace the lid.
- Pulse again until the desired consistency. For a chunkier tapenade, pulse between 10-15 times.
- For a spreadable tapenade, run the processor on low until a paste forms being sure to stop and scrape down the sides of the bowl once or twice.
- Transfer the tapenade to a serving bowl and garnish with parsley, olives and a drizzle of olive oil.
- Serve with crostini or store in a covered container for a sumptuous sandwich spread or healthy snack.