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Balsamic Vinegar Dressing Recipe

Updated on September 6, 2014

Make Your Own Simple Salad Dressing

Salad dressing is a delicious part of a meal, but what goes into salad dressing varies so much according to taste. Some people love creamy dressings. Some prefer an oil-based dressing.

To eat healthier and to add zest to my salad, I often make this easy balsamic vinegar dressing recipe.

This salad dressing recipe is easy and versatile. With just a few key ingredients, like those shown here, you can jazz up your salad making it just what you want with your favorite herbs and spices.

Photo Credit: Peggy Hazelwood

Make Your Salads Even Better with Balsamic Vinegar

Vintage Lettuce
Vintage Lettuce | Source

Make Your Own Salad Dressing - Save Money, Save Time, and Eat Healthy

Bottled salad dressing can get expensive. Splurge on a good bottle bottle of balsamic vinegar instead and make your own dressing. It will be fresh and delicious, and you can make it just how you like each time.

  • Ingredients

    1/2 cup olive oil

    1/8 cup (2 tablespoons) balsamic vinegar

    1/8 teaspoon salt OR shallot salt

    1/8 teaspoon black pepper

    1/8 teaspoon powdered garlic OR powdered onion

    1/8 teaspoon dried mixed herbs, optional

  • Combine all ingredients thoroughly. Stir or shake immediately before using.
  • This salad dressing is delicious on a green leafy salad or drizzled over steamed vegetables. It also makes a great dip for raw veggies!

Get To Know Your Balsamic Vinegar - The Leaf System

Balsamic vinegar is made from grapes and is noted with a leaf system. The bottle I have is "2 leaf" balsamic.

The balsamic vinegar leaf system follows:

~ 0 leaf is basically mostly red wine vinegar with a bit of caramel coloring.

~ 1 leaf is a light colored and flavored, and is sweet yet zesty. Good for everyday use on salads.

~ 2 leaves is more rounded in flavor, brisk and vibrant. Good for steamed vegetables and marinades.

~ 3 leaves is tangy, full bodied, and smooth with a more polished taste. Good in sauces and on fish and roasted meat.

~ 4 leaves has a heady aroma and is more syrupy and sweet. Excellent on ice cream, fresh fruit, and some cheeses.

Source: Balsamic Vinegar Guide

Olive Oil - Choose a Light Variety

Choose a light olive oil to make balsamic vinegar dressing. Try one that is labeled "light" or "extra virgin" for your salad dressing for a smooth, creamy finish.

Balsamic Vinegar for Salads

Do you use balsamic vinegar in salad dressings or cooking?

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Seasonings and Spices - The Spice of Life

Make your balsamic vinegar with spices you love. Experiment and then you'll have some great go to recipes to whip up in minutes.

Learn to Use Spices - to enhance food flavor

I love making my salad dressing a bit different each time. Start with a base of olive oil and balsamic dressing and add to it for a unique new dressing.

Try some of these spice combinations for a fun twist depending on your salad ingredients:

  • For oriental dressing, add all or some of these spices: ginger, garlic powder, cinnamon, and dry mustard.
  • To make a Southwest dressing, add your favorites of these spices: cumin, cayenne pepper, and chili powder.
  • For an easy light and bright dressing, add lemon juice and garlic powder.

You can use sour cream as a base instead of olive oil to make a creamy dressing.

Do you like balsamic vinegar? - Will you try this easy recipe?

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    • girlfriendfactory profile image

      girlfriendfactory 4 years ago

      Yum! One of my favorite things!

    • Lenskeeper profile image

      Lenskeeper 4 years ago

      I love balsamic vinegar. I didn't know that there WAS a leaf system! Thanks for sharing.... :)

    • MariaMontgomery profile image

      MariaMontgomery 5 years ago from Central Florida, USA

      I love both balsamic vinegar and balsamic vinegrette. Thanks so much for the recipe. I can't wait to try it out. You may like my husbands recipe for Balsamic Chicken. The url is

    • makemoneyonline5 profile image

      makemoneyonline5 5 years ago

      love balsamic vinegar. Try it over baked red sliced onions in the oven... cook onions first with oil of your choice and cracked pepper and salt, until soft. Pull out and drizzle the vinegar over the top.. yummo!

    • gottaloveit2 profile image

      gottaloveit2 5 years ago

      I'm a huge fan of balsamic vinegar and have been known to spend up to $50 a bottle for a 15 yr age variety. Great lens. You made me drool..

    • LisaDH profile image

      LisaDH 5 years ago

      I like balsamic vinegar dressing, so I'll give this a try.