Japanese Ginger Salad Dressing (Restaurant Style)

5 from 144 votes
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There’s no need to even leave your kitchen to create this restaurant-style Japanese ginger salad dressing, the perfect way to bring a whole new level of flavor to salads.

Ginger salad dressing in a jar

I love salads. And I love dressing! But I’m getting a little tired of the traditional vinaigrette/balsamic/ranch dressings that seem to come with every salad these days.

So, I made this Japanese salad dressing recipe using just a handful of fresh ingredients. Taking inspiration from Japanese restaurant salad dressing, this recipe is best suited to green Japanese salad but can be added to almost anything. You heard it from me first – ginger salads are about to be your new go-to dressing.

This ginger salad dressing recipe can be made in seconds and will give a real punch of flavor to dozens of recipes. You don’t have to use it only on your salads. It can be added to meat and fish or even incorporated as part of a thicker sauce.

Ginger salad dressing in a jar

The ingredients I use can often be found in Japanese sauces, not just in Japanese salad dressing. Healthy ingredients like ginger, sugar, and soy sauce are frequently used to create thick, flavorful sauces for a variety of dishes.

Ginger is a staple of Asian cuisine – and it also has a number of amazing health benefits. In Eastern medicine, ginger is used to treat a number of ailments, from colds and nausea to hypertension and arthritic pain.

Because of the ginger root’s core compounds, it’s a powerful anti-inflammatory and antioxidant. Plus, it has been shown to help ease digestion, reduce the risk of heart disease and can even help with period cramps. Not bad for a humble spice.

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What Is in Japanese Ginger Salad Dressing

  • Ginger: The star ingredient of this Japanese dressing, you’ll want a fresh ginger root – not the powdered kind you find in jars! You can use Galangal root if you prefer, but ginger works best.
  • Carrots: I like these for sweetness and they add plenty of color to your Hibachi salad dressing. You can also use squash or parsnip if you prefer.
  • Onion: You can use either red or white, or substitute with spring onions or shallots.
  • Sugar: Traditional granulated (caster) sugar works best because of the smaller crystals (it’ll dissolve quicker). But some recipes use brown sugar as a good complement to ginger and soy sauce-based Japanese salad dressing.
  • Soy sauce: You can use light or dark as you prefer. If you can’t have soy, tamari or coconut aminos are great substitutes for this Japanese ginger dressing recipe.
  • Rice vinegar: If you don’t have rice wine vinegar, white wine vinegar is the best alternative. They are both similar liquids with similar taste profiles.
  • Oil: I like to use vegetable oil, avocado oil, or peanut oil. You can also add 1-2 Tbsp of sesame oil if you prefer – this is more common in Japanese recipes.
Ingredients for Japanese ginger salad dressing

Is Japanese Ginger Salad Dressing Gluten Free

Yes! You should, however, check your soy sauce before using it in this ginger salad dressing. Make sure it’s gluten-free as some commercial soy sauces can contain traces of wheat and gluten. Or they even use them in the production process.

How to Make Japanese Ginger Dressing

Here’s how to make this Japanese ginger salad dressing recipe in just two steps.

Prepare Your Ingredients

Peel the onions, ginger, and carrots. The easiest way to peel ginger is with a spoon – check my guide here. You can roughly chop these ingredients too.

Prepared carrots ginger and onion for salad dressing

Blend

Place all the ingredients in a food processor for blender and blend until smooth. Taste test and adjust if needed – add more soy sauce, vinegar, or sugar if you feel your carrot ginger salad dressing needs it.

And voila – this is how to make ginger dressing.

Steps for blending Japanese ginger salad dressing

How Long Does Homemade Ginger Salad Dressing Last

Be sure to store this Asian ginger salad dressing in an airtight container, like a jar or a bottle. Or you can place it in a small bowl covered with wrap. Japanese ginger dressing will keep in the fridge for up to four days. Make sure to shake well before serving. 

Because this Japanese salad dressing recipe has an oil and vinegar base, it freezes well. If you prefer to freeze your Japanese salad dressing, I recommend pouring it into ice cube molds. You can also store it in an air-tight container until you need it. However, freezing might not extend the shelf life for very long (up to 4-6 weeks), so you can get the similar results betweek freezing or refrigerating this ginger salad dressing. 

Japanese ginger salad dressing in a small jar

What to Serve with Japanese Ginger Salad Dressing

Of course, the best way to serve my ginger salad dressing recipe is to add it to an Asian-inspired salad with iceberg lettuce. I’ve found the flavors always blend well together. You can also use if as dressing for any side salad like:

Plus – ginger salad dressing doesn’t have to be confined to salads!

  • Drizzle over my Lettuce Wraps or over roasted vegetables.
  • You could even use it as a thin dipping sauce.
  • Swap out traditional soy sauce for this ginger salad dressing to compliment these Crispy Rice Paper Dumplings or even for your favorite sushi rolls.
Lettuce salad with ginger carrot salad dressing

More Salad Dressing Recipes

If you try this Japanese-style ginger dressing recipe, I’d love to hear your thoughts/questions below. Also, I’d appreciate a recipe card rating below, and feel free to tag me in your recipe recreations on Instagram @Alphafoodie!

Japanese Ginger Salad Dressing (Restaurant Style)

5 from 144 votes
By: Samira
There's no need to even leave your kitchen to create this restaurant-style Japanese ginger salad dressing, the perfect way to bring a whole new level of flavor to salads.
Prep Time: 3 minutes
Total Time: 3 minutes
Servings: 16

Ingredients 
 

  • 1.6 oz ginger 1 medium piece
  • 7.3 oz carrots 4 medium-sized
  • 3.6 oz onion 1 medium-sized
  • 1/2 cup rice vinegar
  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil or peanut oil or avocado oil
  • 3 Tbsp soy sauce
  • 1 Tbsp sugar

This will yield about 2 cups of salad dressing

    Instructions 

    • Peel the onions, ginger, and carrots. The easiest way to peel ginger is with a spoon – check my guide here.
      You can roughly chop these ingredients too.
    • Place all the ingredients in a food processor for blender and blend until smooth.
    • Taste test and adjust if needed – add more soy sauce, vinegar, or sugar if you feel your carrot ginger salad dressing needs it.

    Storage Instructions

    • Store this ginger salad dressing in an airtight container, like a jar or a bottle. It will keep in the fridge for up to four days. Make sure to shake well before serving. 
      To freeze your Japanese salad dressing, I recommend pouring it into ice cube molds. It freezes well but keep it in the freezer for up to 4-6 weeks.

    Video

    Notes

    • Taste and adjust: Tweak any ingredients to your liking, whether you’d like the ginger dressing recipe to be more tart, sweet, salty, etc.
    • Allow the flavors to meld: I recommend chilling the ginger dressing for at least an hour (or two) before using it. It’s even better on day two.
    • If it’s too thick: Add a little water to thin it out.
    • Shake/whisk before use: In case the immersion has broken while it sits in the fridge.
    Check the blog post for serving recommendations and more tips!
    Course: DIYs, Salad
    Cuisine: Asian, Japanese
    Freezer friendly: 1 Month
    Shelf life: 4 Days

    Nutrition

    Serving: 2Tbsp, Calories: 78kcal, Carbohydrates: 3g, Protein: 1g, Fat: 7g, Saturated Fat: 1g, Polyunsaturated Fat: 4g, Monounsaturated Fat: 2g, Trans Fat: 0.05g, Sodium: 201mg, Potassium: 70mg, Fiber: 1g, Sugar: 2g, Vitamin A: 2161IU, Vitamin C: 1mg, Calcium: 7mg, Iron: 0.2mg

    Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.

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    Recipe Rating




    18 Comments

    1. Lori says:

      5 stars
      Absolutely delicious! I used it on a salmon rice bowl. I strained it after processing

      1. Support @ Alphafoodie says:

        Thank you for your comment, Lori! Glad you enjoyed it.

    2. Annette M says:

      5 stars
      Perfect taste! I had to guess on the carrot and ginger size, but it turned out fantastic! Have it in the fridge waiting on dinner to be cooked!

      1. Support @ Alphafoodie says:

        Thank you for your comment, Annette. Glad you enjoyed the recipe!

    3. Liz R. says:

      5 stars
      Simple and delicious. I needed a quick and easy dressing for some fish and this fit the bill. I love Japanese ginger dressing and this tastes pretty close to the restaurant version. I would guess they probably actually use pickled ginger in theirs, but this is yummy. Thank you!

      1. Samira @ Alphafoodie says:

        Hi Liz! Thanks for your comment and I’m glad you enjoyed the dressing. Yes, the restaurant version might use pickled ginger, but this homemade version is still yummy! I will try next time using pickled ginger! Hope you’re having a great weekend!
        -Samira

    4. Danielle says:

      5 stars
      This is absolutely delicious. Tastes exactly like all the ginger dressings you get at sushi restaurants. It makes quite a lot, which makes it perfect for second and third salad nights! Thanks for making this available. It’ll be a steady rotation in the fridge now. <3

      1. Samira @ Alphafoodie says:

        Hi Danielle! I’m so glad you enjoyed the ginger dressing! It’s definitely a favorite of mine too. Thanks for the feedback and for trying out the recipe. If you have any more questions or need any other recipe recommendations, feel free to ask. Hope you’re having a wonderful weekend :-), Samira

    5. Dee says:

      5 stars
      This dressing is STELLAR – glad it made more than we needed… this will be a regular!

      1. Support @ Alphafoodie says:

        Glad you liked it, Dee! Thank you for your comment!

    6. Maryanne says:

      5 stars
      I just made this dressing for tonight to go with a salad and sushi. I approximately halved the recipe and substituted pickled ginger (it’s what I had) and olive oil. I’m sure the exact recipe is delicious but even with my subs it is delicious. This will make such a nice dinner of salad and sushi. Thanks so much for the recipe.

      1. Support @ Alphafoodie says:

        Glad you gave it a try and managed to sub with what you had, Maryanne!

    7. Barbara says:

      5 stars
      Excellent! So good I want to eat it by the spoonful. I did not have fresh ginger, and used 1.5 Tbsp. ground ginger. I omitted the sugar and don’t miss it. I added 1 T. sesame oil. It’s not too much vinegar in my opinion, it’s perfect!

      1. Support @ Alphafoodie says:

        Thanks for your comment, Barbara! Glad you liked it and subbed the ingredients how you liked them.

    8. Christy says:

      5 stars
      This is the best ginger dressing I’ve ever had!

      1. Support @ Alphafoodie says:

        Glad you like it, Christy!

    9. Autumn says:

      4 stars
      I made this recipe tonight for dinner and it was good. But I did have to make a few adjustments. Once I followed the recipe, I found the dressing to be overpowered by the rice vinegar. I probably added about 2-3 more tablespoons of sugar to balance it out to my taste. I think next time I would use less rice vinegar and maybe a bit more oil? Just a thought!

      1. Support @ Alphafoodie says:

        Thank you for your comment and your tips!