Dirty Martini Salad Dressing

 If you’re looking for a salad dressing that’s going to impress your guests, this dirty martini salad dressing is the answer. The recipe doesn’t call for any alcohol, but its flavors channel a gin or vodka martini.

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This delicate dressing has a balance of brininess and acidity paired with herbaceous notes from fragrant rosemary and aromatics like garlic and shallots. The bonus is that it can also be used as a marinade or dipping sauce, too.

Is the best part is how easy it is, how customizable it is, or the fact that 007 himself might come to hunt you down for it? We’ll let you solve that mystery — in the meantime, set aside the few minutes it takes to whip up this simple dressing that will be the star of the show however you choose to use it.

straight on shot of dirty martini dressing with salads

Why You’ll Love Dirty Martini Dressing

There’s no reason not to love this sassy sauce. 

  • Delicious – This incredible dressing is a delectable sauce with balanced flavors that channels the flavors of a gin martini. It will up your salad dressing game exponentially. Just like a nice dry martini.
  • Convenient – These ingredients will likely be in your pantry or fridge, but if they’re not already, they should be easy to find at the grocery store. 
  • Easy – It couldn’t be easier to whip up this simple dressing that will absolutely elevate your meal.
angled shot of dirty martini salad dressing in jar

Ingredients

These basic ingredients make the best dressing when you bring them all together.

  • Olive brine: This splash of olive brine is what really makes this dressing. The olive juice that’s found in a jar of olives adds a briny flavor that complements the other ingredients.
  • White wine vinegar: This vinegar adds a tangy and acidic taste to the dressing, which balances out the saltiness from the olive brine and the richness of the olive oil.
  • Pimento-stuffed green olives: The olives are the star ingredient in a dirty martini dressing. They provide a distinctive flavor and texture to the dressing, and their briny taste pairs perfectly with the other ingredients.
  • Garlic clove: Garlic adds a pungent and slightly sweet flavor to the dressing, which enhances the other flavors and adds depth overall.
  • Shallot: Shallots have a milder and sweeter taste than onions and they add a subtle onion-like flavor to the dressing without overpowering the other ingredients.
  • Lemon juice: This adds a bright and fresh flavor to the dressing – its acidity balances out the other flavors.
  • Fresh rosemary: Rosemary adds a woody and pine-like flavor to the dressing, which complements the other flavors and adds an herbaceous aroma.
  • Coarse kosher salt: Sprinkle salt into this dressing to add a crunchy texture — it also brings out the natural flavors of the other ingredients.
  • Ground black pepper: Black pepper adds a tiny touch of heat and spiciness to the dressing.
  • Extra virgin olive oil: This is the base of the dressing and provides a rich and luxurious texture.

How to Make Dirty Martini Salad Dressing

This delicious dressing comes together so easily and quickly. 

  1. Add ingredients to food processor. Add the olive brine, white wine vinegar, olives, garlic, shallot, lemon juice, rosemary, salt, and pepper to a blender or food processor
  2. Blend. Pulse or blend briefly. Only a bit of the rosemary should remain intact.
  3. Add olive oil. In intervals, add the olive oil while continuing to run the blender or food processor.
  4. Enjoy. Serve over your favorite salad. Ours included spinach, grape tomatoes, blue cheese crumbles, cucumbers and thinly sliced red onion.
zoomed out angled shot of dirty martini salad dressing

What to Serve with Dirty Martini Dressing

The obvious answer is to serve this dressing over your favorite simple salad made with veggies and salad greens or a Wedge Salad. However, you can also use it as a marinade to dress up meats like chicken breasts and pork chops, or for veggies like asparagus or carrots as well. 

You can also toss it into one of your favorite pasta sauces or toss it with pasta for an upgrade on your typical pasta salad or just serve it as a dipping sauce for fresh bread. Or, if you’re feeling saucy, use this in the base of your next Bloody Mary (served in extra large cocktail glasses, of course).

Variations 

This dressing is full of bold flavor but there are endless ways to change it to make it your signature salad topper.

  • Alcohol – Instead of white wine, try sherry or a bit of dry vermouth. You can also give liquor a shot by using gin or vodka.
  • Oil – Use avocado oil or canola oil instead.
  • Citrus – Instead of lemon juice, try lime.
  • Other spices –  Add ginger, more garlic, or horseradish to the dressing.
  • Heat – Impart more spiciness by adding crushed red pepper flakes or cayenne pepper powder.
  • Onion – Add some green onions or red onion to impart even more flavor.
  • Blue cheese – Add crumbled blue cheese to the dressing for more pungent, umami flavor.
angled shot of spoon in dirty martini salad dressing

Storage and Freezing

You can make this dressing ahead of time and store it — it’s perfect for meal prep or getting ready for parties.

Refrigerator: Store dirty martini dressing in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 1 week.

Freezer: Dirty martini dressing can be frozen for up to 3 months. To freeze, place the dressing in an airtight container or freezer bag and freeze. 

overhead shot of salad in martini glass

Common Questions About Dirty Martini Dressing

What is dirty martini dressing?

Dirty martini dressing is a type of salad dressing that is made with olive oil, lemon juice, brine from olives, and a variety of other ingredients, depending on the recipe. It’s typically served on salads, but it can also be used as a marinade or dipping sauce.

What is the difference between dirty martini dressing and regular martini dressing?

The main difference between dirty martini dressing and regular martini dressing is the addition of brine from dill pickles. This gives dirty martini dressing a bit of salty and herbal flavor that other dressings do not have.

collage of dirty martini salad dressing for pinterest

More Delicious Dressings

spoon holding green goddess dressing

Avocado Green Goddess Dressing

Avocado Green Goddess Dressing is full of good-for-you veggies and herbs, perfect for salads, but also ideal as a dipping sauce or a spread for sandwiches.
See The Recipe!
blue cheese dressing pouring over greens

Homemade Blue Cheese Dressing

The best homemade Blue Cheese Dressing using two simple ingredients to really make it POP! Perfect for salads, dipping and buffalo wings.
See The Recipe!
chipotle ranch dressing pouring on to a salad

Chipotle Ranch Dressing

Add some zing to your homemade ranch with this Chipotle Ranch Dressing recipe! Made with only 4 simple ingredients.
See The Recipe!
straight on shot of dirty martini dressing with text overlay for pinterest
spoon in jar of dirty martini salad dressing

Dirty Martini Salad Dressing

4.30 from 10 votes
This Dirty Martini Salad Dressing balances brininess and acidity with herbs from fragrant rosemary and aromatics like garlic and shallots!
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Total Time: 5 minutes
Servings: 1 cup

Ingredients

Instructions

  • In a blender or small food processor, combine the olive brine, white wine vinegar, olives, garlic, shallot, lemon juice, rosemary, salt and pepper. Pulse or blend until only small pieces of the rosemary remain.
  • Slowly add in the olive oil in a steady stream while the blender or food processor is running to create an emulsification.
  • Serve over your favorite salad.
  • If you’ve tried this recipe, come back and let us know how it is in the star ratings or comments.

Notes

Our dressing was served in martini classes using a baby spinach and arugula blend with thinly sliced red onion, grape tomatoes, crumbled feta cheese and cucumber.
Other variations to help stabilize the emulsification include 1 teaspoon of Dijon mustard or honey.
Author: Jessica Formicola
Course: Condiment
Cuisine: American
Keyword: dirty martini salad dressing
Did you make this recipe?I’d love to see your recipes – snap a picture and mention @savoryexperiments or tag #savoryexperiments!
Jessica Formicola in her ktichen

About the Author

Jessica Formicola

Jessica the mom, wife and chef behind Savory Experiments. You might see her on the Emmy- nominated TV show Plate It! or on bookshelves as a cookbook author. Jessica is a Le Cordon Bleu certified recipe developer and regularly contributed to Parade, Better Homes & Gardens, The Daily Meal and more!

Read More About Jessica

4.30 from 10 votes (5 ratings without comment)

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Recipe Rating




Questions and Reviews

  1. 5 stars
    This was a tasty and unique dressing recipe. I love discovering new and delicious ways to dress our salads.

  2. 5 stars
    Dang, this is going on the menu this week! We are huge salad fans, and love a dirty martini!

  3. 5 stars
    What a genius idea for a homemade salad dressing! 🙂 I love a good martini, so I know that I would love this too.

  4. 5 stars
    I absolutely love this martini dressing, always great to find a recipe that makes me want to eat more salad! Thanks for sharing, can’t wait to make this again.