Make Ahead

No-Frills Miso Dressing

June  3, 2021
23 Ratings
Photo by James Ransom
  • Prep time 10 minutes
  • Serves Enough for one big salad.
Author Notes

The best thing about this dressing is that it's nearly impossible to mess up. Growing up, my mom always made this for a simple salad alongside her hearty Japanese stews, and I never saw her measure the ingredients. At the end of the meal I was always given the salad bowl to scoop up any last salty greens, and it was my favorite part -- it's that good. One bonus: this dressing isn't just limited to salad. Drizzle it on top of a warm tofu noodle salad, use it as a marinade for grilled fish, or toss it with some thinly chopped carrots, scallions, and cold left over chicken. The options are endless. This dressing keeps for up to one week, all it needs is a few vigorous shakes. —Joy Belamarich

What You'll Need
Watch This Recipe
No-Frills Miso Dressing
  • 3 tablespoons neutral oil (such as peanut, canola, vegetable, etc).
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons rice vinegar
  • 2 teaspoons white miso
  • 1/4 teaspoon (a drop) sesame oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon honey or maple syrup
  • 1/2 teaspoon soy sauce
  1. Combine the ingredients in a bowl and whisk until smooth, adding a dash more vinegar or honey to taste. Feel free to spice it up with some Sriracha, a hit of hot pepper flakes, some grated fresh ginger or even a teaspoon of peanut butter.

See what other Food52ers are saying.

  • fuhsi
  • Luke Duke Banjo
    Luke Duke Banjo
  • Anna
  • Lisa
  • jennifer
Writer, Fooder, Blogger. New Yorker turned Cape Coder.

21 Reviews

Patti September 22, 2022
Tell me some turned out to be pretty good and simple I had all the ingredients it's Asian enough that I've had that miss you taste which is really good and I was able to put your dressing together in just a second after I pull out the ingredients so it took all of 10 minutes maybe thank you for your recipe Patty
fuhsi May 11, 2020
I double this recipe for a week's worth of lunch salads during normal times. Now we're in quarantine, it's gentle flavors have enhanced vegetables, full-on stir fry's, tuna/egg salad, and toast. My modifications are an extra 1/2 tsp miso, halve the honey, and finely chopped ginger when we have it.
Luke D. May 2, 2020
Lol Joy we totally went to the Iowa Young Writer's Workshop together so long ago. I was looking up salad dressing recipes and bumped into your name. Hope all's well and that this dressing is as badass as it looks! Hit me up if you're ever in W. MA!!!!
Rochelle August 7, 2019
This is my new go-to dressing. An easy weeknight dinner salad with a store bought rotisserie bird. I doctor mine up with Spicy Chili Crisp. Scrumptious!
Anna January 7, 2019
Great recipe! I used it on salad and on steamed broccoli.
Lisa January 6, 2018
So very, very good!!
jennifer September 9, 2017
When my daughter became a vegetarian, I began using miso to make a vegetarian Caesar Salad dressing. It gave the dressing the umami that usually comes from the anchovies and/or Worcestershire sauce. (Luckily, she still eats cheese, so the parmesan helps, too.) Miso was a great stand in for the missing anchovies, but I have yet to make a Miso Caesar dressing that doesn't curdle or separate a bit. Of course, once it's tossed with the salad, that part (which niggles at the perfectionist in me) doesn't seem to matter to the taste buds at all. Now that I read this recipe, and all the wonderful comments for variations and various uses, I think I'll be incorporating Miso in my dressing for more than just my daughter's special dressing.
Simone J. May 13, 2018
Eek just to let you know most parmesan has rennet in it which is an animal product. You need to get vegetarian parmesan.
Lizzie D. May 23, 2016
This is such a great salad dressing. Thank you so much for posting your recipe.
[email protected] February 28, 2015
My new favorite use of miso is simply mixing the miso with a little water then tossing cubed turnips and sweet potatoes and roasting in the oven at 400 degrees for about 20 minutes. This is a wonderful side dish or can even be thrown in a salad to add substance. Enjoy!
Miles March 2, 2015
Sounds great. We just discovered databases and this sounds like a way to roast theme too!
chris January 6, 2015
Looks like a great all-purpose seasoning, to have conveniently available. I'd feel safe, keeping this (basic) recipe for way longer than one week, in the refrigerator.
brandon December 3, 2014
having just found myself with an over abundance of of both white miso and rice vinegar was wondering if you had any suggestions???
Douglas B. September 22, 2014
I bet this would be dreamy on roasted beets or asparagus even
Douglas B. September 22, 2014
absolutely Yummeeeeeee !!!!
Miles July 16, 2014
Has anyone tried this on roasted beets?
Miles March 2, 2014
I'm going to try this (I finally found miso paste (!) over roasted broccoli! Thanks!
Joy B. March 2, 2014
yay! Let me know how it turns out!
Miles March 3, 2014
Joy - it turned out great! I roasted the broccoli in olive/canola oil mix with salt for about 5 minutes convection, 15 regular. Then I let it cool just a bit and then tossed it with the dressing and finished it off with some toasted pine nuts - this will be a standard at our home now! Thanks!
Joy B. March 3, 2014
So happy to hear this, Miles. Never tried this dressing with roasted veggies -- you've inspired me!
sel January 26, 2014
miso makes a wonderful brushed on or hands on coating for roasting chicken or any meats....wonderous condiment for jazzing the otherwise dull mayo. Use your instincts, as with any type of cooking...that is how recipes came into our lives....Sel