This luscious vegan tahini dressing is silky smooth and full of flavor. Drizzle it on a salad, use it as a dipping sauce...or just eat it by the spoonful — it's that good!
Most of the time I buy my salad dressing at the store. But occasionally, like when I'm having dinner guests or craving something special, I'll make my own...and it's usually this one. It's my go-to homemade vegan salad dressing recipe. It has so much going for it!
- You only need five ingredients (plus water), and I usually have them all on hand.
- This tahini dressing is super easy to make. All you need to do is stir a bunch of stuff together. Literally.
- This is one dairy-free and egg-free salad dressing that everyone will enjoy. Tahini is naturally vegan, but you don't need to be vegan to love it.
- It's oil-free! Tahini is naturally creamy and loaded with natural fat, so there's no need to add refined oil.
- It's also gluten-free!
Are you sold yet? Let's talk about how easy it is to make this stuff!
Ingredients You'll Need
- Tahini. Look for this in the international foods section of your supermarket. I like to buy mine at Trader Joe's — it's relatively inexpensive and good quality!
- Lemon juice. Please use freshly squeezed juice. It will give your dressing the best flavor!
- Maple syrup. I really like the flavor that maple syrup gives this dressing, but you could substitute with another liquid sweetener such as agave if needed.
How It's Made
The following is a detailed photo tutorial on how to make this dressing. Scroll all the way down if you'd like to skip right to the recipe!
- Whisk tahini, lemon juice, maple syrup, finely minced garlic, and salt together in a bowl. Something maybe kind of unexpected will happen: the mixture will get thicker. That's fine!
- Now thin it with cold water. Add about 1 tablespoon at a time.
- Whisk, whisk, whisk. The dressing keeps getting thinner.
- When it's still creamy, but also pourable, it's done. Taste-test and adjust any of the seasonings to your liking.
Tips on Working with Tahini
Tahini can be tricky because of it's tendency to separate. And I mean really separate, to where the solid layer is rock solid! My husband and I like to joke about taking our tahini jar to Sherwin Williams so they can pop it in the paint shaker. (←I don't recommend this.)
- Inspect your tahini before buying it. I always look for the jar at the store that has the least separation.
- Store jars of unopened tahini on their side or upside down. Over time this can help redistribute the layers of oil and solids.
- Be patient and prepared to stir like crazy. It can help to take the tahini out of it's original jar and place it in a large bowl for this. Otherwise you end up spilling tahini oil down the side of the jar and making a big mess!
Shelf-Life & Storage
Store your vegan tahini dressing in a sealed container in the fridge. It should keep for about a week. If it thickens up during storage, just thin it with a bit of cold water before using it.
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Creamy Lemon Garlic Vegan Tahini Dressing (Oil-Free!)
This luscious tahini dressing is silky smooth and full of flavor. Drizzle it on a salad, use it as a dipping sauce...or just eat it by the spoonful — it's that good!
- ½ cup tahini
- 3 tablespoons lemon juice
- 1 ½ tablespoons maple syrup
- 1 garlic clove, very finely minced
- ½ teaspoon salt, plus more to taste
- Chilled water, as needed
Whisk the tahini, lemon juice, maple syrup, garlic, and ½ teaspoon of salt together in a medium bowl.
Begin whisking in chilled water, about 1 tablespoon at a time, adding up to ½ cup total, until the mixture is creamy and just pourable (I typically add about ¼ cup).
Taste-test and add additional salt if desired. Adjust any other seasonings to your liking.
Makes about 1 cup, but the exact amount will depend on how much water you add.