Fresh ingredients. Fragrant aroma. And extremely delicious. Make your own dressing for your salads in 5 minutes. Introducing a zingy and fresh Lemon Basil Dressing that will add heaps of flavour to your side salad. It’s a perfect way to celebrate summer and the best that fresh herbs have to offer! This Lemon Basil Vinaigrette also doubles as a great marinade for poultry.
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Why This Lemon Basil Vinaigrette Is A Perfect Salad Dressing
- Low-carb, gluten- and dairy-free this is a perfect healthy salad dressing to suit many special diets.
- Making your own salad dressing will only take 5 minutes and will stand head and shoulders above the shop-bought pre-made salad dressing.
- There is no added refined sugar in this vinaigrette!
- A great way to add flavour to otherwise boring-tasting green salads.
- It’s our favorite thing to marinade chicken breasts in for baking or grilling. It makes a perfect marinade for white fish too!
Uses for Basil Lemon Dressing
This easy lemon basil dressing is a great addition to your summer salad, be it a Caprese Salad, Tuscan Panzanella, Spiced Paneer Salad or Grilled Chicken and Peach Salad. It also goes well with a Summer Pasta Salad With Courgettes.
But you can also use this lemon herb vinaigrette as a dressing for a simple side salad. Simply toss your favorite salad ingredients and some grated parmesan cheese with this dressing and enjoy with your main dishes.
This recipe also doubled as a delicious marinade for poultry and white fish. What is more, it is great mixed with rice, couscous or cauliflower rice.
Common Mistakes To Avoid When Making Vinaigrette
- Overusing Garlic: Adding too much garlic can overpower the vinaigrette.
- Neglecting Emulsification: Failing to properly emulsify the vinaigrette results in separation.
- Skipping Seasoning: Forgetting to season with salt and pepper leads to bland vinaigrettes. Avoid this by adding a pinch of salt and a dash of pepper to homemade vinaigrettes to enhance flavour.
- Ignoring Freshness: Mistake – Using old or wilted basil and lemon can dull the vinaigrette’s taste. Avoid this by using fresh ingredients for vibrant and flavorful homemade dressings.
5 simple ingredients plus seasoning can make a real difference to your simple greens or more elaborate salads. Here’s what you will need:
- extra-virgin olive oil: can be replaced with avocado oil.
- fresh basil: leaves only, stalks discarded. A variety of basil can be used. We tested it with Lemon basil, sweet basil and Genovese basil. Other fresh herbs can also be used – try this recipe with coriander or parsley too.
- garlic clove: finely chopped or minced. If you don’t have fresh basil, substitute 1 clove with ¼ teaspoon of garlic powder.
- fresh lemon juice: if using lemon juice concentrate, reduce the amount by ⅓. Taste and add more if needed.
- Dijon mustard.
- a pinch of sea salt and black pepper.
Extras and Variations:
- Grate a lemon zest into your dressing, but note that if you are not using the dressing immediately, it may turn slightly bitter.
- Mix in some additional herbs. Coriander (cilantro), parsley or mint are all a great addition.
- Add some red pepper flakes for a mild kick.
Place the basil, mustard, lemon juice, honey (or maple syrup), garlic, salt and pepper in a smoothie maker or a small food processor (alternatively, use an immersion blender). Blitz everything into a paste.
Add the extra virgin olive oil and blitz again, until smooth and emulsified. Use it to dress your favourite salads.
Store any leftover lemon basil vinaigrette in an airtight container (like a mason jar) in the fridge. It may solidify in cold temperatures. Simply take it out of the fridge and let it come to room temperature, shake and use to dress your salads.
How Long Will It Keep For?
Stored in the fridge, this dressing will keep for up to 4 days.
Can You Freeze Lemon Basil Vinaigrette?
No, the oil used in this basil vinaigrette will prevent it from freezing. However, if you want, you can make a double batch of the dressing, but without adding the oil.
Simply blitz all ingredients (except for olive oil) into a paste, spoon it into the ice cube tray and freeze for up to 3 months. When you are ready to use it, what as many cubes as you need, add oil and give it a blitz in a food processor.
One tablespoon of Lemon Basil Vinaigrette has approximately 65kcal.
Good quality oil will often solidify at low temperatures, so it is perfectly expected. Take the vinaigrette out of the fridge in advance to bring it to room temperature, and it will turn liquid again.
To preserve the vibrant green colour of the basil, start by blanching it. Bring a pot of water to a boil. As it heats up, get a bowl of ice water ready. Add a generous amount of salt to the boiling water and immerse the basil leaves for approximately 15 seconds. After blanching, drain the basil promptly and transfer it to the ice water to cool completely. Once cooled, gently lift it out of the ice water and squeeze out any excess moisture. This method keeps the basil’s vibrant colour for longer.
Healthy eating means different things to different people. We believe that healthy salad dressings are made with natural wholesome ingredients – just like this recipe. For approximate nutritional information details, have a look at the bottom of the recipe card.
Other Easy Salad Dressings
Homemade salad dressings can definitely make even the most boring salads into a culinary delight! Why not try some of the following next time:
- Strawberry Balsamic Vinaigrette
- Homemade Caesar Salad Dressing Without Anchovies
- Creamy Chipotle Salad Dressing
- Basil Pistou
- Mango Chutney Salad Dressing
- Cilantro Lime Vinaigrette
Lemon Basil Vinaigrette (Easy Salad Dressing Recipe)
- Powerful smoothie maker, food processor or immersion blender
- 70 ml (4½ tablespoon) extra virgin olive oil
- 15 g (⅓ cups) fresh basil leaves only
- 1 garlic clove finely chopped or minced
- 25 ml (1¾ tablespoon) lemon juice
- 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
- 1 tsp maple syrup, agave nectar or honey
- a pinch of salt and pepper
- Place the basil, mustard, honey (or maple syrup), lemon juice, garlic, salt and pepper in a smoothie maker or a small food processor (alternatively, use an immersion blender). Blitz everything into a paste.
- Add the olive oil and blitz again, until smooth and emulsified. Use it to dress your favourite salads.