This healthier homemade French dressing is SO creamy, indulgent, and full of sweet, tangy flavor. But with only half as much sugar as the store-bought alternative! Use mayonnaise for a thick & creamy French dressing recipe, or skip the mayo if you prefer classic French or Catalina dressing. Blend it up & have it ready in 5 minutes!

Try my homemade ranch dressing or Italian salad dressing for more store-bought dressing remakes!

Creamy French Dressing Recipe

What is French dressing?

Creamy French dressing is made of oil, vinegar, ketchup, sugar, onion, & spices, plus mayonnaise for creaminess. You might know it as “the orange French dressing” (like Kraft creamy French), which tastes sweet, tangy, and tomatoey, with a rich, thick texture &. To me, it’s like the ‘ketchup’ of salad dressings: it makes everything taste better! It’s similar to Thousand Island dressing, except creamy French is more oil-based & made with less mayo.

Another variation is ‘classic’ French or Catalina dressing, or “the red French dressing,” which has a thinner consistency & more ketchup-forward flavor. Catalina French dressing is basically a ‘ketchup vinaigrette,’ made with oil, vinegar, ketchup, & sugar (and sometimes mustard and/or Worcestershire), but no mayo. Depending on what you like, this can be a classic/Catalina or a creamy French dressing recipe—just omit or add mayo!

Homemade French Dressing

Creamy French Dressing Ingredients

  • Avocado Oil. This is my go-to because I always have it at home, but you can use any neutral-tasting vegetable oil in this recipe: light olive oil, canola oil, or whatever you prefer. Skip more flavorful or unrefined oils like extra-virgin olive oil or walnut oil because those strong flavors will come through in your dressing.
  • Ketchup. Unlike tomato paste, ketchup adds tomatoey flavor and sweetness all-in-one. And both creamy & classic French dressing are supposed to taste sweet! I like regular Heinz or Heinz “Simply” ketchup with no high-fructose corn syrup, but you can use any ketchup you want.
  • Mayonnaise. For a classic or Catalina French dressing recipe, skip the mayonnaise. But for an easy creamy French dressing, use whatever mayonnaise you like! Try avocado oil mayo for a less-processed option—my personal favorite is homemade avocado oil mayonnaise because it always turns out the creamiest & tastiest.
  • Yellow Sweet Onion. Some yellow onion adds a bright flavor that makes this homemade French dressing taste noticeably fresher than store-bought! No need to mince—just rough-chop it since you’re blending it anyway.
  • Apple Cider Vinegar. To balance the sweetness in this dressing, don’t forget a dash of apple cider vinegar for acidity! Or you could use white vinegar, although it will add a more sour flavor.
  • Sugar. You don’t need much here—especially if you’re using classic ketchup with real sugar. Around 2 Tbsp sugar was plenty sweet for me, and this copycat French dressing recipe still only has half as much (3g) sugar per serving compared to store-bought (6g). Of course, add more or less sugar to your taste!
  • Spices. Elevate this simple dressing by adding paprika for sweet smokiness, onion or garlic powder for savoriness, and salt to enhance all of the flavors.
Best Creamy French Dressing Recipe

For a Classic or Catalina French Dressing Recipe

  • Skip the mayonnaise, but follow the rest of the recipe as described.
  • Add ½ tsp mustard powder and/or 1 tsp Worcestershire—both of which are popular classic French dressing ingredients.
  • Consider using red wine vinegar instead of apple cider vinegar. Many recipes use this for a redder color—but it also has a sharper, more acidic taste, so those recipes also use more added sugar.
Add all French dressing ingredients into a blender and blend until smooth.
Add oil, ketchup, mayonnaise, sweet onion, apple cider vinegar, sugar, paprika, onion powder, and salt to a blender. (For a classic or Catalina French dressing, skip the mayo.)
Blend homemade dressing and store in the fridge.
Blend until the dressing is smooth and integrated. Serve over salad immediately, or store in a sealed bottle in the fridge.

How to Make French Dressing at Home (Creamy or Classic)

  1. Into a blender, add neutral vegetable oil, ketchup, mayonnaise (for creamy French dressing), yellow onion, apple cider vinegar, sugar, paprika, onion powder, and salt. (Omit the mayo for a classic french Dressing.)
  2. Blend the mixture until it’s smooth, creamy, and integrated.
  3. Transfer your dressing into a bottle or jar and seal it with a lid. (These tall glass dressing pourer bottles are so perfect!)
  4. Serve over a simple romaine salad, spinach salad, or whatever you like!
  5. You can store this homemade French salad dressing in the fridge for up to 2 weeks.

You can see how I make this copycat French dressing & more in my Salad Dressing Remakes video!

How to Make French Dressing with Mayo
Homemade French Dressing

Easy Creamy French Dressing

This healthier homemade French dressing is full of sweet, tangy flavor—with only half as much sugar as store-bought! Use mayo for a thick & creamy dressing, or skip it for a more classic French dressing or Catalina dressing.
5 stars (2 ratings)


  • ½ cup avocado oil, (or light olive oil, canola oil—any neutral vegetable oil)
  • cup ketchup
  • cup mayonnaise, (optional, for a creamy or "orange" French dressing)
  • ¼ cup yellow sweet onion, rough chopped
  • 3 Tbsp apple cider vinegar
  • 2-5 Tbsp sugar, (optional, to taste)
  • ½ tsp paprika
  • ½ tsp onion powder, or garlic powder
  • ½ tsp salt


  • Add all ingredients to a blender and blend until smooth.
  • Transfer to an airtight jar or bottle to store. Will last in the fridge for up to 2 weeks.
  • Yields ~1¾ cups French dressing.


Nutrition Notes

Per 2 Tbsp creamy French dressing (made with store-bought avocado oil mayo)
122 calories | 12.5g fat | 3.5g carbs | 0g fiber | 3g sugars | 0g protein
195mg sodium | 5mg cholesterol
Per 2 Tbsp creamy French dressing (made with homemade avocado oil mayo)
131 calories | 13.3g fat | 3.5g carbs | 0g fiber | 3g sugars | 0.2g protein
165mg sodium | 4mg cholesterol
Serving: 2Tbsp, Calories: 131kcal, Carbohydrates: 3.5g, Protein: 0.2g, Fat: 13.3g, Cholesterol: 4mg, Sodium: 165mg, Sugar: 1g
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