Vibrant Delight: Crafting Homemade Catalina Dressing

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Sweet, tangy, and slightly smoky, this salad dressing brings together the richness of extra virgin olive oil, the tanginess of red wine vinegar, the tomatoey goodness of ketchup, and the perfect blend of seasonings. Elevate your salad game with this versatile dressing that’s easy to make and bursting with flavor.

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Vibrant Delight: Crafting Homemade Catalina Dressing

Ingredients & Substitutions

Olive Oil:

Extra virgin olive oil not only provides a smooth texture but also enriches the flavor profile of the dressing.

Red Wine Vinegar:

Offering a tangy and slightly acidic kick, red wine vinegar balances the sweetness. If unavailable, white wine vinegar serves as a suitable substitute.


Contributing to both the red hue and the tomatoey essence, ketchup is a key player in Catalina dressing.


Granulated sugar is the perfect counterpart to the vinegar, bringing balance by adding sweetness to the mix.


Paprika, onion powder, and celery seed unite to create a delightful medley of smoky, spicy, sweet, and earthy flavors.

Vibrant Delight: Crafting Homemade Catalina Dressing

Making Without an Immersion Blender

Certainly! If you lack an immersion blender, fear not. A bit of arm strength and a trusty whisk will do the trick. While it may take a few minutes of whisking to dissolve the sugar, the end result will be equally delicious. Alternatively, pulse the ingredients in a food processor for convenience.

Catalina vs. French Dressing

Though similar, Catalina and French dressings boast subtle distinctions. Catalina dressing tends to be thinner, resembling a vinaigrette, and exhibits a brighter reddish-orange hue. French dressing, on the other hand, leans towards a more orange color. Flavor-wise, Catalina dressing accentuates a prominent tomato flavor and is typically a tad sweeter due to a higher sugar content compared to French dressing.

Storing Catalina Dressing

Preserve the freshness of your homemade Catalina dressing by storing it in an airtight container, such as a mason jar with a lid, in the refrigerator. This delectable dressing will keep its quality for up to 2 weeks. Before use, a quick shake or stir will ensure it’s ready to enhance your salads with its vibrant flavors.

Vibrant Delight: Crafting Homemade Catalina Dressing


  • ½ cup (107.25 g) extra virgin olive oil
  • ½ cup (59.75 g) red wine vinegar
  • ¼ cup (60 g) ketchup
  • ¼ cup (50 g) granulated sugar
  • ½ teaspoon paprika
  • ½ teaspoon onion powder
  • ¼ teaspoon celery seed


  1. Add olive oil, red wine vinegar, ketchup, sugar, paprika, onion powder, and celery seed to a mason jar.
  2. Utilize an immersion blender to thoroughly mix the ingredients until the sugar dissolves.
  3. Store the dressing in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 2 weeks.

Vibrant Delight: Crafting Homemade Catalina Dressing

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