This marinated feta cheese is a simple appetizer perfect for any gathering. Creamy feta cheese is marinated in extra virgin olive oil with fresh rosemary, peppercorns, oregano, lemon zest, and a touch of crushed red pepper. Easy to make in five minutes, and delicious served with toasted bread!

marinated feta cheese in a small jar on a light grey surface

Mediterranean food – specifically Greek food – is one of my all time favorite cuisines. I love the fresh flavors and the focus on simple high quality ingredients, and as a Registered Dietitian, I appreciate the health benefits of following a Mediterranean diet.

This marinated feta cheese is a Greek-inspired quick and easy appetizer. Blocks of creamy feta cheese soak up the flavors of extra virgin olive oil, rosemary, lemon zest, and spices. Scoop some up with a cheese knife and spread it over crostini for the most delicious bite!

More simple appetizer recipes to try: Honey Whipped Goat Cheese Dip, Mediterranean Baked Feta, Beet Tzatziki Dip, and Tomato Basil Mozzarella Bruschetta!

This appetizer takes just five minutes to prepare. Dig in right away, or let the flavors bolden by letting everything marinate for 30 minutes.. Prep it ahead of time and store in the fridge so you always have something to serve for last minute guests!

Ingredients in marinated feta cheese

Everything you need to make this recipe:

Kitchen tools needed

To make this recipe, you just need a small 8-12 ounce glass jar, a lemon zester, a knife, and a cutting board.

herb marinated feta cheese ingredients measured out on a light grey backdrop

How to make marinated feta cheese

  1. Drain a block of feta cheese from the brine. Cut it into large chunks, 1/2 – 1 inch in size.
  2. Stuff the feta cheese blocks into a glass jar.
  3. Add fresh rosemary sprigs, lemon zest, peppercorns, red pepper flakes, and dried oregano.
  4. Pour olive oil into the jar, filling it to the top so the feta cheese is covered.
  5. Ideally you will let the feta cheese marinate for 30 minutes before serving, but you can just dig right in if you’re short on time!

Best feta cheese to use for this recipe

The best type of feta to use for this recipe is a French or Greek feta cheese sold in brine. It will be a solid block of cheese, not crumbles. This type of feta cheese is creamier than the pre-crumbled type, with a much more pronounced flavor.

The second best type of feta cheese to use is a block of feta cheese sold in shrink-wrapped plastic.

marinated feta cheese in a small jar on a light grey surface
Fill the jar with extra virgin olive oil to the top

How to serve marinated feta cheese

Serve this appetizer right in the jar with a cheese knife for scooping. Spread it onto toasted baguette or crackers.

Can I prepare this recipe in advance?

Yes! This recipe is easily prepared ahead of time. Just stick it in the fridge for up to two weeks before serving.

If you made this recipe ahead of time and it has been sitting in the fridge, the olive oil may harden. Let the jar sit out at room temperature for about 30 minutes so it returns to a liquid state. You can also run the jar under warm water to speed up the process.

Hand scooping out marinated feta from a jar with a cheese knife, that is arranged on a serving plate with vegetables and bread

Olive oil nutrition and health benefits

Olive oil is one of the healthiest oils to cook with and eat. It’s best known for its impressive composition of healthy fats. A one tablespoon serving of olive oil provides 14 grams of fat, but only one gram is from saturated fat.

The majority of the fat in olive oil comes from heart-healthy monounsaturated fatty acids. Eating monounsaturated fat can help lower the “bad” LDL cholesterol in your blood, thereby reducing your risk for heart disease and stroke.

Difference between extra virgin olive oil and regular olive oil

Extra virgin olive oil is the least processed type of olive oil. It is extracted by grinding olives into a paste, then pressing them to remove the oil. This process is called “cold-pressing” because no heat is involved, which helps maintain the nutrients and flavor.

Because of the minimal processing required to make it, extra virgin olive oil retains beneficial plant compounds such as lignans and flavones, which are powerful antioxidants.

Extra virgin olive oil has more flavor and aroma than regular olive oil. The smoke point is lower for extra virgin olive oil, so it shouldn’t be heated over 400 degrees F. These properties make it ideal for recipes like salad dressings, sauces, and dips.

Let me know if you love this recipe by leaving a comment or star rating below, and check out Instagram and Pinterest for more healthy lifestyle inspiration. Thanks for stopping by!

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marinated feta cheese in a small jar on a light grey surface

5-Minute Marinated Feta in Extra Virgin Olive Oil

  • Author: Alex Aldeborgh
  • Prep Time: 5 minutes
  • Total Time: 5 minutes
  • Yield: serves 4-6 1x
  • Category: appetizer
  • Cuisine: Mediterranean
  • Diet: Vegetarian

Description

This marinated feta cheese is a simple appetizer perfect for any gathering. Creamy feta cheese is marinated in extra virgin olive oil with fresh rosemary, peppercorns, oregano, lemon zest, and a touch of crushed red pepper. Easy to make in five minutes, and delicious served with toasted bread!


Ingredients

Scale
  • 1/2 cup feta cheese in brine
  • 34 sprigs fresh rosemary
  • 1 tsp black peppercorns
  • 1/2 tsp dried oregano
  • 1/4 tsp red pepper flakes
  • 1 tsp lemon zest
  • 3/4 cup olive oil (may need a bit more if you use a bigger jar)

Instructions

  1. Cut the feta into cubes, 1/2 – 1 inch in size.
  2. Put the feta cheese into a 8 or 12 ounce jar.
  3. Add the rosemary to the jar.
  4. Add the peppercorns, oregano, red pepper flakes, and lemon zest to the jar.
  5. Pour the olive oil into the jar to the top, so that everything is covered.
  6. Close the jar and ideally let it marinate for 30 minutes before serving. 

Notes

How to serve marinated feta cheese

Serve this appetizer right in the jar with a cheese knife for scooping. Spread it onto toasted baguette or crackers.

Can I prepare this recipe in advance?

Yes! This recipe is easily prepared ahead of time. Just stick it in the fridge for up to two weeks before serving.

If you made this recipe ahead of time and it has been sitting in the fridge, the olive oil may harden. Let the jar sit out at room temperature for about 30 minutes so it returns to a liquid state. You can also run the jar under warm water to speed up the process.

Keywords: marinated feta cheese, marinated feta in olive oil, simple appetizer, quick and easy appetizer