Green Goddess Dressing

4.91 from 11 votes
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Green Goddess dressing is a favorite condiment used to make vegetables more exciting! This creamy mix is made with fresh herbs, avocado, garlic, anchovies, and a homemade mayonnaise base to give it a characteristic vibrant color and bold flavor.

Green Goddess dressing in a small white bowl.

Recipe Science

  • Blending fresh herbs with mayonnaise creates a smooth emulsion, resulting in a creamy and homogeneous dressing.
  • The acidity from lemon juice and vinegar in the dressing balances the rich, creamy base, adding a tangy brightness that enhances the overall flavor.
  • Fresh garlic and herbs provide aromatic compounds that infuse the dressing with a vibrant, savory taste.

Why It Works

Green Goddess dressing is a legendary condiment that continues to grow in popularity. It’s a robust blend of herbs and aromatics like green onion, tarragon, chives, parsley, and garlic. Homemade mayonnaise and avocado are blended into this recipe to add a silky texture. Anchovies provide saltiness and depth to the dressing.

This salad dressing lives up to its royal name as it has all the qualities to shine at the table. Make a batch to toss with pasta, drizzle on crisp lettuce greens, or serve it as a dip with seasonal vegetables. No matter how you use it, it will become your new flavor enhancer.

Ingredients You’ll Need

Pre-portioned salad dressing ingredients on a table.
  • Mayonnaise: Combine egg yolks, lemon juice, Dijon mustard, and olive oil. This is the rich and smooth base of the green goddess salad dressing.
  • Avocado: The flesh adds a creamy texture and its visual green color.
  • Herbs: Fresh green herbs like parsley, chives, green onions, and tarragon.
  • Alliums: Minced garlic adds a pungency to the creamy sauce.
  • Anchovy: A few canned fish fillets add a wonderful umami flavor. You can omit it, but I highly recommend keeping it in.
  • Vinegar: Mild apple cider vinegar adds tartness to balance the richness of the mayonnaise and avocado.
  • Seasoning: Salt and black pepper enhance all the dressing ingredient flavors.

See the recipe card below for all ingredients and measurements (US and metric).

Ingredient Substitutions

Now that you have the base for the Green Goddess dressing recipe, it’s easy to customize! Try these tasty variations:

  • Mayonnaise: Sour cream or plain Greek yogurt can be used to swap out the mayonnaise. This will add a tangier flavor. Coconut cream is a good plant-based substitute.
  • Herbs: Experiment with fresh basil, cilantro, mint, or dill; add just enough not to overpower the taste of the dressing.
  • Vinegar: There are many types of vinegar to choose from. Apple cider is the mildest, with a fruit taste, but white wine or red wine vinegar can be used. Just avoid balsamic vinegar.
  • Anchovies: Fillets or paste can be used. 1 fillet equals ½ teaspoon paste. This ingredient is optional if you’re following a vegan diet.

How to Make Green Goddess Dressing

Person whisking homemade mayonnaise in a bowl.

Step 1: Make the Mayonnaise Base

If you’re wondering how to make mayonnaise from scratch, you’ll be happy to know it’s a straightforward process. It only takes a few minutes to make an emulsion by gradually whisking egg yolks with lemon juice and olive oil. Store-bought versions can be used if you’re in a pinch for time, but nothing beats fresh mayo.

Avocado and anchovies in a blender.

Step 2: Process the Ingredients

A quick 1-minute process in a blender or food processor instantly breaks down the ingredients.

Pureed green Goddess Dressing in a blender.

The mayonnaise, avocado, anchovies, garlic, herbs, seasonings, and vinegar blend until a smooth salad dressing forms.

You may want to adjust the thickness depending on whether you’re using it as a dip or salad dressing. Gradually add water to thin out the mixture. Taste and adjust the salt, pepper, and apple cider vinegar as desired, especially if substituting any ingredients.

Green Goddess Dressing served on a vegetable platter.

Ways to Use It

  • Salad Dressing: There are many types of lettuce to choose from. Heartier leaves like romaine and spinach hold up better to thicker dressings. It’s a great addition to a Cobb salad.
  • Egg Salad: Instead of just a classic egg salad recipe, use the green goddess dressing’s more herbaceous flavors.
  • Vegetable Platter: If you’re feeding a crowd at a party, serve it with veggies as a crudité platter. Guests won’t be able to resist this dip!
  • Hummus: Spruce up traditional hummus with a little bit of this dressing.
  • Condiment: Add to burgers, or dip with sweet potato fries. If using homemade mayonnaise, it’s a tasty Whole30 sauce to serve with protein like chicken or fish.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is Green Goddess dressing?

As a Bay Area native, I was excited to learn that Green Goddess dressing originated in San Francisco. It was created in the 1920s at the Palace Hotel to celebrate the actor George Arliss and his play The Green Goddess.

What does Green Goddess dressing taste like?

It’s very creamy from the mayonnaise and avocado. The vinegar and lemon juice add tanginess and a subtle citrus flavor. The fresh parsley and tarragon deliver a delicate herbaceous note. The fresh garlic, chives, and onions add a mild allium flavor.

What can be substituted for anchovies?

Substitute the anchovy filets with 1 teaspoon of Worcestershire sauce, soy sauce, miso paste, kalamata olives, or capers.

What are some substitutes for mayonnaise?

Mayonnaise is the base that gives the creamy mouthfeel, so replace it with a similar texture. Substitutes like sour cream or plain Greek yogurt work well due to their fat and protein content; however, they may add a more tart flavor. Coconut cream (not milk) can be used. Also, increasing the amount of avocados is another solution. About 1 cup mashed for a more neutral flavor.

More Dressing Recipes

If you tried this Green Goddess Dressing recipe, please leave a 🌟 star rating and let me know how it went in the 📝 comments below!

Green Goddess Dressing

I love making green goddess dressing because it's a vibrant and herbaceous way to enhance salads and vegetable dishes.
4.91 from 11 votes
Prep Time10 minutes
Cook Time0 minutes
Total Time10 minutes
Servings 20 servings
Course Condiment
Cuisine American

Ingredients 
 

  • 1 large egg yolk
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice, divided
  • 1 teaspoon dijon mustard
  • 1 cup olive oil
  • 1 large avocado
  • 1 cup Italian parsley leaves
  • 1 tablespoon chopped chives
  • 2 tablespoons sliced green onions
  • 2 tablespoons tarragon leaves
  • 1 teaspoon minced garlic
  • 2 anchovy fillets, optional
  • ¼ cup water
  • 2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
  • ½ teaspoon kosher salt
  • ¼ teaspoon black pepper

Instructions 

  • Make the Base – In a medium bowl, whisk the egg yolk, then mix in 1 teaspoon of lemon juice and mustard. Gradually whisk in a few drops of olive oil until ¼ cup is reached. It should start to thicken and lighten in color.
    Add 1 teaspoon of lemon juice while mixing. Gradually whisk in ¼ cup of olive oil, followed by the last 1 teaspoon of lemon juice. Slowly whisk in the remainder of the olive oil.
  • Make the Dressing – In a blender or food processor, add the base, avocado, parsley, chives, green onions, tarragon, garlic, anchovies (if using), water, apple cider vinegar, salt, and pepper.
    Blend on medium speed until smooth, about 1 minute. Season with more salt and pepper to taste.

Notes

  • Recipe Yields: 1 ⅓ cups of dressing
  • Serving Size: 1 tablespoon
  • Storing: Place inside an airtight container in the fridge for up to 5 days.
  • Anchovy Substitute: Add 1 teaspoon anchovy paste. Alternatively, use 1 teaspoon of Worcestershire sauce, soy sauce, miso paste, kalamata olives, or capers.
  • Mayonnaise Substitute: Use 1 cup of store-bought mayonnaise for the egg yolk, mustard, lemon juice, and olive oil.
  • Thin the Dressing: Add 1 tablespoon of water at any time. Blend and adjust the vinegar, salt, and pepper amount.
  • Make it Vegan: Use vegan mayonnaise or substitute 1 additional cup of avocado for the mayonnaise. Replace anchovies with 1 teaspoon miso paste or omit. Adjust seasonings to taste.
  • Make it Whole30: Substitute kosher salt with sea salt. Replace Dijon mustard with mustard powder.

Nutrition Facts

Serves: 20 servings
Calories 15kcal (1%)Fat 1g (2%)Cholesterol 9mg (3%)Sodium 62mg (3%)Potassium 21mg (1%)Vitamin A 50IU (1%)Vitamin C 0.7mg (1%)Calcium 10mg (1%)Iron 0.3mg (2%)

Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000-calorie diet. All nutritional information is based on estimated third-party calculations. Each recipe and nutritional value will vary depending on the brands you use, measuring methods, and portion sizes per household.

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Jessica Gavin

I'm a culinary school graduate, cookbook author, and a mom who loves croissants! My passion is creating recipes and sharing the science behind cooking to help you gain confidence in the kitchen.

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8 Comments Leave a comment or review

  1. Christopher Esposito says

    Wow, Just Wow! I used this in a light bites gig in Chatham NJ and it was a huge hit, especially with the hostess! I used jarred mayonnaise instead of homemade (I was pressed for time!) but it all worked out well in the end…My wife had the fantastic idea of serving it in a yellow bell pepper.

    • Jessica Gavin says

      Hi Lauren! Make sure to cover the dressing with plastic wrap, leaving no gap in between where air could get exposure until ready to serve. There is lemon juice and vinegar so the acidity should help slow down the oxidation.

  2. Judy says

    Wow that sure is beautiful. I have never had this dressing or even heard of it. We have company coming in tomorrow but as soon as they head home this is being made. I’d make it while they are here but my friend isn’t a very adventurous eater.

    Ooh our 41st anniversary is July 1st. This would be a great treat to make for a lovely salad. Thank you Jessica. You are the best!

    • Paulette A Smyte says

      JUst made the GReen goddess and It is so delicious I could eat it out of the bowl! Did not make the mayo, used Hellmans. DId the substitute for anchovies with miso. Everything else was per your heavenly recipe! YOu are my ultimate fave chef! ????

      • Jessica Gavin says

        Whoo hoo! I’m so delighted to hear that you enjoyed the recipe and that the substitutions were to your liking. You are so sweet Paulette!

    • Jessica Gavin says

      Oh my gosh Judy, that’s our wedding anniversary too! Seven years for us, please tell me how to keep a love like that going 🙂 I knew we were cosmically connected! I know you will love the dressing, perfect for a goddess like you.