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10 Dressing Recipes That'll Have You Actively Looking Forward to Your Salad

Are you trying to eat more salads but are underwhelmed by store-bought healthy dressings?

Let’s be honest — salads can taste pretty bland if you don’t jazz them up with an incredibly flavorful dressing. But don’t settle for the boring bottled stuff--make your own delicious dressings at home. Knowing how to whip up unbelievably tasty, yet healthy, salad dressings from scratch is a wonderful culinary skill to possess. Most of the store-bought salad dressings are expensive, not to mention crazy high in calories, fat, and sodium. Just take a look at their unbelievably long lists of ingredients with difficult-to-pronounce additives. Many are loaded with artificial flavors, artificial colors, and much more sodium and sugar than you need.

For a salad to be satisfying, it needs to have a great combination of robust flavors, tantalizing textures, and a really yummy high-quality dressing. More than likely you already have most of the ingredients you’ll need right in your fridge and pantry and any of the others can be purchased at your favorite local grocery store. No need to purchase anything expensive or hard-to-find with these recipes. The simplest way to prepare these dressings is in a wide-mouth, pint-sized canning jar with a tight-fitting lid (like a mason jar). For a couple of these recipes, if you prefer a smoother, creamier consistency you could toss them in your blender instead.

Here are some of my favorite delicious, quick, easy, and, of course, healthy salad dressing recipes. Say goodbye to store-bought dressings for good with this list of insanely-scrumptious homemade versions to take your salad from so-so to so incredible!

All of these recipes make approximately 1 cup of dressing. Use up any of the dressings that contain dairy within one week. The non-dairy dressings will last up to two weeks in your fridge.

Rockin’ Ranch

Ingredients

16 ounces light sour cream

2 teaspoons white vinegar

1 shallot, finely chopped

3 cloves garlic, minced

1 Tablespoon fresh dill, finely chopped

1 Tablespoon minced chives

1/4 teaspoon salt

1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper

Per 2 Tablespoons: 71 calories, 5 grams of fat, 107 mg of sodium, 4.5 grams of carbohydrates, 0 grams of sugar, 2 grams of protein


Creamy Avocado Lime

Ingredients

1/2 of a ripe avocado

1/2 cup packed chopped cilantro

1/2 cup plain, nonfat Greek yogurt

1/4 cup white balsamic vinegar or white wine vinegar

1/4 cup water

2 cloves garlic, minced

Juice of 1 lime

1/2 teaspoon cumin

1/2 teaspoon chili powder

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper

Water to thin if necessary

Per 2 Tablespoons: 32 calories, 2 grams of fat, 2 grams of carbohydrate, 144 mg of sodium, 0 grams of sugar, 1 gram of protein


Chili-Lime Time

Ingredients

Juice and zest of 2 large limes (approximately 4 Tablespoons juice and 1 Tablespoon zest)

1/3 cup apple cider vinegar

1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil

2 Tablespoons lite (reduced sodium) soy sauce (can substitute tamari sauce to make it gluten-free)

2 packets stevia-based natural sweetener (such as Truvia)

2 cloves garlic, minced

1 teaspoon ground cumin

1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes

Per 2 Tablespoons: 69 calories, 7 grams of fat, 1.8 grams of carbohydrate, 135 milligrams of sodium, 0 grams of sugar, 0 grams of protein

Healthy Honey Mustard

Ingredients

1/4 cup Dijon mustard

1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil or canola oil

1/4 cup red wine vinegar or apple cider vinegar

1/4 cup honey

1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper

Per 2 Tablespoons: 96 calories, 7 grams of fat, 9 grams of carbohydrates, 135 mg of sodium, 8.8 grams of sugar, 0 grams of protein


Lovely Lemon Vinaigrette

Ingredients

1/4 cup white balsamic vinegar

1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil

Juice and zest of 2 lemons (approximately 1/2 cup juice and 2 Tablespoons zest)

3 cloves garlic, minced

2 packets stevia-based natural sweetener (such as Truvia)

1 Tablespoon fresh oregano, finely chopped

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper

Per 2 Tablespoons: 66 calories, 7 grams of fat, 1.5 grams of carbohydrates, 146 milligrams of sodium, 0 grams of sugar, 0 grams of protein


Thai Oh-My Peanut Dressing

Ingredients

1/2 cup powdered peanut butter (like PB2)

1/4 cup water

2 Tablespoons sesame oil, toasted

2 Tablespoons white vinegar

2 medium scallions, finely chopped

2 teaspoons fresh ginger, grated (or 1/2 teaspoon dry ginger)

1 teaspoon sriracha (use more or less based on the level of heat you prefer)

1/4 teaspoon fish sauce (this is optional)

1/4 teaspoon salt

2 packets stevia-based natural sweetener (such as Truvia)

Per 2 Tablespoons: 60 calories, 4 grams of fat, 4 grams of carbohydrate, 137 milligrams of sodium, 1 gram of sugar, 3 grams of protein

Greek Blue Cheese

Ingredients

1/2 cup plain, nonfat Greek yogurt

2 Tablespoons buttermilk

Juice of 1/2 a lemon (~2 Tablespoons)

1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce

2 cloves garlic, minced

1/2 cup blue cheese, finely crumbled

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper

Per 2 Tablespoons: 40 calories, 2 grams of fat, 1 gram of carbohydrates, 255 milligrams of sodium, 1 gram of sugar, 3 grams of protein


Miso Hungry Ginger Sesame Dressing

Ingredients

2-inch piece fresh ginger, grated or minced

3 Tablespoons miso

Juice of 2 limes

1 Tablespoon lite soy sauce

3 Tablespoons toasted sesame oil

1/3 cup white vinegar

2 packets stevia-based natural sweetener (such as Truvia)

Per 2 Tablespoons: 59 calories, 5.4 grams of fat, 2 grams of carbohydrates, 264 milligrams of sodium, 0 grams of sugar, 0.8 grams of protein


Raspberry Vinaigrette

Ingredients

1/2 cup raspberries, fresh or thawed from frozen

2 Tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil

2 Tablespoons water

3 Tablespoons red wine vinegar

1 Tablespoon Dijon mustard

2 packets stevia-based natural sweetener (such as Truvia)

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper

Per 2 Tablespoons: 36 calories, 3.5 grams of fat, 1 gram of carbohydrates, 142 milligrams of sodium, 0.5 grams of fiber, 0 grams of sugar, 0 grams of protein


Creamy Dreamy Vinaigrette

Ingredients

1/4 cup white balsamic vinegar

1/4 cup plain, nonfat Greek yogurt

1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil

Juice of 1/2 lemon (~2 Tablespoons)

3 cloves garlic, minced

2 packets stevia-based natural sweetener (such as Truvia)

2 teaspoons dried Italian seasoning

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper

Per 2 Tablespoons: 68 calories, 6.6 grams of fat, 1 gram of carbohydrate, 151 milligrams of sodium, 0 grams of sugar, 1.4 grams of protein

Bonus: Not only do these homemade dressings make your salads pop with flavor, you can also drizzle them over oven-roasted vegetables, grilled chicken breast or fish, as marinades for your favorite meat, poultry, seafood, or tofu, or as a dip for raw veggies.


[Image via Shutterstock]

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