Everyone knows the secret is in the sauce, or in this case, the dressing! Take your salads over the top with this Easy Homemade Italian Salad Dressing recipe.
When sweater weather is passed, you know what comes next?
And while, yes, salads can be enjoyed all year long, they are often best when it’s hot outside and you don’t want to cook. Meal salads, dotted with beans, meat, and eggs, can be super filling without feeling heavy, making them ideal hot weather meals.
And the thing that will take your salad over the top?
Easy Homemade Italian Salad Dressing
I’m convinced that the people who don’t like salad are people who’ve been subjected to thick and icky bottled salad dressings. Yuck.
You’ve heard the saying that the secret’s in the sauce? Well, this applies to salads just as well as any other dish. The salad dressing can make or break the dining experience. It’s delicious on any salad, such as my Italian Salad Recipe.
Therefore, it’s incumbent on you to learn how to make your own dressings. One of the easiest and most versatile to start with is this Homemade Italian Salad Dressing Recipe.
A blend of red wine vinegar, Italian herbs, and oil, Italian salad dressing is a simple but flavorful vinaigrette that is delicious on dinner salads, roasted vegetables, thick sliced tomatoes, even grilled meats.
It costs just pennies to prepare and tastes amazing. Best yet, it’s super simple to make.
How do you make Italian Salad Dressing from scratch?
Making this homemade Italian salad dressing recipe take just a couple minutes. You can measure everything out if you like, but you don’t really need to. Salad dressing is very forgiving to make.
- Add 2 to 4 ounces of red wine vinegar to a jar or salad dressing cruet.
- Add salt, pepper, and your preferred herbs. Stir well to combine.
- Add an equal part of oil to the vinegar and mix well to combine.
- Serve on your favorite salads, veggies, or meats.
- Refrigerate up to a week.
Can I use other oils and vinegars in salad dressing?
You can definitely use this recipe as a template for other varieties of dressings. If you don’t want to use red wine vinegar, you can use lemon juice or white wine or apple cider vinegar.
While I like to use a neutral oil in this Italian salad dressing, you could swap in olive oil if you prefer.
How long is salad dressing good for?
Salad dressing is built around an acid such as vinegar which helps preserve it. Bottled dressings have loads of extra preservatives which helps them last longer.
For best taste and texture, use a homemade vinaigrette within two weeks.
Can you freeze salad dressing?
You can freeze a vinaigrette style salad dressing, though the oil will need to come to room temperature before it will mix well again.
However, it’s so easy to make a quick vinaigrette, just about two minutes, that there really isn’t a huge benefit to freezing it.
What other salad dressings can you make?
If you can buy it at the store or be served it in a restaurant, you can make it yourself. Check out these other delicious homemade salad dressing recipes:
- Homemade Buttermilk Ranch Dressing Recipe [VIDEO]
- Balsamic Vinaigrette You Can Make at Home
- Homemade Blue Cheese Dressing Recipe
- Easy Raspberry Vinaigrette Dressing
- Cilantro Lime Dressing
- Creamy Garlic Dressing with Cilantro
Is it better to make your own salad dressing?
Homemade salad dressings taste better than what you would buy at the store. In fact, I’ve eaten a lot of salads in my lifetime and have yet to find a bottled dressing that was worth buying compared to homemade.
This makes your salad life super convenient. All you need is some oil and vinegar to dress a great salad.
Is it cheaper to make your own Italian salad dressing?
Now, you know me, I care about the bottom line. It’s great that Italian salad dressing tastes better homemade, but is it cheaper.
Let’s crunch some numbers, shall we?
Here’s what the ingredients for this recipe cost when purchased (not on sale) at a mid-range grocery store in Southern California:
- red wine vinegar: $0.72 ($2.29/12.7 oz)
- salt: $0.01 ($2.99/26 oz)
- oregano: $0.02 ($1.25/.67 oz)
- basil: $0.05 ($1.49/.43 oz)
- pepper: $0.04 ($3.79/4 oz)
- sugar: $0.01 ($1.97/4#)
- neutral oil: $0.16 ($1.99/48 oz)
It costs $1.01 for 8 ounces of homemade Italian Salad Dressing. By comparison, a name brand dressing costs around $4 for 16 ounces, twice as much!
You’ll notice that the vinegar is the most expensive ingredient in this dressing recipe. Reduce your costs more by stocking up when you see vinegar on sale or buy a larger bottle that may give you a lower unit cost.
Either way it’s definitely cheaper to make your own salad dressing!
Italian Salad Dressing Recipe
- ½ cup red wine vinegar
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ½ teaspoon dried oregano
- ½ teaspoon dried basil
- ¼ teaspoon black pepper
- pinch granulated sugar
- ½ cup neutral oil such as avocado or sunflower
- In a jar or cruet, combine the vinegar, salt, oregano, basil, pepper, and sugar. Mix well to combine.
- Add the oil in a thin stream and mix well.
- Refrigerate until ready to serve. Use within two weeks.