Honey-Rosemary Vinaigrette

Honey-Rosemary Vinaigrette
Visitor ratings: 4.5 (90%) 2 votes

salad with honey-rosemary vinaigrette
Rosemary dressing with cherries? Sure, why not?

A short and simple post since we just got back from vacation.

We’d made this dressing just a few days before we left on vacation and liked it so well that we thought that we’d put it out there for you to try on your next salad. You do make your own salad dressings, right? We thought so; after all, they’re simple — combine a few ingredients and whisk — a five-minute task at most with almost no cleanup, and an infinite number of variations.

We aren’t covering the salad with this, but we did have it over Romaine lettuce, fresh cherries, and a few candied walnuts. We like the candied walnuts on salads so much that we’re trying to make up a large batch from time to time, keeping the extras on hand in the freezer. After all, it’s no more trouble to make three cups of candied walnuts than it is to make one.

Honey-Rosemary Vinaigrette

Yield: 2 servings

Honey-Rosemary Vinaigrette


  • 2 small sprigs fresh rosemary
  • 2 Tbs extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 Tbs white balsamic vinegar
  • 1/2 Tbs honey
  • 1/4 tsp mustard
  • kosher salt, to taste
  • freshly ground black pepper, to taste

Abbreviated Instructions

Strip the leaves off the rosemary sprigs and chop finely. Place in a bowl with olive oil, balsamic vinegar, honey, and mustard. Whisk until emulsified.

Taste, add salt and pepper as needed, and whisk again.

Serve immediately.


Ingredient discussion:

Many extra-virgin olive oils on the market aren’t extra-virgin, and sometimes they’re not even olive oil. Even some of the national brands; just check out Truth in Olive Oil for more info. White balsamic vinegar isn’t aged like real balsamic, but it has the same sweet-tart taste. You should be able to find it in most grocers — we picked up ours at Trader Joe’s. For honey, you should support your local apiarist by finding a local honey, as it’ll be better than the stuff in the squeeze bottle.

Procedure in detail:

mincing rosemary
Kitchen shears make short work of mincing small amounts of herbs.

Mince rosemary. We use kitchen shears, as they make short work of chopping the rosemary leaves into small bits. Plus, if you’re careful, you don’t even have to strip the leaves off the stem: just snip, snip, snip, all the away around. Whatever you use, mince up the leaves from 2 small sprigs (about an inch long) of rosemary. Smells good already.

making honey-rosemary vinaigrette
It’s not necessary to add ingredients in a certain order; just add them all at once and whisk.

Combine and whisk. Combine the rosemary, olive oil, vinegar, and honey in a small bowl, or, do as we do, and use a measuring cup with a spout for easy pouring. Also, to make it easy, we just dip a small whisk into the honey and estimate a half tablespoon by eye. Once mixed, whisk for a minute or two. Long enough to incorporate all the honey and get the oil and vinegar to emulsify.

tasting dressing
A piece of lettuce is the perfect way to taste the dressing. Just dip and bite!

Taste and season. The easiest way to taste salad dressing is to dip a lettuce leaf into the dressing and pop it into your mouth. After tasting, add salt and pepper as needed, whisk, and taste again. Continue tasting, seasoning, and whisking until it’s perfect.

Serve immediately. Pour over your salad and enjoy. If, for some reason, you need to make this ahead, that’ll work, too. Just give the dressing a quick re-whisking before serving.

To be honest, we have no idea why people buy dressings at the store. We haven’t bought salad dressings for, oh, probably over a decade, as it’s so simple to make one up on the spot with what you have on hand. All you need to remember is 1 part vinegar, 2 parts oil, and optionally, 1 part sweet. Then add a few herbs, a bit of mustard (to help the oil and vinegar emulsify), salt and pepper, and done! For ease, five stars.

Worth the trouble?

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