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Easy Appetizer: Olive Artichoke Tapenade

olive and artichoke tapenade

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Tiny Gualala, California is a gorgeous seaside town perched on the forested cliffs of the windswept Pacific coast, about three hours north of San Francisco (five if you’re motion-sensitive and have to keep stopping along the notoriously curvy highway to lie down on the side of the road, convulsing in a cold sweat while your family assures concerned passers-by not to worry, that everything is gonna be just fine, thanks for asking). Despite the rough journey, my recent weekend in tranquil Gualala had many sublime highlights: sitting in the hot tub high above wild waves, tidepools, and deer; walking down to the beach to collect sand-polished rocks; watching insane purple-red sunsets; and cooking homemade dinners in our cozy rental house kitchen.

Each day we visited our favorite grocery store, Surf Supermarket, to load up on produce, fresh bread, smoked salmon, locally made sausages, and other treats. One special discovery was an olive artichoke tapenade made by a Sonoma County gourmet shop, the Jimtown Store. My brother-in-law loved it so much that I decided I would try to make my own version when I got home. The result was a hit and couldn’t have been easier to throw together. Serve this flavor-packed appetizer with rustic brown bread, cheese, and white wine.

Big thanks to Jimtown for the inspiration. If I can ever stomach the ride up the coast again (unlikely) I’ll be sure to stop by and thank them in person! By the way, you can find their products in stores across the country—and can order them online, too.

tapenade with olives and artichokes in a bowl

Olive Artichoke Tapenade

Robin Donovan
Inspired by Sonoma County's Jimtown Store, this easy appetizer is delicious and couldn't be easier to throw together. Serve this flavor-packed tapenade with rustic brown bread, cheese, and white wine.

Makes 1½ cups.
5 from 4 votes
Prep Time 5 minutes
Total Time 5 minutes
Course Appetizer Recipes
Cuisine Italian
Calories 28 kcal


  • 1 cup pimento-stuffed green olives
  • 1 cup marinated artichoke hearts
  • 2 tablespoons capers
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice from about 1 lemon


  • In a food processor, or by hand, finely chop olives, artichoke hearts, and capers.
  • Stir in lemon juice.


Serving: 1Calories: 28kcalCarbohydrates: 3gProtein: 1gFat: 2gPolyunsaturated Fat: 1gSodium: 227mgFiber: 1gSugar: 1g
Keyword capers, olives, tapenade
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By on January 13th, 2011


Hi, I’m Robin! I am a full-time food blogger, recipe developer, and cookbook author. I spend my days cooking, writing about, and photographing food.

I’m the author of more than 50 cookbooks, including Ramen for Beginners5 Ingredient Cooking for TwoSushi at HomeThe Baking Cookbook for Teens, and the bestselling Campfire Cuisine.

My food writing has also been featured in major print and online pubications including Cooking Light, Fitness, San Jose Mercury News, San Francisco Chronicle, and others. → More about Robin

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