Rich, smooth, and zesty, this tahini sauce recipe is an easy way to elevate any menu. Looking for more recipes with tahini? You’ll love my smoky, savory Baba Ganoush and creamy Hummus—perfect additions to a mezze platter, Mediterranean appetizer, or sandwich spread.

A spoonful of lemon tahini sauce being drizzled in a jar.

Lemon Tahini Sauce Ingredients

This easy tahini sauce recipe requires only five simple ingredients. Below, you’ll discover everything you need to make the creamiest, most vibrant condiment in your cookbook.

Ingredients for the sauce from the top view.
  • Tahini (aka sesame seed paste): High-quality tahini is essential when making this delicious sauce recipe. You should be able to find premade tahini paste in the Middle Eastern section of your local grocery store, or you can purchase it online (my favorite store-bought tahini is from Soom Foods!). Before using, stir or shake your tahini to avoid unwanted settling, and then store the rest in the refrigerator for up to one week.
  • Lemon juice: I always use fresh lemon juice in this recipe due to its rich, bright taste. However, you can also use store-bought lemon juice, depending on what you have on hand.
  • Garlic: I recommend using finely minced or pressed garlic to ensure its flavors distribute evenly throughout the mixture.
  • Salt
  • Water: Cold water is the key to adjusting this sauce’s consistency.

Optional Add-Ins

Turning this simple tahini sauce into a culinary masterpiece is easy with a few optional add-ins. Here are a few that we recommend:

  • Lemon herb tahini sauce: To create a more herbaceous blend, add ½ cups of fresh herbs, such as cilantro or parsley, to your tahini sauce. This variation has an extra-bright flavor and makes an incomparable addition to my vegan Mediterranean Nachos.
  • Seasonings: To make a flavored tahini sauce, add a pinch of other spices. For instance, you can make a turmeric tahini sauce by adding ¼ teaspoon of turmeric powder or play around with different flavors by adding ingredients like cumin, paprika, dill, or black pepper.
  • Sweet tahini cream sauce: Although it’s not a traditional ingredient, you can give this sauce a sweeter finish by adding a tablespoon of honey or maple syrup to the mix.
  • Dijon mustard: Add a teaspoon of Dijon mustard for a nice zing that complements the zesty flavors of this tahini garlic sauce.
  • Olive oil: Tahini paste provides a creamy consistency, but a teaspoon of olive oil can be added to mellow its robust flavor.

How to Make Tahini Sauce

There’s no need to stress when learning how to prepare this simple sauce. This iconic Middle Eastern recipe is a cinch, whether you’re a gourmet chef or a kitchen novice.

A collage of images showing how to prepare tahini sauce.
  1. Mix the ingredients: Place the tahini, lemon juice, garlic, and salt into a small bowl. Whisk the ingredients to the best of your ability, knowing that the mixture will be thick.
  2. Add water: Pour the water into the bowl while still whisking until smooth. You may use more or less water to achieve your desired consistency.
  3. Serve: Taste the mixture for seasoning and add more if necessary. Store it in a mason jar in the refrigerator or use it right away.

Tahini Sauce Uses

When deciding what to make with tahini sauce, the options are endless. Below, I’ve listed my favorite uses, from light vegetable sides to hearty main dishes.

  • Dipping sauce: This tahini dip recipe is a must when serving mezze platters and veggie trays. Try serving it alongside a plate of fresh vegetables—like cucumber, carrots, and tomatoes—and you’ll never have to stress over party appetizers again.
  • Shawarma: Since they’re both packed with rich Middle Eastern taste, I love using tahini sauce for shawarma recipes, such as my spiced Chicken Shawarma and succulent Beef Shawarma. You can even use this classic Mediterranean tahini sauce for gyros—the Greek version of shawarma—or transform it into a tahini spread for a flavor-packed wrap or pita pocket. 
  • Grilled meat and fish: This easy recipe pairs beautifully with grilled meat and fish dishes. Try using this tahini sauce for roasted or grilled chicken, lamb, salmon, or your favorite white fish, and prepare for an explosion of earthy, zesty flavors.
  • Drizzle over roasted veggies: Roasted veggies taste out of this world with a drizzle of this lemon tahini recipe. In particular, this sauce makes a delectable addition to savory-sweet dishes like my Baked Butternut Squash Cubes, Roasted Eggplant, Roasted Cauliflower, and Roasted Butternut Squash and Sweet Potatoes.
  • Salads and grain bowls: Another great way to use this creamy sauce is in fresh salads and grain bowls. This sauce works exceptionally well when bringing out the zingy, garden-fresh taste of my Butternut Squash Tahini Salad and Sweet Potato Quinoa Bowl.
  • Falafel: Using sesame tahini sauce for falafel balls is a fantastic option to complement the dish’s herby, nutty taste.

Aysegul’s Expert Tips

Learning to make tahini sauce from scratch is easy. However, if you want to make the best tahini sauce, these top-notch tips will ensure your recipe is as creamy, flavorful, and rich as possible.

  • Stir tahini before using: Like other natural seed and nut butters, tahini tends to separate during storage, with its oils rising to the top and its solids sinking to the bottom. Therefore, just like you would do with peanut butter, it’s necessary to stir your tahini before adding it to your recipe.
  • Adjust the sauce’s consistency: One of the best ways to make this lemon garlic tahini sauce as versatile as possible is to adjust its consistency. Add more water to your mixture if you want a thinner tahini drizzle—similar to other creamy salad dressings—or use less liquid for a thicker, creamy tahini sauce.
  • Food processor: If you are making a large batch of this sauce, we recommend using a food processor (or a blender) to achieve the ultimate creamy consistency.
  • Resting time: If you have time, I suggest letting the sauce rest for a few minutes before serving. This way, all the ingredients will have time to mix, develop, and infuse the mixture.
  • Experiment with seasoning and add-ins: With so many uses for this easy lemon tahini sauce, I highly recommend playing around with its flavor and consistency to complement your main dish.


What is tahini sauce made of?

Traditional Mediterranean tahini sauce comes together with a few main ingredients: tahini (a creamy paste made from ground sesame seeds), lemon juice, salt, and water. However, there are many variations on this classic Middle Eastern condiment, including those that add extra flavors with fresh garlic, cumin, parsley, cilantro, and more.

What does tahini sauce taste like?

Tahini sauce has a deliciously complex flavor profile, making it an ideal condiment for countless dishes. Tangy, savory, earthy, and mildly bitter, this classic Middle Eastern sauce tastes as great alongside shawarma as it does with a bowl of greens.

What does tahini sauce look like?

Generally, tahini sesame sauce has a light tan color with a yellowish tint, depending on the amount of lemon juice or garlic added to the mixture. The sauce is also known for its smooth, creamy texture, though its thickness may vary from liquidity to a thicker, dip-like consistency, depending on the amount of water you add.

Is tahini good for you?

Though everything is good in moderation, tahini has many health benefits, including improving cardiovascular health, reducing cancer risk, and helping with inflammation.

Other Sauce Recipes You Might Also Like:

If you make your own Lemon Tahini Sauce following our recipe, I would greatly appreciate it if you could take a minute to rate it and leave a comment below. It is a great way to support this website and help those planning to make it. Also, if you took pictures, I’d love to see them. Share your creations on Instagram using #foolproofeats so I can share them with the Foolproof Living community.

Lemon Tahini Sauce Recipe

5 from 1 vote
Yields4 servings
Prep Time5 minutes
Total Time5 minutes
This Lemon Tahini Sauce is perfect for salads, falafel, shawarma, and more! Ready in 5 minutes, this classic Middle Eastern condiment is creamy, nutty, and delicious.


  • ½ cup tahini paste, stirred well
  • ¼ cup lemon juice
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced finely or pressed
  • ½ teaspoon kosher salt, more as needed
  • ¼ cup cold water, more as needed


  • Place tahini, lemon juice, garlic, and salt in a bowl. Whisk (as much as you can) until combined. It will be thick, and that is normal.
  • Pour in the water and continue whisking until it is smooth. You can adjust the consistency by adding more (or less) water.
  • Taste for seasoning and add more if necessary.


  • Yields: This recipe makes approximately 2/3 cup tahini sauce, which is ideal for serving 4-6 people, depending on the dish you plan to use this recipe. The below nutritional values are per serving for 4 people.
  • Adjust consistency and seasoning: Use this recipe as a starting point and adjust consistency based on your preference or the recipe you plan on pairing it with. You can make it thinner by adding more water and vice versa.
  • Storing, freezing, and thawing the leftover sauce: Garlic lemon tahini sauce is the perfect condiment for anyone who enjoys no-fuss meal prep. Here is how I store leftovers:
    • Storing: Transfer the prepared tahini sauce to an airtight container or tightly sealed mason jar and store it in the refrigerator for up to one week. Keep in mind that this sauce tends to separate and thicken during storage, so you might have to whisk a little cold water into the mixture before serving.
    • Freezing: Technically, you can freeze tahini sauce, although extreme temperatures might mess with its consistency. Still, you can freeze this recipe by pouring it into an airtight container and freezing it for up to one month. Or, for easier portioning, you can place the garlic lemon tahini sauce into the compartments of an ice cube tray, freeze until solid, then transfer the individual cubes into a freezer-safe Ziploc bag.
    • Thawing: Place your frozen tahini sauce in the refrigerator overnight to thaw. Because separation is inevitable during freezing, remember to stir it well to regain its creamy, well-incorporated texture before serving.


Calories: 183kcal | Carbohydrates: 8g | Protein: 5g | Fat: 16g | Saturated Fat: 2g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 7g | Monounsaturated Fat: 6g | Sodium: 302mg | Potassium: 159mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 0.4g | Vitamin A: 21IU | Vitamin C: 8mg | Calcium: 47mg | Iron: 1mg

Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.

Additional Info

Course: Condiment/Sauce
Cuisine: Middle Eastern
Tried this recipe?Mention @foolproofliving or tag #foolproofeats!

About Aysegul Sanford

Hello Friend! I'm Aysegul but you can call me “Ice." I’m the cook/recipe-tester/photographer behind this site.

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5 from 1 vote

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