Seeking salads that are dressed to impress? Have your salads been lacking a certain something since switching to a vegan diet? Is the lack of a suitable salad dressing depressing?
Well, make your sad salads the thing of the past, because we are here to liven up your leaves!
When I switched to a cruelty-free lifestyle, I sacrificed my go-to creamy Caesar dressing. It was tasty, tangy, and I loved it. But it wasn’t vegan – so it had to go!
With a busy lifestyle, I struggle to find the time to make my own dressings. I miss the convenience of having that tasty dressing on hand to make the simplest salads sing.
Whether you love a Blue Cheese dressing for pizza crust dipping, coating your lettuce leaves in a creamy Caesar, or smothering your subs in a flavourful Ranch, we have searched the market for the best tasting cruelty-free salad dressings around.
Each of the dressings below is 100% animal-free, and available to order online at Amazon.com or purchase at your local supermarket or health food store.
Top 5 Vegan Salad Dressing Brands
Before we get into the details of each product, let’s quickly see the highlights and how they stack up against each other. For full details, click on a brand or continue scrolling down.
For those who love trying different flavors
According to their website the Tessamae brand was started by the mother of three athletic boys who needed to figure out a way to get them to eat their veggies while staying healthy.
She didn’t like the idea of serving a dressing full of artificial ingredients, so she created and perfected her own all-natural recipe, which is now available for everyone to buy.
It is important to note that not every flavor produced by this company is vegan-friendly as some flavors contain honey.
They do still have a large number of different flavors that are cruelty-free for you to try. There is a Tessemae All Natural Whole 30 Pack available on Amazon that includes 10oz bottles of the following vegan-friendly dressings which is Vegan & Cruelty-free.
What We Love
Tessamae offers an exciting number of different dressing flavors, so there is something for everyone to enjoy. Tessamae dressings are extremely versatile and can be used on salads, as dips for veggies, while many users have successfully turned them into marinades as well.
There is a lot of love out there for the Tessamae Balsamic dressing, with one reviewer claiming that they couldn’t live without it! The Balsamic dressing is fairly creamy, not overly acidic and has a great balance between the oil and balsamic.
Many of Tessamae’s products have zero sugar and reviewers were impressed by the fact that they don’t even add natural sweeteners such as agave or stevia. Many discovered that the dressings made their lives much easier, and found them healthy and delicious!
Some warned that if you purchase the Ranch expecting a thick, creamy white dressing you will be disappointed as this was not the case. Some also found the Tessamae dressings too oily and discovered that there was some hardening and clumping in the fridge for some of the varieties, although Tessamae is currently working on improving this.Check Price on Amazon
For those looking for low calorie options
According to Simple Girl’s website they are a ‘charity lovin’, natural, sugar-free, low-fat food company with clean eating dressing and sauces that are here to enhance your fun and healthy life!’
They say that their dressings aren’t just created for salads but also can be incorporated into pasta dishes, drizzled over grilled or raw vegetables, or used as a marinade for your favorite tofu dish!
Simple Girl Salad Dressing is available to buy on Amazon in a pack of three different flavors: Sweet Vinaigrette, Sweet Mustard and Citrus Ginger, all flavors are also available to buy individually as well. They also make a 16 oz. Organic Simple Girl Balsamic Vinaigrette.
What We Love
It can be very difficult to find dairy, gluten, oil and sugar-free products that taste good and are packed with flavor; but Simple Girl has managed it! All of the Simple Girl salad dressings are jam-packed full of flavor and taste delicious.
These dressings are extremely popular with people who are watching their weight, as they are much lower in calories than many other vegan dressings.
Many commented that these were the best dressings available for those on a strict no sugar and no oil diet. These dressings are healthier than many others out there, but they still have a strong flavor that made munching lots of salads more enjoyable. People also loved the fun, young packaging and were pleased that the bottles were made out of plastic when ordering by mail. Guilt-free and a delight!
Some reviewers found that these dressings were too watery; they lack the creamy texture of other higher calorie dressings. For a few individuals, the dressings were too artificially sweet, they didn’t enjoy the taste of stevia.Check Price on Amazon
For fans of thick and creamy dressings
Follow Your Heart is a well-known brand that started back in the 70s with a small meat-free health food store in California.
The company has continued to grow, and they now sell a great range of products including a selection of salad dressings. According to their website they are passionate about what they do and their manufacturing site is powered by solar energy!
Two of their salad dressing flavors are available on Amazon: the High Omega Vegan Ranch and the Organic Miso Ginger are both available in 12 oz. bottles.
There are also another 13 flavors that are available directly from their website or in participating stores.
What We Love
The Follow Your Heart Ranch dressing is very creamy, thick and delicious. Many found it full of flavor and great for dipping veggies and cauliflower wings into; some have put it on pizzas and in their subs. Many users were in awe at how similar to regular ranch dressing this vegan version was, and commented on the great texture.
Some reviewers found the high omega content an added bonus, as this is an important nutrient that some vegans can struggle to get enough of in their diet. The Miso Ginger is a blend of miso, candied ginger, rice wine vinegar and toasted sesame oil. According to the follow your heart website, it can add an exotic twist to salads and goes perfectly on Asian-inspired foods. Some reviewers fell in love with this dressing and plan to serve it to all their dinner guests!
One drawback is that you can’t order a single bottle through Amazon and some local stores do not stock the Ginger Miso flavor. It is also high in calories with some reviewers saying that was an issue when they found themselves adding it to all their meals!Check Price on Amazon
For those looking for a versatile salad dressing
This is a 100% natural classic vinaigrette dressing, which the company claim is perfect for salads, vegetables, and pasta.
It is made with fresh, whole garlic cloves, no preservatives or additives, and is cholesterol free.
You can find the Classic Vinaigrette flavor on Amazon in a 12.5 oz bottle.
What We Love
This dressing is delicious, tangy and zesty, and is the perfect blend of garlic, vinegar, and sweetness. Some reviewers said it was their favorite dressing of all time; some have been using it for many years and have yet to become tired of it.
This dressing has a lot of flavor, and a little goes a long way. The dressing can be used daily, and many say that they don’t cook without it and rarely use other salad dressings since discovering this one!
It has astounding versatility. It is a welcome addition to some different meals and snacks: add it to pasta; green salads; subs; avocados; couscous; and use as a great dip for crusty bread. It can also act as a great base to make other dressings; for a raspberry dressing add some raspberry jam, or add vegan mayo for a creamier dressing. Many users were also pleased that it contains no additives or preservatives.
Some thought that it was high in salt (9%), but said that it was so flavorful you didn’t actually need to use that much of it anyway!Check Price on Amazon
For those who love Blue Cheese dressing
Daiya is one of the industry’s leaders in manufacturing plant-based products.
Their website promises to give you the delicious joy of dairy without compromising.
They have a good range of different vegan dairy alternatives including three different salad dressings: Homestyle Ranch, Blue Cheeze, and Creamy Caesar.
What We Love
Many found the Daiya dressings rich, creamy and delicious. The Blue Cheeze flavor was a big winner with one reviewer saying that if you like the taste of blue cheese, this dressing is absolutely amazing. Vegan blue cheese dressing cannot get any better than this.
User Top Tip
If you prefer the texture of a chunky-style dressing, just take a tiny amount (say, a 1/4 cup or so) of Chinese-style firm tofu (the kind packed in water), finely crumble it up and mix it in, and that will at least give a little texture.
Some reviewers wanted Daiya to come out with another version of this dressing that has bits of “blue cheeze,” it, as they felt this version was too smooth. Others felt that this dressing was too expensive for them and they would only buy it only as an occasional treat. Others said that they could tell that it was vegan, but were still impressed with the taste!Check Price on Amazon
Is Your Favourite Salad Dressing Really Cruelty-free?
So you’ve checked for the clearly non-vegan ingredients that could be lurking in your favorite salad dressing: no dairy, no eggs, and definitely no anchovies. That’s it, right?
Sadly, things aren’t as straightforward as they seem; there are a couple of not so obvious ingredients that might be lurking in your favorite dressing.
First up, dressings can be sweetened using a variety of different sweeteners, both natural and artificial. Most vegans will avoid honey, as this ingredient is made by exploiting bees. If you need help deciding whether honey is for you, there is more information about it here.
Another way that dressings can be sweetened is by the addition of refined sugar. Surprisingly, this ingredient isn’t always suitable for vegans either!
According to vegan.org some sugar companies use animal bone char to filter out any impurities in the sugar, which makes the sugar that familiar white color we’re used to. PETA state that bone char in the US is made by charring cattle bones and is sometimes called natural carbon. Not all manufacturers will use this method, though, so it’s worth checking.
The vinegar that balances the sweetness in your dressing can also be a problem. Although this is a bit of a gray area, many vegans argue that some types of vinegar might unsuitable. The wine and cider used to make some vinegar might have been filtered through animal derived products such as isinglass, gelatine, casein, and albumen. You can read a further discussion of the issues surrounding vinegar here.
Science Says: Don’t Skip the Salad Dressing!
With all those non-vegan ingredients potentially lurking in your salad dressing, you might be thinking it might be easier and healthier to ditch the dressing entirely.
Go au naturel!
Just plain, raw nutritious veggies, hold the dressing!
But science says this might not be the healthiest option after all.
Salad veggies contain essential nutrients called Beta Carotenoids. These have been shown to be really good for us, helping to reduce the chances of getting heart disease and even some cancers. Some scientific experiments have shown that these Beta Carotenoids, are much better at getting into our bodies when we eat a little fat with them too.
So don’t ditch the dressing; just watch out for those hidden, non-vegan ingredients!
Don’t be a Salad Dodger!
Making a satisfying salad has never been easier with so many different flavors and varieties of vegan salad dressing out there to try.
There is something for everyone, and you’ll never get bored.
From vegans who are watching their weight, to those looking for something more rich and creamy, the vegan salad dressing market has got all the bases covered.
Happy salad munching!