How to make your own salad dressings … kitchen helper
Sure, store-bought salad dressings are convenient, but think about it for a minute - they can be expensive, and often contain sugar, preservatives and poor quality oils, all of which do nothing for your wellbeing. Save money and choose a healthier alternative by mixing up your own dressings. You can tweak them according to your taste and have a repertoire of a few favourites on hand in the fridge for whenever you need them.
Just combine all of the ingredients in a jar and shake them up, or blend them in a blender for a more emulsified result. Store them in a glass jar in the fridge for up to two weeks. Dressings containing olive oil will solidify in the fridge – this is not a problem. Just take them out of the fridge 20 minutes before using, or if you are in a hurry, stand in warm water for a few minutes and the dressing will re-liquify. Give it a shake and you’re good to go.
Gather up your ingredients
Most are regular pantry items and you’ll see several – olive oil, apple cider or balsamic vinegar, salt, pepper, Dijon mustard, garlic and lemon juice – are common to many dressings. Each recipe below will yield about ¾ of a cup of dressing, which is about 12 tablespoons or 6 servings. Just double the recipe if you want a larger quantity.
Apple Cider Vinegar dressing
The health benefits of apple cider vinegar and olive oil are well known, which makes this a great go-to dressing for every day. It goes with leafy or chopped salads and can also be used as a marinade for chicken. Mix or blend together:
¼ cup apple cider vinegar, ½ cup olive oil, 2 teaspoons Dijon mustard, 1 teaspoon minced garlic, 1 teaspoon salt, ½ teaspoon pepper.
If you don’t like raw garlic, feel free to leave it out.
This is a staple in the kitchen and adds zest to a green salad, is perfect over sliced tomatoes, or drizzled over roast veggies. Mix or blend together:
½ cup good quality balsamic vinegar, ¼ cup olive oil, 1 teaspoon honey or maple syrup, 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard, 1 teaspoon minced garlic (optional), ½ teaspoon salt, ½ teaspoon dried basil or thyme.
If this is too tangy for your taste, add another ¼ cup olive oil.
Honey Mustard dressing
This is great on any leafy or chopped salad, or as a dipping sauce for home-made chicken nuggets. Mix or blend together:
Juice of one lemon, ¼ cup olive oil, 2 tablespoons honey, 2 tablespoons Dijon mustard, 1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar, ½ teaspoon minced garlic or shallots (optional), ¼ teaspoon salt, grind of pepper.
Sesame and Soy dressing
For a nutty, savoury dressing ideal for Asian-style salads, mix or blend together:
¼ cup sesame oil, ¼ cup soy sauce, ¼ cup peanut oil, juice of one lime, ¼ teaspoon chilli flakes, 2 teaspoons honey.
So, get mixing and you’ll have an array of healthy dressings in the fridge for just about any salad, at a fraction of the cost.