Satisfying Salads

Dress your greens deliciously

A green salad can be a very healthy meal – if you don't overdo it on the dressing!

In an effort to keep our salads healthy, many of us turn to fat-free dressings. While these dressings tend to be lower in calories, they do not offer much in terms of nutrition or flavor, and they leave us feeling unsatisfied.

Why not make your own dressing, filled with heart healthy olive oil, nutritious garlic, and antioxidant rich herbs like thyme and oregano? You still will want to avoid drowning your salad in dressing, but at least you will be able to embrace a full-flavored, full-fat dressing knowing that it is good for you.

Making your own salad dressing is easier than you think. Start with a base recipe of 1/2 cup olive oil, 1/4 cup vinegar, and 3 tablespoons of water. Add your favorite herbs and seasonings.

Change the recipe using a different type of vinegar, or even try substituting part or all of the vinegar and water for lemon juice or orange juice. Once you have the ratios down, you can get creative. Make it extra easy by purchasing a cruet that already has the measurements marked. You can find one in the salad dressing aisle.

Here are a few delicious recipes to get you started:

Red Wine Vinaigrette

  • 1 small clove garlic, crushed
  • 1 teaspoon finely minced shallot
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1/4 cup red wine vinegar
  • 1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 3 tablespoons water

Asian Sesame Citrus Dressing

  • 1 small clove garlic, crushed
  • 1 teaspoon toasted sesame oil
  • 1 teaspoon toasted sesame seeds
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • 1/4 cup rice wine vinegar
  • 1/2 cup olive oil
  • 3 tablespoons orange juice

To make your dressings, put all ingredients in a jar and shake until well combined. Your dressing will keep in the refrigerator for up to one month.

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