Our 18 Best Salad Dressing Recipes

Creamy Lemon-Garlic Dressing
Photo: Photography / Caitlin Bensel, Styling / Emily Nabors Hall / Julia Bayless

The pièce de resistance of any tasty salad is the dressing that adds flavor and moisture to every bite. After all, a Caesar salad is only as good as its creamy dressing, and there's nothing like a tried-and-true vinaigrette to add an extra pop of freshness to a clean-out-the-fridge salad. That's why we pulled together this mix of four- and five-star salad dressing recipes that have kept our readers coming back for more. You know you can depend on recipes like our Creamy Lemon-Garlic Dressing and Lemon-Shallot Dressing to make your next salad sing.

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Creamy Lemon-Garlic Dressing

Creamy Lemon-Garlic Dressing
Photography / Caitlin Bensel, Styling / Emily Nabors Hall / Julia Bayless

This creamy lemon-garlic dressing carries the full flavor of roasted garlic, with lemon juice and Dijon mustard rounding out the flavor.

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Meyer Lemon Vinaigrette

Meyer Lemon Vinaigrette
Photography / Brie Passano, Styling / Sammy Mila / Holly Raibikis

Once you try this easy vinaigrette recipe, you'll want to use it in every meal. Meyer lemon adds acidity, while the sweetness from the honey and the sharpness from the shallot counterbalance to create a bright, flavorful vinaigrette.

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Caesar Salad Dressing


Double this recipe to have extra dressing on hand for tomorrow night's salad.

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Citrus Vinaigrette


This versatile citrus salad dressing gets a touch of natural sweetness from orange juice, which balances the acidity of the lemon juice. Use it in coleslaw for a mayo-free dressing, or drizzle it over winter greens with dried fruit and nuts.

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Lemon-Garlic Vinaigrette

Lemon-Garlic Vinaigrette
Eva Kolenko

While a 1-to-2 acid-to-oil ratio is common for vinaigrette, shifting it to 1-to-1½ yields a dressing with a brighter flavor and fewer calories. That means for every ½ cup of acid, such as vinegar or lemon juice, use 3/4 cup of oil. Here's a good all-purpose take on the formula.

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Greek Salad Dressing


This simple Greek vinaigrette is so easy to make and so finger-licking good you'll never want to go back to bottled dressing again! Drizzle it over classic Greek salad, a green salad or even use it as a marinade for grilled vegetables or chicken.

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Lemon-Tahini Dressing

Lemon-Tahini Dressing
Jason Donnelly

Spoon this tangy dressing over cooked broccoli, green beans, salad or poached fish.

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Lemon-Shallot Dressing

Lemon-Shallot Dressing
Photography / Antonis Achilleos, Styling / Christine Keely / Ali Ramee

This quick dressing features lemon juice and shallots for a simple, bright flavor. A touch of honey balances the acidity and tartness of the lemon. Use in a pasta salad or over leafy greens.

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Creamy Roasted Garlic Dressing

Roasted Garlic Dressing
Jason Donnelly

Made with mellow roasted garlic and chicken broth, this creamy dressing is perfect with a simple salad of romaine lettuce and red onion rings or with a main-dish salad.

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Basil Vinaigrette


Drizzle this basil salad dressing over sliced tomatoes or cooked green beans. Or toss it into a grain salad for a pop of fresh summertime flavor.

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Tahini Dressing

Tahini Dressing
Jason Donnelly

Tahini adds richness to this creamy dressing. Its nutty flavor will enliven any salad.

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Cucumber Herb Vinaigrette


As the base of this herb-spiked dressing, pureed cucumber provides a mellow grassy flavor and a luxurious texture. Pureeing vegetables into a salad dressing is a great way to give it body (and to sneak in more low-cal vegetables). Experiment with tomatoes, arugula and/or roasted garlic to create your own dressing magic.

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Tomatillo Ranch Dressing


Raw tomatillos replace the tang usually provided by buttermilk in this creamy salad dressing recipe. Toss with your favorite greens or serve with crudités or roasted potato wedges.

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Honey-Mustard Vinaigrette


Here is a great, all-purpose salad dressing. The pleasing pungency of Dijon mustard makes it a good match for slightly bitter greens, such as escarole, chicory, radicchio or Belgian endive. It also makes an irresistible dipping sauce for crunchy vegetables (especially fennel) and crusty whole-wheat bread.

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Cilantro-Lime Vinaigrette

Cilantro-Lime Vinaigrette

Orange juice and cilantro yield a tangy dressing that you'll want to have on hand.

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Honey-Mustard Vinaigrette with Lemon


A healthy, tasty homemade salad dressing is as simple as shaking a few ingredients in a jar.

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Maple Balsamic Vinaigrette with Shallots


This healthy homemade salad dressing has just the right amount of sweetness without being cloying. Try it on a salad with fresh strawberries and spinach or arugula.

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Mint Vinaigrette


This brightly flavored lemon-mint vinaigrette recipe is an ideal dressing for mixed green salads or grain salads, such a quinoa or freekah, topped with fresh fruit.

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