Enliven your salads with the tart juicy flavor of homemade raspberry vinaigrette. It will quickly become a summer time favorite!
Why you’ll love it: Not only is it beautiful, raspberry vinaigrette really makes a salad special. It’s so much fresher-tasting than purchased vinaigrettes!
How long it takes: 10 minutes
Equipment you’ll need: fine sieve, small bowl and whisk, or jar with a lid
Servings: makes ¾ cup
While I love a simple red wine vinaigrette or white wine vinaigrette, I wanted to create a salad dressing that celebrated the warm summer weather and the much anticipated berry season here in Michigan.
I’m especially infatuated with red raspberries this year. Fresh raspberries are summer’s candy, vibrantly red, juicy, and bursting with tart flavor. They’re so beautiful, aren’t they?
A raspberry rosé spritzer, made with fresh raspberries and raspberry jam, is one of our favorite summer cocktails. Raspberries are lovely in desserts, too, like luscious raspberry white chocolate blondies or individual raspberry & brownie mini trifles. Everyone enjoys a slice of classic pound cake with fresh raspberries and whipped cream.
Raspberry cocktails and desserts aside, I love to make fresh raspberries the star of my salads, too. This raspberry vinaigrette recipe is quickly becoming my new favorite for summer salads. Envision a salad with fresh berries, baby spinach, grilled chicken, and candied walnuts, crowned with crumbled gorgonzola cheese. Doesn’t that make your mouth water?!
About this Raspberry Vinaigrette
- It’s made with fresh raspberries. The base of this dressing is, you guessed it, fresh raspberries, in fact, there’s a half cup of fresh raspberry purée in ¾ cup vinaigrette. That’s a lot of berry goodness (and it’s seedless!). I checked the ingredient list of a popular brand of raspberry vinaigrette and raspberry juice was listed as “less than 2%” of the total ingredients. The main ingredients? Water and sugar!
- There are only 5 ingredients. It’s easy to make your own vinaigrette and this recipe is no exception. Besides the raspberries, all you need is olive oil, vinegar, salt and pepper. I like to add a bit of honey, too, but that’s up to you.
- You can make it ahead. The vinaigrette keeps for up to a week in the refrigerator so it’s ready when you are.
Ingredients You’ll Need
- Fresh Red Raspberries: Look for a six ounce container of fresh raspberries. They should look plump and intact. Raspberries are quite fragile so handle them carefully. They can be refrigerated for one to two days and they can also be frozen. In fact, frozen raspberries will work fine in this recipe.
- Extra Virgin Olive Oil: You probably won’t find good quality extra virgin olive oil in commercial salad dressings. Choose the best olive oil you can afford. It has a wonderful flavor and health benefits, too.
- Red Wine Vinegar: A dash of vinegar rounds out the flavor of the vinaigrette, so it tastes like a vinaigrette and not simple raspberry juice on your salad. Keep a bottle of red wine vinegar in your pantry. You’ll find that it’s perfect for homemade salad dressing and so much more.
- Honey (Optional): I like to add just a teaspoon of honey to the vinaigrette for a little sweetness. Taste the vinaigrette and see what you think. Sometimes raspberries can be a bit on the tart side and a little honey is necessary. Other sweeteners can be used, such as agave or maple syrup.
- Salt & Pepper: Just a pinch of kosher salt and coarse ground pepper season the salad dressing.
How To Make Raspberry Vinaigrette
Prep the raspberry purée. Rinse the berries and drain them in a fine mesh strainer. Over a small bowl, using a fork, first mash the raspberries in the strainer until they are pretty smushed up.
Next, using the back of a large spoon, press the smashed berries through the fine mesh strainer into the bowl. Take your time; this may take about five minutes. A few seeds may squeeze through the mesh but that’s okay. You should end up with about a half cup of raspberry purée.
Either combine the remaining ingredients in the small bowl you used to catch the purée or transfer the raspberries to a small jar with a lid.
If you’re using a bowl, whisk together the raspberries, olive oil, red wine vinegar, honey (if using), salt and pepper until the dressing emulsifies, or is completely blended together. If you’re using a jar, add all the ingredients, put the lid on, and shake it up.
Taste the vinaigrette before adding it to the salad. You may decide to add a bit more sweetener, salt, or pepper. It’s up to you!
What to Serve With Raspberry Vinaigrette
Drizzle the vinaigrette over your favorite salad. It goes well with green salads that include fruit (more raspberries, strawberries, oranges, apples, etc.). Add chicken or shrimp, if you wish, either grilled or crispy. Toasted pecans or candied walnuts go particularly well with this dressing. I love a tangy cheese, too, such as gorgonzola, blue cheese, or feta cheese. The dressing goes well on a grain salad, too.
Make It Your Own
- Creamy raspberry dressing: Whisk in a couple tablespoons of plain Greek yogurt or mayonnaise.
- Experiment with different vinegars: Try balsamic vinegar instead of red wine vinegar. I like to use white or golden balsamic vinegar so the vinaigrette retains the brilliant red raspberry color. Apple cider vinegar is another good choice; apples and raspberries are always a good match.
- Vegan raspberry vinaigrette: Simply substitute agave or maple syrup for the honey, or leave out the sweetener.
- Not a fan of raspberries? No problem, check out my list of 24 easy salad dressing recipes!
Raspberry vinaigrette keeps well in a jar in the fridge, ready whenever the craving for a salad strikes. All you have to do is shake-shake-shake and pour.
Sometimes olive oil solidifies a bit when refrigerated. Let the vinaigrette sit out at room temperature for a half hour or so and it will liquify again. If you don’t have a half hour, gently warm it up in the microwave for 10 seconds or so, depending on how much there is in the jar. Be sure to remove the lid first.
How long does Raspberry Vinaigrette last?
If you store the dressing in a covered container in the fridge, it will keep for up to a week.
- 6 ounces fresh raspberries, rinsed and drained (about 1 ½ cups)
- 4 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- 1 tablespoon red wine vinegar
- 1 teaspoon honey (optional)
- ¼ teaspoon kosher salt, or to taste
- ¼ teaspoon coarse ground black pepper, or to taste
- Push berries through a fine mesh strainer into a small bowl, first with a fork to mash them, and then with the back of a large spoon to push all the fruit through. It’s okay If a few seeds squeeze through. This should yield about ½ cup raspberry puree.
- Using a fork or a small whisk, whisk in olive oil, red wine vinegar, salt, pepper and honey, if desired. You can also put all the ingredients in a small clean jar with a lid, and shake well.
- Taste vinaigrette and season with additional salt and pepper, if needed. Makes ¾ cup.
- Store vinaigrette in fridge until ready to use, or for up to one week. The oil may harden a bit in the fridge, so plan to leave it out on the counter for about 30 minutes prior to use. Or you may gently warm it in the microwave (10 seconds should suffice).
- Frozen raspberries can be substituted for fresh. Thaw them overnight in the refrigerator in a covered container. Proceed with the recipe as directed.
- Vegan raspberry vinaigrette: Omit the honey, or substitute agave or maple syrup.
- Creamy raspberry dressing: Whisk in 2 tablespoons Greek yogurt or mayonnaise.
This website provides approximate nutrition information for convenience and as a courtesy only. Nutrition data is gathered primarily from the USDA Food Composition Database, whenever available, or otherwise other online calculators.