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Lemon Dijon Vinaigrette

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Add a burst of fresh flavor to your meals with homemade Lemon Dijon Vinaigrette. Perfect for salads or as a versatile marinade.

A carafe of lemon dijon dressing with the cork stopper.

Perfect for Salads, Marinades, and More

Looking for an easy, versatile salad dressing that you can whip up in minutes? This Lemon Dijon Vinaigrette is a must-have in your recipe arsenal.

Made with simple, whole ingredients, this dressing is perfect for elevating your salads and other dishes. It’s become a sleeper hit in our house for fresh salads full of crisp greens and crunchy veggies!

You can customize it to suit your taste, whether you prefer it more tart, sweeter, or with an extra kick of mustard. With its fresh, vibrant flavor, this all-purpose vinaigrette is sure to become a staple in your kitchen.

Gather Your Ingredients

You’ll need just a few fresh, whole ingredients for this well-balanced vinaigrette: lemon juice, Dijon mustard, fresh thyme, honey, garlic cloves, extra virgin olive oil, kosher salt and cracked black pepper.

Raw ingredients for lemon dijon vinaigrette on a table.

Customizing Your Vinaigrette

So…this is a Dijon-lemon dressing, so offering substitutions for those seems silly. However, feel free to use more or less of either to play with the levels of tartness and subtle spice! Remember that mustard is an emulsifier, so without it the dressing will separate quickly.

Use different herbs to make nuanced changes to the flavor:

  • Basil – slightly sweet and a summer stunner.
  • Parsley – fresh and grassy; a classic choice.
  • Tarragon – for a subtle anise flavor and extra depth.
  • Chives – adds a little onion sharpness without overpowering.
  • Oregano – robust and earthy.
  • Rosemary – aromatic and piney.
  • Mint – refreshing and cool.

Use more or less honey to adjust the sweetness. If you prefer, substitute with sugar, agave syrup (or other plant-based sweetener), or maple syrup. Keep in mind that some sweeteners, like maple syrup & honey, add another level of flavor where plain sugar will provide a neutral sweetness.

As for garlic, use it or not, but I do love it grated on a microplane as it really ‘melts’ into the dressing. You might consider adding a little finely minced shallot if you enjoy its bite.

Let’s Get Cooking

There’s really nothing to it! 

Add all the ingredients to a lidded jar or salad cruet and shake vigorously to combine. Or, whisk everything except the olive oil together in a bowl; continue whisking as you add the olive oil in a steady stream.

Pouring olive oil into a mason jar with other vinaigrette ingredients.

So Many Ways to Use This Dressing

Lemon Dijon Vinaigrette is incredibly versatile and can be used in a variety of dishes beyond salads. Here are some ideas:

Marinade for chicken or fish – Use the vinaigrette to marinate chicken breasts, fish fillets, or shrimp before grilling or baking. The acidity of the lemon juice helps tenderize the meat, while the mustard and herbs add a burst of flavor.

Dressing for cooked vegetables – Dress your favorite roasted, steamed or grilled vegetables, such as asparagus, carrots, or Brussels sprouts, with some vinaigrette for some zippiness.

Grain bowls – Drizzle the vinaigrette over grain bowls filled with quinoa, farro, or brown rice. Add in some roasted veggies, a protein like grilled chicken or tofu, and a handful of greens for a balanced, flavorful meal.

Sandwiches and wraps – Drizzle a bit of the vinaigrette on your sandwich or wrap instead of mayonnaise or mustard. It pairs wonderfully with ingredients like turkey, ham, roasted veggies, and fresh greens.

Pasta salad – Mix the vinaigrette into a pasta salad with your favorite ingredients like cherry tomatoes, cucumbers, olives, feta cheese, and fresh herbs. It adds a bright, zesty flavor that complements the pasta and veggies.

Coleslaw – Toss shredded cabbage and carrots with the vinaigrette for a light and tangy coleslaw that’s perfect as a side dish or a topping for pulled pork sandwiches.

A salad with lemon dijon vinaigrette being poured over.

Storage Instructions

Because this dressing contains fresh ingredients, it is best to store it in the refrigerator to preserve those ingredients and flavors. Keep it in an airtight jar or bottle and refrigerate up to one week. 

Let it rest at room temperature for 15 minutes or so before using. Because some separation may occur, give it a good shake or stir to recombine.

A carafe filled with lemon dressing with a cork stopper.

Lemon Dijon Vinaigrette

Linda Feller
Add a burst of fresh flavor to your meals with homemade Lemon Dijon Vinaigrette. Perfect for salads or as a versatile marinade.
Prep time.5 minutes
Total time.5 minutes
Course.Salad
Cuisine.American, French
Number of servings.12 (about 12) 2-tablespoon servings
Calories per serving.129 kcal

Ingredients

  • 4 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
  • 2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
  • 2 tablespoons fresh thyme leaves, chopped (or other herb)
  • 1 tablespoon honey
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced or grated
  • kosher salt and fresh cracked black pepper
  • ¾ cup extra virgin olive oil

Instructions

  • In a small mixing bowl, whisk together the lemon juice, mustard, thyme, honey, garlic, and a generous pinch each of kosher salt and black pepper until well combined. Slowly whisk in the olive oil until it is well incorporated. Or, place all the ingredients in a leak-proof jar, seal it up and shake vigorously until well combined!

Notes

Because this dressing contains fresh ingredients, it is best to store it in the refrigerator to preserve those ingredients and flavors. Keep it in an airtight jar or bottle and refrigerate up to one week. Let it rest at room temperature for 15 minutes or so before using. Because some separation may occur, give it a good shake or stir to recombine.

Nutrition

Calories: 129kcal | Carbohydrates: 2g | Protein: 0.2g | Fat: 14g | Saturated Fat: 2g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 10g | Sodium: 28mg | Potassium: 19mg | Fiber: 0.3g | Sugar: 2g | Vitamin A: 58IU | Vitamin C: 4mg | Calcium: 8mg | Iron: 0.3mg
Keywords.no cook
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