Oyster Vinaigrette Sauce that’s bar none! If you’re looking for a fun sauce to top your oysters on the half-shell with, you’ve got to try this Mediterranean-style mignonette with red wine vinegar, fresh garlic, a dash of olive oil, and a sprinkle of sumac.

Oysters are the ultimate appetizer all year around, and especially for special occasions and holidays. Raw oyster toppings are typically made using a tasty vinegar based oyster dressing.

And whether you’re dishing up fresh raw oysters, or baked oysters – this oyster vinaigrette will be the star of the show. Without using onions or shallots, you can get a strong flavor – that typically pairs great with oysters, with a spice called Sumac, along with red wine vinegar – it’s sidekick for this recipe.

oysters cooked in air fryer with vinaigrette topping and garnished with parsley

Sumac is the secret spice to make this vinaigrette sauce for oysters extra special. It has a purple color to it, which gives this vinaigrette it’s unique color. It’s a Mediterranean spice that is commonly used in various Middle eastern dishes, however, if you’d like to substitute it for another common ingredient, I do share a substitute option!

checking oysters for safety


  • Red wine vinegar. Being that this is a staple ingredient, make sure your red wine vinegar is fresh to make the best oyster vinaigrette recipe. Using red wine vinegar and sumac (talked about below) eliminates the need to use shallots, making this a great mignonette recipe without shallots – which can be hard to come by when going the traditional route.

  • Extra virgin olive oil. I like using a little fat in this mignonette. If you don’t have olive oil on hand and prefer not to purchase some, substitute for butter. However, to get an authentic Mediterranean style vinaigrette, it’s best to use a good extra virgin olive oil.

  • Sumac. This is a highly used spice in Mediterranean cuisine. Traditionally used for vinaigrettes in one of our popular salads. I also used it in this Fried Feta Spinach Salad. It’s citrusy but with a deeper flavor profile. If you can’t get it in your hands and this Amazon Sumac option is not going to work in your time frame, than you can try substituting 1 teaspoon of sumac for 1/2 teaspoon of fresh lemon zest. Though it won’t be exactly the same, you will get a citrusy flavor substitute without added liquid.

  • Garlic. Freshly minced garlic is best, I wouldn’t use pre-minced garlic that’s typically sold in a jar.

  • Sprinkle of salt if you choose to would be fine.

  • Fresh Parsley. For oyster garnish chop fresh flat-leaf parsley. Parsley is also a widely used herb in Mediterranean cuisine, especially on seafood, salads, and well just about any dish.



Oyster Vinaigrette on half shell oyster


Making this oyster topping sauce is so incredibly easy, with very minimal work and almost no chopping. All you need to do is:

Collect the ingredients in a small bowl.

Stir them to combine.

Refrigerate for at least 20 minutes (if time allows).

And top to fresh or cooked oysters and enjoy!


You can store this vinaigrette sauce in an airtight container in the fridge. It should last a few weeks when stored properly.

It’s long shelf-life makes it the perfect sauce to prep in advance and have one less thing to do last minute – especially if you’re entertaining a crowd.

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  1. If you have the time, prep the vinaigrette sauce in advance and store in the fridge for at least 30 minutes for the flavors to meld .
  2. Use fresh ingredients to make a good quality mignonette that’s going to shine.

  3. Make sure to double or triple this recipe, as you see fit for the quantity of oysters you’re serving.


  • Use this vinaigrette sauce on other seafood. It makes a create dressing on a:
    • baked salmon. Add a teaspoon of sugar to the vinaigrette and use it to add great flavor on a salmon fillet.
    • white fish. Drizzle to top cooked fish and garnish with tomatoes, red onion, and other desired veggies.
    • seafood salad. You will need to 4x the recipe and add a teaspoon or two of sugar if you’re going to try a salad. This amount of vinegar, though absolutely great on oysters, doesn’t work out too well on a salad without balancing it with some sweetness.

opening oysters with an oyster knife


If you’re planning on enjoying oysters raw, then make sure you have an oyster shucking set in order to shuck them safely. You will need gloves, or a kitchen towel, and an oyster shucking knife. Simply shuck, and use this raw oyster topping to garnish!

oysters open when cooked in airfryer

If you plan to take the easy route and cook them, you can easily toss them in the air fryer and they’ll be open with no fuss! Check out how to open oyster shells in the air fryer on my site!

Or you have the option to bake them on a baking sheet in a high oven temperature until they pop open. As soon as they open, remove them and let them cool before handling. Pry off the top shell, leaving the bottom shell (the one that’s a cup shape) and pour a teaspoon or so of this delectable Mediterranean-inspired oyster vinaigrette to garnish and serve.


What dressing to put on oysters?

The best dressing to pair with oysters is a vinaigrette sauce. Raw or cooked oysters both pair extremely well with a strong vinegar or lemon-based sauce and need a mignonette or vinaigrette that can provide those strong flavors.

How to cook oysters?

Oysters can be prepared using various methods, using the grill, oven, or even the air fryer to cook them the absolute fastest way. By cooking the oysters slightly, their shells pop open making them much easier to work with. That’s all the hard work of shucking done for you.
But, if you prefer completely raw oysters, turn to an oyster knife and shucking gloves that make this process much faster and safer than using tools you have at home. Trust us, we’ve tried – our hands paid the price for a week.
Here’s a good shucking set if you’re interested.

Where to find fresh oysters?

Look to your local seafood market for fresh oysters, or turn to online distributors. Places like Taylor shellfish or other shellfish distributors can make it easy to order online and have oysters delivered to your home at a fraction of the cost of dining out.


Side Dish: With extra sumac on hand, you’ll have to try this Fried Feta and Strawberry Salad alongside! Made with fried that’s fried to perfection, strawberries and spinach with a sumac vinaigrette sauce that’s to die for!

Drink: Pair this recipe with this Spicy Mango Margarita or this Creamy Espresso Martini for a boozy dessert drink! Or try a bubbly; champagne, brut, or prosecco that are always a perfect pairing with oysters. Cheers!

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Oyster Vinaigrette on half shell oyster

Oyster Vinaigrette Sauce

Oyster Vinaigrette that's bar none! If you're looking for fun raw oyster topping, or you prefer a sauce for your cooked oysters – you've got to try this Mediterranean-style mignonette with red wine vinegar, fresh garlic, olive oil, and sumac.
It pairs great with any type of oyster, cooked or raw!
5 from 1 vote
Prep Time 5 mins
Total Time 5 mins
Course sauce, Seafood Sauce
Cuisine Mediterranean, Seafood
Servings 12 servings
Calories 21 kcal



  • In a small bowl, stir all the ingredients until combined.
  • Pour about a teaspoon into your oysters and enjoy.


Make ahead and store in the fridge for a few hours for the flavors to meld. 
Sumac substitute is 1/2 teaspoon of freshly grated lemon zest.
*vinaigrette calories are only an estimate.


Serving: 1servingCalories: 21kcal
Keyword Oyster Mignonette, sumac
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