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5 Non-Dairy Tahini-Based Dressings You Have to Try

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Tahini is by far one of the most enjoyed vegan staples of all nut and seed butters. Forget just using it on a sandwich! Tahini is the perfect spread that can stand alone in a recipe to replace nut butter, and makes a wonderful base when united with other ingredients to form something spectacular. Made of nothing but raw sesame seeds (and some brands add salt), tahini is one of the easiest spreads to make at home and you can find it in any grocery store nationwide. Whether you choose raw or roasted tahini, they’ll both work great to create a creamy texture and rich flavor in whatever you add them to.

Sauteed-Kale-and-Carrot-With-a-Tahini-Sauce-1200x800-1-1200x800

One of the best ways to use tahini is in recipes where dairy is normally called for. You can even make tahini milk by blending 1/4-1/3 cup raw or roasted tahini with 3-4 cups of water and simply using that as a milk (though it has a nuttier flavor than almond or coconut). You can also use tahini in a more classic way, which is in a salad dressing or hummus recipe.

Dairy-based dressings all contain not just milk, but also lactic acid (a preservative), cheese, and lots of salt to preserve the milk that’s in used them. Not only is dairy unhealthy, but it’s also unnecessary.  Most of us don’t love these dressing for the milk they contain. Instead, their spices and texture are what keep us coming back. So the easiest thing to do, is to simply replace the milk with a creamy alternative. In this case, we’re going with tahini. Not just because it tastes great, but also because it’s a nutritional powerhouse. 

Why Tahini is a Great Dairy Replacement

tahini1 (1)

Two tablespoons of tahini has 8 grams of protein, 15 percent of your daily iron needs and 4 percent of your daily calcium needs – in just two tablespoons. It’s also free of cholesterol and harmful fats unlike dairy-based dressings, and free of sugar unlike most fat-free dressings on the market that also include artificial flavors and/or preservatives.

But the best part is, tahini can stand as a base for many flavors, whether savory or sweet. A classic tahini salad dressing includes: tahini, lemon, garlic, lemon and black pepper. That’s a great recipe and certainly not one to be reckoned with, but there are some other recipes you can make in just minutes that are also a great option when you need a change of pace.

Here are five to try:

1. Tahini Black Pepper and Basil

basil1

Amanda Slater/Flickr

Basil is abundant in the spring and summer, so why not take advantage of the fresh form and use it in a salad dressing? Basil isn’t just delicious, but also comes with anti-bacterial properties and it contains nutrients that boost your immune system and digestion. Pair it in a dressing with black pepper, also a good source of antioxidants, and give your tahini a little zen zing!

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 cup raw or roasted tahini
  • 1 tsp. black pepper (coarse ground works best)
  • juice from 1 lemon
  • 3-4 fresh basil leaves (you can use more or less if desired)
  • 3 tbsp. water or your choice plain non-dairy milk to make it creamier
  • pinch of pink or sea salt (optional)

Directions:

1. First, tear the basil into tiny pieces. You can also stack them on top of one another and roll them up, then slice them chiffonade style with a knife. The key is just to get them in smaller pieces.

2. Add the ingredients in the order listed to your food processor.

3.  Process for about 30 seconds until everything is completely blended and nice and creamy.

4. Use on three to four salads or one or two salads and store the rest in the fridge for about a week.

 

2. Spicy Lemon Pepper

lemonpepper

Chlot’s Run/Flickr

Lemon pepper is a timeless flavor combination that I grew up loving. Now instead of using it on chicken and fries, I use it on salads, roasted sweet potatoes, and as a dip for celery and carrots. It would also make a great sauce mixed into cooked quinoa, on a grain-based salad or in a veggie bowl. Give it a try!

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 cup raw or roasted tahini
  • juice from one lemon
  • 1-2 tsp. fresh lemon zest (use organic lemons)
  • 1 tsp. black pepper
  • 1/4 tsp. paprika for extra spice
  • 3 tbsp. water or your choice plain non-dairy milk
  • pinch of pink or sea salt (optional)

Directions:

1. Add all the ingredients to your food processor in the order listed.

2.  Process for about 30 seconds until everything is completely blended and nice and creamy.

3. Use on three to four salads or one or two salads and store the rest in the fridge for about a week.

 

3. Creamy Mock Caesar Dressing

caesar

Geoff Peters/Flickr

I used to love Caesar salads … until I found out the dressing had minced anchovies! Um, no thanks, I’ll take my salads animal-free, what about you? Here, we have a delicious mock Caesar dressing that tahini stars perfectly in. The secret is to use capers, onion powder, Dijon mustard, parsley, and garlic to help replicate that same flavor. It’s quite addicting, just be warned!

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 cup raw or roasted tahini
  • juice from one lemon
  • 1 tsp. capers (looked in the canned food section where they come in jars near the artichokes)
  • 2 tsp. Dijon mustard
  • 1 tsp. black pepper
  • 1/4 tsp. onion powder
  • 1/4 tsp. garlic powder
  • 1/2 tsp. parsley flakes
  • 3 tbsp. water or your choice plain non-dairy milk
  • pinch of pink or sea salt (optional)

Directions:

1. Add all the ingredients to your food processor in the order listed.

2.  Process for about 30 seconds until everything is completely blended and nice and creamy.

3. Use on three to four salads or one or two salads and store the rest in the fridge for about a week.

 

4. Garlic Chili Pepper

Avocado-Kale-Chilli-Salad (3)

If you like things spicy, you’ll love this dressing. It uses nothing more than chili powder and a fresh garlic clove to add true natural flavoring. This dressing would be perfect on healthy fries, dressed over a veggie burger or roasted vegetables, and makes the most incredible salad dressing you can imagine.

Ingredients: 

  • 1/2 cup raw or roasted tahini
  • 2 tsp. chili powder
  • 1 garlic clove, minced into very fine pieces
  • 3 tbsp. water or your choice plain non-dairy milk to make it creamier
  • pinch of pink or sea salt (optional)

Directions: 

1. Add all the ingredients to your food processor in the order listed.

2.  Process for about 30 seconds until everything is completely blended and nice and creamy.

3. Use on three to four salads or one or two salads and store the rest in the fridge for about a week.

 

5. Classic Vegan Ranch

vegansalad1

Kelly Garbato/Flickr

Lastly, if you love ranch dressing, this one is for you. Creamy, rich, and with that classic flavor we all grew up loving, nothing could be more simple and delicious. Most traditional recipes call for buttermilk, while many vegan recipes call for vegan mayonnaise. Though you can choose vegan mayo instead of tahini, this recipe below is even tastier and much less processed, therefore healthier for you too.

Ingredients: 

  • 1/2 cup raw or roasted tahini
  • 1 tsp. onion powder
  • 1 tsp. garlic powder (works better than a garlic clove in this recipe since the flavors are a bit different)
  • 2 tsp. parsley flakes
  • 2 tsp. black pepper
  • 3 tbsp. your choice plain non-dairy milk to make it creamier (soy or almond work best here- do not use coconut or rice milk which are sweeter)
  • pinch of pink or sea salt (optional)

Directions: 

1. Add all the ingredients to your food processor in the order listed.

2.  Process for about 30 seconds until everything is completely blended and nice and creamy.

3. Use on three to four salads or one or two salads and store the rest in the fridge for about a week.

padthai2

Try these recipes out in any of our salads, our pasta dishes, on top of or mixed into our veggie bowls, as a dip for raw veggies, or even as a dressing for vegan burgers and healthy fries! The possibilities are endless here, friends.

What’s your favorite way to use tahini?

Lead Image Source: Super Protein Kale Caesar Salad (Vegan)



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0 comments on “5 Non-Dairy Tahini-Based Dressings You Have to Try”

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Tina Girton
1 Months Ago

I just made the Mock Caesar Dressing and it\'s out of this world!!! Thank you!


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