Sesame Ginger Dressing offers a burst of umami, citrus, and sweet flavors, blending into a dressing that's both versatile and tantalizing. Ready in just 10 minutes, this recipe proves that quick preparation doesn't have to sacrifice complexity or taste.
The combination of fresh lime juice with soy sauce and rice vinegar brings a balanced tanginess. Freshly grated ginger and a hint of garlic infuse the dressing with warmth and depth, while a mix of avocado oil and toasted sesame oil ensures a smooth, luscious texture. With or without the optional toasted sesame seeds, this dressing enhances any Asian-inspired dish.
Ingredients You Need to Make Sesame Ginger Dressing
- Rice Vinegar: Also called Rice Wine Vinegar - look for a version with no additives or seasonings.
- Soy Sauce: Opt for traditional or naturally brewed versions, available in most grocery stores.
- Fresh Lime Juice: A ripe lime should feel heavy for its size and have a bright, green skin.
- Honey: Lighter-colored honey typically offers a milder taste, while darker honey is more robust.
- Fresh Ginger: Choose pieces that are firm and have a spicy aroma.
- Garlic: Choose a head of garlic with cloves that are tightly closed, and avoid ones with green shoots.
- Avocado Oil: Choose cold-pressed and unrefined options to preserve nutrients from the avocado.
- Toasted Sesame Oil: The oil should have a deep, nutty flavor and aroma.
- Sesame Seeds: Optional, but if you decide to include them, make sure they're toasted for the best flavor.
- Swap unseasoned rice vinegar with apple cider vinegar for a slightly different tangy kick.
- Replace soy sauce with tamari or coconut aminos for a gluten-free or soy-free alternative.
- Use agave nectar or maple syrup instead of honey for a vegan version.
- Add a pinch of red pepper flakes for a spicy twist.
- Incorporate a teaspoon of miso paste for deeper, umami flavor.
- Whisking Technique: Consistency is key. Add the oils in a slow, steady stream while whisking constantly to achieve a smooth, emulsified texture.
- Fresh Ingredients: Use fresh lime juice and freshly grated ginger for the most vibrant tastes. Avoid bottled or pre-packaged alternatives.
- Taste Test: Always taste after mixing to adjust seasonings. Keep in mind that flavors meld over time, especially if stored for a few hours before serving.
Versatile Uses Beyond Salad
While this dressing pairs exceptionally well with dishes like Ahi Tuna Salad, its versatility extends far beyond leafy greens.
- Marinade: Marinate chicken, fish, or tofu for at least 30 minutes before grilling or baking.
- Dipping Sauce: Serve it as a dipping sauce alongside spring rolls, sushi, Grilled Tuna Steaks or dumplings.
- Stir-Fry: Add the dressing to your favorite stir-fried vegetables or noodles for an instant flavor boost.
- Grain Bowls: Drizzle it over rice, quinoa, or farro bowls to bring all the elements together.
How to Store
Store the dressing in an airtight container in the refrigerator. It will stay fresh for up to a week. Shake well or whisk before using to recombine any separated ingredients.
More Homemade Salad Dressings
How to Make Sesame Ginger Dressing
By Hand: In a bowl, mix rice vinegar, soy sauce, lime juice, honey, ginger, and garlic. Gradually whisk in avocado oil and sesame oil until well combined.
Blender: Combine the first set of ingredients in a blender; blend smoothly. While blending, slowly add the oils until the mixture emulsifies.
Finish: If using sesame seeds, stir them in. Chill before serving.
Sesame Ginger Dressing
- 2 tablespoons unseasoned rice vinegar
- 2 tablespoons soy sauce
- 2 tablespoons fresh lime juice from about 1 lime
- 2 tablespoons honey
- 1 tablespoon finely grated fresh ginger
- 1 small garlic clove minced
- ⅓ cup avocado oil or other neutrally flavored oil
- 2 tablespoons toasted sesame oil
- 2 teaspoons toasted sesame seeds optional
To Make by Hand
- In a medium bowl, whisk rice vinegar, soy sauce, lime juice, honey, ginger and garlic together in a medium bowl until smooth. Add avocado oil then toasted sesame oil in slow streams, whisking constantly until emulsified.
- To a blender pitcher add rice vinegar, soy sauce, lime juice, honey, ginger and garlic; blend until smooth. With blender running, add avocado oil and toasted sesame oil in slow, steady streams; blending until emulsified.
- Transfer to serving pitcher and stir in toasted sesame seeds if desired. Cover and refrigerate until ready to serve.
- Makes about 1 cup (16 tablespoons).