You may have a fridge full of bottled salad dressings (and many of them are probably passed their use-by dates), but none of them are as fresh and vibrant as a homemade dressing. DIY salad dressings are simple to make, usually take less than 10 minutes to whip up, and often use ingredients you already have on hand.
Next time you throw together a green salad or pasta salad, air-fry cauliflower buffalo wings, or make anything you need a dipping sauce for, there’s bound to be a homemade dressing on this list that you can use instead of reaching for expensive store-bought salad dressing.
Green Goddess Dressing
Travel back to the 1970s and 80s with this green goddess dressing that holds up pretty well in the new millennium. Purée fresh herbs—parsley, tarragon, and thyme—with anchovy paste, lemon juice, garlic, sour cream, and mayo. Drizzle over salads or serve as a dip for crudités or crackers.
Homemade Italian Dressing
Combine olive oil, red wine vinegar, garlic, basil, oregano, and a few other pantry staples, shake them together, and you have a simple homemade Italian salad dressing with endless uses. Drizzle it on a green salad, use it on sandwiches, toss with cold pasta, drizzle on grilled vegetables, and more.
Greek Salad Dressing
Make this zippy and bright Greek salad dressing with pantry ingredients you probably already have in the kitchen. Olive oil, red wine vinegar, garlic, lemon. juice, oregano, plus a few other common ingredients go into a jar that you shake to mix. Use it on any green salad or our quinoa Greek salad.
Easy Sesame Dressing
Light and slightly creamy with an irresistible nutty sesame flavor, sesame dressing is incredibly versatile. It’s a salad dressing, but it also works on coleslaw, rice and noodle bowls, sashimi, and even as a meat marinade.
Thousand Island Dressing
This dressing that’s perfect on a Reuben sandwich or as a spread for a burger is also a great dipping sauce for veggies and French fries. Plus, it’s a tasty salad dressing that gets even tastier if you let it sit in the fridge for about 24 hours.
2-Minute Salad Dressing
This Parisian-inspired dressing could be a lot of work to make, but if you use your microwave, it comes together in 2 minutes. Instead of sautéing shallots for the dressing, microwave them in olive oil to soften them, tame their pungency, and create amazing flavor. Add the microwaved shallots and oil to Dijon mustard, red wine vinegar, and season with salt and pepper. You’ll want to use it on every salad you make.
Avocado Lime Dressing
Zest up summer salads, grilled vegetables, and more with this vibrant, tangy avocado lime dressing made with fresh avocado and avocado oil. It’s vegan, dairy-free, and gluten-free, and it comes together easily when you toss all the ingredients in a blender or food processor.
Homemade Blue Cheese Dressing
Sometimes bottled blue cheese dressing tastes nothing like blue cheese. But this homemade version is creamier and zingier than store-bought brands, plus it has the wonderful flavor of divine blue cheese. Use it on a classic wedge salad, dip your Buffalo wings in it, or use it on BLT instead of mayo.
Charred Citrus Dressing
This dressing is a little more work than most others, but it’s so worth the effort. Lightly char a whole thinly sliced lemon and lime on the stovetop then blend with more lemon and lime juice and oil to create a punchy dressing. It’s a salad dressing, a marinade for chicken, and a warm sauce to drizzle on cooked veggies or grains.
Honey Mustard Dressing
This honey mustard dressing with two types of mustard—Dijon and grainy—may just become your go-to everyday dressing. It’s great on salads, of course, but it’s also what you’ll reach for when you need a marinade for chicken breasts.
Egg-Free Caesar Dressing
Enjoy the flavors of Caesar dressing without raw eggs, dairy, or anchovies—this one is vegan. Tahini replaces the eggs, nutritional yeast does the work of Parmesan cheese, and soy sauce or vegan Worcestershire emulates anchovies.
An “anchovies for beginners” vinaigrette, this dressing doesn’t hit you over the head with a fishy taste. The anchovies bring umami to this tangy, punchy salad dressing that doubles as a marinade for chicken or seafood.
If you can remember the ratio of 3 parts oil to 1 part vinegar, you have the keys to untold vinaigrette variations. We offer three solid recipes here (including an unbeatably simple sherry vinegar one) that you can riff on to your heart’s content.
Homemade Ranch Dressing
Ranch dressing is the ultimate crowd-pleaser for green salads, pasta salads, veggie dips, and pizza dips. This version adds fresh and dried herbs to a base of mayo and buttermilk, and it’s fresher and tastier than any shelf-stable bottle version you’ll ever buy.
This quick and easy basil vinaigrette dressing comes together in the blender in just 10 minutes. It brightens up salads, fish, chicken, potatoes, tomatoes, or white beans.