What is French Salad Dressing?
Creamy French Salad Dressing is my all time favorite salad dressing, yet when I moved to Australia, they didn't sell it here! The Aussie version of French dressing is an oil and vinegar variety, and I couldn't eat it and ending up throwing it away. It was just completely different from what I was expecting (although factually correct). Sounds dramatic, but I didn't want a traditional vinaigrette. I missed the flavor and tang of the bright orange American invention of a salad dressing, only French in name.
The American version of French Salad Dressing is a ketchup based salad dressing. Of course, Americans love ketchup on many foods, and this recipe won't disappoint. Of course it has oil and vinegar with the ketchup, but also garlic, onion and spices like paprika. Full of flavor and tangy, this is my favorite creamy salad dressing recipe.
Homemade Salad Dressings
The salad dressing varieties in Australian grocery stores is about 1/10th of what is available in North America. American are spoiled for choice when it comes to food. Even some of what I would consider are the American basics aren't available here, you can't even buy Kraft salad dressings in Australia. But I digress.....So I have had to learn how to make some of my favorite salad dressings. Check out my copycat Zesty Italian Dressing, my Blue Cheese Dressing, Coleslaw Dressing, Poppyseed Vinaigrette and even a Bacon Ranch Salad Dressing. So much tastier than plain oil and vinegar.
As a teenager, I hated salads, but French Dressing was the recipe that changed my mind. I would order a garden salad and french fries at the school cafeteria, then I would get 2 French Salad Dressings. One would be for the salad, and the other I would dip the french fries into it. So my love affair with French Dressing began, and actually probably all sauces.
How to Make French Salad Dressing From Scratch
Salad dressings are surprisingly easy to make, and don't have any of the unpronounceable ingredients in store-bought salad dressings. Things like Propylene Glycol Alginate, or Calcium Disodium EDTA, or even one on the main ingredients which is High Fructose Corn Syrup. Google the High Fructose Corn syrup, you'll be surprised what we eat for convenience, I know I was! So now my rant is over.
This recipe calls for a food processor or blender when making French Dressing. This ensures that the ingredients are blended together really well. You just throw all in the ingredients in the food processor, and slowly pour the oil in a slow and steady stream. I think the onion is the reason why you get a nice tang and bite in this recipe. The food processor ensures the onion is finely processed and liquified. No one wants to bite into a surprise onion!
Do I Need To Use A Food Processor?
LIFE HACK: You can skip the use a food processor or blender to make French Dressing. Sometimes I don't want the hassle of cleaning a food processor, as it's really only the onion that needs blending. I cut the onion into smaller pieces, small enough to fit into a garlic press, and push through. The garlic press allows the onion pieces to be broken up small enough, saving blending time! Just place all the ingredients in a bowl, and vigorously whisk together until combined. Easy Peasy!
This homemade French Salad Dressing recipe is quick, easy and delicious. My kids completely devoured their salads with a generous serve of this tasty dressing. Ok, they drowned their salad with this dressing and licked the plates! If you've never tried Homemade French Salad Dressing before or made it at home, try this recipe, I'm sure you'll love it! Bon Appetit! Приятного аппетита!
*Photos updated August 2018
French Salad Dressing
- ½ cup mayonnaise
- ½ cup Heinz ketchup
- ¼ cup white vinegar
- ½ cup sugar
- ⅓ cup onion chopped
- 1 tsp fresh minced garlic
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ¼ teaspoon pepper
- 1 teaspoon paprika
- 1 cup vegetable/olive oil
- Combine the mayonnaise, ketchup, vinegar, sugar, onion, garlic, salt pepper and paprika in a small food processor or blender and process until smooth.
- Gradually add the oil in a slow and steady stream, while still processing. Refrigerate for several hours before using.