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Thousand Island Salad Dressing Recipe

This Thousand Island salad dressing is a classic and has been one of my favorite salad dressings since I was a child. I love the delicious blend of flavors that come together and make any salad taste special. The little “island” of relish add texture and flavor, while the creaminess of what holds it all together will send your senses into orbit, in a good way!

Jar of Thousand Island salad dressing next to a platter of fresh vegetables

Ways to Serve Homemade Thousand Island

Once you’ve tried homemade Thousand Island dressing on your salad, you’ll never want to go back to the bottled version. And that’s okay because it’s so easy to make!

In fact, you’ll probably look around at other foods you can add it to or dip into it. That’s what I did. I love it on salads, used as veggie dip, and on sandwiches.

I’d almost forgotten about this delicious dressing, until I was in the mood for a crunchy wedge salad for lunch. But I didn’t want any of the bottled dressings we had.

Then I remembered my old-school Thousand Island recipe and decided to make that.

Thousand Island salad dressing on a wedge of lettuce

I checked my pantry and fridge to make sure we had all of the ingredients. We had everything I needed, so I made it and took a few pictures.

This dressing is also delicious on a mixed greens salad. You can even swap it out with the dressing on this creamy coleslaw recipe.

I’ve never tried it, but I think it would also be good mixed into this broccoli slaw. It has just the right amount of sweetness to balance the flavors.

Another salad this dressing would be good on is this Cobb salad with chicken from Miz Helen’s Country Cottage.

Not only does this delicious dressing taste wonderful on salads, but also it’s good as a dip or topping for other vegetables and meat.

Serve it alongside a veggie platter on the appetizer table. Or offer it as a dipping sauce with chicken strips.

No matter how you serve this homemade Thousand Island dressing, it will be a huge hit.

Although the bottled version of this dressing is okay, this is absolutely delicious and almost as easy.

Thousand Island Salad Dressing Ingredients

I’ve been making Thousand Island dressing for as long as I can remember, and my recipe has changed through the years.

My earliest attempts only had 3 ingredients, and it turned out pretty good. But as my cooking skills matured, I added more things to make it taste even better.

So now, I start with the base of the first 3 ingredients—mayonnaise, ketchup, and sweet pickle relish.

Ketchup, mayonnaise, mustard, and sweet pickle relish

I also add chopped onion, honey, minced garlic, vinegar, mustard, salt, and pepper. You don’t have to include everything, but it’s really good with these ingredients.

Ketchup, mayonnaise, sweet pickle relish, apple cider vinegar, honey, mustard, minced garlic, chopped onions, salt, and pepper

For exact measurements of each ingredient and full directions, go to the recipe card at the bottom of the page. You can even print out the card by using the “print” button.

How to Make Thousand Island Salad Dressing

You’ll love how easy this recipe is to follow. First of all, you’ll need a medium-small bowl to mix the ingredients.

Next, measure out all of the ingredients into the bowl. Stir until it’s all well mixed.

All of the ingredients mixed in a bowl

Finally, cover the dressing and put it in the fridge to allow the flavors to come together.

I like to transfer the dressing to a mason jar and put the lid on. It will be good for several days as long as you keep it refrigerated.

Homemade Thousand Island salad dressing in a mason jar with a lid on it

If you don’t have a jar that’s the right size, put a plastic cover over the bowl before you refrigerate it.

This salad dressing recipe is actually pretty flexible. In fact, you can increase or decrease the amount of each ingredient.

You can even leave out anything you don’t care for. Or if you’re out of something, you should be fine.

Sometimes I don’t have onion. So I’ll leave that out. It’s still delicious!

Another thing you might want to substitute is sugar for the honey. Or you can use maple syrup for a totally different flavor.

I’m a big believer in tweaking recipes to make them my own. I certainly hope people do that with all of my recipes because you know what your family likes.

Thousand Island salad dressing beside a plate of vegetables and on top of a wedge of lettuce

Extra Tips for Making the Best Thousand Island Dressing

Following this recipe as stated will deliver some wonderful salad dressing. Here are some tips that will take it from really good to amazingly delicious:

  • Always start with the freshest and best ingredients you can find.
  • Adjust the sweet and tart balance to suit your taste. That might require frequent taste testing, but that’s fine. You’ll get the best results if you do this.
  • Add a finely chopped hardboiled egg to the dressing. This adds texture, flavor, and even more nutrition to the finished dressing.
  • Make sure the dressing is creamy and not too thick. If it is, simply add a small amount of vinegar or lemon juice.
  • Put it in the refrigerator and let it rest for at least an hour before serving. That gives the flavors a chance to meld. Then give it another stir or whisk before putting it on the table.

More Recipes

We love salads—both as a meal and as a side with any casserole or other main dish. You can also serve most salads as the main dish, simply by adding your favorite protein in bite-size pieces.

Some of our favorite casseroles include this delicious Italian chicken zucchini casserole or this yummy savory beef and rice casserole.

Italian chicken casserole in a pan

We also enjoy having a salad with these delectable creamy ranch pork chops. the pork chops are amazing comfort food that goes so well with almost anything.

plate of creamy ranch pork chops with rice and broccoli

The beauty of having a salad as the main part of dinner is that you can enjoy dessert without guilt. At least, that’s how I operate.

I make so many scrumptious desserts it’s hard to pick a few. So I base my decision on my mood at the moment. Right now, this mint chocolate ice cream sounds good.

Cookies are great for dessert too. We love these flourless peanut butter cookies that are deliciously gluten-free.

plate of peanut butter cookies

Homemade Salad Dressing

Sure, you can buy bottled dressings for your salad. But there’s something special about homemade salad dressing. You can add or subtract … or even substitute ingredients to make it suit your family’s taste. This one is so good!

Yield: 4 servings

Thousand Island Salad Dressing

Thousand Island dressing next to a plate of vegetables

Add a burst of flavor to any salad with this delicious homemade Thousand Island dressing!

Prep Time 10 minutes
Total Time 10 minutes


  • 1/2 cup of mayonnaise
  • 2 tablespoons of ketchup
  • 2 tablespoons of sweet pickle relish
  • 1 teaspoon of finely chopped onion
  • 1 teaspoon of honey
  • 1/4 teaspoon of minced garlic
  • 1/4 teaspoon of apple cider vinegar
  • 1/4 teaspoon of mustard
  • Salt and pepper to taste


    1. Mix all of the ingredients in a small bowl.
    2. Place a lid on the bowl or cover it in plastic wrap.
    3. Refrigerate the salad dressing for a couple of hours before serving it.


  • If you want a spicier dressing, add chili powder, Tabasco, or cayenne pepper.
  • If you don’t care for onion or garlic, you can leave it out.
  • If you don’t have apple cider vinegar, use whatever vinegar you have.
  • Another great addition is a chopped boiled egg. This thickens the dressing and adds even more flavor and body to the salad.
  • Taste the dressing and add more of what you think it needs before you serve it.

Nutrition Information



Serving Size


Amount Per Serving Calories 212Total Fat 21gSaturated Fat 3gTrans Fat 0gUnsaturated Fat 17gCholesterol 12mgSodium 386mgCarbohydrates 7gFiber 0gSugar 6gProtein 0g

The nutrition information is a product of online calculators. I try to provide true and accurate information, but these numbers are estimates.

Did you make this recipe?

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Miz Helen

Saturday 22nd of August 2020

Your Thousand Island Salad Dressing recipe looks fantastic! Thanks so much for giving a mention to my Chicken Cobb Salad, you are right it would be so good on that salad, can't wait to try it! Thanks so much for sharing your talent with us at Full Plate Thursday and please come back soon! Miz Helen

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