Best Tahini Sauce

In Essential Recipes/ Recipes

The Best Lemon Tahini Sauce is a vegan tahini sauce that’s perfect for anything: a Buddha bowl sauce, on a sandwich or veggie burger, over nachos, or as a dip for veggies!

Best Lemon Tahini Sauce | A Couple Cooks

Alex and I have been making this lemon tahini dressing for quite a while now, but decided we should share it as its own recipe. Because it’s that good. Yes, we put it on everything. As a Buddha bowl tahini dressing (or for bowl meals, whatever you call them!). On sweet potatoes. On sandwiches and veggie burgers. Really anything that tastes good tastes better with lemon tahini sauce. It’s so easy to make! And if you’re like me, you might be wondering how to use up the tahini that you bought to make homemade hummus. We’re so passionate about this sauce, we made a video for you and slathered it on our chickpea couscous bowls. Keep reading for the recipe!

Watch how to make lemon tahini sauce

What is tahini? Is tahini vegan?

Tahini is a paste made of sesame seeds that’s used in Middle Eastern or Mediterranean dishes. And yes, tahini is vegan. It’s purely sesame seeds and salt, according to the package in our refrigerator. We use tahini in our homemade hummus recipe, but we also use it in all sorts of other things. Tahini dressing (lot of versions) and even our new favorite: chocolate tahini cookies!

How to make lemon tahini sauce

Making lemon tahini sauce could not be simpler! Just whisk together equal parts tahini and fresh lemon juice, then add olive oil, kosher salt, and a bit of maple syrup. A few notes: do not substitute bottled lemon juice here: you’ve got to have the real thing from fresh lemons! We like to add maple syrup to balance the acidity a bit, but you could omit it if you’re on a sugar free diet.

Once you’ve whisked together these components, the dressing will be very thick. Then whisk in water until it comes to a creamy consistency. For our recipe, we’ve used 2 tablespoons of water, but this can vary based on the tahini brand. Brands of tahini can vary widely from very creamy to chunky and thick, so make sure to eyeball it and adjust as needed. Also, some tahini brands will need to be stirred for several minutes to make sure the consistency is even, like with peanut butter.

Best Lemon Tahini Sauce | A Couple Cooks

Looking for more tahini recipes?

Outside of our Best Lemon Tahini Sauce recipe, here are a few other tahini recipes from A Couple Cooks:

This recipe is…

This Best Lemon Tahini Sauce recipe is vegetarian, gluten-free, vegan, plant-based, dairy-free, naturally sweet, and refined sugar-free.

Tahini Recipes to Make Healthy Eating Delicious | What is tahini sauce

Best Tahini Sauce

1 Star (2 votes, average: 5.00 out of 1)

  • Author: Sonja
  • Prep Time: 5 minutes
  • Cook Time: 0 minutes
  • Total Time: 5 minutes
  • Yield: About 2/3 cup (~10 tablespoons)
  • Category: Sauce
  • Method: Whisked
  • Cuisine: Mediterranean


This lemon tahini sauce is a vegan tahini dressing that’s perfect for anything—a Buddha bowl, on a sandwich or veggie burger, over nachos, or as a dip for veggies!


  • 1/3 cup tahini
  • 1/3 cup fresh lemon juice (2 small or 1 1/2 large lemons)
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon maple syrup
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 2 tablespoons water


  1. In a small bowl, combine the tahini, lemon juice, olive oil, maple syrup, and kosher salt and whisk to combine. Add the water and whisk until a creamy dressing forms; you may need to add a bit more depending on the consistency of your tahini.
  2. Serve immediately or refrigerate and bring to room temperature before serving. Extra dressing keeps for about 1 month in a sealed container in the refrigerator.

Keywords: How to Make Tahini Dressing, Homemade Salad Dressing, tahini sauce, lemon tahini dressing

About the Authors

Sonja Overhiser

Cookbook Author and writer

Sonja Overhiser is author and recipe developer of Pretty Simple Cooking, named one of the “best vegetarian cookbooks” by Epicurious, and a recipe developer and healthy & sustainable food advocate behind the award-nominated food blog A Couple Cooks.

Alex Overhiser

Cookbook Author and photographer

Alex Overhiser is photographer and recipe developer of Pretty Simple Cooking, named one of the “best new cookbooks” by Bon Appetit, and a recipe developer, photographer, and technical expert at A Couple Cooks.

1 Comment

  • Reply
    Brittany Audra @ Audra's Appetite
    August 7, 2018 at 9:36 pm

    I have some tahini in my fridge…I’ve nearly forgotten about it so I can’t wait to make this sauce in my meal-prep rotation! So versatile.

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