Culinary Tips for the Best Tahini Dressing
Stir the tahini thoroughly in the jar before measuring it; it tends to separate in storage. When storing, turn it upside down to help the oil distribute back into the paste.
Tahini varies in thickness and bitterness, so keep this in mind when preparing the recipe. The amount of water, maple syrup, and salt needed will vary based on your taste. The maple syrup and salt both help balance bitterness.
If the dressing appears to curdle when you start adding water, don’t panic! Just add more water and whisk, and it will become smooth again.
You can make this recipe in a bowl or with a blender/food processor. Choose whichever works for you!
- Tahini: substitute cashew or sunflower seed butter, but then it wouldn’t be tahini dressing!
- Extra virgin olive oil: substitute canola or avocado oil.
- Lemon juice: substitute red wine vinegar or apple cider vinegar.
- Garlic: substitute ¼ teaspoon pre-minced garlic, ⅛ teaspoon granulated garlic, or a pinch of garlic powder.
- Dijon: substitute whole grain, stone ground, or honey mustard. Note that whole grain and stone ground will have a stronger flavor. If using honey mustard, taste before adding the maple syrup. It may not need any!
- Maple syrup: substitute honey, cane sugar, or brown sugar.
Feel free to add spices or herbs to your taste. Smoked paprika, cumin, turmeric, and black pepper are some of our favorites, but the sky’s the limit!
Lemon zest adds a bright and tangy flavor that is delicious on summery salads and bowls!
Use these basic kitchen tools for recipe success:
- Dry Measuring Cups & Spoons
- Liquid Measuring Cup
- Small Mixing Bowl
- Chef’s Knife
- Cutting Board
- Small Spatula
- Airtight Container
- Garlic Press (optional)
Health Benefits of Tahini Dressing
Many salad dressings contain ingredients that can work against your health goals. Making your own dressing at home puts the control back in your hands and allows you to choose ingredients that taste delicious and promote your health! The featured ingredients in this dressing are tahini, extra virgin olive oil, and no unnecessary ingredients.
Tahini is sesame seed paste and is rich in plant-based protein, fiber, and healthy monounsaturated fatty acids. Monounsaturated fats have been shown to promote heart health. Additionally, all of these nutrients help you feel satisfied until your next meal, helping to prevent overeating.
Extra Virgin Olive Oil
Extra virgin olive oil is a key component of the Mediterranean Diet. It contains high amounts of heart-healthy monounsaturated fatty acids and polyphenols which may reduce inflammation. Additionally, certain nutrients require fat for absorption; using extra virgin olive oil in this dressing can boost the nutritional quality of a dish. (1, 2)
No Unnecessary Ingredients
Not all food additives are bad or dangerous, but we believe that it’s best to be cautious when handing your health over to food manufacturers. Many store-bought dressings contain fillers, stabilizers, and flavor enhancers that may not promote your health. Learning how to make your own salad dressing can give you some peace of mind; you will be able to see, pronounce, and taste all of the ingredients!
Serve vegan tahini dressing on top of green salads, mixed into grain bowls, or tossed with roasted vegetables. With the right ingredients, green salads and grain bowls can be satisfying meals on their own, but can also be delicious sides. Pair a side salad with roasted fish, baked chicken, turkey meatballs, or pan-fried tofu.
How to Store Leftover Dressing
Store vegan tahini dressing in the refrigerator for 1-2 weeks. If it starts to separate, simply shake or stir to mix it back together.
Want more flavorful sauce recipes?
Try out these favorites!
Vegan Tahini Dressing
- ½ cup tahini
- ¼ cup extra virgin olive oil
- 2 Tablespoons lemon juice (~1 medium lemon)
- 2 teaspoons maple syrup
- 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
- 1 small garlic clove, minced (~¼ teaspoon)
- ¼ – ½ cup water
- Salt to taste (~¼ teaspoon recommended)
- Dash pepper
Additions To Your Taste
- Fresh chopped herbs (basil, parsley, dill, thyme)
- Lemon zest
- ¼ teaspoon smoked paprika
- ¼ teaspoon cumin
- ⅛ teaspoon turmeric
- In a small bowl, whisk all ingredients together except water until thoroughly combined. Start with less water, then add more to reach your desired consistency. Add salt and pepper to taste. Enjoy!