Skip the store-bought stuff and make this simple Italian dressing at home! It’s zesty, flavorful, and pairs well with a variety of salads or can be used as a marinade.
With how many homemade salad dressings I have on the blog how have I not shared my go-to recipe for Italian salad dressing?! That changes today!
Why You’ll Love This Dressing
It’s so easy to make your own dressing at home and tastes so much better than store-bought!
It pairs well with a variety of salads, especially my Italian chopped salad and can be used as a marinade.
You only need a few simple ingredients that you probably already have in your pantry.
It comes together in a matter of minutes.
Italian Dressing Ingredients
red wine vinegar – I like to use a high-quality red wine vinegar (aka not the cheapest one on the shelf) for salad dressings because there are minimal ingredients and the flavor really shines through. White wine vinegar will also work here, so feel free to use that if it’s what you have on hand.
extra-virgin olive oil – I also recommend using a higher quality extra virgin olive oil for salad dressings like this. Save your regular olive oil for cooking.
dijon mustard – mustard is a great addition to vinaigrettes. It not only adds flavor but also helps to emulsify the dressing.
maple syrup or honey – the extra hint of sweetness really ties the dressing together and helps balance the acidity of the vinegar.
garlic cloves – I prefer fresh garlic cloves, but if you don’t love the strong flavor of garlic, you could also use dried minced garlic or garlic powder instead. I’d use about 1/4 teaspoon.
seasonings – onion powder, dried thyme, dried oregano, dried basil, black pepper and sea salt. For added freshness, feel free to use fresh herbs instead of dried herbs.
How to Make it
It really couldn’t get any easier than this… to make this dressing add all your ingredients to a bowl or mason jar and whisk by hand or shake up the jar until emulsified.
How to Use Italian Dressing
What I love about this dressing is that it is so versatile! It can be used in so many different ways… here are some ideas:
On an Italian salad – I specifically shared this dressing recipe to be paired with a chopped Italian salad that combines romaine lettuce, mozzarella cheese, red onions, cucumbers, and pepperoncini. It’s a natural fit of flavors and so delicious!
On falafel bowls– These bowls are delicious with thicker sauces like tzatziki and hummus but if you’re looking for a lighter option, this Italian dressing is delicious!
On pasta salad– Toss this dressing over pasta and chill for a tasty pasta salad.
As a marinade for chicken or tofu – almost all dressings can double as a marinade and this Italian dressing is no exception. I love marinading my air fryer chicken breast in this dressing.
On roasted veggies – Top your roasted veggies with this Italian dressing for a burst of flavor. This is particularly delicious on roasted cauliflower and potatoes.
Tossed with grains – If you’ve never tossed your freshly made grains (like rice, farro or orzo) with a vinaigrette dressing, you’re missing out!
How to Store
I recommend storing leftovers in an airtight container for up to one week in the refrigerator. I use these 8 oz mason jars and plastic lids for storing so I can easily shake to re-mix the ingredients before serving.
If the contents separate or solidify in the refrigerator, just let the dressing come to room temperature on the counter (or use a hot water bath) and then shake the dressing to combine!