Lemony Bean Salad Dressing

Lemony Bean Salad Dressing from Carrie on Vegan | www.carrieonvegan.com

I love experimenting with different salad dressings. Given that I eat at least one giant salad a day, my taste buds require new flavors every so often. While I was stuck on my Green Goddess Dressing for most of last year, my second favorite was probably my Creamy Hummus Dressing.

This new recipe is an evolution of the hummus dressing. Here, I use regular white beans instead of chickpeas, and I substitute lemon juice for vinegar. I also add some different spices and sun-dried tomatoes. I’m calling it “Protein-Packed Lemony Salad Dressing” because of the protein in the beans. I’m not one to count grams of protein in my diet (I know that as long as we eat a whole-foods, plant-based diet, then we are assured enough protein), but this dressing does provide a good source of protein for the salad.

You probably need a high-speed blender to make the dressing. You just combine the ingredients in the blender,


I’ve been using this on all different types of salads including this one with black beans and homemade tortilla chips (corn tortillas sprayed with a bit of canola oil and baked at 350 for 12 minutes):

Here’s the recipe:

Lemony Bean Salad Dressing
Recipe type: Salad Dressing
Serves: 6
  • 2 lemons
  • 2 shallots
  • 1½ cups cooked or canned white beans
  • 2 tablespoons tahini
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • ½ cup apple cider or coconut vinegar (or your favorite)
  • 2 teaspoons ground cumin
  • ½ teaspoon chili powder
  • ¼ teaspoon paprika
  • 2 pitted Medjool dates
  • 1 teaspoon white miso paste or lower-sodium miso paste
  1. Squeeze juice from lemons into a high-speed blender.
  2. Chop shallots and add to lemon juice.
  3. Rinse and drain beans and transfer to blender.
  4. Add tahini, garlic, vinegar, cumin, chili powder, paprika, dates and miso paste. Process until smooth. Add cold water, if necessary, to reach desired consistency.

Lemony Bean Salad Dressing from Carrie on Vegan | www.carrieonvegan.com

Speaking of salad dressings, you’ll notice that I don’t use oil in them. In fact, I rarely use oil at all but get my fats from whole-food sources like nuts, seeds and avocados (the fat source in the dressing above is from the tahini which is ground sesame seeds). Anyway, the reason I cook this way is because of what I have learned from Dr. Fuhrman about eating the whole food to get the most nutritional benefit.

Also, please don’t forget to check out my review of Dr. F’s new book, Super Immunity. In my review, you’ll learn how I was a sickly kid/young adult and why chicken soup should NOT be offered as a remedy to help speed the healing from a cold.

You can find this recipe plus over 150 more on my healthy cooking app, Vegan Delish!


  1. says

    I do use oils, but only olive oil, and in small amounts. I’m thinking about maybe adding a tiny bit of coconut oil to my diet. I think a lot of this country’s obesity problem stems from poor eating habits and the increase in fried foods.

    Thank you for sharing such a great recipe and a serving suggestion. I am definitely going to try a salad like that soon. It will be my first adventure in homemade tortilla chips.

    • says

      Thanks Lola! You’re right, the obesity crisis is multi-faceted, there is not only problem. Let me know how your homemade chips turn out!

  2. Gina says

    This salad dressing recipe looks great, Carrie, and I can’t wait to try it. I started my ‘Eat to Live’ journey on December 26th and so I’m now on Day 10. (Wow, already Day 10!) Because there are so many salads to eat, I’ve been trying a few different salad dressing recipes from Dr. Fuhrman’s site but am, on the hunt for more, so yours will be the next one I try. Regarding oil, I’ve cut it all out of my diet and don’t seem to miss it that much. I do rely, like you do, on raw nuts, seeds, and avocados for my fat content, and they all work great. Anyway, thanks again for sharing all that you do. I appreciate it. ๐Ÿ™‚

    • says

      That’s so great, Gina, that you started the Challenge! Yay!!! How do you feel? The first 2 weeks can be tough, especially if you’re coming off caffeine, refined sugars, etc. Sounds like you are doing a great job, keep up the good work!

  3. says

    Well, you and I were just discussing oils! I think that whole foods sources of fat are of course more nutritious, and almost always preferable. But I also believe that the most current research indicates that very moderate amounts of flax, hemp, olive, or avocado oil are not deleterious to health, and can even bestow some benefits (in addition to taste).

    I am a FANATIC for lemony, thick dressings. This is right up my alley and I can’t wait to try it.

    • says

      Hey Gena! Yeah, sometimes my comments on other people’s blogs show up in my posts. ๐Ÿ™‚ I agree with you that oils aren’t necessarily deleterious in small amounts, but I guess for me it’s a matter of trying to have every calorie count in that I’m getting the absolute most nutrition possible. I think this type of commitment comes from being a formally very sick person with daily migraines to now feeling like I can conquer the world because I feel so much better with this type of diet. Thank you for your comment; as always, I really appreciate your input.

      • says

        I actually didn’t know your whole health history, but suspected that you probably had a powerful healing story. I totally understand why oils aren’t nutritionally “worth it” to some people, I do. But some people (not you) treat them like Satan incarnate, which doesn’t seem *quite* fair either. In any case, I agree that they’re probably not necessary/helpful to you, and am so glad that your eating style now supports good health!

    • says

      Thanks Kat, let me know if you make it and how you like the flavor. It’s hard to make a nice dressing without salt, but the lemon juice or vinegar gives the necessary pop, I think.

  4. says

    I’m with Kathleen–beans in a dressing?! Wouldn’t have occurred to me and I love it. I read your post quickly this morning and it did inspire me to make a nice thick salad dressing for a big raw lunch. Next time I’ll try beans!

    Yep, I use oil (but you knew that) when it makes sense for my taste. This morning my dressing was cashew-based so naturally oil wasn’t needed.

    • says

      Thanks for the comment, JL! I know, beans in a dressing is cool, right? It slices two carrots with one knife, or so the saying goes. ๐Ÿ™‚ I love cashew-based dressings (or sweet toppings) as well, they are so creamy in texture. Have a great rest of your week!

    • says

      Thanks Sara! I am trying hard to stay healthy and posting as many recipes as possible. Let me know if you try the dressing, I love to hear feedback about my recipes.

  5. says

    many of my homemade dressings start with cashews – once I used chickpeas. I love a good lemon flavor, and with sun dried tomatoes too, I KNOW I would love this!

    I will be making this – pinned!

    can I come over and eat these amazing salads with you every day??? ๐Ÿ˜€

  6. Clelia says

    Hi, Carrie – these dressings look scrumptious.

    Question – I am using store-bought tahini and cashew butter. Am I supposed to drain off the oil before measuring the amount called for in a recipe, or should I mix the oil into the butter/tahini, and then use the amount called for? I can’t find an answer to this question anywhere.

    • says

      I would use a spoon to mix it all together and then measure it out. It should stay mixed up after you refrigerate it, kinda like peanut butter. Good question!

  7. says

    Thank you so much for posting this. I am very new on this journey and I am going to convert to a plant based diet. I had the lapband for three years and in a nutshell it caused health issues. Even though I lost my weight I now have to start my journey again and I don’t think I will go for anymore surgery. The thing holding me back was finding some good dressings. The salad is great but if it ain’t got some PUNCH on it then I can’t handle it. (smile). So I am going to try this. THANKS!

    • says

      Thanks for the comment, Laura! I’m so sorry to hear about the complications you’ve had. Good luck as you start your journey. Have you read Eat to Live? That’s the book that really helped me.

  8. says

    Yes, I am reading it now. It was given to me by a friend while I was in the hospital. She saw how very afraid I was to be without my band. She follows Eat to Live and thought I would like it. I bucked it at first (depression) but then as I slowly started to recover at home I’d pick it up and read a few pages. So now I am about half way through and I’ve started SLOWLY to incorporate the principles and in about two weeks I think I am going to do the 6 Weeks Challenge. I am building my pantry up for that right now. And even though I am not 100% following it, I’ve lost 2lbs! So amazing, but that “dressing” issue…yeap, I got to find some recipes to get me though that!

    • says

      Thanks for the comment and update, Laura! I am so happy for you that you are reading the book and starting to incorporate the principles into your life. I have a lot of salad dressings on my recipe page that can help you enjoy all the vegetables. The idea is to include some fat to make the veggies tempting. My husband and I also love using vinegar instead of salt, that has helped a lot. Good luck, you can do this!!!

  9. Elizabeth says

    Hi. Love your blog!!! I follow DrFuhrman’s eating plan and have never felt better. I cant wait to try some of your recipes… Thank you!

    I know this is off the subject but could recommend a water filtration system? I would like the kind that attaches to the sink. :o)

    • says

      Hi Elizabeth, thanks for the sweet comment. I use a reverse osmosis water filtration system that is a separate unit next to my kitchen sink. I believe there are camping or portable units available, though, that can be run through the faucet. Reverse osmosis is the system that Dr. F recommends. ๐Ÿ™‚

  10. nancy says

    Carrie: can I substitute honey for the dates? what alternative to miso paste do you suggest. (multiple food allergies!!!!) I made mayonnaise from scratch last summer. Very labor intensive. I will be trying one of your dressings on a potato salad.

    • says

      Hi Nancy! I appreciate the comments. You could definitely use honey instead of dates in this recipe. And, I might suggest anchovy paste as a substitute for the miso paste. Or, if you want to keep it plant-based, you could try nutritional yeast?


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