Lemon Vinaigrette Dressing

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A light, fresh and an easy lemon vinaigrette that works on just about any salad and uses pantry staple ingredients!

Another #EBFbasics recipe coming at ya! I kicked off this new series on Eating Bird Food with quick pickled onions and now I want to share a vinaigrette that works in so many recipes!

I was introduced to the world of homemade dressings thanks to my aunt… at least from what I remember. We typically had store-bought dressings at home and not healthy store-bought salad dressings – my favorite was Catalina, which is essentially liquid sugar disguised as a tomato-based dressing. The first time I had a homemade vinaigrette was at my aunt’s house and I’ve been obsessed with homemade dressings since (check out some of my personal favs here). One huge reason I love salads so much is homemade dressings. #gamechangers

If you’re typically just an oil and vinegar gal when it comes to salads, promise me you’ll give this basic lemon vinaigrette a try! It will take your salads to the next level even though it is so dang simple. And it goes well on just about any salad. If you don’t have a go-to vinaigrette recipe, this can be yours. This could also be used as a base vinaigrette recipe – build on this to make your signature vinaigrette. I have used it in bowls and even as a dipping sauce for chopped veggies.

A jar with lemon vinaigrette. A spoon sticks out of the top of the jar.

Why You’ll Love This Vinaigrette

  • It uses ingredients you probably already have in your pantry!
  • Take your salads to the next level.
  • You can customize it to your liking easily!
Ingredients measured out to make lemon dressing: olive oil, lemon juice, apple cider vinegar, garlic, water, honey or maple syrup, dijon mustard, oregano, salt and pepper.

What You Need

  • apple cider vinegar – one of the bases of this dressing. I’m a big fan of apple cider vinegar, but you can use whatever vinegar you have on hand like white wine vinegar.
  • lemon juice – I prefer to squeeze fresh lemons but if you have lemon juice in the fridge use it up!
  • water – adds a bit of liquid.
  • dijon mustard – for some tang.
  • maple syrup – honey or liquid stevia would also work. If you are watching your sugar intake you can omit, but I prefer a little sweetness to cut the aciditiy.
  • dried oregano – you can also use fresh, you’ll just need a little more. Feel free to mix this up with your favorite herbs – dried or fresh!
  • garlic – one clove minced, feel free to use more if you like an extra kick of garlic flavor.
  • sea salt and black pepper – extra seasoning.
  • olive oil – the other base of this dressing!
Olive oil whisked into the other ingredients.

How to Make This Dressing

Are you ready for how simple this recipe is?

Aside from the olive oil, add all the ingredients into a bowl and whisk. Then slowly add the olive oil as you continue to whisk until emulsified.

And voila! Easy homemade dressing that is simple but delicious and will elevate any salad.

You can also blend everything together in your blender or shake the dressing together in a jar.

An overhead photo of a jar with lemon vinaigrette.

Variations & Tips

  • I love adding a hint of sweetness to my salad dressing just to round out the flavors and make salads more satisfying to me. I fyou don’t like adding sweetners or are watching your sugar intake, you can always omit the sweetener, use less or use a natural zero-sugar based sweetener like stevia instead.
  • I chose to add oregano to this base recipe because I’m a big oregano fan, but feel free to spruce this dressing up with any herb of your choice!
  • This recipe can be whisked, blended in a blender or even shaking up in a mason jar. Pick whichever method is easiest for you.

Ways to Use This Vinaigrette

This dressing is simple but delicious and can be used on a variety of salads.

I like to make a “kitchen sink” salad and empty out all the veggies in the fridge, top with quick pickled onions and this vinaigrette for an easy and satisfying meal. Here are some more salads to try it on!

A jar with lemon vinaigrette. A spoon sticks out of the jar.

Storing Tips

It’s best to store your homemade dressing in a glass container in the fridge. It should last for up to a week.

One thing to note, dressings made with olive oil tend to harden and separate – this is totally normal! Take the dressing out of the fridge about 20 minutes before you use it and then give it a quick shake to recombine the ingredients.

More Salad Dressings To Try

Check out all my salad recipes and salad dressing recipes here on EBF!

If you enjoyed this recipe, please consider leaving a ⭐ star rating and let me know how it went in the 📝 comments below.

4.50 from 61 votes

Basic Lemon Vinaigrette Dressing

A light, fresh and an easy lemon vinaigrette that works on just about any salad. 
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Total Time: 5 minutes
Servings: 3 /4 cup

Ingredients  

  • ¼ cup apple cider vinegar
  • 2 Tablespoons fresh lemon juice
  • 2 Tablespoons water
  • 1 Tablespoon dijon mustard
  • 2 teaspoons honey or maple syrup, or stevia, to taste
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano, or 1 Tablespoon fresh
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • ½ teaspoon sea salt
  • ¼ teaspoon black pepper
  • ½ cup + 2 Tablespoons olive oil

Instructions 

  • Whisk together all ingredients except the olive oil in a small bowl.
    Apple cider vinegar, lemon juice, water, dijon mustard, honey, dried oregano, garlic, sea salt and black pepper whisked together in a bowl. A small bowl of olive oil is nearby.
  • Slowly pour olive oil into the bowl and whisk together until emulsified.
    Olive oil whisked into the other ingredients.
  • You can also blend everything together in your blender or shake the dressing together in a jar.

Nutrition

Serving: 1Tablespoon | Calories: 85kcal | Carbohydrates: 1g | Fat: 9g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Sodium: 77mg | Sugar: 1g

Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.

Additional Info

Course: Salad Dressing
Cuisine: American
Keyword: lemon dressing, lemon vinaigrette, lemon Vinaigrette dressing
Did you make this recipe?Mention @eatingbirdfood and tag #eatingbirdfood!

About Brittany

Hey there, I’m Brittany, the creator of Eating Bird Food, cookbook author, health coach and mama of two littles. Here you’ll find quick and easy recipes that make healthy fun and enjoyable for you and your family!

More about Brittany
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Recipe Rating




19 Comments

  1. 5 stars
    I made this lemon vinaigrette today, and used it on a spinach salad tonight with dinner! It was great, and I’ll be making it again and again. So fresh and flavorful!

    I used a custom made garlic and herb vinegar, used maple syrup for the sweetener, and used half the salt, given our dietary needs. Even then, I’ll definitely be making this dressing again! Probably will use as a marinade with chicken or fish too.

    1. YUM! This sounds amazing, Nancy! I am so glad you love this dressing recipe and it came out great for you. Thanks so much for sharing your review & star rating, I appreciate it!

  2. 5 stars
    Great dressing. Left out the salt as my husband has to cut back on salt. Tasted just find without salt. Made this a couple time already, worked great on salad with leftover salmon. Thanks.

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