Easy to make healthy Salad Dressings

2 December, 2016

6 easy recipes to make healthy dressings – for Salads & Vegetables

I’m not a fan of pre-packaged salad dressings which are loaded with sugar and “bad” fats.  And I’m often asked how to make salads and vegetables tasty.  Here are some tips for healthy anti-inflammatory dressings which I use both on salads and vegetables – in summer and winter!

As you know, I’m not into low fat dressings and I recommend only using fats which aid the brain, metabolism, and reduce inflammation in the body and brain.  Most of the ingredients contained in these dressings are rich in healthy fats which I recommend using as much as you want to.  Don’t be afraid!  These fats’ are really good for you!  Read on for my tips on how to build the ideal anti-inflammatory salad.

 

My standard “go to” dressing

(and also the one I grew up with and the one my mum taught me)

  • ¼ cup olive oil
  • ¼ cup flax-seed oil (store in fridge as goes rancid easily)
  • ¼ cup apple cider vinegar
  • ¼ cup fresh lemon juice
  • ½ teaspoon seeded mustard
  • ½ crushed garlic clove
  • Pink Himalayan sea salt (pinch) and pinch black pepper

Place all in a jar and shake.  High in healthy anti-inflammatory fats and digestive stimulating bitter tastes – so helps digest raw salads.  Alkalising on the body therefore anti-inflammatory. Lasts for weeks in the fridge.  I put this on steamed vegetable and salads.

 

Simple dressing for steamed veges

  • 1/2 cup olive oil
  • ½ cup fresh lemon juice
  • 1 clove crushed garlic
  • Salt and pepper

Pour over steamed broccoli, beans and asparagus for extra boost of nutrition and taste.

 

Creamy Sesame salad dressing

  • 1/3 cup Olive oil
  • 1/3 cup lemon juice
  • 1 teaspoon Tahini (sesame seed paste available at the health food section of supermarket)
  • 1-2 garlic clove crushed
  • Salt and pepper
  • 1/3 teaspoon of Dijon mustard

Place all ingredients in a jar and shake.  Store in fridge.

 

Creamy Caesar Style Dressing

  • One egg yolk at room temperature (very important it is not cold!)
  • 2 teaspoons apple cider vinegar (Brags brand is ideal)
  • 1/3 cup olive oil
  • 1/2 tsp mustard or mustard powder
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 2 garlic cloves, crushed
  • 2 teaspoons gluten free Worcestershire (avoid ones with malt vinegar)
  • 2 Tablespoons Parmesan cheese (if you are not avoiding dairy).  I keep a bag of shaved parmesan in the freezer just in case.
  • Salt, pepper and spices to taste.

Method:

  1. Whisk egg yolk with whisk or blender on low speed.
  2. Once creamy, add vinegar and other ingredients except oil and blend until creamy.
  3. Slowly add oil, stirring constantly until incorporated.
  4. If it doesn’t incorporate well, your egg might still have been too cold!

A good source of good healthy anti-inflammatory Omega 3 fats, choline, vitamin D, A, E and K, folate and B12 plus more.

 

Italian Dressing

  • 3 Tablespoons white wine vinegar
  • 1/2 teaspoon of Dijon mustard
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 1/2 tsp onion powder
  • 1-2 cloves finely minced garlic
  • 1/2 tsp each of thyme, basil, oregano (fresh ideally but dried is fine)
  • Salt (preferably pink sea salt) and pepper to taste

Put all ingredients in a jar and shake.  Store in fridge.

 

Greek Dressing

  • 1/2 cup olive oil
  • 2 Tablespoons red wine vinegar
  • 1/2 teaspoon dijon mustard
  • 1/2 tsp each of oregano and marjoram
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 clove garlic crushed
  • 1/2 tsp lemon juice

Put all ingredients in small jar with lid and shake until well mixed.  Use on dark lettuces, feta cheese, olives, and cucumbers.

What I throw into a salad:

  • Seeds or nuts: I lightly fry in a fry pan, sunflower seeds & pumpkin seeds in Tamari (wheat free soy sauce).  I do it in bulk and store in the fridge.  I throw 1-2 tablespoons over the top of a salad to make it more crunchy and yum.  I also may add raw walnuts, brazil nuts, macadamia nuts (handful of a combination of these)
  • Olives
  • Chopped veggies – finely sliced red cabbage (rich in detoxing sulphur), radicchio lettuce (bitter and beneficial for the digestion), baby spinach leaves (rich in easy to absorb folate), thinly sliced fennel (good for digestion and settles a tender tummy), cucumber (cools the blood), red, yellow or green capsicum (vit c), baby tomato, etc…
  • chopped apples
  • Pomegranate seeds (heart health, gut health – anti-parasitic)
  • Protein: grilled or baked chicken; sliced steak; tofu sauteed in tamari; any type of cooked seafood
  • At times I add goats feta
  • Or all of the above!

As you can see, my salads are a meal on their own.  All these ingredients feed your good bacteria in your gut microbiome aiding your immune health, your mental health and your hormonal health.

You can pre-organise your lunch salads that you take to work, by putting these separate ingredients into individual containers stacked in the fridge.  Plus make your dressing in bulk.

In the morning build your salad by throwing a handful of each pre-prepared ingredient into your lunch container.  Take a small amount of dressing to work to put on just before serving.  Things are so much easy if we pre-prepare our work lunches.  This method is also great if you come home late and want a quick, healthy and easy dinner.

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