Skip the store bought and make your own basil balsamic vinaigrette dressing. It is naturally gluten free and vegan. Perfect for your favorite salad, to use as a marinade or to dip bread in. All you need is 4 basic ingredients and less than 5 minutes!
Have you ever craved a salad dressing? Well, this is one that I crave often. The sweet, spicy and savory combination of it truly makes me drool thinking of it. Plus, it is so simple to make, and I love dipping lettuce or croutons into it while I wait for my dinner to be made.
WHY YOU'LL LOVE THIS RECIPE
- Versatile. This basil dressing is perfect for salads, but you can also use it in many other ways, such as a marinade, bread dip, to dip veggies in or drizzle on food. The possibilities are endless.
- Perfect for meal prep. No matter where you are working having extra dressings on hand makes life easier. This dressing lasts in the refrigerator for up to 5 days allowing you to use it as the week goes on.
- Made with just 4 ingredients. It is simple to make your own salad dressing at home. This creamy basil balsamic dressing is ready in under 5 minutes and only requires 4 ingredients. If you love making your own sauces and dressings, try my vegan tahini Caesar dressing, my honey mustard dressing and my apple cider vinaigrette.
INGREDIENTS AND SUBSTITUTIONS
Basil- Fresh basil is the key ingredient for this basil balsamic dressing. If you cannot find fresh basil, frozen basil that has been thawed with the water removed will also work. I do not recommend using basil paste, dried basil or any pre-chopped basil because it will not have as fresh of a flavor.
Balsamic Vinegar- You can use any balsamic vinegar for this recipe. I personally like the one from Trader Joe's because it is not very expensive. You can find it in the vinegar and olive oil section of any grocery store. Do not use balsamic glaze, which has added sugar and is thicker like a syrup.
Extra Virgin Olive Oil- This recipe calls for extra virgin olive oil as the base of the dressing. I have not tried it with any alternatives, such as avocado oil.
Lemon Juice- Use fresh lemon juice for the best flavor. Pre-bottled lemon juice is watered down and does not provide the best flavor.
STEP BY STEP INSTRUCTIONS
Step 1. Roughly chop the basil. This will allow it to blend into the dressing easier.
Step 2. Blend the ingredients. Add all of the ingredients into a mason jar and insert an immersion blender. Blend until it is thick and creamy, about 45-60 seconds. You may need to move the immerse blender up and down.
If you do not have an immersion blender, you can use a food processor or blender, and blend until smooth, approximately 30 seconds.
If you have neither, chop the basil into small, bite size pieces and add all of the ingredients into a jar and shake vigorously until all of the ingredients are combined.
For best, prolonged freshness, store this basil vinaigrette in an airtight glass jar or meal prep container. When stored properly, this diy fresh basil salad dressing will last for up to 5 days.
If you notice the dressing is hard at all due to the olive oil thickening in the refrigerator, let is warm up for 5 minutes on the counter top then give it a good shake.
I do not recommend freezing this recipe.
TIME SAVING HACKS
Since this dressings lasts for up to 5 days, save time throughout your week by making a batch or double batch on Sundays and portion for individual servings to grab on your way out the door in the morning.
I do not recommend using anything other than fresh basil to ensure the texture and flavor is at its best. Dried basil can cause it to become clumpy and chalky.
You can use it on anything you wish! Some ideas are, salad (of course), marinades, bread drip, drizzled on pizza and to dip veggie sticks into.
That is completely normal. Simply (and carefully!) remove the basil the blade and continue to blend. It is key to move the immersion blender up and down to try to prevent this.
- Use balsamic vinegar, not balsamic glaze. Balsamic glaze is a thicker and has a syrup like texture which will not work well for this fresh basil balsamic vinaigrette. Balsamic vinegar can be find in the vinegar and olive oil aisle of all grocery stores.
- Move the immersion blender up and down. If you are using an immersion blender, the basil can easily get caught in the blades. Move the blender up and down to ensure this does not happen. If it does, simply clean off the blend + keep blending.
MORE SALAD + DRESSINGS RECIPES
Basil Balsamic Vinaigrette
- 3-4 tbsp basil leaves chopped
- ½ cup extra virgin olive oil
- ¼ cup balsamic vinegar
- 1 tsp lemon juice
- Salt + Pepper for taste optional
- Roughly chop the basil into small pieces.
- Add all ingredients to a glass or mason jar and blend for 45-60 seconds, moving the immersion blender up and down, until smooth. *
Food Processor or blender
- Add all ingredients to the processor or blender and blend for 45-60 seconds, scraping the sides as needed, until smooth.
- Add all ingredients to a mason jar and shake vigorously for 45-60 seconds.