Several individual components of the Mediterranean diet have been shown to offer protection against prostate cancer. The present study is the first to investigate the association between adherence to the Mediterranean diet and the relative risk of prostate cancer. We also explored the usefulness of the Mediterranean Diet Score (MDS) in a non-Mediterranean population. FFQ data were obtained from 1482 incident prostate cancer patients and 1108 population-based controls in the Cancer of the Prostate in Sweden (CAPS) study. We defined five MDS variants with different components or using either study-specific intakes or intakes in a Greek reference population as cut-off values between low and high intake of each component. Unconditional logistic regression was used to estimate the relative risk of prostate cancer for high and medium v. low MDS, as well as potential associations with the individual score components. No statistically significant association was found between adherence to the Mediterranean diet based on any of the MDS variants and prostate cancer risk (OR range: 0·96–1·19 for total prostate cancer, comparing high with low adherence). Overall, we found little support for an association between the Mediterranean diet and prostate cancer in this Northern European study population. Despite potential limitations inherent in the study or in the build-up of a dietary score, we suggest that the original MDS with study-specific median intakes as cut-off values between low and high intake is useful in assessing the adherence to the Mediterranean diet in non-Mediterranean populations.