Salad Days! Just in time for the warm weather and fresh produce, sharing a round up of our 14 favorite salad dressings!
We eat salads all year round — in fact if you follow my Instagram Stories, you know my husband and I tend to opt for big, fully loaded salads for lunch most days.
To keep the salads interesting and fresh tasting, we switch up the salad “add ins” (nuts, beans, seeds, fruits, dried fruits, grains,etc) and we switch up the dressings!
Even the most basic salad tastes completely different with a change of dressing — just think of the difference between a basic balsamic dressing and a lemony dijon dressing and a green goddess dressing.
Here we’re serving up a range of tangy lemon dressings, Asian inspired dressings, creamy cashew-based dressings, Tahini dressings, olive oil based dressings, peanut dressings, green goddess dressings and more!
Let’s start with the basic Olive Oil based dressings.
We’ve got an Easy Balsamic Vinaigrette, a Lemony Dijon Vinaigrette, a Lemony Dijon Shallot Dressing, and a Honey Lime Dressing.
The Easy Balsamic Vinaigrette is a long time go to (our basic default salad dressing) and it’s just as it sounds –EASY and with just Extra Virgin Olive Oil (EVOO), balsamic vinegar, Dijon mustard and a pinch of salt and garlic powder.
The Lemony Dijon Vinaigrette is also simple made with just 8 ingredients: sherry vinegar, EVOO, Dijon mustard, garlic powder, lemon juice, honey, salt and pepper.
The Lemony Dijon Dressing with Shallots is what we use in our Shaved Brussels Sprout and Kale Salad but it is fresh and light! Compared to the prior dressing there is no vinegar and much more lemon!
It’s made with lots of fresh lemon juice, Dijon Mustard, minced shallots, fresh garlic, salt pepper and EVOO (extra virgin olive oil).
Still olive oil based but a completely different flavor is our Honey Lime Dressing. This is most often paired with our Mexican Chopped Salad and it is fresh, light and is reminiscent of flowers! A perfect Spring and Summer dressing!
And the Honey Lime Dressing is made with just 6 ingredients! Lots of fresh lime juice, EVOO (extra virgin olive oil), honey, fresh chopped jalapeno, minced garlic and fresh cilantro.
Next up, let’s look at our creamy dressings.
These dressings are creamy and so satisfying made creamy with either tahini, cashews or yogurt. We have a Vegan Caesar Dressing, a Vegan Ranch Dressing, a Tahini Sherry Vinaigrette, Lemony Garlicky Yogurt Dressing and a Lemon Tahini Dressing/ Sauce.
The Vegan Caesar is from my friend Corey at The Vegan Six. I love a good Caesar Salad dressing but have never been a fan of raw eggs so I’m always on the lookout for a great vegan alternative… this one is unreal — packed with flavor and addictively delicious!
It’s just 7 ingredients — raw cashews, garlic, tahini, white miso, nutritional yeast, fresh pepper and capers — but the blended combination is magical. And you may have noticed, there is no oil either, which is a nice change from so many dressings.
The Vegan Ranch is adapted from Minimalist Baker and is creamy and delicious! It’s made with cashews (soaked in hot water), unsweetened almond milk, lemon juice, garlic, sea salt, black pepper, onion powder, apple cider vinegar, maple syrup, fresh minced dill, fresh minced parsley, fresh chives.
The Tahini Sherry Vinaigrette is based on a dressing we used to love at a local restaurant. It’s fresh, creamy, has a slight sweetness and tang from the sherry vinegar and so yummy! It’s made with tahini, almond milk yogurt, garlic, lemon juice, sherry vinegar, salt and water.
The Lemony Garlic Yogurt Dressing is used as part of our Spinach Quinoa Salad and it is creamy, tangy, garlicky and yummy! Plus it’s made with just 4 ingredients: extra virgin olive oil (EVOO), lemon juice, garlic & yogurt (I used Almond Milk yogurt).
The Tahini Sauce is more of a sauce than a salad dressing per se but it is a staple in our house so we included it here! It’s super easy to make, creamy and so tasty!
Plus it’s made with just 5 ingredients: tahini, garlic, fresh lemon juice, salt and water.
We also have Green dressings!
Our favorite Green dressings include a creamy Cashew Herb Dressing, a creamy Green Goddess Dressing, and a Basil Vinaigrette.
The Green Goddess and Creamy Cashew Herb Dressings are two of my favorites to make as soon as it starts to feel like spring and then I continue to make and inhale them all summer long when fresh herbs are in abundance! They both also double as great dipping sauces.
The Creamy Cashew Herb Dressing is adapted from The Crunchy Radish and is one of my favorites because you can switch up the herbs based on what you have on hand or preferences. It’s made with: cashews (soaked in water), EVOO, fresh lime juice, fresh cilantro, fresh parsley, sherry vinegar, scallions, salt and pepper.
The Green Goddesss Dressing is new this year and I can’t get enough of it! This too you can switch up the herbs based on availability and preference. It’s made with extra virgin olive oil, white wine vinegar, Dijon mustard, 1 cup of fresh herbs (we used parsley, chives, dill and basil), roasted and salted pistachios, plus water, salt and pepper.
The Basil Vinaigrette is delicious any time of year but to me, it tastes like summer! I can’t get enough of it once basil is in abundance. It tastes great with greens, tomatoes and anything caprese!
The Basil Vinaigrette is The Black Dog Summer on the Vineyard Cookbook and we’ve been making it for years! It’s made with lots of fresh basil, garlic, salt, EVOO (extra virgin olive oil), canola oil, red wine vinegar, Dijon mustard, and pepper.
And last but certainly not least, we have a yummy spicy Peanut Dressing and an Asian Dressing.
The Peanut Dressing is one of my favorites! It can be used as a salad dressing or dipping sauce for chicken or tofu and it is a little savory, a little sweet, a little (or a lot – you decide) spicy . If you like peanut based dressings and sauces, it is practically drinkable!
It’s made with 8 ingredients and comes together quickly: peanut butter, gluten-free tamari, ginger, rice wine vinegar, sriracha, fresh lime juice, water and brown sugar.
The Miso Ginger Dressing is from Mark Bittman/ NYT Cooking and tastes just like the restaurants! It’s made with 8 ingredients: a neutral oil, rice wine vinegar, gluten-free mild miso, sesame oil, carrots, ginger plus salt and pepper.
Hope you love these as much as we do!
What’s your favorite kind of dressing?
Scroll down for recipe links and leave a comment if you try any.