Japanese Vegan Miso Salad Dressing

Vegan miso salad dressing

The Spruce

  • Total: 5 mins
  • Prep: 5 mins
  • Cook: 0 mins
  • Yield: 8 servings
Nutritional Guidelines (per serving)
50 Calories
4g Fat
2g Carbs
2g Protein
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Nutrition Facts
Servings: 8 servings
Amount per serving
Calories 50
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 4g 5%
Saturated Fat 1g 3%
Cholesterol 0mg 0%
Sodium 556mg 24%
Total Carbohydrate 2g 1%
Dietary Fiber 1g 2%
Protein 2g
Calcium 6mg 0%
*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.
(Nutrition information is calculated using an ingredient database and should be considered an estimate.)

This Japanese-inspired miso and ginger salad dressing has a perky, gingery Asian flavor featuring salty and sweet notes from a combination of rice vinegar with savory soy sauce, miso, and sesame oil. Unlike store-bought ginger-miso dressings, this is low in sugar and will pair well with all fresh salads without adding tons of unwanted or empty calories.

Miso paste comes from fermented soybeans, grains, and koji, an edible fungus also used in making beverages like sake. It's known for its health-promoting properties, and also because it's high in protein, vitamins, and minerals. Next time you're in need of a bowl of soup to relieve the symptoms of a cold, try miso paste in a soup instead for a tasty recovery.

If there are any gluten restrictions in the house, check the label of your miso and use gluten-free tamari instead of soy sauce. Most miso brands have gluten because they ferment gluten-containing grains in it, but some use only gluten-free grains in their process.

Ingredients

  • 1/4 cup miso
  • 2 tablespoons rice vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons soy sauce
  • 2 tablespoon sesame oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon ginger (fresh, minced; or 1 teaspoon ginger powder)
  • Optional: water or soy sauce (as needed)

Steps to Make It

  1. Gather the ingredients.

    Ingredients for dressing
    The Spruce
  2. Combine all ingredients using a blender or food processor. If mixing by hand, use a fork or whisk and beat until smooth.Instead of using a small bowl and a whisk, you can also place everything together in a mason jar, cover, and then shake it all up until fully emulsified.

    Combine all ingredients
    The Spruce
  3. Add a bit of water, a teaspoon at a time, if desired, for a thinner consistency.

    Blended
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  4. Serve as the dressing to a salad or use as a dipping sauce and enjoy!

Citrus Flavor and Other Uses

  • This vegan miso salad dressing can also be a great spring roll dipping sauce if you add less water. This thicker version makes for a great dressing for cold rice or pasta salads, even on grilled tempeh, seitan or tofu! For another variation, try thinning this miso dressing out with a bit of orange juice instead of water for a Japanese-inspired miso-orange dressing.

Toning Down the Miso Flavor

  • If you're not used to miso, it's possible that you may find its flavor a bit too strong or salty. You can dilute this dressing with a little more water and sesame oil. Olive oil is good too if there are any sesame allergies in the house, but if you're choosing other oils for dilution, go for mild-flavored ones that won't overpower the miso taste.
  • Soy milk will thin it out and add to the creaminess while cutting the strong miso flavor; cashew and unsweetened rice milks are also good additions because they're thick and can help you achieve a great texture.