Yesterday evening we had a barbecue and I made a tomato/mozzarella salad. Since I couldn't find my dressing shaker, I used my hand blender (an ESGE M180S, in case it matters).

I got my dressing as usual, dark brown in colour, it was just a bit more smooth than usual, which I expected. A few minutes after pouring it over the salad, the colour went from dark brown to a very very light brown, looking as if I'd used cream in it. The taste stayed the same as usual, but the colour change I thought was weird.

So, why would a blended dressing change its colour while a shaken dressing wouldn't?

Probably the ingredients are important to answer this, so here's what I used:

  • Olive & sunflower oil (4 tbsp each)
  • Balsamic vinegar (2 tbsp) , malt vinegar (1 tbsp), apple vinegar (1 tbsp)
  • Hibiscus syrup (2 tbsp)
  • Dried basil (1 tsp)
  • Mustard (1 tsp)
  • Salt (1 tsp), sugar (1 tsp), freshly ground pepper
  • @Knives Thanks for editing, it's probably obvious that I'm not a native speaker.
    – takrl
    Aug 3, 2011 at 20:08
  • you're doing fine - I wouldn't have guessed.
    – Shog9
    Aug 3, 2011 at 20:15

3 Answers 3


It seems I was looking in the wrong direction here. It seems to have been the Mozzarella cheese. After pouring the dressing over the salad, the cheese started to leak some white liquid, which changed the colour of the dressing.

This was something I hadn't on my radar, since I had always used the same brand of cheese, and it had never happened before. I only found out because last week I did a shaken dressing, and this caused that behavior too. So it's nothing to do with the blender ...


Sounds like some air bubbles were incorporated in the mix and started to resurface (or blend together?).

Generally little air bubbles tend to make a mixture lighter in colour, you can see that, for instance, when you mix sugar and egg yolks.

Now, I'm not sure why did it happen once you poured it on the salad...

  • Thanks. I was aware of this, but like you said, wouldn't have expected this to occur ten minutes after actually preparing the dressing.
    – takrl
    Aug 3, 2011 at 17:33
  • @takrl: could it be that the air bubbles were really tiny and started to slowly "merge together" after that? That would change their light diffracting properties. Did the color change only in the dressing poured on the salad or also the one that was left in the container (if any)?
    – nico
    Aug 3, 2011 at 17:46
  • Thanks, for the idea, but I can't really tell. Since it was considered delicious there wasn't any left in the container (I actually -sort of- had to defend it to be used for the salad :) )
    – takrl
    Aug 3, 2011 at 17:49

My first though was that it has to with the higher efficiency of the blender. Since the blender breaks up the fat into much smaller droplets than what is possible using a shaker or a whisk, that would account for the lighter color. This is also the reason why blended mayonnaise will be opaque and almost white, whereas a hand stirred mayonnaise can be quite translucent and much more yellow in color. Then I read on about the color changing from dark to light. I have absolutely no idea what that is about. Maybe somebody poured cream into it while you weren't looking? Or used magic? :)

  • Thanks. No, nobody could've poured cream into it. That would've altered the taste, and since we only returned from holiday two days ago, we haven't got any cream in the house yet :-) But good point about the blender efficiency, although I would've expected to see this when preparing it and not later on ...
    – takrl
    Aug 3, 2011 at 17:36

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