Clementine Dressing with Wasabi and Ginger

by on January 17, 2014
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Clementine Dressing with Wasabi and Ginger

For a long time I’ve been stuck on apples in my lunchtime salad, but yesterday my eyes fell on the bowl of clementines on the counter, and I just couldn’t resist adding them to not only the salad but the dressing as well. I’ve been wanting to try one of Dr. Fuhrman’s many orange and cashew dressings, but, honestly, they all contain too much fat for my tastes and needs. I’m one of those people who like a lot of dressing on salad, so I prefer to have something so low in calories and fat that I can just pour it on without worrying too much about how much I’m using. So I decided to make a dressing similar to Dr. Fuhrman’s but using chia seeds to thicken it and just a drop (literally) of sesame oil for flavor.

Wasabi powder

When I tasted the dressing, however, I found it too bland. It was crying out for some spice, some zing. I added cayenne pepper, but that just didn’t do it. It needed a different kind of heat, the kind of heat that takes veggie sushi from ordinary vegetables wrapped in rice to sublime. It needed wasabi.

The wasabi made all the difference. I’ll admit that I actually added more than I indicate in the recipe below, but I’m sort of addicted to spicy. You may find that you like this sweet and tangy dressing just fine without the wasabi, or you may do like I did and throw in a couple of teaspoons. I’ll leave that up to you and your scorched or tender taste buds.

Clementine Dressing with Wasabi and Ginger
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
If you’re not worried about the fat, you can add a handful of raw cashews or a little tahini to make the dressing richer. And if you’re not a fan of wasabi, feel free to leave it out.
Serves: 10
  • 1/2 cup orange juice, fresh squeezed
  • 2 clementines, satsumas, or other small seedless oranges, peeled
  • 5 tablespoons white wine vinegar
  • 1 medjool date, pitted and chopped
  • 1 tablespoon chia or ground flax seeds
  • 1 teaspoon ginger-root, minced (about 1/2-inch section roughly chopped)
  • 1/2 teaspoon low-sodium tamari or soy sauce or salt to taste (optional)
  • 1/2 to 1 teaspoon wasabi powder
  • 1 pinch cayenne pepper
  • a few drops toasted sesame oil (optional, but good)
  1. Place all ingredients in blender and blend at high speed until smooth. Taste and add additional seasonings as needed. Allow to stand at least 10 minutes to thicken slightly and let the flavor develop.
Makes about 10 2-tablespoon servings.
Nutrition Information
Serving size: 1/10th of recipe Calories: 25 Fat: less than 1g Carbohydrates: 5.7g Sugar: 4g Sodium: 9.4mg Fiber: less than 1g Protein: less than 1g



I set my salad up to look pretty for the photo with spring mix greens on the bottom and clementines, red pepper strips, and chickpeas on the top. But once the photos were taken, I threw the salad into a much larger bowl, filled it up with romaine and shredded carrot, and tossed it with more dressing. You can see the “real life” version of the salad here on Instagram.



Just a reminder that the Vitamix sale is still going on. For the next two months, you can get $30 off the normal price of a reconditioned blender, and if you buy any Vitamix priced $299 and up, you can get free shipping by using my affiliate link. I’ll get a commission, too, so you’ll also be helping support this site. Check out all the reconditioned models here.

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{ 22 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Shelley January 17, 2014 at 9:07 am

This dressing sounds superb! I think I would do some edamame/baked Asian tofu and avocado in my salad. Can’t wait!


2 Cara O'Sullivan January 17, 2014 at 9:53 am

Susan, I know the wasabi won’t be well received at my house. Is there a milder substitute you could suggest?

Sometimes I wish I had only me to cook for. LOL. Thanks. — Cara


3 Susan Voisin January 17, 2014 at 10:08 am

Cara, you can just leave it out or increase the cayenne a touch.


4 Melissa January 17, 2014 at 10:09 am

Have wasabi powder in my cupboard and clementines in my fridge. May just have to make this tasty looking dressing for lunch!


5 jengrace January 17, 2014 at 10:16 am

Absolutely delicious, just made it and poured it warm from the vitamix onto wilted greens- fabulous! The perfect kick to a wintery day. Thanks!


6 Susan Voisin January 17, 2014 at 10:21 am

That was fast! 🙂 So glad you liked it!


7 moonwatcher January 17, 2014 at 11:07 am

Hi Susan,

The composition of that top photo is one of the most beautiful I’ve ever seen on a blog, if not the most beautiful. Right up there. So gorgeous, with the spiraled peel coming off the clementine next to the ginger. And the light is just right.

And as if that isn’t enough, this sounds delicious! I’m right with you about wanting my dressing to be low fat enough that I don’t have to parce out small amounts and can just use however much I want. I think the combination of the ginger, clementine and wasabi is inspired. A while back while making a sushi style salad I thought to add a little wasabi, along with lime and rice vinegar. I didn’t get it quite right, but I was definitely on the right track with the wasabi. I think I got the idea from your roasted asparagus, which is another great way to warm up a salad.

This is just gorgeous, and I’m sure will delight both tender and scorched taste buds. (If you’re like me, and don’t use your wasabi powder all the time, it kind of mellows a bit with age. Not great for the “scorched” camp, but wonderful for light-weights like me!!)

Thanks for another great way to eat a salad!!




8 Susan Voisin January 17, 2014 at 11:58 am

That is so nice of you to say! For some reason, I always have trouble shooting salads and dressings, so this means a lot. And thanks for mentioning that wasabi gets mellower with age. I suspect that mine has been sitting around a little too long, and that’s why I needed so much of it–and why I hope people will add it to taste. I don’t want to burn anybody up!


9 Michele January 17, 2014 at 5:53 pm

Do you use ground chia for this? I have chia seeds in my pantry, can I grind them in my coffee grinder?


10 Susan Voisin January 17, 2014 at 6:08 pm

I used whole chia and my Vitamix ground it right up. If you suspect your blender might not, you can grind it beforehand, but I don’t think it’s essential.


11 Aileen Cohen January 19, 2014 at 12:19 am

Thanks. I am not a fan of the nut (or avocado) based dressings either.


12 Heather @Gluten-Free Cat January 20, 2014 at 8:17 am

What a lovely combination of flavors! I look forward to trying this dressing.


13 Tami@NutmegNotebook January 20, 2014 at 3:52 pm

I love the little cuties in my salads but never thought to make dressing with them. Great idea!


14 Judy Piper January 21, 2014 at 10:33 am

How can you call a recipe fat free when you say to add *just a drop* of sesame oil? It’s this drop that makes all the difference between low fat and fat free! I want Fate Free Recipes to be free from any and all added fats!! No tahini, no oil, no butter, schmalz, bacon fat, chicken fat, fat lips, sesame oil etc. NONE!


15 Susan Voisin January 21, 2014 at 10:53 am

Did you happen to notice the word “optional” after sesame oil? I seriously don’t understand why people come on to a free website just to be nasty. Would you come into someone’s home and act that way? No one is forcing you to use this recipe, so there’s no reason to get all upset about a drop of oil that you can leave out.


16 Linda January 21, 2014 at 7:15 pm

I love that you added the clementines to the salad! My favorite, quick and easy, lunch is chickpeas, tomatoes, basil, and a lime vinaigrette. I’m definitely going to try this dressing. Thank you!


17 Kim M. February 3, 2014 at 3:11 pm

Susan, this is a FANTASTIC dressing! I can’t stop eating it. I couldn’t find wasabi powder at Whole Foods so I just got a little packet of prepared wasabi at the sushi area there. It added the perfect heat to this dressing. So many times I’ve tried (and failed) to make a ginger dressing like those you get at a Japanese restaurant. You nailed it with this one. Thanks!!!


18 Corrin Radd March 2, 2014 at 6:23 pm

Made this dressing today and loved it over baby spinach!


19 Em March 9, 2014 at 3:37 pm

Will make! My son loves wasabi on everything!


20 Joyce Glass April 7, 2014 at 12:59 pm

Wonder if you’ve ever tried the Nutribullet 900 watt. I love my Vitamix and have had it for more than 15 years, but when I want to make something with less quantity, the Nutribullet is at least as powerful and because the blades are in the lid, it’s easier to get the stuff out of the bottom of the containers (which come in three sizes). I love it for sauces and dressings as well as smaller smoothie drinks. It only has one speed, very high, but that’s what I want a high speed mixer for! It’s also less expensive than a Vitamix and takes up a lot less counter or cabinet space. I didn’t try the Nutribullet 600 watt because I read some reviews that indicated that the 900 was much better. This is not an advertisement but, because I’ve been so happy with mine, I just thought I’d suggest it in case you might be interested.


21 Anne E. McGuigan July 12, 2014 at 7:55 pm

Hi Susan,
I made this dressing for tonite’s main meal salad. I used black pepper instead of wasabi and half a large orange instead of the clementines. We poured it over kale, chickpeas, beets and red pepper. It was absolutely delicious. Many thanks.


22 Anne E. McGuigan July 14, 2014 at 7:52 am

Hi Susan,
I provided a link to your delicious salad dressing on my most recent post. You may be interested in taking a look. Many thanks.


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