This easy raspberry vinaigrette mixes up in just 7 minutes and makes a sweet and tart dressing for just about any salad. Fresh or frozen raspberries can be used.
How to Make a Raspberry Vinaigrette
A blender or an immersion blender is the best way to liquefy the raspberries, whether you use fresh or frozen.
- Start by blending the raspberries with just the vinegar until it is completely liquid. A regular blender, immersion blender or even a smoothie maker will do the job.
- Next it’s important to strain the mixture to remove the raspberry seeds.
- At this point you could simply whisk in the rest of the ingredients – the salt, agave and oils. This will create a beautiful deep magenta vinaigrette.
- Or if you prefer a creamier texture, rinse out the blender and return the strained raspberry-vinegar. Add the oils, salt and agave and blend until it’s creamy. The vinaigrette will turn a paler pink color.
- The final step is to taste the vinaigrette to make sure that all the flavors pop. See below for guidance on how to adjust the flavors if needed. This is also described in my post The Correct Ratio for a Traditional Vinaigrette.
Raspberries – Flavorful ripe raspberries are the key to the flavor of this dressing. Without ripe raspberries the flavor will not come through. So if If you can get fresh, ripe in season raspberries they are a good option.
If you can’t get fresh flavorful raspberries, then frozen raspberries are an excellent alternative. They are almost always packaged when they are at peak ripeness.
Vinegar – My favorite vinegar for this recipe is white balsamic. It has nice depth of the flavor and a slight sweetness to it that goes well with fruit. White wine vinegar, red wine vinegar or even apple cider vinegar are other good options.
Just note that these vinegars all have different levels of tartness and might require a slight tweak to the amount of balancing ingredients, which is described in the recipe card below.
Extra virgin olive oil is traditional in vinaigrettes. I love the richness of EVOO but it can also be slightly bitter. So I prefer a combination of EVOO with a neutral flavored oil like avocado, sunflower, light olive oil or canola. The neutral oil also help to keep the dressing from solidifying (olive oil does this when chilled).
A sweet ingredient helps to balance the sour vinegar and bitter olive oil. It will also enhance the fruitiness and sweetness of the raspberries.
I prefer to use agave syrup as my sweetener because it incorporates easily. Plain old sugar, maple syrup or any other sweetener will work in its place.
The recipe below gives a range of 1 to 2 tablespoons of sweetener. The sweetness of the raspberries will determine how much sweetener you’ll need to add. So start with one tablespoon, taste and add more if the dressing is too sour, bitter or doesn’t taste enough like raspberries.
Finally, a little bit of salt enhances all the other flavors as well as balancing. Depending on the raspberries, the bitterness of your olive oil and the tartness of your vinegar, you may want to add two or three more pinches of salt. Salt is a great way to tame bitterness in foods and bring out the flavors of all the other ingredients.
The flavor of this raspberry vinaigrette can vary wildly depending on:
- the sweetness and flavor of the raspberries you use – raspberries can be quite tart.
- the flavor of your extra virgin olive oil – EV olive oil can be on the bitter side and and some are very bitter.
- I recommend white balsamic vinegar. Different brands will have different levels of tart and sweet.
All of these factors make it necessary to experiment with the recipe. Make it as is in the recipe below, then taste. Don’t be afraid to add more of something to make it to your liking. Guidance is provided to help you along the way,
Easy, 7-Minute Raspberry Vinaigrette
- 1½ c (6-8 oz) fresh or frozen-thawed measure frozen raspberries before thawing
- ⅓ c white balsamic vinegar – white wine, red wine, apple cider or champagne vinegar can be used too
- 1-2 Tbsp agave syrup or other sweetener
- ¼-½ tsp salt
- ½ c extra virgin olive
- ¼ oil – avocado, sunflower, light olive oil, canola or other neutral flavored oil*
- If using frozen raspberries, either let them thaw at room temp or microwave in 10 second increments until thawed. Include all of the juice.
- Use a blender or immersion blender to puree the raspberries and vinegar. Blend at least 30 seconds or until it is liquefied.
- Strain the mixture into a medium sized mixing bowl through a fine mesh strainer. Use a spoon or rubber spatula to push the liquid through until you are left with mostly seeds. Discard the seeds.
- At this point you can simply whisk in the rest of the ingredients. Add both oils and start with just 1 TBSP agave and ¼ tsp salt. This will create a beautiful deep magenta vinaigrette. (pictured on left in photo)ORIf you prefer a creamier texture, rinse out the blender and return the strained raspberry-vinegar. Add the oils, ¼ tsp salt and 1 Tbsp agave and blend until it's creamy. The vinaigrette will turn a paler pink color. (pictured on right in photo)
- Taste. The flavor may need some tweaking. Variations in vinegars, olive oils and the sweetness of the raspberries make this step important.Is it too sour? Stir in more sweetener 1 teaspoon at a time and a pinch of salt.Is it bitter? Stir in more salt 2 pinches at a time.Is it blah or lacking something you can't quite identify? Two pinches salt and a teaspoon of sweetener will help.
- This dressing will stay fresh in the refrigerator for at least one week. Shake well before using.