You can save time, money, and gain better nutrition by making healthy salad dressing recipes at home and leaving the premade stuff on the shelf.
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You can find some delicious salad dressing for sale at the grocery store. However, salad dressing is super easy to make yourself, and you’ll have a much healthier version. Besides being better for you, homemade salad dressing is incredibly inexpensive to make. You’ll never have to worry about running out again.
Creating a delicious healthy homemade dressing doesn’t have to be a chore or complicated. You can make some of the salad dressings you love within minutes.
Eating a salad is a fantastic way to incorporate more fruits and veggies into one’s diet, but choosing the right dressing can make all the difference in terms of health and taste. While many store-bought dressings are high in calories, unhealthy fats, and unnecessary additives, making a healthy salad dressing at home is simple and allows for customized flavors. With a focus on fresh, wholesome ingredients, these healthy salad dressing recipes are guaranteed to elevate any dish.
There’s no need to sacrifice flavor for health, as homemade salad dressings can be not only nutritious but also incredibly delicious. By experimenting with various herbs, spices, and combinations of ingredients, one can create unique and satisfying dressings that complement a variety of salad bases. Additionally, controlling the ingredients allows cooks to cater to specific dietary preferences or restrictions more easily than grabbing a bottle from the store shelves.
As summer approaches and an abundance of fresh produce becomes available, there’s no better time to try some new healthy salad dressing recipes. Transform even the simplest of salads into a mouth-watering meal by whipping up a homemade dressing that’s packed with flavor and nutrients, while being lower in unhealthy additives. Moreover, these dressings can be made in larger batches and stored in the refrigerator, making healthy choices more convenient.
Types of salad dressing
There are a lot of different homemade salad dressing recipes, so you’re sure to find a new favorite. Salad dressings can vary in texture, as some (such as ranch) are thick and creamy, while others (such as vinaigrette) are very thin and light. These two types of dressings are called vinaigrettes and creamy dressings.
Vinaigrettes are typically made with oil, vinegar, spices, sugars, herbs, and other ingredients. At the same time, creamy dressings are usually based on mayonnaise or other fermented milk products such as sour cream, yogurt, or buttermilk.
How to make salad dressing
The easiest way to make a homemade salad dressing is to use devices such as food processors and blenders to do most of the work. You basically just need to measure out your ingredients, combine them, and blend them. Here are four methods you can use to make healthy homemade salad dressing.
These devices are great for blending large ingredients and fresh herbs. Food processors are best for dry ingredients.
Blenders can mix and puree both wet and dry ingredients and are arguably the best devices for making salad dressings. And many of the newer models are very easy to clean and dishwasher friendly, making your job that much easier!
The Jar and Lid Method
This method combines your ingredients together by simply putting everything in a jar, tightening the lid, and shaking them up. However, it doesn’t totally emulsify your ingredients, but it does the job well enough for certain dressings and leaves very little to clean.
The Bowl and Wisk Method
This method would be the last resort. It takes more time for your mixture to separate unless you whisk continuously for a few minutes. However, it can be a great arm workout.
Storage and Meal Prep
Prepping ahead: The flavors in your salad dressings will blend together better over time, so you should try to make your dressings at least 24 hours ahead before serving.
Storage: We recommend using glass jars with airtight seals, such as four and 8-ounce mason jars. Plastic can leak unwanted flavor into your dressings, while clean glass jars don’t have those issues. You can keep recipes with fresh ingredients in the fridge for up to one week. Dressings that don’t contain perishable ingredients will usually last up to two weeks or longer in the refrigerator.
Freezing: We do not recommend freezing salad dressing as the ingredients tend to separate once it thaws.
Serving: You should allow your salad dressing to rest at room temperature for at least 10 minutes before shaking and drizzling it onto your salad.
What Salad Dressing is the Healthiest?
If you’re looking for the absolute healthiest salad dressings, vinaigrettes will be the best option. They are usually made with simple ingredients such as vinegar, oil, and a relatively little sweetener. Plus, they don’t contain ingredients such as our cream or mayonnaise. However, no matter what kind of dressing you prefer, homemade salad dressings are always much healthier than almost anything you’ll buy in the store.
Healthy Salad dressing alternatives
If you want to add a bit of extra flavor to your salad without dressing, you can use ingredients such as salsa, citrus juice, yogurt, guacamole, and hummus.
Here is a list of the best healthy salad dressing recipes you can make at home.
One fun and simple salad dressing recipe is apple cider vinegar dressing. Aside from its amazing flavor, apple cider vinegar dressing also offers many health benefits because of its acetic acid.
This is a wonderful dressing that pairs well with winter and fall produce. It’s also great for tossing roasted veggies, like Brussels sprouts. When added to salads with cranberries and squash, this dressing really adds a deliciously tangy pop that brings those sweeter ingredients to life.
The ingredients for this recipe include vegetable oil, apple cider vinegar, erythritol, garlic cloves, mustard, pepper, salt, salad herb blend (optional).
Chipotle honey vinaigrette is of the best homemade salad dressing recipes for folks who like a little spice.
This dressing’s smoky and sweet flavor is anything but boring. This blend combines the flavors of chipotle peppers, garlic, honey, and lime juice with oil and vinegar for a simple yet amazing vinaigrette.
This salad dressing recipe includes olive oil, red wine vinegar, lime, honey, garlic, chipotle peppers, abodo sauce, Mexican oregano (or plain oregano), kosher salt, and freshly ground black pepper.
This salad dressing recipe for sesame ginger dressing combines sesame oil, sriracha, and rice wine vinegar for a delicious dressing with a distinctive Asian flair.
This intense and flavorful recipe is ideal for Asian noodle salad, but it’s also great over kale salad. It has a savory, nutty, sweet flavor that packs a little kick, thanks to the ginger.
It’s the kind of sauce you want to keep on hand in the fringe and transforms any salad into a tasty delight.
The ingredients for this salad dressing recipe include light soy sauce, vegetable oil, ice wine vinegar, sesame oil, fresh lime juice, minced garlic, honey, freshly grated ginger, sriracha, water, and sesame seeds (optional).
Another simple salad dressing that’s super easy to make from home is avocado dressing.
For avocado fans, this dressing is a dream come true with its creamy, savory, Southwestern style that coats every last bite of salad with the creamy taste of avocado.
Honestly, it’s tough to think of a salad this dressing doesn’t taste good on!
The ingredients of the healthy salad dressing include medium avocado, Greek yogurt, chopped garlic, chopped red onion, fresh lemon juice, and freshly chopped parsley sprigs.
The Green Goddess is right up there with the best when it comes to healthy dressing!
This California classic dressing makes for the perfect veggie platter dip or a great way to dress up your simple green salads. Plus, it’s super quick and easy to make.
The ingredients for this healthy salad dressing include grated or pressed garlic clove, minced anchovy, chopped fresh chives, light mayonnaise, red wine vinegar, lemon juice, light sour cream, chopped fresh parsley, kosher salt, and pepper.
Vegan ranch dressing is a healthy salad dressing recipe that contains zero dairy products and a maximum creamy ranch flavor.
While we all know ranch isn’t the healthiest dressing by far, this recipe goes a long way to make it way more nutritious and just as delicious!
The ingredients for this healthy salad dressing recipe include raw cashews (boiled for 30 minutes and drained), filtered water, non-dairy milk, medium red onion, lemon, raw apple cider vinegar, sea salt, fresh ground pepper, and fresh parsley.
Balsamic vinaigrette is one of the best salad dressings for those who love simple flavors.
This recipe uses only three main ingredients and can be made in about five minutes. This dressing works equally well on all types of salads and doubles as a fantastic marinade for veggies, steak, or chicken.
This healthy salad dressing recipe includes extra virgin olive oil, balsamic vinegar, pure maple syrup (or honey), and salt (optional).
Lemon vinaigrette is an easy salad dressing recipe that’s zippy and bright with the delicious tangy flavor of fresh lemons and just a hint of natural sweetness. The dijon mustard also adds a brilliant complexity to the recipe delivering some savory herbal flavors.
You can also enjoy this vinaigrette on roasted veggies, grain bowls, sandwiches, and much more.
This healthy salad dressing recipe includes large or medium lemons, maple syrup or honey, dijon mustard, kosher salt, freshly ground black pepper, and extra-virgin olive oil.
This homemade dressing recipe, creamy honey mustard dressing, is ideal for many green salads, a great dip for chicken, and a fantastic sauce to put on some of your favorite sandwiches.
And yes, for those cheat days when you’re creating fried foods like french fries and chicken nuggets, this is one of those must-have dips.
It offers the perfect combination of spice, zest, and sweetness that makes you want to eat every last bite of whatever this dressing graces itself upon.
The ingredients for this healthy salad dressing include dijon mustard, honey, light mayonnaise, lemon juice (or distilled white vinegar), and cayenne pepper.
This Greek homemade salad dressing brings together a creamy, savory taste that combines ingredients such as red wine vinegar, lemon juice, olive oil, garlic, and oregano into a smooth and creamy experience that you’ll have to taste to believe.
Plus, it’s made using non-fat Greek yogurt instead of mayonnaise, making it a much healthier creamy dressing option.
Ingredients for this healthy salad dressing include non-fat Greek yogurt, red wine vinegar, lemon juice, olive oil, dijon mustard, grated garlic clove, dried oregano, onion powder, salt, and pepper.
This recipe makes Homemade Ceasar a super easy salad dressing you can make right at home.
I have to admit, a delicious Ceasar chicken salad with Italian croutons is by far one of my favorite guilty salad pleasures. And this healthier homemade Caesar dressing helps relieve a bit of that guilt.
The ingredients for this delicious salad dressing recipe include anchovy filets, garlic clove, egg, dijon mustard, salt, pepper, canola oil, lemon juice, and grated parmesan cheese.
Many will argue that creamy cilantro lime dressing is the best salad dressing recipe for Mexican salad.
However, I beg to differ.
This is one of the best salad dressing recipes for any salad! With its creamy, zesty, and spicy flavor, how could it not be?
The ingredients used for this salad dressing recipe include ranch dressing mix, mayonnaise, milk, fresh cilantro, salsa verde, jalapeno, garlic, and fresh lime juice.
13. Tahini Dressing
Creamy, dreamy tahini sauce is the perfect blend of tangy, nutty flavor with a smoothness that makes it the ideal dressing for any salad. Plus, its subtle garlicky flavor complements the toasted sesame perfectly without detracting or overwhelming it.
The ingredients for this delicious salad dressing include medium to large pressed or minced garlic cloves, lemon juice, tahini, fine sea salt, ground cumin, and ice water.
This recipe lets you make deliciously spicy, creamy, savory chipotle ranch dressing using only four basic ingredients. Chipotle ranch is another one of my favorite guilty pleasure dressings that you can put on just about any salad and makes for a great party dip.
Plus, when you put this dressing on a juicy hamburger, something magical happens that will just blow your mind!
This creamy salad dressing recipe includes low-fat mayonnaise, light sour cream, dry ranch dressing mix, chipotle pepper, and abodo sauce.
It’s hard to describe just how much zesty, savory Italian dressing makes just about any meal better. The perfect blend of seasonings and spices brings out the best in salads, sandwiches, and pasta dishes.
The ingredients for the dressing include olive oil, white vinegar, mayonnaise, grated parmesan cheese, lemon juice, granulated sugar, garlic powder, garlic salt, kosher salt, Italian seasoning, and black pepper.
The ingredients of the Italian salad shown in the recipe include salad mix, sliced red onion, pepperoncini, Roma tomatoes, black olives, croutons, and grated parmesan cheese.
16. Peanut Dressing
This recipe for peanut dressing blends the smooth, creamy sweetness of peanut butter with savory spices such as ginger and garlic to create a salad dressing experience like nothing else!
Ingredients include peanut butter, garlic, fresh ginger, rice vinegar, low sodium soy or tamari sauce, maple syrup, and cayenne pepper (optional).
You can also discover more incredible healthy salad dressing ideas in the video below.
16+ Healthy Salad Dressing Recipes (+Avocado Dressing)
- 1 ripe avocado cut into chunks
- 1/2 cup Greek yogurt
- 1 garlic clove minced
- 1 red onion chopped
- 1 Tbsp. lemon juice
- 2 Tbsp. fresh parsley
- Put all ingredients into a high-speed blender and blend until completely smooth.
- Serve over your favorite green salad or use it as a dip.
Organize all the required ingredients.
Enjoy the food.