Balsamic Vinaigrette Recipe
Salad Dressing with Balsamic Vinegar
Is there anything more satisfying than skillfully whipping up your own dressing right at home? It makes you wonder why you ever bothered buying bottled stuff at the store.
This homemade salad dressing recipe for the Best Balsamic Vinaigrette is one I’ve tweaked over the years to be perfectly tangy-sweet and silky in texture.
The tantalizing flavor is based on good quality aged balsamic vinegar, extra virgin olive oil, honey, a touch of dijon mustard, and herbs. It is fabulous over robust spinach and kale salads, romaine salads, and even over roasted vegetables!
And you can easily make larger batches of this balsamic vinaigrette dressing, and keep it in the refrigerator for several weeks.
What Ingredients You Need to Make the Best Vinaigrette Dressing
With just a handful of ingredients, you can make a balsamic dressing that rivals any store-bought brand in both taste and cost.
Here’s all that you need:
- Aged balsamic vinegar – It’s important to buy very good aged balsamic vinegar. The longer the vinegar has been aged, the sweeter, milder, and richer it becomes.
- Extra virgin olive oil – My personal favorite for making vinaigrettes, but you can substitute it with avocado or any other light-flavored oil you prefer.
- Honey – You’ll need less honey in this recipe if you use an older vinegar and/or if you prefer a more savory and less sweet dressing.
- Dijon mustard – For that perfect tangy element that brings out the boldness of the balsamic.
- Dried thyme – This balances the sweet and zesty notes of the dressing with a mild earthy flavor.
- Minced garlic – Because every good vinaigrette needs garlic!
How To Make Balsamic Vinaigrette Dressing
- Place all the ingredients in a jar and seal tightly.
- Shake vigorously. The mustard will help emulsify the vinaigrette and give it a thick luxurious quality.
That’s it. Seriously!
Get the Full (Printable) Best Balsamic Vinaigrette Recipe Below. Enjoy!
Frequently Asked Questions
How Long Can Balsamic Dressing Be Stored?
Kept in an airtight container in the fridge, this dressing will keep well for 2-3 weeks. Just give it a good shake before serving.
What Are Some Ways to Enjoy This Balsamic Vinaigrette?
Balsamic vinaigrette dressing is delicious drizzled on cold salads loaded with fresh greens and veggies, and on warm salads with quinoa, chickpeas and/or cooked stone fruits like grilled peaches or poached pears.
It adds a wonderful depth and tanginess to hearty roasted veggies, such as carrots and Brussels sprouts, as a balsamic glaze after cooking.
Try a bit of this balsamic vinaigrette recipe with fruits like watermelon and strawberries for a terrifically savory and sweet treat. Adding a scoop of vanilla ice cream turns the salad into an instant dessert.
You can even use it as a marinade over proteins like steak, pork, and chicken.
Can I Substitute Ingredients in this Recipe?
You absolutely can. Use whatever mild flavor oil you prefer (like paleo-friendly avocado oil, sunflower oil, or canola oil), substitute maple syrup for the honey to make it vegan, and it’s perfectly okay to use other mustards like stone-ground or yellow mustard if you don’t have Dijon.
Where Does Balsamic Vinegar Come From?
Authentic balsamic vinegar is made in only the cities of Reggio Emilia and Modena, Italy. It is highly regulated for quality so the traditional methods and production process is monitored by a special certification agency in Italy.
Traditional balsamic vinegar begins with grape must, which is a thick juice or mash made of whole pressed grapes including every component from skin to seeds and stems. They must achieve the perfect balance in flavor after cooking to concentrate the liquid, then fermenting for several weeks. It is then aged in barrels made of chestnut, oak, cherry, mulberry, and juniper wood to create unique flavor notes.
Looking For More Delicious Dressing and Salad Recipes?
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- 3-Ingredient Almond Butter Balsamic Vinaigrette
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- Harvest Salad (Cobb Style) Recipe
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- Roasted Beet Chickpea and Kale Salad Recipe
Best Balsamic Vinaigrette Recipe
- Pour the balsamic vinegar, olive oil, 2 tablespoons honey, Dijon mustard, dried thyme, and garlic clove in a jar. Season with 1/2 teaspoon salt and 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper.
- Place the lid on the jar and shake vigorously to combine. Once smooth, taste. Then add more honey or salt if needed.
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