5 Reasons to Make Your Own Salad Dressing

Ryan Nadolny | Ryan Eats Everything

Do you have teenagers that eat ranch dressing on everything they eat? I’m genuinely shocked they don’t put it on their cereal. I wouldn’t put it past them.

What our little crumb snatchers don’t understand is how expensive dressing can be. I have to buy ranch dressing by the barrel! If we run out, they riot.

The cost isn’t the only factor. Store bought salad dressing is rather unhealthy, often loaded with saturated fats and sodium in a very small serving.

The thing is, dressing is extremely easy to make and takes very little time to do so. Plus it tastes so much better when you make it homemade!

Grab a few mason jars and your immersion blender and you’ll have a batch of homemade dressing in no time.

Not only will it cost less to make, but you’ll also be using better ingredients with fewer preservatives. Did I mention that it tastes better, too?

1. Keto-Friendly Honey Mustard Dressing

I am a sucker for a good honey mustard so this keto-friendly honey mustard dressing is a win for me. It’s sweet and tangy and the perfect dipping sauce for chicken tenders or to brush over salmon before popping it in the oven. Mustard is notoriously healthy, containing at most, only a few calories. It will take you longer to gather your ingredients than it does to make this dressing itself.

2. Cafe Rio Dressing Recipe

Admittedly, this Midwesterner didn't really know what Café Rio was, but those of you out west will likely know better. Despite my ignorance, I still wanted to know what all the hype was about when it comes to this copycat Café Rio dressing recipe. Basically, it’s ranch dressing with some bonus ingredients like tomatillos and lime juice that really ramp up the flavor quotient. Just toss everything into a blender and blend until smooth, and that's it! Easy-peazy-lime-squeezy!

3. Miso Lemon Tahini Dressing Recipe

This miso lemon tahini dressing recipe may take a little longer to make than some homemade dressing recipes, but that’s only because you need to roast a whole head of garlic first. Your hard work will soon be rewarded with sweet, yet savory, garlic paste. The more garlic the better, I say. It livens up any dish and helps to ward off vampires, goblins, and mothers-in-law. Score! The garlic, miso, lemon and tahini come together to create one complex, creamy salad dressing you'll be making all the time.

4. Oil and Vinegar Dressing

This homemade oil and vinegar dressing is about as simple as it gets. You can sweeten this dressing with a touch of brown sugar if you prefer, but I like it just the way it is. If you have any roasted garlic on hand, you could use that in place of the fresh garlic for a slightly sweeter, more robust taste. This is a great base dressing to keep in your back pocket. It can take on any flavor profile you throw at it - for instance, I like to toss some blueberries into the blender and then drizzle this dressing over fresh summer salads.

5. Citrus Vinaigrette Recipe

This citrus vinaigrette recipe is a favorite for topping big, hearty winter salads, but this homemade dressing recipe is truly perfect any time of the year. I’ve made the dressing with orange champagne vinegar and without the added orange and I couldn’t taste any differences between the two. Go with what you have on hand. Don't take your dressing too seriously. Enjoy the fruits of your minimal labor.

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Dressings, Marinades, Sauces, Salads
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