Blueberry vinaigrette is a homemade blueberry dressing made with organic fresh blueberries and a few ingredients blended to make a delicious oil-free healthy dressing. Perfect for any salad, or drizzled on vegetables, potatoes, or used as a fruit dip. And it takes 5 minutes to make!
When life gives you blueberries, make blueberry vinaigrette! I couldn't resist filling my basket with the beautiful blueberries I found at the farmer's market. In fact, since moving to Arizona, I've struggled to find flavorful blueberries in comparison to the ones I used to eat in Michigan. But, of course, the key is eating fruit in season, which is slightly different in terms of when those seasons occur. So, today, with blueberries in my basket, I decided to make a blueberry salad with blueberry dressing.
I love making homemade dressings because they are healthier, and I always know what ingredients I'm eating. If I can't say or define an ingredient, I figure I shouldn't eat it. And, in today's world, the list of preservatives and unknown ingredients seems to grow by the day.
Let's say homemade is better! Many people think it is easier to make a simple dressing from scratch than most people think. In fact, most of my dressing only contains a few ingredients. The key, however, is the combination of ingredients to make a fabulous oil-free blueberry vinaigrette.
When are Blueberries in Season?
Typically, blueberry season occurs between June and August. But, that timeline varies depending on what area of the country you reside in. For example, in Michigan, we picked blueberries in July for the best juiciest blueberries. In Arizona, however, it isn't as predictable. So, when I saw robust blueberries, I jumped to attention.
Although blueberries didn't make the 2021 Dirty 15 List, they didn't make the clean list either. In fact, blueberries, like most berries, contain a lot of pesticides, so buy organic.
How to Remove Pesticides
Even though organic is best, sometimes organic blueberries aren't available. But, there is a solution.
- Mix 1 part white distilled vinegar and 3 parts water in a food-grade container or bowl; you need about 3 cups of water and 1 cup of vinegar for ½ pound of blueberries.
- Add the blueberries to the vinegar solution and let them soak for 5 to 10 minutes.
- Rinse, and you're good to go!
- Fresh blueberries: Fresh and in-season is best for the tastiest dressing. And, it's blueberry season, so now is the time.
- Champagne vinegar: This is by far my favorite mild vinegar. Champagne vinegar is a mild, floral vinegar typically made from Chardonnay and pinot noir grapes.
- Garlic: Raw garlic blended into dressing gives it a distinct flavor and mellows out the acidity of the dressing.
- Shallot: Milder and sweeter than onions, shallots bring a unique flavor profile to a dressing, especially when combined with garlic.
- Maple syrup: Maple syrup adds a little sweetness to the savory components of the dressing.
- Dijon mustard: Dijon adds a tanginess to the flavor of the dressing.
- Water: The water thins the ingredients in the dressing and acts as an emulsifier since oil is not used in this dressing.
- Use any fresh berries in season and create a strawberry or a citrus dressing. Or, in the fall, try a maple and apple dijon.
- Substitute raw red onion for a shallot.
- Jarred garlic is a replacement for fresh garlic.
- Asian rice vinegar is a good substitute, as is white wine or sherry vinegar, even though it's a touch harsher.
- Choose date syrup or agave nectar as a substitute for maple syrup.
When making the dressing in advance, be aware the dressing thickens in the refrigerator. Therefore, keep the dressing in the blender cup and give it another whirl right before serving.
How to Make the Dressing
Now, all you need is a high-speed blender. I love my Nutri-bullet, but any blender works well. Blend until smooth, but keep the dressing in the blender cup because as it chills, you may need to blend it once more before serving.
Even though I made this blueberry dressing for my blueberry salad, this dressing is wonderful for any salad or as a fruit dip.
One of my other favorite recipes to use fresh summer blueberries is lemon blueberry bread. So, I make sure to pick a bunch of blueberries when they are in season to use in various recipes from June to August.
Replacing oil with water in an oil-based dressing recipe usually works as a quick fix to making a fat-free, oil-free dressing.
Fresh blueberries are best, however, you can use frozen blueberries if they are completely thawed before adding the other ingredients and blending.
Shallots are from the onion family. But, they have a sweet flavor with a slight sharpness. I love shallots in salad dressings! Yellow onions and green onions are good substitutes for shallots.
- Always add any liquid to the blender first to avoid any sticky substance sticking to the bottom of the blender cup.
- Make salad dressing in advance, so it has time to chill in the refrigerator.
- If the dressing appears thin, don' worry; it thickens as it chills.
- The dressing will stay fresh for 5 days in the refrigerator.
So the next time you're yearning for a fresh and tasty oil-free dressing, make a blueberry vinaigrette. You'll love the combination of flavors!
Other Oil-Free Dressing Recipes
Do you love this blueberry vinaigrette? If so, give it a 5-star review and a comment below!
- 1 cup fresh organic blueberries
- 1 clove garlic
- 1 small shallot
- 2 teaspoons maple syrup or date syrup
- 1 Tablespoon dijon mustard
- ½ cup champagne vinegar or substitute balsamic vinegar
- ½ cup water
- Combine all the ingredients in a small blender cup
- Blend until smooth
- Refrigerate until ready to use
- The dressing thickens when chilled, leaving it in the blender cup and blending again right before serving.
- Water acts as an emulsifier to replace oil in dressings.
- When using fresh fruit in dressings, I suggest buying fresh and organic.
- A great substitute for champagne vinegar is either rice wine vinegar or white wine vinegar. The rice wine vinegar is a bit sweeter when compared to the white wine vinegar.
- Choose date syrup or agave nectar as a replacement for maple syrup in recipes when not using sugar.
- This dressing with stay fresh for 5 days in the refrigerator.
Hi! My name is Kathy, I am a retired high school English teacher & vegan enthusiast and blogger. My entire blog is fully plant-based vegan. I truly believe what we eat & how we live determines our health & the preservation of our planet! 🙂