This carrot and ginger dressing is based on the Japanese salad dressing from teppanyaki restaurants, like Benihana. So simple and healthy, you won’t believe how easy it is to make. Jump straight to the recipe.
This post is sponsored by Gourmet Garden. I have received compensation and product for creating this recipe. All opinions are my own, and I only work with brands I love and feel will be useful for my readers.
Gluten Free, Vegan, Japanese Carrot and Ginger Dressing
Somewhere between celebrating my birthday at Farrell’s Ice Cream Parlour and celebrating in a night club, there was a magical period where birthdays only meant one thing…. Japanese food at Benihana. From the ages of 11 to 17, my birthday dinner with family always meant going to the famous Japanese-influenced steakhouse. There, we watched chefs throw their sharp knives in the air, ate food that had been cooked right in front of us, and posed for cheesy polaroids with men in tall toques long before the era of the celebrity chef. At the end of the night, I often left with a container of my favorite thing: the carrot and ginger laden Japanese salad dressing.
I haven’t been to a Benihana or any other teppanyaki place for many years, but sometimes when we’re out to sushi, I’ll have a salad topped with that beautiful, bright orange, Japanese salad dressing.
After picking up a ton of carrots at the local farmers market, I decided I would match a batch (or three) of this carrot ginger dressing for myself. The results are too good not to share. The dressing is gluten free, vegan, and I’ve included paleo options too. Try this dressing on a fresh green salad or drizzled on top of cooked fish, veggies or meat.
I made this carrot ginger dressing with the lightly dried ginger from Gourmet Garden. If you’re not familiar with their lightly dried herbs, they are just that… lightly dried. As soon as they hit moisture, water, or steam, they completely rehydrate. I’ve always got them on hand for adding punch to quick and easy meals, but they work equally well when they’re the star of the show as they are in this dressing.
- ½ lb carrots, tops removed and peeled
- ¼ of a small red onion
- 2 tablespoons lightly dried ginger
- 1 clove garlic (optional)
- ¼ cup rice vinegar (coconut vinegar for paleo)
- 2 tablespoons tamari/gluten free soy sauce (use coconut aminos for paleo)
- 1 tablespoon toasted sesame oil
- ½ cup neutral flavored oil like avocado or expeller pressed grape seed
- salt and pepper to taste.
- Add carrots, onion, ginger, garlic, vinegar, soy sauce, and oils to a blender or food processor and blend until mostly smooth. Small bits of carrot and ginger are good and add to the texture. Taste and add salt and pepper if needed.