Fiery sriracha-tahini dressing with 3-ingredients is the creamy, oil-free, quick condiment that raises the flavor profile for salads and beyond.
Ah, the elusive oil-free, thick and creamy dressing. It can be a plant-based nemesis.
But it doesn’t need to be.
I’ve been on the quest to expand my dressing horizons to create bold flavors to excite those simple salads I so often have for lunch. And although I’ll never give up my cashew ranch, creamy cilantro-lime, or tahini ranch dressings, there I so many times when I want something super quick.
And now comes this 3-ingredient wonder.
Let’s celebrate with a bowl and a whisk. I’ll even do without the whisk and grab a fork for this job. Sometimes it’s even the same fork I will be eating my salad with. I’m not going to lie about it – pure unadulterated laziness to avoid dishwashing.
So, here’s what you need (seriously, this all)
Tahini (sesame paste)
Lemon juice (squeeze it fresh or go for the little lemon bottle)
Sriracha –the hot sauce we can’t seem to live without.
If you aren’t familiar with Sriracha, it's time to introduce yourself. This classic, the hot sauce might look like ketchup but has a unique garlicky, kicky, slightly chili flavor.
As of this moment,
Sriracha is ubiquitous. It might have been a Californian creation, there are no borders when it comes to our favorite hot sauce. If you happen to be attached to a different chili sauce, I’ll grant you the substitution. But seriously, give Sriracha a chance. You won't regret it. I’m using original Sriracha here, but there are a few varieties. Any of them will make a tasty dressing following the same instructions.
Tahini - in and out
Before we get started, let’s talk a moment about tahini.
At it’s simplest, it’s a paste or butter made from sesame seeds. Tahini is an essential ingredient in many Middle Eastern dishes, and thanks to hummus, it’s now found in many kitchens globally.
We praise it in plant-based kitchens as one of the good fats. Calorie for calorie, it offers substantive nutrition. Like any higher fat ingredient, it’s meant to be enjoyed in moderation. That’s what makes it great for dressings. A little goes a long way.
Beyond hummus, the nutty, slightly bitter flavor of tahini is found in a lot of recipes. Heck, I’ve even used it to massage kale!
Personally, I like to make tahini because that gives me the ultimate control of the only ingredient – sesame seeds. I take a moment to toast the sesame seeds, and then I toss them in my food processor or spice grinder. If you have time, make a batch. It keeps for several weeks to months in a tightly sealed container or jar.
In a hurry for that salad? No time to add making sesame paste to your to-do list? I get that. Let’s add it to your shopping list instead.
Now that tahini is so popular (thanks hummus), you can find it at most bigger supermarkets.
When you buy tahini, just like when you buy any pre-packaged ingredient, be sure to check the labels. You want tahini that contains only hulled or unhulled sesame seeds. Some brands add extra oil to expedite the processing time. You don’t want that.
Sesame seeds have plenty of natural oil. That’s why, when you get it home and open the jar, you’ll notice a layer of oil at the top. If you have pure sesame pate (also known as sesame butter), it’s just the oil from the seeds. Mix that in or, if you are so inclined, drain it off into an empty can. Let’s not clog the drain by sending oil down there.
You’ll find tahini salted or unsalted. That’s your preference. I usually opt for the unsalted if I buy it because I can always add salt if I need to.
An unopened jar will keep on your shelf for about 6 months. Once you open it, you can extend its shelf life by storing it in the fridge where it keeps for 2 months. Sesame seeds contain a lot of oil, if you have ‘spoiled’ tahini, you will most likely be alerted to that fact by a rancid smell rather than visual signs.
Whether or not you’ve made your own, open a fresh jar, or dig in the back of the fridge for it, there are a few tips to making tahini even creamier.
Stir it up in the jar or container before spooning it out.
Next, spoon it into the bowl and add the liquid (in our case, lemon juice). My general guidance is a 1:2 ratio of tahini to lemon juice. You can adjust the lemon juice depending on how thick you want your dressing.
Once you start mixing n the lemon juice, you’ll notice that the tahini gets lighter, thinner, and smoother. Once you get the mixture to a consistency you like, add a tablespoon of Sriracha, give it a taste and add more. We like it hot, so I aim high in the 2-3 tablespoon region, but I appreciate that not everyone wants that much heat. This is yours to make.
It so often happens that we forget to share those quick, simple concoctions that we use frequently. We assume that 'everyone knows that.' Not so, I say. I’ve spent more of my life not mixing Tahini, lemon juice, and Sriracha than I’ve spent enjoying it. But that course is destined to be reversed, 3-ingredients and a few minutes, several times a week. Peace.Print
Fiery sriracha-tahini dressing with 3-ingredients is the creamy, oil-free, and dairy-free quick condiment raising the flavor profile for salads and beyond.
- ¼ cup Tahini
- ½ cup lemon juice
- 2-3 Tbsp. Sriracha hot sauce (you can use another hot chili sauce if desired
- In a small bowl, whisk together the tahini and lemon juice until it becomes creamy and smooth. Add more lemon juice if you want a thinner consistency.
- Whisk in the Sriracha. Start with 1 Tbsp. Taste the dressing, and adjust if you want it spicier.
- The nutritional information is based on 2 Tbsp. per serving.
- Store this dressing in the refrigerator in a sealed container or jar with a lid for 2 weeks. Stir before serving and add a bit of lemon juice or water if it becomes to thick upon sitting.
- If you buy tahini, check to ensure that there is no added oil. Sesame seeds naturally have a lot of oil, so it is common for oil to accumulate at the top of the jar. Added oil is sometimes used to assist in processing. That's what you want to avoid. Just check the labels.
- I used original Sriracha sauce for this dressing; however, there are a few different flavors like extra hot and smoky. Any of your favorites will make a tasty dressing.
- Category: Dressings & Condiments
- Cuisine: plant-based
Keywords: sriracha-tahini dressing