11 Salad Oil Substitutes To Try

Salad Oil Substitute

A Salad oil substitute works in many recipes. If you do not have salad oil handy, you can use one of the many alternatives that you may have in your kitchen. While salad oil is light and neutral oil, other oils may even be healthier and tastier options.

You may be surprised to learn that though salad oil is available specifically for use in salad dressings, it is actually a generic term for any light oil that can be used instead. And you don’t necessarily have to use neutral oil, if you are habituated to using strong tasting oil in your cooking. 

It is just that when you use neutral oil in your salads you can get the actual taste of the foods, which is enhanced by the dressing and not overpowered by it.

Some Salad Oil Substitutes For You

1. Olive Oil

Olive oil, in its different variations, lends itself well to all kinds of salad dressings. You can make mayonnaise or vinaigrette with it or even make flavored and blended salad dressings.

While extra virgin olive oil has many health benefits, you can also use pure olive oil or light olive oil virgin olive oil instead. Avoid using these oils in frying because of their low smoke point.

2. Avocado Oil

This oil is very healthy and you can use the cold pressed version. Avocado has a rich and buttery taste with a grassy flavor and the oil, too, is light in color and delicious.

In fact, you should try to use avocado oil in your salad dressings and check out the difference in taste when you use any other oil.

3. Peanut Oil

When peanut oil is refined, it is virtually tasteless and can be used in cooking, baking, and in salad dressings. If you use filtered or cold pressed peanut oil, it has greater health benefits.

However, this oil may have a somewhat raw and peanutty taste and can go rancid fast if not refrigerated.

4. Canola Oil

Canola oil is probably the most popularly used oil and found in most kitchens. This oil is neutral tasting and healthy. As plant-based oil, it has a higher smoke point and can be used in cooking and baking without detracting from the taste of the dish.

You can also use it instead of salad oil when you make any kind of salad dressing for a good mouth feel.

5. Corn Oil

Corn oil is refined oil that you can use to replace salad oil in a pinch. It is neutral tasting and golden in color. It has some healthy properties and can be used in cooking and in uncooked dishes.

You can use it as a salad oil replacement in salad dressings. The jury is out on whether it is healthier than olive oil or not.

6. Sunflower Oil

This oil has a high smoke point and is used a great deal in cooking. Many processed foods used sunflower oil instead of other oils because it is usually cheaper.

However, this does not detract from its healthy properties and, because it does not have a strong taste or flavor, you can use it to make your salad dressings.

7. Butter

Butter has a rich and creamy taste and is golden in color. It can also be whipped well and aerated. When you add a sour liquid to it such as vinegar or lemon juice, you will get a buttery salad dressing that will taste great.

Butter actually contains less fat than oil. So whether it is for health reasons, for taste, or just as an alternative to salad oil, try butter.

8. Nut Butters

Nut butters (almond, cashew, peanut) can prove to be a fat component of salad dressings. You will need to thin them with a liquid (such as vinegar or lemon juice or a thin chili sauce) to get the desired consistency to use as a salad dressing.

They are fat rich, but also have protein so can prove to be a healthy option.

9. Tahini

Similar to nut butter, tahini is made from lightly toasted sesame seeds. These are rich in calcium and in fat. You will need to dilute this to use as salad dressing.

Consider thinning this with a citrus juice (orange or lemon) for added taste and flavor.

10. Yogurt

Yogurt, especially high fat yogurt, can prove to be a good substitute as well. If the yogurt you get is too thin, you can drain some of the liquid from it before using.

Pair this with condiments and herbs for a refreshing salad dressing. This can be used without oil as well.

11. Cheese

You can use a cheese that is soft and mash it well. Thin it with some sour cream, yogurt or half and half and add some herbs and condiments to it to use to dress your salads.

If you have some cheese spread on hand, you can thin it and use it as well. Since the spread will have some cheese, you will also get more taste as well as protein and calcium from these dressings.


Is salad oil the same as olive oil?

As salad oil is an umbrella term for oils used to make salad dressings, olive oil is considered to be a salad oil. Any product sold as salad oil may or may not contain olive oil.

Is salad oil the same as vegetable oil?

Salad oil is bland oil and you can use any plant based oil that has the same qualities instead of salad oil.

What is the difference between salad oil and cooking oil?

Cooking oil has a high smoke point. While some cooking oils can be used as salad oil, anything specifically sold as salad oil should only be used in uncooked dishes like salad dressings.

Final Words

Almost any kind of oil can be used to make salad dressings. The only caveat is that if you use strong tasting cold pressed oil, it may not allow the taste and flavor of the ingredients used in the salad to shine through. While cold pressed oils have many health benefits, use them in your salads only if you like the taste and flavor.

And apart from conventional oils, you can also use other foods to make your salad dressings. These include yogurt, cheese, butter, nut butter, and tahini, to name a few that can be used as a salad oil substitute.

You cannot copy content of this page