If you are looking for a way to spruce up your summer salads, this is the recipe for you. This is an easy, simple, and delicious tahini salad dressing that will take your salads from ordinary to extraordinary. It can easily be made oil-free if you so desire; it’s healthy and nutritious, a guilt-free tahini salad dressing recipe to enhance those salad greens.

Looking for more easy salad dressing recipes? Try my creamy Italian dressing or this creamy avocado cilantro dressing.

Tahini Salad Dressing

What is the hype about eating salad greens?

Salad greens contain concentrated nutrients and fiber, which are incredibly important to a healthy diet.

Unfortunately, a lot of people do salad greens the wrong way and just cut up some lettuce and call it a day. 

A good chopped salad is more than lettuce in a bowl. A good salad is healthy and contains a lot of nutritious, varied vegetables and greens. You are way more likely to eat a colorful salad than you are to eat a drab salad with no variation to it.

This includes the dressing!

The dressing you use is incredibly important. It elevates a salad from drab-to-whoa in a matter of seconds. 

Not only that but one of the reasons why I absolutely love this lemon tahini salad dressing is because it’s colorful and adds a special zingy taste that you just don’t get anywhere else.

Truly a show stealer, if you ask me. I’ve found myself eating more salads just because I’m craving the taste of this salad dressing with tahini.

Best of all, this recipe for tahini salad dressing is completely vegan and has its own powerhouse of nutrients to back it up!

Other recipes you may like:

Why You’ll LOVE this Tahini Salad Dressing Recipe

  • Easy to make: Vegan tahini salad dressing is super easy and quick to make. Whip this tahini recipe up in a few minutes and enjoy it with your salads all week. 
  • Healthy: Tahini is super healthy and rich in vitamins. You can also leave the oil out of this recipe for an oil-free salad dressing recipe. 
  • Delicious: This sesame tahini salad dressing is the perfect dressing to elevate salads and dishes. Pour it over chopped greens, kale, and vegetables for a tasty and healthy meal. 

I always look for different dressings or ways to make my raw greens and veggies taste delicious and flavorful, because it is essential to have some variety in your salad dressings. I have several wonderful salad dressings on my website. Try them all, keep the ones you love and rotate to make salads an enjoyable part of the meal.

Pouring Tahini Salad Dressing over a salad

Other Salad Dressings You Might Like (With and Without Lemon Juice)

There’s nothing like a great dressing to really showcase any kind of salad. You can even put a good dressing on tofu, soy curls, or other savory snacks to really highlight the dish and give it a zing. 

Variety is the spice of life, and to me, that means the more dressings you can choose from, the better. 

Unfortunately, a lot of store-bought dressings aren’t vegan, which makes a lot of people think they have to go without it if they want to pass on the animal products. 

Instead of going without, try some of these recipes below and add it to your favorite dish, like cauliflower steaks or a nice veggie-heavy salad. The more the merrier, and best of all – these delicious dressings don’t take a lot of time to make.

What is Tahini?

So what is tahini made of? Tahini is a paste made from sesame seeds, consequently it is very high in fiber and a great source of plant protein. It is also an excellent source of many needed vitamins such as B-vitamins, iron, calcium, zinc, magnesium, etc.

Tahini Salad Dressing Ingredients

Tahini Salad Dressing Ingredients:

Let’s take a look at the ingredients for homemade tahini salad dressing.

  • Tahini: It is a paste made from ground sesame seeds and gives the dressing its creamy base. High in nutrition, fiber, protein, and antioxidants, tahini paste provides both flavor, texture, and bulk.
  • Lemon Juice: Lemon juice brightens, gives dimension, and adds nutritional value. Lemon juice is high in vitamin C and provides a zest to this dressing.
  • Maple Syrup: A touch of sweetness gives complexity and balance to this maple tahini dressing.
  • Garlic Clove: Garlic is a must. It gives the dressing flavor and depth, but it is also a great immune booster with potent medicinal properties. You can also use garlic powder, but it will change the flavor of this easy tahini dressing. 
  • Turmeric: gives color and has anti-inflammatory qualities.  
  • Cayenne: provides an extra element to the flavor and anti-inflammatory properties.
  • Sea Salt: gives flavor and provides minerals to the tahini sauce salad dressing.
  • Olive Oil: Extra virgin olive oil is an optional ingredient. We include it, because it adds to the flavor and gives a smoother, richer consistency.
  • Water: Water is essential to life, and regulates the consistency of this dressing. If the dressing is too thick, add water a tablespoon at a time.

Special Equipment:

Blender: It is helpful to have a good blender when making tahini salad dressings. I like to use a Vitamix Blender.

Whisk: However, if you do not have a blender, you can whisk the salad dressing by hand.

How to make Tahini Salad Dressing:

Let’s take a closer look at this creamy lemon tahini dressing and my step-by-step guide on how to make the best salad dressing recipe. 

Step 1:

Add tahini, lemon juice, maple syrup, garlic, turmeric, cayenne, salt, and water to a blender, and blend until smooth.

Step 2:

While the blender is blending on low speed, add the oil.

Step 3:

Check the consistency. If the tahini salad dressing is too thick, add more water one tablespoon at a time.

Step 4:

Add to an airtight container and store the tahini dressing in the fridge for up to one week. Stir before serving.

Tahini Dressing Recipe Variations and Substitutions:

Have fun experimenting with this tahini vinaigrette dressing recipe, as you can try many different flavor combinations and substitutions.

  • Olive oil can be omitted for an oil-free salad dressing.
  • Maple syrup can be replaced with another sweetener. The dressing only requires a touch of sweetness for balance.
  • Sesame oil: Add a splash of sesame oil to increase the sesame taste even more in this recipe. 
  • Tahini can be substituted with almond butter, peanut butter, or cashew butter, though it changes the flavor.
  • Soy Sauce: Leave out some of the salt and add a little soy sauce or Bragg Liquid Aminos to the tahini salad dressing.
  • Turmeric can be omitted.
  • Cayenne can be omitted.
Homemade Tahini Salad Dressing

Allergy-Friendly Options:

Gluten Free:

This tahini salad dressing is gluten-free.

Oil Free:

Omit the olive oil for an oil-free dressing.

Nut Free:

Although tahini is made from a seed and not a nut, it can trigger an allergic reaction in some people.

Soy free:

This tahini salad dressing is soy-free.

Tips and Tricks to Make the Best Tahini Salad Dressing:

Use a good blender: It is important to use a high-quality blender, as it will make the tahini dressing super creamy. 

Add the oil slowly: The key to creamy tahini dressing is to add the oil slowly to emulsify the salad dressing properly. 

Make ahead: The beauty of this tahini recipe is that you can make the salad dressing ahead of time and store it in the fridge. This tahini lemon salad dressing will last for one week in the fridge.

Lemon Tahini Dressing Serving Suggestions:

  • Chopped Salad: As I have said, serve this tahini dressing for salad with your favorite greens. I love this salad dressing with Romaine lettuce, chopped cucumbers, sliced radishes, sliced red onion, and some minced dill. It is delicious.
  • Roasted vegetables: Pour this delicious tahini sauce dressing over roasted veggies for an outstanding flavor combination. 
  • Bowls: Drizzle this easy dressing recipe over a tofu bowl, buddha bowl, or my mediterranean bowl for a tasty meal.

How to Store Tahini Salad Dressing:

Store in an airtight container in the fridge for up to one week.

FAQ – Frequently Asked Questions About Tahini Dressing:

What is healthier, white or black sesame seeds?

Black sesame seeds have a stronger flavor and contain more nutritional value than white sesame seeds.

What does Tahini taste like?

It has a consistency and flavor like nut butter, but with no sweetness and a touch of bitterness.

Do you need to refrigerate Tahini?

No tahini is shelf stable and does not need to be refrigerated after opening.

How long will tahini last?

It has a shelf life of about 4-6 months once opened.

Is Tahini Dressing Usually Vegan?

Yes! Tahini dressing is one of the few dressings that doesn’t have to have the recipe altered to be considered vegan. A lot of people assume otherwise based on its yellow coloration, thinking it must have egg in it, or another kind of animal product. 

The yellow coloration can be more pronounced depending on what grade sesame paste or oil you are using, but for the most part, it comes from the sesame, lemon, and turmeric. 

The rich, earthy flavor is 100% free from animal products.

In my experience, however, it’s awfully hard to find it in stores. Plus, making easy tahini salad dressing yourself always tastes better in my opinion. Not only is it fun and fast, but you get to put your own twist on recipes you make at home!

Is Tahini a Healthy Fat?

Tahini contains a lot of very healthy fats that help you fuel your body and keep you focused throughout the day. Rich in vitamins and minerals, tahini’s fat content is primarily made out of omega 6 fatty acid which is common in vegetable oils. 

The fresher oil you use to make this dressing, the better it will be for you. I always recommend choosing non-GMO organic oils because you can really taste the fresh difference it makes in the final product, but if you can’t find it, regular oil does just fine.

Do You Need to Refrigerate Tahini?

No, you don’t have to refrigerate tahini. Fortunately, for those of us who have a fridge full of vegan goodness, tahini is shelf stable, meaning it doesn’t need to be refrigerated after opening.

For maximum freshness, it’s important to keep it stored out of direct sunlight and away from heat. This keeps the nutritious oil from degrading over time. 

How Long Will Tahini Last?

Tahini typically has a shelf life of 4-6 months once opened.

You can extend the shelf life by putting it in the fridge, but you may need to let it cool back down to room temperature before using it so the cold temperature doesn’t detract from the meal. 

Once your tahini starts to go bad, you’ll notice a bitterness creeping into the flavor profile. This isn’t bad for you, but it isn’t always a pleasant addition to the earthy, nutty richness tahini normally has.

Some people say that tahini naturally has a little bitterness to it even when it is freshly made, but that bitterness increases the longer it sits on the shelf.

Why is it called Tahini?

Tahini originates from the word meaning ground in middle Eastern cultures. It is a common ingredient in Middle Eastern cuisine.

Watch My Tahini Salad Dressing Recipe Video

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Tahini Salad Dressing

Tahini Salad Dressing

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  • Author: Chef Ani
  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Total Time: 10 minutes
  • Yield: Serves 4


If you are looking for a way to spruce up your summer salads, this is the recipe for you. This is an easy, simple, and delicious tahini salad dressing that will take your salads from ordinary to extraordinary. It can easily be made oil-free if you so desire; it’s healthy and nutritious, a guilt-free salad dressing to enhance those salad greens.


  • 1/4 cup water
  • 1/4 cup tahini
  • 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
  • 1 teaspoon maple syrup
  • 1 small garlic clove
  • 1/4 teaspoon turmeric
  • pinch of cayenne pepper
  • 3/4 teaspoon sea salt
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil


  • Add water, tahini, lemon juice, maple syrup, garlic, turmeric, cayenne, and salt to a blender. Blend until smooth. 
  • While the blender is running on low speed slowly add the oil.
  • Check the consistency. If it is too thick, add more water one tablespoon at a time.
  • Add to an airtight container and store in the fridge for up to one week. Stir before serving.  

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