This Italian Dressing recipe tastes just like the kind you’d get on a salad at your favorite Italian restaurant. It’s crave-worthy, and so easy to make!
How Do You Make Italian Dressing from Scratch?
All you need to make this dressing recipe is 7 ingredients and about 10 minutes of time. You can shake everything together in a sealed mason jar, but I prefer to blend the ingredients together so that it’s super-smooth. (Blending it is also faster, too, since you don’t have to take the time to mince the garlic first.)
Here are the ingredients you’ll need for Italian Dressing:
- Red wine vinegar
- Olive oil
- Spicy brown mustard
- Dried oregano (or Italian seasoning)
- Maple syrup (or honey)
Feel free to make any swaps based on what you have in your pantry. I imagine that a white wine vinegar would work just as well as red in this recipe, and if you only have Dijon mustard, that should work, too.
How to Make the Best Italian Dressing
What makes this the best salad dressing? I think it’s the unusual ratio of oil to vinegar. Traditional recipes will call for up to 3/4 cup of oil for this amount of vinegar, but this recipe calls for a fraction of that, to cut down on calories and to avoid an overly oily taste and texture.
Instead, this recipe uses mustard as a natural thickener along with 2 tablespoons of water to bulk up the dressing. Adding a splash of maple syrup balances out the acidity in the vinegar, but you can use honey or any other sweetener you have on hand to do this.
Then you just have to toss everything in a blender and blend until smooth! You can taste and adjust any seasonings as needed, but the dressing develops even a better flavor after resting for at least 20 minutes, to let the flavors meld.
How long Does Homemade Italian Dressing Last?
This dressing recipe will last for up to one week in the fridge, when you store it in an airtight container. This recipe makes 1 cup of dressing, so you can double it if you need more than that as part of your meal prep routine.
Italian Dressing Recipe
- 6 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
- 1/4 cup red wine vinegar
- 1 tablespoon pure maple syrup (or honey, to taste)
- 2 tablespoons water
- 1 teaspoon dried oregano (or Italian seasoning)
- 1 teaspoon spicy brown mustard
- 1 large clove garlic , minced
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1-2 tablespoons shallot or red onion , diced (optional)
- Combine all of the ingredients in a blender, and blend until smooth.
- If you don't have a blender available, you can also combine the ingredients in a glass mason jar with a lid, and shake well to combine. Let the dressing rest for at least 15 mintues for the flavors to meld.
- Taste and adjust the flavoring, as needed. I sometimes need 1 more teaspoon of maple syrup to balance out the acidity, and I love adding a thick slice of red onion or about 2 tablespoons of diced shallot, to elevate the flavor. (But that's optional!)
- Store the dressing in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 1 week. This recipe makes roughly 1 cup of dressing.
Nutrition information is for roughly 2 tablespoons of dressing. This information is automatically calculated using generic ingredients, and is only an estimate not a guarantee.
If you try this recipe, please leave a comment below letting me know what you think. And if you make any modifications, I’d love to hear about those, too! We can all benefit from your experience.
Reader Feedback: What’s your favorite salad dressing?
Questions and Reviews
I made this dressing and it was so so yummy. It was super flavorful but not over powering, which I loved. I used this on a salad with romaine and ti was excellent. Thank you!!
Just wondering if you can tell me what ‘spicy brown mustard’ is please?
I’m an Aussie girl and this isn’t an ingredient we are familiar with here..
Love your blog… and can’t wait to try this dressing!
It’s a smooth whole grain mustard. Similar to Dijon, but not quite as overpowering in flavor.
It’s a smooth whole grain mustard, similar to Dijon but not quite as potent in flavor.
Delicious! I made a double batch and it wasn’t that creamy at the beginning so I added the parmesan cheese and blended longer, added salt, and turned out perfect!…… Are all your recipes vegetarian?….. I see you don’t cook with real meat much, am I right? why is that?
Glad you enjoyed the dressing! My recipes are not all vegetarian, but I don’t cook with red meat very often. You’ll find several chicken recipes here on the website, and there are a few red meat options in my Fresh & Healthy Instant Pot Cookbook. But, for the most part, I think it’s more fun to make vegetables taste good, so I like to share as many veggie-packed recipes as I can. 🙂
Ohhh this dressing looks so good! I’ve been hunting for a new one to try.
I’m wondering if there’s a substitute for oil. I prefer to eat as oil- free as possible saving my fats for seeds, nuts and avocado. Could I substitute canelini beans for oil?
I can’t wait to try this dressing! Do you also have a French vinaigrette recipe? If not I hope you’ll make one!! (Crossing fingers, please :)?)
I made your soy ginger dressing the other day and it was SO yummy!
Could you replace the spicy mustard with a whole grain dijon? All I have on hand right now
Sure, I don’t see why not!
Excellent! Put this on a power greens salad with chickpeas and quinoa, raw veggies,etc. yummy! Made a dinner salad with it yesterday – very satisfying.
Did you put the cheese in it or not? I can’t have dairy so I’m wondering if it’s good without the cheese?
This is one of our go-to dressings to keep on hand. I make a batch and a half and that gets us thru a week. As always, Megan knocks it out of the park. 👍🏼
I made this to use as a marinade for chicken thighs cooked on the grill. I highly recommend it! My super picky husband loved it! FYI: it’s excellent with or without the onions.
I make this all the time!!! It’s the best!!
Made a pasta salad and it called for a Creamy Italian dressing, which isn’t available anymore from a popular brand of salad dressings, so I took this dressing, and to make it more creamy, I added a little bit of mayo and sour cream and it did the job. I would have used cashews to make it creamy, but I have a sister-in-law that can’t have nuts. Next time I do my salad I may try the cashews instead. It was very flavorful!