Basil Vinaigrette

SauceBasilSalad Dressing

Have extra garden basil? Make a quick basil vinaigrette for a salad dressing or sauce for chicken, fish, potatoes, or pasta.

Photography Credit: Elise Bauer

Have extra basil in your garden right now?

This is a quick and easy basil vinaigrette dressing you can make with it that you can use not only as a salad dressing, but also as a sauce for fish, chicken, potatoes, tomatoes, or white beans.

Basil vinaigrette is super easy to make. Use either a blender or food processor and purée some fresh basil leaves, a shallot, some Dijon mustard, a little salt and sugar, white wine vinegar, and olive oil.

Basil Vinaigrette

Ideas for using basil vinaigrette

  • Use this basil vinaigrette with some chopped fresh tomatoes and drained canned garbanzo beans. Presto jammo, instant basil-y bean salad!
  • Use as a dressing for a salad with quinoa, arugula, corn, feta, chickpeas, and toasted sunflower seeds.
  • Marinate chicken breast cutlets in the basil vinaigrette, grill them, then add thin slices of tomato, mozzarella, and a basil leaf, and put back on the grill for a grilled caprese chicken.
Updated August 1, 2018 : Introduction updated, first published 2010

Basil Vinaigrette Recipe

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  • Prep time: 10 minutes
  • Yield: Makes a little more than one cup

Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup roughly chopped basil leaves
  • 1 shallot, chopped,
  • 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 cup white wine vinegar
  • 3/4 cup olive oil

Method

1 Place the basil, shallot, mustard, sugar, and salt in a blender or food processor. Pulse several times to combine. Scrape the sides of the blender down with a spatula.

2 Add the vinegar and pulse again.

3 Slowly add the olive oil: Turn the blender on low and take off the cap in the center of the blender’s lid. Slowly pour in the olive oil while the blender is going.

The mixture may sputter a little out of the open cap, so hold your hand over it to minimize splashing.

4 Purée for 1-2 min: When the olive oil is incorporated, turn off the blender and scrape the sides down one more time. Cover and purée everything for 1-2 minutes.

Store covered in the fridge for up to a week.

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Elise Bauer

Elise Bauer is the founder of Simply Recipes. Elise launched Simply Recipes in 2003 as a way to keep track of her family's recipes, and along the way grew it into one of the most popular cooking websites in the world. Elise is dedicated to helping home cooks be successful in the kitchen. Elise is a graduate of Stanford University, and lives in Sacramento, California.

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20 Comments / Reviews

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Did you make it? Rate it!

  • Cynthia C.

    I made a cool chicken pasta salad using your basil vinaigrette and it was perfect for a hot July day. I cooked 3 garlic cloves in my pasta water and blended it in with the basil and other ingredients for added zip. The color contrast between the basil dressing, black olives, and cherry tomatoes was quite pretty! It’s a very attractive salad to present to family or friends at a picnic.

    Thanks so much for this fantastic recipe. I never tried basil vinaigrette before, and now I will make it a regular part of my salad rotations.

  • Checka

    Alice:

    I just started using Purple Basil this summer. I was hoping for a really pretty color but it sort of turns dark green/black. I used it in homemade tomato sauce. Tastes amazing. The color might not be pretty but I’m sure the taste would be great.

  • JHalfen

    Basil Vinegarette was the dressing of choice for the salad greens at Christmas Day dinner. It was in a word, “wonderful”. Had some left over and decided to drizzle a little over sliced tomatoes, added a little chopped fresh basil, salt/pepper and goat cheese. This too was “wonderful” and I’ve noted after the fact that another commenter has done this as well. Will be making this again and again. Thank you for the recipe and for perking up an otherwise “ordinary” green salad.

    xxxxxyyyyy

  • Susan

    My basil plants are heroically withstanding the Texas heat and gave me plenty of gorgeous leaves for this recipe. Didn’t get to try it until last night … oh, my, is it tasty! What a lovely change from regular vinaigrettes ~ thank you!

  • Sally

    I tried this recipe last night and loved it! I poured it over salad and some fresh mozzarella and tomatoes and was even a little tempted to drink it right from the jar. Luckily I resisted and have some leftover to enjoy today.

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