Ginger Dressing

published Feb 20, 2024
Ginger Dressing Recipe

With the perfect balance of sweet, savory, and umami flavors, this is great with salad and so much more.

Serves8 to 10

Makes2 cups

Prep10 minutes

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head on shot of the ginger dressing in a small jar.
Credit: Photo: Alex Lepe ; Food Stylist: Rachel Perlmutter

One of my go-to salad dressings at the grocery store is Makoto ginger dressing. I love its chunky texture and its savory, slightly sweet flavor. It makes any green salad incredibly delicious. After going through so many bottles, I came up with my own copycat version that tastes just as good as — if not better than — the original. 

All you need to do is blitz the ingredients (which include apple, carrot, and ginger) in a blender or a food processor. That’s it! This easy-to-make dressing gives a simple bed of salad greens so much life. I love adding some shredded carrots and sliced cucumber to make the salad taste even better, as those fresh veggies pair so well with the ginger dressing. 

Key Ingredients in Ginger Dressing

  • Apple: The secret ingredient that adds a nice sweetness. You don’t have to peel the skin (I think it adds a nice texture), but you can if you prefer. Use sweet, snappy apples like Pink Lady or Honeycrisp.
  • Carrot: The iconic orange color of ginger dressing comes from a carrot. It adds a subtle sweetness along with the apple.
  • Ginger: Fresh ginger adds citrusy, warm flavors to the dressing. A small amount of ground ginger ensures the gingery flavor comes through.
  • Ketchup: Its jammy, sweet, tomato-forward flavor creates a fantastic balance with the other aromatics.
  • Extra-virgin olive oil: Helps emulsify the dressing, bringing it all together.
Credit: Photo: Alex Lepe ; Food Stylist: Rachel Perlmutter

Helpful Swaps

  • If you don’t have light brown sugar, you can use regular granulated or dark brown sugar.
  • Swap the rice vinegar for apple cider vinegar or white wine vinegar.
  • To keep it gluten-free, use tamari instead of soy sauce.

If You’re Making Ginger Dressing, a Few Tips

  1. Leave the dressing slightly chunky. One of my favorite parts about ginger dressing is its slightly chunky texture. Instead of blitzing the vegetables too finely, leave a bit of texture to the carrots, apple, and onions.
  2. Add a little bit of water if the vegetables are not blended well. If your mixture doesn’t blitz well in a blender or food processor, add a splash of water (about a tablespoon) and continue to blend.
  3. Shake well before serving the dressing. Like any other oil-based dressing, natural separation will happen. Be sure to shake well before serving. 
  4. Think beyond the salad. This dressing is delicious on top of salad greens, but you can use it to marinate chicken or toss with the noodles, or even as a dipping sauce for roasted veggies

Ginger Dressing Recipe

With the perfect balance of sweet, savory, and umami flavors, this is great with salad and so much more.

Prep time 10 minutes

Makes 2 cups

Serves 8 to 10

Nutritional Info


  • 1

    small yellow onion

  • 1/2

    medium Honeycrisp apple

  • 1

    medium carrot

  • 1 (1-inch) piece


  • 1 clove


  • 1/3 cup

    extra-virgin olive oil

  • 3 tablespoons

    soy sauce or tamari

  • 1 tablespoon

    packed light brown sugar

  • 1 tablespoon


  • 1 tablespoon


  • 1 tablespoon

    rice vinegar

  • 1 teaspoon

    toasted sesame oil

  • 1/2 teaspoon

    kosher salt

  • 1/4 teaspoon

    ground ginger


  1. Prepare the following, adding each a blender or food processor fitted with the blade attachment as you complete it: Peel and dice 1 small yellow onion (about 1 cup). Core and dice 1/2 medium honeycrisp apple (about 1/2 cup). Peel and dice 1 medium carrot (about 1 cup). Peel 1 (1-inch) piece ginger and thinly slice crosswise. Peel 1 garlic clove and smash with the flat part of a knife.

  2. Process for 30 seconds. Scrape down the sides of the bowl, and process for 30 seconds more.

  3. Add 1/3 cup extra-virgin olive oil, 3 tablespoon soy sauce or tamari, 1 tablespoon packed light brown sugar, 1 tablespoon mirin, 1 tablespoon ketchup, 1 tablespoon rice vinegar, 1 teaspoon toasted sesame oil, 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt, and 1/4 teaspoon ground ginger. Process until combined, about 30 seconds.

Recipe Notes

Storage: Refrigerate the dressing in an airtight container for up to 1 week. Whisk before serving.