Homemade Balsamic Vinaigrette

I’m pretty sure this entire post falls into the category of #firstworldproblems and also #thisiswhatyourewritingabout, but here we are. 

The tale begins with a love affair for balsamic vinaigrette. I honestly can’t remember the first time I had it, but I’m sure it had everything to do with Caffe Giovanni (back when they were on Carson St. next to Mallorca). Their house dressing was so good, I used to straight up lick it off my plate.

At home, we would swap out the white (or tarragon) vinegar for balsamic in our Good Seasons Italian dressing. It made eating salads fun, and something that I looked forward to night after night. 

Enter in food sensitivities and out went the Good Seasons (and any other bottled salad dressing). 

I was forced to try my hand at making my own dressings. Sadly, every single recipe out there for balsamic vinaigrette calls for mustard as an emulsifier (the glue that holds it all together). As a mustard hater, this seriously broke my heart. No matter how little I would add, I could always taste the mustard. 

Eventually my food sensitivities resolved and I was able to go back to eating my beloved Good Seasons and forgot all about the plight of the mustard-free homemade balsamic vinaigrette. That is, until yesterday, when I realized that Good Seasons contains WHEAT and I needed to find another way to dress my salad.

Back to the recipe hunt I went.

I was again reminded of my disdain for mustard and homemade vinaigrettes. But I was desperate for some salad and needed to figure out a way around it all.

Thankfully, we didn’t have the right mustard in the house because I was forced to think outside the box. I added a tablespoonful of almond butter in its place and voila. A FREAKIN’ AMAZING SALAD DRESSING WAS BORN. 

Turns out almond butter is a brilliant emulsifier when it comes to salad dressing. And it’s seriously one of the best balsamic dressings I’ve ever had. 

TAKE THAT stupid mustard.

I’ve finally found a way around you, and it’s called … almond butter. 

The best homemade balsamic vinaigrette there is (sans mustard)

Homemade Balsamic Vinaigrette

Enjoy a balsamic vinaigrette so good, it will make you want to lick your plate clean. Recipe adapted from My Kitchen Escapade.
Author Emily Levenson


  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • 1 tbsp almond butter or nut butter of choice
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/4 tsp pepper
  • 1/3 cup balsamic vinegar
  • 2/3 cup oil


  • Combine all ingredients in a lidded jar or salad dressing cruet and shake vigorously until combined.
    Serve atop your favorite salad, with veggies, as a marinade or topping for chicken and fish, or drizzled on a sandwich.
    The possibilities are truly endless.

P.S. — Was there an over/under for how long it was going to take me to post a recipe? Because I’m pretty sure I didn’t see this one coming.

More about Emily Levenson

Emily Levenson is a therapist turned holistic health coach, podcaster, meditation encourager, and seeker of everyday magic. Emily recently kicked off her third #The100DayProject, focusing her efforts on daily meditation.

One thought on “Homemade Balsamic Vinaigrette

  1. Nancy Solhaug

    Fantastic, Emily! I can’t wait to try almond butter in Balsamic Vinaigrette. Mustard not for me either. And congrats for 24/100. Cheers–Nancy


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