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Sun Dried Tomato Vinaigrette

Sun dried tomato vinaigrette is a creamy dressing that’s delicious on salads, grilled vegetables, and meats, or used as a dipping sauce for bread. This versatile recipe is dairy free and made with a handful of simple ingredients.

Looking for more homemade salad dressings? Try my poppy seed dressingcarrot ginger miso dressing, or basil balsamic vinaigrette.

Unlike store-bought salad dressings, homemade dressings allow you to keep the ingredients simple, fresh, and naturally sweetened (no high fructose corn syrup). This homemade sun-dried tomato vinaigrette not only has an incredible flavor, but it’s also easy to customize. All you need are a few basic pantry staples.

This dressing is delicious on Mediterranean salads, pasta salads, green salads, or grain bowls: try my dragon bowl.

What You’ll Love About This Recipe

  • Flavorful – has a bold flavor that’s a mix of savory and tangy.
  • Easy to make – this dressing requires little effort. All you have to do is throw everything into a high-speed blender!
  • Versatile – use it on everything from pasta to fresh salads, bread, bowls, and beyond.

Ingredients

To make this sun dried tomato dressing, you’ll need:

  • Sun dried tomatoes – for this particular recipe, I used sun-dried tomatoes that are not packed in oil, but feel free to use oil-packed sun-dried tomatoes if that’s what you have on hand. These have a concentrated tomato flavor that’s slightly tangy.
  • Extra-virgin olive oil.
  • Red wine vinegar.
  • Lemon juice.
  • Fresh basil leaves
  • Dijon mustard – helps emulsify the dressing and make it creamy.
  • Maple syrup – helps balance out the flavors. Without it, the vinaigrette is too tart.
  • Fresh garlic.

How to Make Sun Dried Tomato Vinaigrette: Step By Step

Here are some quick visual instructions. The full instructions and ingredient list will be in the printable recipe card below!

1. Soften the sun-dried tomatoes in a small bowl with hot water.

2. Add the ingredients to a blender. Blend until smooth and season to taste with kosher salt and freshly cracked black pepper.

Helpful Tips

  • For the smoothest dressing, use a blender, not a food processor.
  • If using oil-packed sun dried tomatoes, skip the first step.

Quick tip: For a more pourable consistency, add more extra virgin olive oil or warm water to thin out the dressing.

Storage

Fridge: Store this dressing in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 2 weeks. 

Freezer: Freeze leftover dressing by adding it to a silicone ice cube tray. Once frozen, transfer the cubes to a freezer-safe bag. Thaw in the fridge overnight or add the cubes directly to a warm skillet if using as a sauce.

Make It Your Way: Substitutions & Variations

Please remember that recipes are just a starting point.

How can you make this sun-dried tomato dressing using what you already have? Here are some ideas…

  • No sun-dried tomatoes? – you can also use fresh tomatoes such as cherry or Roma tomatoes, but I recommend sauteing them in a little olive oil on the stove first to intensify their flavor. If you do this option, eliminate the water in the recipe since fresh tomatoes contain much more water than sun dried tomatoes.
  • No red wine vinegar? – you can also use balsamic vinegar.
  • No lemon juice? – leave it out and add 1 more tablespoon of vinegar.
  • No maple syrup? – use honey instead.
  • No fresh garlic? – sub 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can you use regular tomatoes instead of sun-dried tomatoes?

Yes, but if you’re using fresh tomatoes, I recommend sauteing them first in a little olive oil to deepen their flavor. You can then add a tablespoon of tomato paste to help give the dressing a concentrated flavor similar to sun dried tomatoes.

What’s the difference between semi-dried tomatoes and sun-dried tomatoes?

Sun-dried tomatoes are fully dried to remove all their water content, which gives them a chewy texture. Semi-dried tomatoes are only partially dried, which means they still contain some of their juices and have a plump texture.

Should I soak sun-dried tomatoes before using them?

If you’re using dry-packed sun-dried tomatoes, you should soak them first. They have a tough, chewy texture and blend more easily when soaked in warm water before making the sundried tomato dressing.

Can you buy sun dried tomatoes not in oil?

Yes, sun dried tomatoes can be purchased dry in a sealed package. Both oil-packed and dry sun dried tomatoes will work for this tomato salad dressing recipe.

More Homemade Dressings

I hope you love this Sun Dried Tomato Vinaigrette! If you make it, be sure to leave a comment & a star rating so I know how you liked it!

Sun Dried Tomato Vinaigrette

5 from 2 votes
A jar of sun dried tomato vinaigrette with a spoon in the jar next to a cutting board and fresh basil leaves.
Sun dried tomato vinaigrette is a creamy dressing that's delicious on salads, grilled vegetables, and meats, or used as a dipping sauce for bread. This versatile recipe is dairy free and made with a handful of simple ingredients.
Prep Time 10 minutes
Total Time 10 minutes
Serving Size 1.5 cups

Ingredients
 

  • cup hot water
  • cup sun dried tomatoes
  • ¾ cup extra virgin olive oil
  • ¼ cup red wine vinegar or balsamic vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • ¼ cup fresh basil leaves
  • 1 tablespoon dijon mustard
  • 1 tablespoon maple syrup or honey
  • 1 garlic clove
  • ½ teaspoon diamond crystal kosher salt, plus more to taste if using anything else, start with ¼ teaspoon
  • freshly cracked black pepper

Instructions

  • Add the hot water and dry packed sun dried tomatoes to a small bowl. Let soak for 5-10 minutes to soften. If using oil-packed sun-dried tomatoes, skip this step.
  • Add the soaked sun-dried tomatoes, the soaking water, and the rest of the ingredients to a high-speed blender. Blend until completely smooth. Season to taste with more salt and freshly ground black pepper as needed.

Notes

See the blog post for storage instructions, helpful tips, and frequently asked questions.

Make It Your Way: Substitutions & Variations

No sun-dried tomatoes? – you can also use fresh tomatoes such as cherry or Roma tomatoes, but I recommend sauteing them in a little olive oil on the stove first to intensify their flavor. If you do this option, eliminate the water in the recipe since fresh tomatoes contain much more water than sun dried tomatoes.
No red wine vinegar? – you can also use balsamic vinegar.
No lemon juice? – leave it out and add 1 more tablespoon of vinegar.
No maple syrup? – use honey instead.
No fresh garlic? – sub 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder.

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