tomato lime salad dressing with spoon with baguette and salad

Fresh Tomato Lime Salad Dressing with Cilantro

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Try this fresh tomato lime salad dressing for healthy, homemade green salads, taco salads, or even marinating foods like tofu, tempeh, or mushrooms. I am always looking for a good salad dressing and created this to pair with my many salad creations. Salads are a great way to enjoy healthy vegetables, fruits, and even nuts, ground flaxseed, and avocado. I have one most days and always enjoy new flavors to keep them interesting. This recipe was inspired by an Italian-style tomato vinaigrette that my grandfather always made.

tomato lime salad dressing in bowl next to salad

Salad Dressings and Sodium

Have you checked the label of your favorite store-bought salad dressing lately? Many are quite high in sodium: from 140 to 400 mg plus for some tasty Caesar dressings -that’s per serving of only 2 tablespoons! One of the benefits of making your own is that you can control how much sodium is in it. This tomato lime salad dressing recipe has just about 75 milligrams per servings (and I got a generous 3 tablespoon serving from it). This is almost all from the tomato sauce – so you can always go with a reduced-sodium tomato sauce if you prefer.

High Blood Pressure and the DASH Diet

When it comes to controlling high blood pressure, we have learned that sodium is not the only dietary factor that’s important. Diets high in naturally occurring potassium, calcium, and magnesium with 4-5 servings each of fruits and vegetables daily and a reduced-sodium diet of 1,500 milligrams per day were found to have the largest reduction in blood pressure.

This National Institutes of Health publication also recommends being active for 30 minutes per day and losing weight – or at least not gaining weight if overweight already. Of course, always see your doctor and follow their recommendations regarding diet and medication.

The DASH Diet has been “Ranked the #1 Best Diet for Healthy Eating as well as #2 Best Diets Overall” by U.S. News & World Report.

According to registered dietitian nutritionist Rosanne Rust, “Almost half of all adults in the United States have high blood pressure (hypertension), with many unaware of it. According to the World Health Organization, it’s the leading cause of death, contributing to strokes, heart attacks, heart failure, kidney failure, and even dementia.

While medications are often necessary to maintain healthy blood pressure, a diet and lifestyle overhaul will greatly help you manage your blood pressure and your overall heart health.” Rosanne is the coauthor, of DASH Diet For Dummies®, along with Dr. Sarah Samaan and Cindy Kleckner, RDN.

cover of DASH for Dummies, 2nd edition

DASH Diet for Dummies 2nd edition is an easy-to-read reference guide that helps you make gradual changes to your diet and lifestyle.

You can learn more about the DASH Eating Plan and seven recipes to get started from this publication from the National Institutes of Health. There are tips for reading labels too.

Check out my 6 Tips for Healthy Summer Salads from the Pennsylvania Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics blog.

Ingredient Tips for Tomato Lime Salad Dressing with Cilantro

Lime juice: to get the most lime juice out of a lime, microwave the halves for a few seconds. Then, insert a fork and move it around while you squeeze the lime half. I recommend fresh lime juice for this recipe for the flavor.

Cilantro: if you don’t have fresh cilantro, feel free to substitute fresh parsley or basil. I have had good success growing all of these in an indoor hydroponic garden.

Olive Oil: you can use another oil if you prefer. Avocado and peanut are also high in monounsaturated fats (learn more about fats choices from this article from Harvard Medical School.) I have made this tomato lime salad dressing to be lower in oil than standard recipes to keep the calories and fat at a reasonable level (77 calories and 7 grams of fat estimated in about 3 tablespoons)

Onion powder: This kicks up the flavor. You can substitute dried minced onion, but not onion salt.


This tomato lime salad dressing keeps in a covered container in the refrigerator for 2 days, due to the fresh cilantro.

Other Recipes You May Enjoy

tomato lime salad dressing with spoon with baguette and salad

Fresh Tomato Lime Salad Dressing with Cilantro

Melissa Altman-Traub MS, RDN, LDN
A bright, fresh dressing with cilantro, perfect for green salads, taco salads or as a marinade for baking or grilling.
5 from 5 votes
Prep Time 3 minutes
Total Time 3 minutes
Course Appetizer, Main Course, Salad
Cuisine American, Mediterranean, Mexican, Tex-Mex
Servings 2
Calories 77 kcal


  • Small bowl
  • whisk or fork


  • 3 tablespoons fresh lime juice
  • 2 tablespoons tomato sauce
  • 2 tablespoons water
  • ¼ teaspoon onion powder
  • ¼ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh cilantro


  • Mix together the lime juice, tomato juice, water, onion powder, and black pepper in a small bowl with a whisk.
  • Drizzle in the olive oil while whisking.
  • Stir or whisk in the chopped cilantro.


The nutrition estimate is from Spoonacular, which is based mainly on FoodData Central from the USDA.


Calories: 77kcalCarbohydrates: 3gProtein: 0.5gFat: 7gSaturated Fat: 1gPolyunsaturated Fat: 1gMonounsaturated Fat: 5gSodium: 75mgPotassium: 111mgFiber: 1gSugar: 1gVitamin A: 574IUVitamin C: 10mgCalcium: 12mgIron: 0.3mg
Keyword Lime, Olive Oil, Salad, salad dressing, Tomato
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How did you like this recipe? Please leave a comment and star rating in the comments below:

9 thoughts on “Fresh Tomato Lime Salad Dressing with Cilantro”

  1. 5 stars
    I made this last night and added it to a bowl of pasta and chicken. It was super tasty! Tangy, bright, and citrusy! Thanks for the recipe!

  2. This recipe sounds delicious! I like that there is no vinegar in it. Usually every time I find a dressing recipe that looks good, it has some kind of vinegar in it. I will need to make this dressing soon

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