Asian Salad Dressing Recipe - Sesame Oil, Soy Sauce, Brown Sugar, Rice Wine Vinegar

Asian Salad Dressing

Asian Salad Dressing Recipe - Sesame Oil, Soy Sauce, Brown Sugar, Rice Wine Vinegar
Region / culture: Asia | Preparation time: 10 minutes | Cooking time: 0 minutes | Servings: 4


Asian Salad Dressing
Asian Salad Dressing

Asian salad dressing is a versatile and flavorful condiment that can transform any salad from mundane to extraordinary. This particular recipe combines the nutty richness of roasted sesame oil with the umami depth of soy sauce, the sweetness of brown sugar, the tang of rice wine vinegar, and the aromatic punch of fresh ginger and garlic. It's a perfect blend of the five fundamental tastes, making it an excellent choice for dressing a wide variety of salads.


The history of Asian salad dressing is deeply rooted in the culinary traditions of East Asia, where sesame oil, soy sauce, and rice vinegar have been staple ingredients for centuries. These components are often used in various dressings, marinades, and sauces to enhance the flavors of dishes. This recipe is inspired by these traditions, combining these classic ingredients with brown sugar, ginger, and garlic to create a modern, yet timeless, salad dressing.


How to prepare

  1. In a bowl, whisk together the sesame oil, soy sauce, brown sugar, vinegar, ginger, and garlic.
  2. Add the chopped scallions.
  3. Refrigerate until ready to use.


  • For a spicier version, add a teaspoon of chili flakes or a tablespoon of Sriracha sauce. If you prefer a sweeter dressing, increase the brown sugar to taste. For a citrusy twist, add a tablespoon of fresh lime juice.

Cooking Tips & Tricks

For the best flavor, use high-quality, toasted sesame oil and a naturally brewed soy sauce. Freshly grated ginger will provide a more vibrant taste than powdered ginger. If you find the dressing too thick, you can thin it with a little water until you reach your desired consistency. Always taste and adjust the seasoning as needed, as the saltiness of soy sauce can vary between brands.

Serving Suggestions

This dressing is incredibly versatile and can be used on a variety of salads. Try it on a mixed green salad, a noodle salad, or even as a dressing for a cold vegetable salad. It also works well as a marinade for chicken, beef, or tofu.

Cooking Techniques

The key technique in this recipe is whisking the ingredients together thoroughly to ensure that the sugar dissolves and the flavors meld beautifully. Refrigerating the dressing before use allows the flavors to deepen.

Ingredient Substitutions

If you don't have rice wine vinegar, you can substitute it with apple cider vinegar for a similar tangy flavor. Maple syrup or honey can be used in place of brown sugar for a different type of sweetness.

Make Ahead Tips

This dressing can be made ahead of time and stored in the refrigerator for up to a week. The flavors will continue to meld and develop over time, making it even more delicious.

Presentation Ideas

Serve the dressing in a small pitcher or bowl alongside your salad so guests can add as much or as little as they like. Garnish with sesame seeds or chopped scallions for an extra touch of elegance.

Pairing Recommendations

This dressing pairs beautifully with salads that contain ingredients like avocado, mango, or cucumber. It also complements grilled meats and seafood, making it a versatile addition to your culinary repertoire.

Storage and Reheating Instructions

Store the dressing in an airtight container in the refrigerator. It does not require reheating, but it should be brought to room temperature before serving if it has thickened in the fridge.

Nutrition Information

Calories per serving

A serving of this Asian salad dressing contains approximately 150 calories. The majority of these calories come from the fats in the sesame oil.


This Asian salad dressing contains approximately 8 grams of carbohydrates per serving, primarily from the brown sugar and the small amount of carbohydrates present in the soy sauce and vinegar. The exact amount may vary depending on the specific brands of ingredients used.


The primary source of fat in this recipe is the roasted sesame oil, which is rich in unsaturated fats. A serving of this dressing contains about 14 grams of fat, most of which are heart-healthy monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats.


This dressing contains minimal protein, with less than 1 gram per serving. The soy sauce contributes a small amount of protein to the recipe.

Vitamins and minerals

Sesame oil is a good source of vitamin E, an antioxidant that helps protect your cells from damage. This recipe also contains small amounts of minerals such as calcium, iron, and magnesium, primarily from the soy sauce and sesame oil.


This recipe contains soy and may contain gluten, depending on the type of soy sauce used. Individuals with allergies or sensitivities to these ingredients should exercise caution.


Overall, this Asian salad dressing is relatively low in carbohydrates and proteins but high in healthy fats, particularly unsaturated fats. It also provides a modest amount of vitamins and minerals.


This Asian salad dressing is a flavorful and easy-to-make condiment that can elevate a simple salad to something special. With its rich history and nutritional benefits, it's a healthy and delicious choice for any meal. Whether you're looking to dress a salad, marinate meat, or simply add a burst of flavor to your dishes, this dressing is sure to impress.

How did I get this recipe?


The first time I saw this recipe, I was captivated. It was a warm summer day, and I had just finished helping my neighbor Mrs. Lee with her garden. As a token of appreciation, she invited me inside for a refreshing salad. I watched in awe as she effortlessly tossed together a vibrant mix of fresh vegetables, herbs, and a tangy dressing that she called Asian Salad Dressing.

I had never tasted anything quite like it before. The flavors were bright and bold, with a perfect balance of sweet, salty, and sour. I was determined to learn how to make it myself, so I asked Mrs. Lee for the recipe. She chuckled and said that it was a family secret, passed down through generations. But she could teach me how to make it if I promised to keep it to myself.

I eagerly agreed, and Mrs. Lee began to show me the ingredients and method for making the dressing. It was a simple recipe, but the key was in the quality of the ingredients and the precise measurements. She explained how each ingredient played a crucial role in creating the harmonious flavors of the dressing.

As I watched and listened intently, I realized that cooking was not just about following a recipe. It was a form of artistry, a way to express love and care for others through food. Mrs. Lee's hands moved with grace and precision as she mixed the ingredients together, her face lit up with a smile as she tasted the final product.

After that day, I made Asian Salad Dressing countless times, experimenting with different variations and tweaking the recipe to suit my own taste. I shared it with friends and family, who all raved about its deliciousness. It became a signature dish of mine, something that people always looked forward to whenever I hosted a gathering.

Over the years, I learned more about the origins of the recipe. Mrs. Lee told me that it was a traditional dressing from her homeland in Vietnam, passed down from her grandmother to her mother and now to her. She had adapted it slightly over the years, adding her own personal touch to make it uniquely hers.

As I continued to make the dressing, I started to add my own twist to it as well. I incorporated fresh herbs from my own garden, experimented with different types of vinegar and oils, and even added a hint of spice with some chili flakes. Each batch was a labor of love, a reflection of my passion for cooking and my desire to create something special for those I cared about.

One day, my granddaughter came to visit me in the kitchen as I was making a fresh batch of Asian Salad Dressing. She was curious and eager to learn, just like I had been all those years ago with Mrs. Lee. I smiled and welcomed her, showing her the ingredients and explaining the process step by step.

As we worked together, I could see the same spark of excitement in her eyes that I had felt when I first learned the recipe. It was a beautiful moment of connection, passing down a tradition from one generation to the next. I knew that she would carry on the legacy of this recipe, making it her own and sharing it with others in the years to come.

And so, as I finish up another batch of Asian Salad Dressing, I can't help but feel grateful for all the people who have taught me along the way. From Mrs. Lee to my own mother and grandmother, each one has played a role in shaping my love for cooking and my appreciation for the art of creating delicious food.

As I drizzle the dressing over a fresh salad, I take a moment to savor the flavors and reflect on the journey that has brought me here. Cooking is not just about nourishing the body; it is about nourishing the soul, connecting us to our past and our loved ones in a way that is truly special.

I hope that one day, my granddaughter will look back on this moment with fondness, just as I do now. And that she will carry on the tradition of making Asian Salad Dressing with the same love and care that I have always poured into it.

For in the end, it is not just a recipe. It is a story, a memory, a legacy that will live on through the generations. And that, to me, is the true magic of cooking.


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