Homemade dressings are always the better choice over store-bought dressings, and my Homemade Thousand Island Dressing is no exception! This is a tangy and zesty dressing that can be used for much more than a lettuce salad and it’s easy to make! If you are sold on homemade dressings like I am, be sure to try my Homemade Ranch Dressing or Caesar Dressing.

Homemade Thousand Island Dressing

Thousand Island Dressing

Every time I go to a restaurant and order a salad, the first question I ask is if they have Thousand Island dressing since it is one of my favorite dressings. If they do have it (which is hit or miss), I get super excited! Then, the big question…Is it homemade or do you make it in-house? If the answer is yes, again, I get even more excited! (Hey, sometimes it’s the little things that make me the happiest!) It actually seems to be gaining some steam in restaurants because I have noticed it is not just for the supper clubs and salad bars anymore, and I have to admit that I have tried some decent Thousand Island at a couple of my favorite spots.

However, I am not going to go out to eat every time I want a decent dressing! I have purchased so many brands of Thousand Island dressings in the past, and they just never lived up to what I expected. Either they were too runny (I have always preferred a thicker Thousand Island dressing, especially for dipping my croutons), or they just lacked the flavor I was expecting. Well, it made total sense to make my own! And, you can even make homemade mayonnaise to use in the recipe.

Ingredients for Thousand Island Dressing

Why is it Called Thousand Island?

To me, Thousand Island is the perfect name for this dressing that was named after the beautiful Thousand Islands region located between the United States and Canada, since it has such a lovely taste. (At least, that is the romantic version of the history of Thousand Island Dressing I like to go with.)

How Long will Homemade Dressing Last?

You should be able to store this in your refrigerator for up to 2 weeks. I typically look at the expiration date of the sour cream (since that would be the first to spoil). Use a permanent marker and make a note on the storage bottle so that you don’t run into issues down the road. We like to use squeeze bottles with a lid.

Whisking Homemade Thousand Island Dressing

Ways to Use Thousand Island Dressing

The most obvious way to use Thousand Island Dressing is over your lettuce salad. But, you can use it in other ways as well! Try it for the following:

Reuben SandwichPutting Thousand Island on a Reuben Sandwich is somewhat controversial…well, as controversial as dressings can be, I suppose. The great debate is ‘Should a Reuben be served with Thousand Island or Russian Dressing?’ I used my Homemade Russian Dressing for my Reuben recipe, but it is all about your taste buds or loyalty to the original on this one. How about trying the Thousand Island on my Reuben Sliders?

Dip In: Thousand Island is a great dip! Use this recipe for vegetables like cauliflower, celery, carrots, and broccoli. Take it a step farther by using this to make my Reuben Dip! Have you tried it with your french fries??? (That question means to go for it!)

Sandwich Spread: Thousand Island is not just ‘sandwiched’ in-between Reubens anymore. It is worth trying on any burger or sandwich!

Thousand Island Dressing over a lettuce salad


5 from 1 vote

Homemade Thousand Island

Prep Time 5 minutes
Chill 30 minutes
This tangy and zesty Thousand Island Dressing can be used for much more than a lettuce salad and it's easy to make!


  • ½ cup (116 g) mayo
  • ½ cup (115 g) sour cream
  • 3 tablespoons ketchup
  • tablespoons white vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • 1 tablespoon sweet pickle relish
  • ½ teaspoon onion powder
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon pepper


  • Combine all ingredients in a small bowl. Whisk until smooth.

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Reader Comments

  1. This looks like a quicker version of the original version by Sophia LaLonde. It has chopped boiled egg, red bell peppers and olives along with the relish. No ketchup, but Worcestershire sauce.

  2. 5 stars
    This is wonderful I have always made my own but used only mayo , pickle relish and catsup..yours is so much better..tho I did omit the vinegar. Made it a little too tart for me.

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