I gave up bottled salad dressings a long time ago. Most of them are either too salty or too full of sugar for my taste. But making your own dressing doesn’t have to be difficult. This lemon basil dressing is super easy and takes less than 5 minutes. The blender does most of the work so there’s no chopping, slicing or mixing required. I use the smoothie cup from my Ninja blender and it works well.
Be sure to check out my full collection of easy sauces and dressings including my blueberry vinaigrette in 5 minutes, my easy strawberry vinaigrette, lemon mint vinaigrette and 4 ingredient chicken marinade.
Lemon Basil Sauce
I call this a salad dressing but it is also perfect as a sauce on grilled fish or chicken. Toss it will pasta, rice or quinoa for an easy flavorful side dish. Or toss steamed, grilled or roasted veggies.
Since salad dressings are slightly more acidic, you can ease up on the cider vinegar by a tablespoon or two.
Feel free to adjust the flavor to your preference. Salad dressing is great way to start learning how to balance flavors. Add more oil or a little sweetener to tone down the sour. Add more lemon juice or vinegar to amp up the sour. If it’s blah, add more salt. If it’s too sweet, add more sour or salt. You can use this same process for anything that you cook to take your dishes from eh, to wow! Here is my post on the basics of balancing flavor when you cook.
Oils – I use a combination of extra virgin olive oil and a sunflower or avocado oil (corn, canola or vegetable will work too). The basil will oxidize and turn brown if not refrigerated and if you use all olive oil, the dressing will solidify in the fridge. So using half and half works well. The neutral oil will allow you to store it in the refrigerator to maintain the beautiful bright green color.
Uses for Lemon Basil Dressing
Of course this dressing is perfect on a kale strawberry salad but the bright lemony flavor makes it perfect as a sauce for seafood or chicken. Or toss it with some pasta, quinoa or rice for a yummy side dish. Top some grilled veggies for a fresh dish.
Lemon Basil Dressing
- 3 oz fresh basil
- juice of 1 lemon
- ¾ cup extra virgin olive oil
- ¾ cup sunflower safflower oil
- 6 Tbsps apple cider vinegar
- ¼-½ tsp table salt
- 1 Tbsp. agave optional
- Remove the thicker stems from the basil and stuff it into your blender cup. Add the remaining ingredients but use only ¼ tsp salt.
- Blend on high for 30-40 seconds.
- Taste. Feel free to adjust the flavor to your preference. Balance the sour with some sweetener or more oil. If it seems blah add more salt.
- Store in the refrigerator to maintain the bright green color.