Lemon Vinaigrette Recipe – Cookie and Kate

Homemade lemon vinaigrette is one of the most versatile salad dressings! Today, I’m sharing my go-to lemon dressing recipe for all of your salad needs. It’s light and lively, and goes with nearly any salad.

Lemon juice shines in this simple recipe using basic, high quality ingredients. No store-bought salad dressing can compete with these vibrant, freshly-squeezed flavors.

lemon vinaigrette ingredients

To make this lovely dressing, you’ll need just five basic ingredients. Fresh lemons and garlic are key—please no pre-squeezed juice or pre-minced garlic here. You’ll also need extra-virgin olive oil, Dijon mustard, and honey or maple syrup. The Dijon mustard rounds out the flavor and helps emulsify the ingredients so they stay blended together.

This dressing yields enough for six generous side salads and keeps in the refrigerator for up to ten days. I’ve enjoyed this dressing for years and know you will, too!

how to make lemon vinaigrette

How to Serve Lemon Vinaigrette

Lemon vinaigrette is one of my go-to dressings throughout the year. This dressing recipe relies entirely on lemon juice for its acidity. Technically, you could call it a citronette since it’s vinegar free, but this oil-based dressing is similar in flavor and mouthfeel to a classic vinaigrette.

Any green is fair game but I tend to use this dressing with more mild lettuces, including Bibb lettuce, spring greens and baby arugula. Lemon vinaigrette goes well with all fresh fruits, and any salad-friendly nut or cheese.

In summary, lemon vinaigrette is quite versatile. Here’s a short list of flavors that go particularly well with this dressing:

  • Apple
  • Broccoli
  • Carrot
  • Chickpeas
  • Citrus, including grapefruit and orange
  • Cucumber
  • Farro
  • Fennel
  • Feta and goat cheese
  • Lentils
  • Pear
  • Radish
  • Strawberries
  • Sunflower seeds
  • Wild rice

Watch How to Make Lemon Dressing

Salads Featuring Lemon Vinaigrette

The following salads on Cookie and Kate feature lemon vinaigrettes tailored to each recipe.

Please let me know how your lemon salad dressing turns out in the comments! I love hearing from you. If you find yourself on a homemade dressing kick, be sure to check out more salad dressings here.

spoonful of lemon vinaigrette


Lemon Vinaigrette

  • Author: Cookie and Kate
  • Prep Time: 5 minutes
  • Total Time: 5 minutes
  • Yield: ¾ cup 1x
  • Category: Salad dressing
  • Method: By hand
  • Cuisine: Mediterranean
  • Diet: Vegetarian

5 from 2 reviews

Homemade lemon vinaigrette is far superior to store-bought salad dressings! Fresh lemon shines in this simple recipe using quality ingredients. Recipe yields ¾ cup.



  • ⅓ cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • ⅓ cup lemon juice (from about 2 lemons)
  • 2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
  • 1 to 2 tablespoons honey or maple syrup, to taste
  • 3 cloves garlic, pressed or minced
  • ¼ teaspoon fine salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper, to taste
  • Pinch of red pepper flakes (optional, for heat)


  1. Combine all of the ingredients and whisk until blended. 
  2. Season generously with black pepper and adjust to taste by adding more honey if the dressing tastes too tart. This dressing keeps well in the refrigerator, covered, for up to 10 days.


Recipe adapted from the Liquid Gold salad dressing in my cookbook, Love Real Food

Make it vegan: Use maple syrup, not honey.

▸ Nutrition Information

The information shown is an estimate provided by an online nutrition calculator. It should not be considered a substitute for a professional nutritionist’s advice. See our full nutrition disclosure here.

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