Healthy Italian Dressing & Marinade

This simple Healthy Italian Dressing and Marinade is bright and delicious, with no added salt or sugar. Perfect for your heart healthy lifestyle! It’s easy, too. Just toss all the ingredients in a jar and shake!

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Glass bottle of salad dressing

Tips and FAQs

What is the best oil to use for salad dressing?

Oils with low smoke points are usually the best to use for salad dressings. These oils are typically unrefined, retaining more of their healthful benefits and flavor. It’s important to know the flavor your oil will impart in the salad dressing, and make sure it’s complimentary.

Oils with the lowest smoke points are extra virgin olive oil, flaxseed, walnut, and pumpkin seed oils. You can also use some oils with higher smoke points with delicious results, including avocado, sesame, and grapeseed oils. I keep extra virgin olive oil on hand for dressing, because it works well with most spices, has a great nutritional profile, and is almost neutral in flavor and color.

Can I use another vinegar instead of red wine vinegar?

Yes. White wine vinegar will also work, as well as most others. Your dressing will be on the sweeter side if you use balsamic or apple cider vinegar.

Can I leave out the mustard?

If you hate mustard, just leave it out. Your dressing will separate more quickly without it, but will still taste great! Similarly, another mustard is fine to use, just stay away from whole grain mustard. You don’t want something with lots of texture here.

Healthy Italian Dressing and Marinade is, of course, perfect for a simple tossed salad. But also consider using it to marinate tofu, chicken, or seafood. It would be great to toss on pasta salad or grilled vegetables, too!

For more Italian-inspired recipes, check out Zucchini Lasagna Rolls, Vegetarian Stuffed Peppers, and Deconstructed Pesto Herb Salad!

If you make my Healthy Italian Dressing, tell me in the comments!

Healthy Italian Dressing & Marinade

This simple Italian Salad Dressing and Marinade is bright and delicious, with no added salt or sugar. Perfect for your heart healthy lifestyle!

Course Condiment
Cuisine Italian
Diet DiabeticDiet, GlutenFreeDiet, LowCalorieDiet, LowFatDiet, LowLactoseDiet, LowSaltDiet, VeganDiet, VegetarianDiet
Prep Time 5 minutes
Total Time 5 minutes
Servings 16
Calories 63 kcal
Author Laura Yautz


  • ½ cup Extra Virgin Olive Oil
  • ¼ cup Red Wine Vinegar
  • ¼ cup Water
  • 1 Tbsp Lemon Juice
  • 2 tsp Italian Seasoning
  • 2 tsp Dijon Mustard
  • 1 tsp Garlic Powder
  • ½ tsp Onion Powder
  • ½ tsp Ground Pepper
  • (Optional) Pinch Salt (IF needed)


  1. Add all ingredients to a bowl or jar, and whisk until well combined.
  2. Store in the refrigerator, and shake before using.

Recipe Notes

Note: Olive oil will solidify when refrigerated – this is normal. When this happens, simply remove the dressing from the refrigerator and allow to rest on the counter for about 10 minutes before use.

If the dressing seems overly tart, you can add up to 1 Tbsp of a sweetener, like honey, sugar, or agave. Add as little as possible. Your goal is to reduce added sugar as much as possible over time.

Glass bottle of salad dressing with text overlay: Simple Italian Dressing and Marinade; no added salt or sugar.

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