Basil Vinaigrette (and 20+ recipes to use it!)

Hands down one of the most popular creations here - my simple Basil Vinaigrette Recipe. Not even exaggerating, it's the best vinaigrette in the world and it's going to make your recipes THAT much better! The versatility is epic. Its perfect for a Loaded Salad, to this delicious summer Tomato Basil Pasta, and so many amazing fish recipes such as this grilled salmon.

basil vinaigrette recipe in a weck jar with a square glass olive oil bottle in the background, a few basil leaves on the table with a spoon dipped in basil vinaigrette on the table


 

Why I Love This Recipe

I’m all about taking a shortcut in the kitchen every now and then – and that is exactly what this Basil Vinaigrette allows me to do! It’s my go-to basil salad dressing (and has been since I first posted it in 2014) for all of my favorite summer meals and you’ll be seeing it make an appearance in a few recipes over the next several weeks as I try to stretch out this California summer until November 🙂  

I whip up a batch of Basil Vinaigrette every few days and keep it on hand for anytime I’m in a pinch and need to eat something STAT. It goes beautifully on a salad, on top of come cooked vegetables, mixed into a pasta or rice, topped on some chicken, steak or fish... you get the idea. It literally works with everything. It can very easily brighten up, or just be a great change for your go-to recipes, like an alternate dressing for the whole roasted cauliflower.

Ingredients & Substitutions

Basil Vinaigrette Ingredients: shallot, basil, garlic, red pepper flakes, olive oil, red wine vinegar, salt and pepper measured and prepped out on a blue enamel tray
  • Shallot
  • Basil
  • Garlic
  • Red Pepper Flakes
  • Olive Oil
  • Red Wine Vinegar
  • Salt & Pepper

*See recipe card for all specifics and alterations.

How to Make Basil Vinaigrette

Basil Vinaigrette Ingredients: shallot, basil, garlic, red pepper flakes, olive oil, red wine vinegar, salt and pepper in a food processor

Step 1: Combine all the ingredients in a high powered blender.

Blended basil vinaigrette in a food processor.

Step 2: Blend for 60 seconds until very smooth.

Blended basil vinaigrette in a food processor with salt and pepper.

Step 3: Taste and adjust salt and pepper as needed.

Step 4: Serve immediately or refrigerate in an airtight container for up to 3-5 days.

Tips & Tricks

A few things to keep in mind as you make the worlds most perfect basil vinaigrette recipe:

  • Look for a small shallot. You don't want a HUGE shallot as that will affect how the end result tastes. If you can only find a large one, just use 1-2 tablespoons worth of chopped shallot.
  • Use a decent quality olive oil. Something that you could use as a salad dressing. If you use something that's too flavored etc, that will affect the taste of the vinaigrette
  • Season to taste!! Always! So important to try the sauce and then adjust salt as needed.
  • Feel free to add other herbs as you please. Cilantro mixed with basil is excellent. Chives are amazing mixed in too!
  • If you love this recipe as much as me - try making the cilantro vinaigrette version too!

Recipe FAQs

What is basil vinaigrette made of?

This Basil Vinaigrette recipe is made of fresh basil, a small shallot, garlic, red pepper flakes, olive oil, red wine vinegar and salt! You can add a few cracks of black pepper too if you prefer!

What is the formula for vinaigrette dressing?

The basic formula is 2 parts oil to 1 part of vinegar plus all the add ins like shallot, garlic, salt and pepper. This recipe has just a touch less vinegar than normal but feel free to up it per your taste preference.

Favorite Recipes to use with Basil Vin

AND - you guys asked for it on Insta live recently. Here are a billion additional ideas on how to use this basil vinaigrette recipe:

Basil vinaigrette in a weck jar with a spoon covered in vinaigrette propped up on the jar and a sprig of basil in bottom right corner.

If you tried this recipe, please leave a 🌟 star rating and let me know how it goes in the 📝 comments below. Thanks for visiting today!

Simple Basil Vinaigrette

Author: Gaby Dalkin
5 from 68 votes
The most delicious basil vinaigrette recipe you'll ever encounter! Add it to veggies, chicken, fish, steak, pasta, salad dressings.... skies the limit! You'll want to slather it on everything all summer long.
Prep Time 5 minutes
Total Time 5 minutes
Course Side Dish
Cuisine Italian, Mediterranean, American
Servings 10 servings

Equipment

Ingredients
  

  • 1 small shallot roughly chopped (about 2-3 tablespoons)
  • 2 cups tightly packed fresh basil leaves stems removed (about 4 ounces)
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • ½ teaspoons red pepper flakes (optional)
  • ½ cup olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt plus more to taste

Instructions
 

  • Combine all the ingredients for the basil vinaigrette in a high powered blender and blend for 60 seconds until very smooth.
  • Taste and adjust salt and pepper as needed. Serve immediately. Or you can refrigerate the vinaigrette for up to 3-5 days.

Notes

  • Store for up to 5 days in an airtight container in the fridge.
  • Feel free to mix in some other herbs if you want! Basil combined with cilantro and chives are excellent. Parsley is another great addition if you want things a bit more earthy. 
  • This freezes beautifully! Portion it out into a ice cube tray and freeze. Then when you are ready to use, pop out a cube and let come to room temperature and use as needed.

Nutrition Information

Calories: 100kcal | Carbohydrates: 1g | Protein: 0.2g | Fat: 11g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 8g | Sodium: 235mg | Potassium: 27mg | Fiber: 0.2g | Sugar: 0.2g | Vitamin A: 283IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 11mg | Iron: 0.3mg
Tried this Recipe? Tag me Today!Mention @WhatsGabyCookin or tag #whatsgabycooking!

Photo by Matt Armendariz // Food Styling by Adam Pearson // Recipe by What's Gaby Cooking

204 Comments

  1. Hi Gaby,
    I have some pesto already made in the freezer. Do you think if I just added some red wine vinegar and some pepper flakes after defrosting would work in a pinch?

    You are the bomb!

  2. 5 stars
    Made my first batch this summer and can't stop making it! This recipe is a hit with our family, love it!

  3. Hi Gaby! Love your blog. This might be a weird question but I have recently lost 30 lbs. and I am not eating fats or oils. Is there anything to substitute for the olive oil? I have only been using Walden Farm dressings but this looks amazing. I may be out of luck but thought I would at least ask.
    Thanks,
    Lynne

  4. 5 stars
    Pretty much always have some of this (or the cilantro version) in my fridge at all times. How did I ever live without it? Makes simple salads fantastic, and elevates pasta, salmon, chicken, roasted veggies, bread... SO delicious and healthy. Thanks, Gaby!!

  5. 5 stars
    This is my absolute favourite dressing and I’ve made it many times. My friends rave about it and always want me to make more. However, I made it yesterday and for some reason it came out incredibly bitter and I’m wondering if the shallots or strength of garlic overpowered it. Could you please clarify if it’s a small shallot or a large one that you recommend and any suggestions on how to tone down the bitterness? I will 100% make this again but want to prevent another mishap. Thank you!

  6. 5 stars
    Thank you for this (and many other) delicious recipes! I started making this last summer and it continues to be our favorite dressing on any salad (except Caesar). My husband gets pretty disappointed if I try to make a different salad dressing.

  7. 5 stars
    I have had this saved for so long and I just made it this past weekend. Why did I wait so long???? This is a delicious and versatile vinaigrette that was delicious with grilled chicken, I put about a tablespoon in some fresh brussel sprouts that I was sauteing as well. This will be my summer go-to sauce as I plant so much basil for the summer and was only making pesto before now!

  8. I could eat this superb sauce on cardboard it’s so good. We love it on chicken and veggies and pizza and left overs.
    Many thanks

  9. Hello Gaby! I love basil and I’m dying to try this, but I’m a little stumped by the nutritional information. It says that it makes 10 servings, and then the nutritional information for the 10 servings is noted, but not the size of each serving. I’m guessing tablespoons, but how many? Or possibly it’s 1/8 cup? (Sorry to be tedious, but I have to track everything I eat.)

    Also, many of us are home cooks who are not intuitive in the kitchen, so when a recipe notes an ingredient like “small shallot”, it’s really helpful to people like me to give a weight/approximate weight. (That Rachael Ray “just eye ball it!” never worked for me!)

    Thank you.

  10. I’m having trouble with your ingredients on this basil vinaigrette. The things I am having trouble with are 0.6 shallots it’s roughly chopped don’t really understand how much that is, is that a half a cup a quarter of a cup whatever 0.6 clove garlic again don’t understand 0.3 teaspoons don’t understand I think it means a 10th or 3/10 of a teaspoon what is that I mean a quarter teaspoon a half teaspoon? Looked online for conversion too difficult.

    1. where are you getting those numbers? It should read:

      1 shallot roughly chopped
      2 cups tightly packed fresh basil leaves stems removed (about 4 ounces)
      1 clove garlic
      1/2 teaspoons red pepper flakes
      1/2 cup olive oil
      2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
      1 teaspoon kosher salt

  11. 5 stars
    Really great for a lot of dishes. The required salt is too much, I cut it in half, and it turned out well. I also only use half a larger shallot or a full small shallot (roughly a half dollar size). It would be better to list the ingredients by mass.

4.96 from 68 votes (20 ratings without comment)

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