Home > Dressings, Dips, & Sauces > Balsamic Vinaigrette Balsamic Vinaigrette October 23, 2021 | 3 Comments SAVE TO RECIPE BOX Jump to Recipe This post may contain affiliate links. Please read my disclosure policy. This simple Balsamic Vinaigrette takes mere minutes to whip together and needs no special kitchen appliances! This tangy vinaigrette has nicely balanced flavors and a great thickness — the perfect topping for a simple side salad, garden salad, or roasted vegetables! Balsamic Vinaigrette There is nothing quite like a good balsamic vinaigrette — something so simple, yet has the power to transform a simple bed of greens and raw veggies to a dish you’ll want to lick the plate clean after! As a through and through salad lover (I know, I know — really. It’s true.) that has shared over 100 salad recipes over the years, balsamic has still remained top of the list and is made frequently in my home. While this particular balsamic vinaigrette dressing does have just a few more ingredients than most you’ll see floating around the internet, I truly believe it is the BEST of its kind. It is nuanced in flavor and tangy without being overpowering in the slightest. I can’t wait to hear what you think of it! What Balsamic Vinaigrette Is Made Of You’ll find the most standard balsamic vinaigrette is as easy as mixing 1 part balsamic to 3 parts olive oil which is, of course, delicious, BUT it doesn’t hold a candle to this particular vinaigrette. We add a few more ingredients to the mix which add so much complexity. Plus, the Dijon adds a nice thickness that helps it adhere to salads that much better. Balsamic vinegar. The better your balsamic vinegar, the better the flavor of the dressing will be. The Spruce Eats has us covered with a list of the current best balsamic vinegar brands! Dijon mustard. We love Grey Poupon® Dijon best. Make sure to use Dijon, not yellow mustard. There’s a big flavor difference! Olive oil. The better the olive oil used, the better the flavor of the balsamic vinaigrette will be. We recommend extra virgin olive oil for this recipe. Honey. Since the vinegars offer a fair amount of tang, we like balancing that out with some honey. If you’d prefer the dressing to remain tangy, leave out or reduce the honey. For a sweeter dressing, add additional honey, slowly, and to taste. Red wine vinegar. This is the “secret ingredient” in this dressing. Instead of relying solely on balsamic vinegar, we add this vinegar which keeps the dressing punchy, but not as intensely flavored. It adds a nice, almost imperceptible rounding-out flavor! Salt and pepper. No dressing is complete without salt and pepper, and this vinaigrette is no exception! Add to taste preference, remembering that an extra pinch can be the difference between a good and a stellar dressing! QUICK TIP How To Make Balsamic Vinaigrette You won’t believe how simple this dressing is to make — all you need is a jar with a lid or a small bowl and whisk. Simply combine all the ingredients into a jar and shake until combined and emulsified– or combine all the ingredients into a small bowl and whisk until combined and emulsified. Seriously — it’s really that easy! What Balsamic Vinaigrette Can Be Used For There are practically endless ways to use this Balsamic Vinaigrette recipe, and below are some of our favorite applications: On a simple, every day greens and veggies salad or one of these unique salad recipes: Caprese Quinoa Salad, Panzanella Salad, or Chicken Spinach Salad As a drizzling sauce over raw veggies like carrot sticks, cauliflower florets, broccoli florets, celery sticks As a drizzling sauce over roasted vegetables like roasted broccoli, roasted Brussels Sprouts, or roasted asparagus (leave panko and Parmesan off these linked recipes and instead drizzle with this balsamic vinaigrette after roasting) Use as a sandwich condiment (toss some mixed greens with the dressing and add to a loaded sandwich) Drizzle on a grain bowl with veggies and a hearty grain such as quinoa, farro, couscous, or brown rice As a finishing sauce for grilled meats and/or grilled vegetables — or use as a marinade! Add to a dessert — a plate of macerated strawberries and goat cheese is begging for a drizzle of balsamic! Add to braised meats for a level of complexity and tanginess — think short ribs or a pork shoulder! What About A White Balsamic Vinaigrette? I hear you! We love a good white balsamic vinaigrette as well. First off, what is white balsamic vinegar? Although they all sound similar, it is not white vinegar or balsamic vinegar (which are all different types of vinegar). White balsamic vinegar starts the same way that regular balsamic vinegar does but is pressure-cooked to prevent it from browning and it’s aged for a shorter time. The result is a less intense version of balsamic with a lighter, golden-hue, and milder (slightly sweeter) flavor. So essentially, with a white balsamic vinaigrette you’ll get a similar–but less intense–flavor to a regular balsamic vinaigrette, with notes of sweetness. Additionally, the dressing will be quite light in color, unlike the dark vinaigrette you’d get with balsamic vinegar. That color difference is helpful in the appearance of some dishes. VARIATIONS Here’s our favorite white balsamic vinaigrette recipe: combine the following ingredients in a jar and shake to combine: 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil, 2 tablespoons white balsamic vinegar, 1-1/2 tablespoons honey, 1/2 teaspoon Dijon mustard, and salt/pepper to taste. (I add 1/4 teaspoon fine sea salt and 1/8 teaspoon pepper.) STORAGE Storing Balsamic Vinaigrette Stored properly in an airtight container in the fridge, this balsamic vinaigrette will stay good for 5-7 days. Note: Leftover dressing will separate and may even solidify a bit (this is because olive oil solidifies at cold temperatures). Simply let the dressing stand at room temperature for about 15-20 minutes and then vigorously shake to re-combine. Then it’s ready to use again! If you have time, make the dressing in advance. This dressing improves if it’s made in advance and chilled; the flavors meld together and intensify; plus, it’s just better chilled! Balsamic Vinaigrette FAQs1Is balsamic vinaigrette healthy?Making your own dressing is always going to be the best — not only taste-wise but nutritionally. When making your own Balsamic Vinaigrette you can control exactly what goes into it and adjust for personal dietary restrictions and preferences. As a whole, this recipe is packed with good-for-you ingredients that are linked to plenty of health benefits. Olive oil is a great source of good-for-you fats and vinegar is a prebiotic linked to reducing cholesterol and has antimicrobial properties. 2Is there a difference between balsamic vinegar and balsamic vinaigrette?Yes! Balsamic vinegar is an ingredient that goes into a balsamic vinaigrette. Balsamic vinegar is a very dark and intensely flavored vinegar made wholly or partially from freshly crushed grape juice (with all the skins, seeds, and stems). A Balsamic Vinaigrette is a recipe that combines balsamic vinegar with olive oil (and typically a few other ingredients) to create a delicious cacophony of flavors that go nicely on salad, roasted vegetables, and other recipes. 3How long does opened balsamic vinegar last?We recommend always checking the packaging for best by dates, but typically a commercially available balsamic vinegar will last 3-5 years. 4Should I refrigerate balsamic vinegar after opening?Balsamic vinegar is shelf-stable after being opened — you don’t need to store it in the fridge. It is best stored in a cool and dark place (light and heat is the enemy here!). If you primarily use this vinegar for salads and like the dressing chilled, you can store balsamic vinegar in the fridge. Primarily using for sauces, reductions, or marinades–the pantry/cupboards are fine for storage! More Dressing Recipes Lemon Vinaigrette my favorite homemade vinaigrette! Honey Mustard Salad Dressing with a chicken, avocado, and tomato salad Greek Salad Dressing with fresh lemon juice Cafe Rio Dressing cilantro-lime dressing Citrus Vinaigrette with fresh lemon and orange juice FOLLOW ALONG! Subscribe to my newsletter and follow along on Facebook, Pinterest and Instagram for the latest updates, recipes and content. Balsamic Vinaigrette 5 from 3 votes - Review this recipe This simple Balsamic Vinaigrette takes mere minutes to whip together and needs no special kitchen appliances! This tangy vinaigrette has nicely balanced flavors and a great thickness -- the perfect topping for a simple side salad, garden salad, or roasted vegetables! SAVE TO RECIPE BOX Print Recipe Balsamic Vinaigrette 5 from 3 votes - Review this recipe SAVE TO RECIPE BOX Print Recipe This simple Balsamic Vinaigrette takes mere minutes to whip together and needs no special kitchen appliances! This tangy vinaigrette has nicely balanced flavors and a great thickness -- the perfect topping for a simple side salad, garden salad, or roasted vegetables! Course Appetizer, Salad, Side Dish Cuisine American, Healthy Keyword balsamic vinaigrette Prep Time 10 minutes Total Time 10 minutes Servings 5 cups Calories 116kcal Cost $0.98 Ingredients2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar1 tablespoon red wine vinegar1 tablespoon Dijon mustard1 tablespoon honey1/4 cup extra virgin olive oilFine sea salt and pepper InstructionsCOMBINE: In a wide-mouth jar, combine all the dressing ingredients. Season to taste with salt and pepper; I add 1/4 teaspoon fine sea salt and 1/8 teaspoon pepper. Briskly shake to combine and emulsify. (Don't have a jar? Briskly whisk in a bowl instead!) Check to make sure honey isn't sticking to the bottom -- whisk it into the mixture if it is. Taste and adjust the flavor to personal preference.STORAGE: Store in the fridge until ready to use. In an airtight container in the fridge, this dressing will stay good for 5-7 days. Heads up: Leftover dressing will separate and may even clump a bit (this is because olive oil solidifies at cold temperatures). Simply let the dressing stand at room temperature for about 15-20 minutes and then vigorously shake to re-combine. Then it's ready to use again! Recipe NotesNote 1: Flavors: We love Grey Poupon® Dijon best. Make sure to use Dijon, not yellow mustard. There’s a big flavor difference! Since the vinegars offer a fair amount of tang, we like balancing that out with some honey. If you'd prefer the dressing to remain tangy, leave out or reduce the honey. For a sweeter dressing, add additional honey, slowly, and to taste. Nutrition information is for a 1-tablespoon serving. Nutrition FactsServing: 1serving | Calories: 116kcal | Carbohydrates: 5g | Protein: 1g | Fat: 11g | Saturated Fat: 2g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 8g | Sodium: 36mg | Potassium: 15mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 4g | Vitamin A: 2IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 4mg | Iron: 1mg We do our best to provide accurate nutritional analysis for our recipes. Our nutritional data is calculated using a third-party algorithm and may vary, based on individual cooking styles, measurements, and ingredient sizes. Please use this information for comparison purposes and consult a health professional for nutrition guidance as needed. DID YOU MAKE THIS RECIPE? I love hearing from you when you've made one of my recipes! Tag me on Instagram at @ChelseasMessyApron or leave me a comment below.