Looking for a way to turn your boring salad into a delicious lunch? These 20 vinaigrette recipes give you plenty of options.
I’m not sure what it is about homemade vinaigrette. Maybe it’s the fresh ingredients or being able to add such exact amounts of everything.
Whatever it is, you just can’t beat homemade vinaigrette recipes. There’s no store-bought salad dressing or vinaigrette that can top them.
Here, I’ve pulled together some of my favorites. There are all kinds of options: sweet, zesty, creamy, spicy, etc.
Whatever you’re in the mood for, this list has something for you.
Now, let’s get to it. That way, 5 to 10 minutes from now, you’ll have the vinaigrette of your dreams.
How To Make a Basic Vinaigrette
1. Fresh Mint Vinaigrette
This 5-minute vinaigrette is both fresh and refreshing. It’s unbelievably minty, and there’s also a pleasant underlying sweet and tangy taste.
It’s the perfect option for any summer salad. And while it’s a bit zesty, it’ll leave your mouth tasting fresher than most vinaigrettes do.
2. Creamy Avocado Vinaigrette
This green vinaigrette is creamy, dreamy, and delicious. It’s bright, super zesty, and remarkably good for you as far as salad dressings go.
It uses just five ingredients and takes only 5 minutes to prepare. Besides the avocado, you make this vinaigrette with primarily tart ingredients.
Therefore, if genuine zest isn’t your thing, this one might not be right for you.
3. Strawberry Lime Vinaigrette
This thick pink vinaigrette looks more like a smoothie than a salad dressing. Fortunately, it doesn’t need to look like a vinaigrette to taste like one.
It has a bold, sweet, and savory flavor that perfectly complements summer salads.
It works exceptionally well if you like to top your salads with juicy steak strips.
4. Maple Vinaigrette
This gorgeous golden vinaigrette perfectly balances sweetness and savoriness. The maple syrup provides a wonderfully rich base.
The tarter components enhance the flavor rather than mask it. It uses more ingredients than some options on this list.
However, it still takes just 5 minutes to make.
Best of all, it tastes great on any salad. It works whether you’re making a simple mixed green salad or a fruit-filled summer salad.
5. Clementine Vinaigrette
Clementine vinaigrette is sweet and citrusy with just a hint of tarragon underneath. Typically, tarragon isn’t my favorite herb.
I find it pungent and overpowering. Fortunately, this vinaigrette uses only a fourth of a teaspoon.
It’s just enough to lend its licorice flavor to the dressing without overwhelming it.
6. BEST Balsamic Vinaigrette
I tend to be skeptical when someone calls something the “best.” After all, taste is entirely subjective, so their best might not be my best.
This one is pretty close to ideal, though.
It features the perfect balance of vinegar and oil. Plus, the tangy and sweet flavors play well together, too.
The consistency is also excellent. It’s neither too thick nor too runny. It’s hard for me to believe anyone won’t love it.
7. Sesame Ginger Dressing
Try this recipe if you’re looking for something with an absolute ton of flavor. It’s fresh and spicy with a distinctly Asian flair.
It tastes great on anything, but I prefer to use it on cabbage-heavy salads.
8. Sunshine Salad Dressing
It’s hard not to like something with a name like “sunshine salad dressing.” This creamy, zingy dressing is just as light and bright as it sounds.
Its Greek yogurt, honey, and Dijon mustard base has a rich, sweet, and tangy taste. There’s also a warm earthiness from the garlic and pepper.
It’s pretty healthy, too. It’s low-calorie, low-fat, and somewhat low-carb (5.1 grams per serving).
9. Lemon Vinaigrette
Try this recipe if you like vinaigrettes that are more tart and zesty than sweet. Its bright yellow color perfectly matches its vibrant flavor.
It tastes fantastic on salads. However, you can also use it on roasted veggies or to season meat. (It’s phenomenal on fish.)
10. Creamy Greek Yogurt Balsamic Vinaigrette Salad Dressing
The prep time on this says 5 minutes. In reality, it only takes about half that time to whip up this creamy, flavorful dressing.
It’s thick and smooth, sweet and tangy. And much like the lemon vinaigrette above, you can add it to much more than salads.
11. Blue Cheese Vinaigrette
Blue cheese vinaigrette is a light, thin dressing with a ton of flavor. It tempers the salty tanginess of blue cheese with garlic, Tabasco, and pepper.
The Tabasco primarily lends flavor, not heat, but there’s a slight spiciness. It’s not one of the prettier options on the list, but it certainly tastes fantastic.
12. Chili Lime Vinaigrette
Of course, if you’re looking for something with lots of heat, I’ve got you covered there, too.
This chili lime vinaigrette won’t set your mouth on fire, but it’s pretty spicy.
You’ll only add a fourth of a teaspoon of cayenne, but it’s noticeable. You can adjust that, as well, to make it spicier or less spicy, as you prefer.
The other herbs and seasonings give this vinaigrette a totally robust flavor.
It’s so good, you can also use it as a meat marinade or even a salsa-like topping.
13. Italian Vinaigrette
You’ll like this one if you enjoy the creamy, zesty salad dressing from Olive Garden.
The recipe’s author claims it tastes like Olive Garden’s dressing but better.
There are no discernible differences between them to me. If there are differences, they’re practically unnoticeable.
Check it out for yourself the next time you’re in the mood for a zesty Olive Garden salad.
14. Lemon Garlic Dijon Vinaigrette
The name of this vinaigrette gives you all the info you need about it. It’s bright and citrus-flavored.
Plus, there’s that rich Dijon mustard tanginess just beneath the surface.
It’s a simple, six-ingredient vinaigrette that takes 5 minutes to make. You can use it on various salad types.
15. Orange Vinaigrette
Here’s another fruity option to brighten up any salad. It’s overflowing with the citrus flavors of orange and lemon. The red wine vinegar makes it even tangier.
Don’t worry, though. It isn’t 100% tartly sweet. The shallots, garlic, and Dijon mustard help ground it somewhat.
Consequently, it tastes superb on all-veggie salads or fruit and veggie mixes.
16. Garlic & Herb Vinaigrette Dressing
This one is a bit oilier than I like. However, its taste is so spectacular that I can easily overlook that. It’s incredibly earthy and herb-flavored.
It features some of my favorite seasonings and herbs. There’s garlic, basil, oregano, parsley, black pepper, and more.
That myriad of flavors is what makes this dressing so impressive.
17. Citrus-Lime Vinaigrette
This spicy, lime-infused vinaigrette has a distinctly Mexican flair. Featuring jalapenos, lime, and cilantro, it doesn’t have much choice.
The orange juice lightens it a bit, but not too much. If you want to add a dash of heat to your salad, this is the vinaigrette for that.
And don’t let the word “citrus” in its name fool you. You’ll taste the orange a bit, but it’s not what I’d call a “fruity” dressing.
18. Red Wine Vinaigrette
This light, zesty vinaigrette is one most of us already know and love. If you’ve ever had red wine vinaigrette, you already know how it tastes.
It’s a lot like the store-bought variety. However, this one uses fresh ingredients for a crisper, more refreshing flavor.
If you find it too tart, add honey until you sweeten it to your tastes.
19. Cilantro Lime Dressing
Here’s another great option if you’re looking for something with a bit of Mexican flavor. You’ll love its bright green color and fresh, tangy taste.
It’s sweet, bright, and zesty all at once. It may not be suited for every type of salad.
Nonetheless, it’s wonderful on a taco salad or other Mexican dishes.
20. Raspberry Vinaigrette
Of all the options on this list, this one tastes the most like its store-bought counterpart. It’s an incredible balance of sweetness and tartness.
Plus, its lovely red hue adds a splash of color to any salad, no matter how green.
You can use it on anything, but it tastes best on fruit-filled summer salads.
I don’t hate it on a garden-fresh one, either, though. That’s especially true if you toss in a handful of walnuts to add some nutty crunchiness.
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