Carrot Ginger Dressing is a light, refreshing salad dressing that is simply irresistible! (It’s like your favorite Japanese restaurant dressing, only fresher!)
What's the Story Behind this Recipe?
There's a little place near my house – Mr Bento’s – that serves the best teriyaki salmon burger! I always order it in a meal, which arrives on a quarter-sheet pan with four pot stickers and a cold, crisp green salad on the side. I look forward to that side salad nearly as much as the salmon burger itself: I just can’t resist that delicious Carrot Ginger Salad Dressing!
At one point about a month ago, I was jonesing hard for something fresh and light and bright to satisfy my umami urges. All I wanted in life was a big green salad doused with Mr Bento's dressing. No salmon burger. No potstickers. Just the salad.
So I decided to figure out how to make Carrot Ginger Dressing for myself. Honestly, I was blown away when I learned how easy this is to make!
Why You Will Love this Recipe
If you aren't making your own salad dressings yet, consider this: most dressings (including this one) take less than ten minutes to mix up. You save a ton of money, and the food you eat is fresher and healthier.
The only downside is, homemade dressings do not last ten or twelve months in the fridge. (On the other hand, is that really a downside?)
This easy blender dressing recipe has so many great things going for it: it’s super-fast to pull together, naturally dairy-free and vegan, and has no added sugar. (The carrots add just the right amount of sweetness.) The teaspoon of orange zest enhances and brightens the natural carrot and ginger flavors.
In addition to the easy prep and fabulous flavor, one of the things we love most about this dressing is the stunning color it brings to the plate, especially when paired with leafy greens.
Carrot Ginger Dressing Ingredients
Japanese Carrot Ginger Dressing has a simple, pantry-friendly list of ingredients.
- Carrots: This dressing is actually a great way to use those rubbery carrots that are a little past their use-by date. Be sure to peel them first.
- Ginger: Use fresh, peeled ginger. For easy peeling, use the edge of a spoon against the root instead of a peeler or knife.
- Orange zest: Use fresh orange zest. Dried orange zest is not a good option.
- Sesame oil: Sesame oil is a small but vital component to this recipe. Use a high-quality sesame oil, and make sure it is fresh.
- Seasoned rice vinegar: Seasoned rice wine vinegar is sweeter than regular rice wine vinegar, and brings bit more flavor to the overall dish.
- Soy sauce: Use tamari or light soy sauce if you have it. Light soy sauce is thinner and not as strong-tasting as dark soy sauce.
- Sugar: Use granulated white sugar.
How to Make Restaurant-style Carrot Ginger Dressing
Combine all ingredients in blender cup and blend until smooth.
That's it. You're done!
FAQs & Expert Tips
Carrot Ginger Dressing isn’t just for salad! Try it on salmon (so good!) or other grilled fish, rice, spring rolls, sautéed greens, sandwiches, noodles, steak, shrimp, and roasted vegetables.
If your dressing seems too thick, you can thin it with a little more water. We prefer to make this dressing quite thick, and then add water as needed. That way, it can also double as a dip.
More Fresh Salad Dressing Recipes
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Carrot Ginger Dressing (Japanese Restaurant-style Salad Dressing)
- 1 Blender
- ½ pound coarsely chopped carrots
- ⅓ cup canola oil or extra-light olive oil, or other light, neutral oil
- ⅓ cup fresh ginger peeled & coarsely chopped [1.5 ounces]
- ¼ cup seasoned rice vinegar
- 3 tablespoons red onion coarsely chopped
- 1 tablespoon light soy sauce or tamari
- 1 tablespoon sesame oil
- 2 teaspoons fresh orange zest
- 2 tablespoons sugar
- 1 tablespoon water as needed
- Combine all ingredients in blender cup.
- Blend until smooth. If your dressing seems too thick, you can thin it with a little more water.
Dressing may be refrigerated for a two weeks. (Probably longer, but it doesn't last that long at our house.)
This website provides approximate nutrition information for convenience and as a courtesy only. You are solely responsible for ensuring that any nutritional information provided is accurate, complete, and useful.
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I have to regretfully report that this was the blandest Carrot-Ginger Salad Dressing I ever tasted. There was no kick to it. Ginger-Carrot Salad Dressing should have a vinaigrette kick to it! My wife thought so as well. I unfortunately didn't taste it after I made it because I assumed it would be good. I've made a lot of different Japanese ginger carrot dressing recipes from different websites and they were all good so I didn't feel the need to check after making this one. So I went to the best of the best recipe for this salad dressing. JUST ONE COOKBOOK website which makes the best Japanese food overall and compared ingredients and that's where I saw what was missing. Not enough rice vinegar and no sweetener. Once I added those ingredients, it improved the flavor but it still didn't hit the spot IMO. Can't say I will make this again. Sorry.
Renée B. says
Every has different tastes; I hope you find a recipe that fits yours. Just one question: did you measure the ginger by volume, or by weight? It is vital that you use at least 1.5 ounces of ginger. Otherwise, your dressing will definitely be bland. Also, I'm assuming you also used seasoned rice vinegar (as opposed to regular, which is very bland), but I'd love to have a confirmation of that.
I have updated the recipe to include sugar, which was inadvertently left out. Thank you for calling it to my attention.
I assume you can also blend this in a food processor as well? I've made this salad dressing about 4 times from different recipes on the internet and I made it in a food processor every time.
Renée B. says
Yes, of course!
This dressing looks so light and fresh. I can't wait to try it.
Such a beautiful vivid color! I love how easily this dressing comes together and in only a few minutes too. So perfect for pairing with salads.
I know - I love the contrast you get with this dressing! It makes for a really nice presentation.
This is one of my favorite dressings to have on a salad when we go to a Japanese restaurant. I never knew it had carrots. Looking forward to making my own!
It is surprising, isn't it? Carrots are the secret ingredient in a lot of things! (Homemade tomato soup immediately come to mind.)
This dressing is fantastic! So easy and flavorful and love the ginger and sesame.
Ginger and sesame are such great culinary partners, aren't they‽
This dressing is so flavorful and delicious. Pinning too!
I made this today. We LOVED IT. We are always looking for new tasty ways to make dressing. We seem to get caught up in a rut. But this broke us out of that rut. So good!
Tawnie Kroll says
Such a flavorful and tasty recipe! I had so many carrots to use up and this was just the perfect use of them. Thank you!
I just love the combination of sweetness from the carrots with a bit of heat from the ginger. What a delicious flavor combination.