Tarragon Buttermilk Dressing

Preparation info

  • Difficulty


  • Makes about

    2¼ cups

Appears in

The Bacon Bible

The Bacon Bible

By Peter Sherman and Stephanie Banyas

Published 2019

  • About

I think of this as a béarnaise sauce, without the butter but all of the flavor. I love using it as a dip for vegetables, a dressing for salads, or an easy sauce for grilled chicken and fish.


  • 2 large shallots, chopped
  • 1 cup (240 ml) champagne vinegar or white wine vinegar
  • 1 cup (240 ml) dry white wine (such as a chardonnay)
  • 3 tablespoons chopped fresh tarragon leaves
  • cups (360 ml) store-bought mayonnaise
  • ¼ cup (60 ml) shaken buttermilk
  • ¼ teaspoon kosher salt


In a medium nonreactive saucepan, combine the shallots, vinegar, wine, and 2 tablespoons of the tarragon, bring to a boil, and cook until the mixture is reduced to ½ cup (120 ml), about 15 minutes. Let cool slightly.

In a food processor, combine the mayonnaise, buttermilk, and shallot reduction and process until smooth. Add the remaining tarragon and the salt and pulse a few times just to incorporate.

Transfer to a container with a tight-fitting lid and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes to allow the flavors to meld. The dressing will keep, tightly covered in the refrigerator, for up to 3 days.