5 Minute Italian Dressing Recipe (easy + vegan) - simply ceecee (2024)

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This homemade Italian Dressing is a family favorite to liven up leafy greens and pasta salads. It comes together in under 5 minutes with only a handful of staple ingredients. Forget the bottled stuff, this Italian vinaigrette is a zesty blend of Italian spices and herbs with a light tangy flavor; and it's simple to make from scratch!

5 Minute Italian Dressing Recipe (easy + vegan) - simply ceecee (1)

In my opinion, nothing compares to homemade salad dressings. They're ridiculously simple to make; taste amazing, cost next to nothing, and are healthier than store bought dressings! Plus this Italian dressing keeps for 2-3 weeks in the refrigerator so make a double batch and get pouring it on everything!

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Classic Italian Dressing Recipe

If the thought of eating another boring salad is stressing you out, I'm here to help! Start with a variety of leafy greens, shredded cabbage, and tons of colorful veggies. Then add a plant protein like chickpeas, quinoa, lentils or tofu, some avocado chunks, and something crunchy like croutons, nuts or seeds. And of course salad's secret weapon - a killer salad dressing!

This classic Italian dressing joins a growing collection of delicious vegan dressings like Miso Sesame Ginger Dressing, White Balsamic Dressing, Chinese Chicken Salad Dressing,Lemon Vinaigrette andVegan Ranch.

BONUS POINTS: My vegan Italian dressing is free of everything: egg free, dairy free, nut free, and gluten free; but it's FULL of flavor! It really is everything you want a great salad dressing to be!

Ingredients & Variations

This tasty golden Italian dressing (vegan) is quick to make from scratch with just a handful of basic ingredients. Here's what you'll need:

5 Minute Italian Dressing Recipe (easy + vegan) - simply ceecee (2)
  • Red or White Wine Vinegar:Adds a bright, zesty punch of acidity to the dressing.
  • Fresh Lemon Juice: Adds citrus undertones and mild acidity.
  • Olive Oil: Olive oil adds richness and body to this bright, zippy Italian vinaigrette.
  • Fresh Garlic and Onion Powder:Fresh garlic adds a pungent bite and flavor to the dressing, but you can easily sub for garlic powder.
  • Maple Syrup:A touch of sweetness from maple syrup mellows the acidity from vinegar and lemon. Can sub with agave, white sugar, coconut sugar or vegan honey.
  • Italian Seasonings: A combination of dried oregano, thyme, and basil gives this dressing it's savory Italian flair. Can be subbed for an equal amount of 'Italian Seasoning'.
  • Salt & Pepper: To make the dressing pop and enhance the depth of flavor.
  • Optional Add Ins: Elevate the flavor of your Italian dressing with a tablespoonful or two of vegan parmesan cheese. If you like heat (we do!), add a pinch or two of red pepper flakes to the dressing.

FORGET ABOUT IT: Have you spent years buying salad dressings from the store (and have a fridge door full of half full salad dressing bottles to prove it)? No more! Homemade dressings are fast, fresh, healthier than store bought, delicious, and customizable. No preservatives, quality ingredients, low salt, sugar, oil, etc. it's all up to you. If you've got 5 minutes, you can make a delicious tasting salad dressing from scratch that's good for you!

How to Make Italian Dressing in 5 Minutes

On my list of best, go-to salad dressings, this vegan Italian dressing is up there. I like to prep it on Sunday then enjoy it all week. Let's whip up a batch together:

5 Minute Italian Dressing Recipe (easy + vegan) - simply ceecee (3)
  1. Mix it:Place all the dressing ingredients into a jar or measuring cup then just whisk together or shake to mix.
  2. Taste it:Taste the dressing and adjust the ingredients to suit your taste. Like more garlic, sweeter, saltier, tangier? - it's all up to you.
  3. Chill it:Store your dressing in a jar in the fridge for up to three weeks. Let it come to room temperature, give it a shake, then enjoy.
  4. Serve it on everything!:Not just forside salads, this Italian vinaigrette is the perfect addition to pasta salads, grain bowls, grilled veggies, and it makes a killer tofu marinade too!
5 Minute Italian Dressing Recipe (easy + vegan) - simply ceecee (4)

Helpful Tips

This basic Italian salad dressing recipe is delicious as written. However, when making a salad dressing from scratch, there's lots of room to customize it to suit your taste! Here's just a few ideas:

  • Too tangy?:If the dressing is too acidic, add another teaspoon or two of oil or ½ teaspoon maple syrup/sugar to balance out the flavors.
  • Is your dressing missing something?:If homemade salad dressing tastes flat or it's missing something, the answer is usually salt which makes flavors pop. Add another pinch or two to enhance the dressing flavor. Pro Tip: An equal measure (ie. ¼ teaspoon) of fine salt is saltier than ¼ teaspoon coarse salt.
  • Oil options:Sub in any oil for olive oil like grapeseed oil, vegetable oil, avocado or canola oil if you prefer. Reduce or increase the amount of added oil to suit your taste.
  • Oil v. Acid Ratio for vinaigrette: The standard ratio of oil to acid in a vinaigrette/dressing is 3:1. I like more pucker power, so I drop the amount of oil down. Play around with the ratio until you find the perfect level to suit your taste buds.
  • Make it Creamy!!: If you like your Italian salad dressing creamy, replace 1 - 2 tablespoons of the oil with mayonnaise (like Vegenaise). SO GOOD!
  • Sweetness:Add more maple syrup (sugar or agave) to increase the sweetness which will balance out the sharpness of the dressing.
  • Why did my homemade dressing solidify?:If your Italian vinaigrette dressing solidifies in the fridge, don't worry, it's completely normal. Just leave the dressing at room temperature while you make the salad and the oil will warm up. Then give it a good shake and enjoy!


Is italian dressing gluten free?

Yes, Italian dressing is naturally gluten free!

Is Italian Dressing vegan?

Some store bought Italian dressing is NOT vegan as it may include parmesan cheese. Check the label.

5 Minute Italian Dressing Recipe (easy + vegan) - simply ceecee (5)

How to Use Italian Dressing

This Italian dressing keeps well in an airtight container or jar for up to 3 weeks in the fridge. Of course, it’s a great way to dress up a simple green salad or pasta salad, but there are many other delicious ways to use it too. Here are a few ideas to get you started:

  • Toss it with warm grains like couscous, quinoa, rice or lentils and top with fresh herbs.
  • Use as a marinade for protein like chickpeas or tofu.
  • Drizzle over roasted or grilled veggies or a veggie sub sandwich (just like Subway!).
  • Or use it in place of the dressing in any of these salad recipes:
    • Easy Veggie Pesto Pasta
    • Mediterranean Cucumber Tomato Salad
    • Mason Jar Salads (great for meal prep!)
    • Quinoa Salad with Chickpeas
5 Minute Italian Dressing Recipe (easy + vegan) - simply ceecee (6)

More Dressing and Sauces

My family loves extra flavorful salad dressings,saucesand dips. If you do too, try one of these homemade salad dressing recipes next:

  • easy lemon vinaigrette
  • best homemade vegan ranch dressing
  • white balsamic dressing
  • really good vegan Caesar dressing
  • lemon balsamic vinaigrette

Did you make this Italian Salad Dressing? Let me know what you think in the comments below. Craving more vegan food? Follow along onInstagramandFacebook!

5 Minute Italian Dressing Recipe (easy + vegan) - simply ceecee (7)

5 Minute Italian Salad Dressing (vegan + gf)

This zesty, Italian salad dressing is the perfect blend of red wine vinegar and lemon juice, olive oil, Italian spices and herbs with a lovely light tangy flavor. It's simple to make from scratch in just 5 minutes!

Author : Tracy Halasz

Servings:4 servings

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Prep Time 5 minutes mins



  • Add all ingredients (including any optional ingredients you are using) to a mason jar, cover with a tight fitting lid, shake vigorously until well combined.

  • Customize: Now it's time to tweak the dressing to suit your taste. Make it more or less sweet or salty. Add more or less Italian seasoning. Add more oil, lemon juice or vinegar to make the dressing richer or tangier. Add parmesan cheese. Add a tablespoon or two of mayo to make a creamy Italian dressing.

  • Store the dressing in a jar in the refrigerator for up to 3 weeks. Shake before using.


Italian seasonings: If you don't have dried basil or thyme, just use more oregano. Alternatively use 1 teaspoon (or more) of Italian seasoning blend in place of the individual seasonings. I like extra oregano in my Italian dressing - customize to your own taste.

Parmesan cheese option: Add 2-3 tablespoons vegan parmesan cheese for a cheesier, thicker Italian dressing.

Garlic: If you use fresh garlic, its flavor will intensify over the time stored. I typically use fresh garlic when I'm serving the dressing immediately. Otherwise I use garlic powder.

Customize it!: Make the dressing more or less sweet or salty. If it's too tangy/sharp, add more sugar to balance the flavor. Follow a reduced oil diet? Use less oil. Everything is customizable to suit your taste. Have FUN with it!

Creamy Italian salad dressing option: If you like your Italian salad dressing creamy, replace 1 - 2 tablespoons of oil with vegan mayonnaise (like Vegenaise).

Did your Italian dressing solidify in the fridge?: If your dressing firms up in the fridge, don't worry that is totally normal. Let it warm up at room temperature while you make your salad, then give it a shake and enjoy.

This recipe is from simplyceecee.co food blog. All images and content are copyright protected. Please do not use my images or republish this recipe without prior permission. Thank you.

Tried this recipe? Tag me!Mention @ceeceecooks or tag #ceeceecooks

5 Minute Italian Dressing Recipe (easy + vegan) - simply ceecee (2024)


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