Recipe: Stasia’s Famous Herb Shallot Vinaigrette

MethodComp_350wideThis is my goto vinaigrette dressing. It’s super simple and basic, but everyone seems to go crazy over it. Especially the vegetarians. I don’t know why. Perhaps someday I will conduct a study.

This dressing is terrific with an additional squeeze of citrus – lemon and grapefruit especially – and loads of fresh ground pepper. But if you are going to use citrus, I would squeeze a freshly cut fruit over the salad, as opposed to putting it into the jar with the dressing. The juice will change the composition of the dressing over time and not in a way that I liked. Maybe you can experiment and let me know if you find a way to do it that works.

JC doesn’t like a lot of vinegar, so I’ve cut back. If you like vinegar, feel free to add more. In fact, you should play with the ingredients to suit your tastes. This is a good solid dressing base that can take several types of adjustments. Try different herbs, types of oils and vinegars. I always use dried herbs as I prefer to store salad dressing in the cupboard instead of the fridge and I fear that fresh herbs will turn black in the dressing. Feel free to use fresh herbs directly on your salad though!

Party Tip: Blend a cup of dressing with 1/2-1 cup cashews (pre-soaked if you have time) for a quick, rich vegan dip to serve with crudite or pita. Or use as a spread for tea sandwiches and crostini.


1 cup olive oil

¾ white balsamic or apple cider vinegar

1 tbsp Dijon mustard

1 tbsp whole grain or brown mustard

1  tbsp garlic powder

1 tsp pepper

½ tsp salt

1 tbsp dried tarragon

½ tbsp dried dill leaves

1 medium shallot, diced

Pouring copy


Place all ingredients in a bowl or jar and mix vigorously.  I usually just pour everything into my dressing bottle and then shake like crazy. You will need to shake again just before serving.

You can store this in your kitchen cupboard, no need to refrigerate.

About Anastasia King Jaress

Anastasia is a former media producer who hit the road to sustainability in April 2013 with her husband JC and Mattie, the dog. She writes about food, community, sustainability, travel, family and the myriad questions that boggle them.

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