My 4 Go-To Everyday Salad Dressings

This month I challenged myself to get back into cooking at least 5 nights/week and so far it’s going well, but only because I’ve been doing a lot of planning ahead and meal prepping. In order to get in our raw veggies, I’ve found that pre-making one or two everyday salad dressings makes that a lot more realistic. I’ll generally double up on recipes so that I have enough for a few meals and then salad-making is a breeze.

Today I’m sharing 4 salad dressing recipes that I make week after week, month after month, year after year. I rarely stray from these so please share yours too so that I can finally branch out! Although I somehow never get sick of them because they’re all so delicious and fairly different from each other in taste and consistency.

You’ll notice that all of them use apple cider vinegar which I like to include for the health benefits, but I’m now also partial to the taste. You can swap in whatever vinegars you like in the recipes below.

One more tip for meal-prepping salads is to pre-cut all your veggies as soon as you get home from the grocery store. I like to take them all out of bags, cut them, and put them in glass Tupperware so I can see exactly what I have available. It encourages me to eat more raw vegetables when they’re not hiding out in a drawer.

Everyday Vinaigrette

I’ve been making this simple vinaigrette for a decade. It’s so easy but the perfect dressing for any salad. I couldn’t tell you the exact amount of ingredients if my life depended on it. I always just mix, taste, and edit until it’s perfect.

Ingredients:
– Olive oil
– Apple cider vinegar
– Dijon mustard
– Maple syrup
– Salt & pepper
– Garlic powder

Directions:
– Mix all ingredients in a small bowl with a fork. Taste and edit as needed.
– Pour over salad and enjoy!

What I pair it with:
Pretty much any salad. I made this at the beginning of every week and use it for lunches and dinners for days.

Easy Caesar

Caesar dressing sounds complicated, but in reality, it’s just a bunch of ingredients thrown into a blender. I make mine with cashews so that I can use less cheese and it’s super delicious. This is Anel’s all-time favorite salad dressing and he requests it often!

Ingredients:
–  2 tblspns, olive oil
–  1 tblspn, apple cider vinegar
– 1 tsp, Dijon Mustard
– Large handful of (salted) cashews
– 2 anchovies (optional)
– 1 egg yolk
– 1 tsp, Worcestershire sauce
– Juice from 1/2 lemon
– 1 garlic clove
– 1 tsp, maple syrup
– Salt and lots of black pepper
– Small amounts of water to thin it out as you go

Directions:
– Place all ingredients including 1 tblspn of water into a blender
– Blend and taste, adding more of each ingredient as you need it
– It will most likely be too thick so add water in tiny increments to thin it out
– Pour on salad and enjoy!

What I pair it with:
Crunchy lettuce like romaine or butter lettuce. I usually add baby tomatoes, apples, and homemade sourdough croutons too!

Peanut Dressing

Man do I love this salad dressing so much. I could eat it off a spoon, but that would be weird… Or would it? It’s the perfect amount of salt and sweet and tastes like something you could get at a restaurant.

Ingredients:
– 1/2 cup, peanut butter or almond butter (I prefer peanut)
– 2 tblspns, tamari (or soy sauce, tamari is just gluten free)
– 1 tblspn, toasted sesame oil
– 1 tsp, brown rice vinegar
– 2 tsp, honey/maple syrup
– Red pepper flakes to taste
– 1-2 tblspns water, to thin (you might need more)

Directions:
– Place all ingredients in a blender including 1 tblspoon of water
– Blend until smooth
– Add water in 1 tablespoon increments until it reaches the consistency you like
– Pour on salad and enjoy!

What I pair it with:
My favorite soba noodle salad or fresh greens with as many crunchy veggies as possible. Sometimes I dip carrots and cucumbers in it as a snack.

Avocado Green Goddess

This creamy and nutrient-packed dressing doesn’t store as well as the others so I usually make it for lunch then use the second half for dinner. I replace the buttermilk or Greek yogurt that most people would use for tahini to make it dairy-free but if you have no issues with dairy, it’s probably best with the yogurt.

Ingredients:
– 1/4 cup tahini
– 1 tblspn, olive oil
– 1 ripe avocado, pitted
– Handful of fresh chives and parsley (or whatever herbs you prefer)
– 1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
– 1 clove, garlic
– 1 tsp, maple syrup
– Juice from 1/2 lemon
– 1 anchovy (optional)
– 1-2 tblspns water, to thin (you might need more)

Directions:
– Place all ingredients in a blender including 1 tblspoon of water
– Blend until smooth
– Add water in 1 tablespoon increments until it reaches the consistency you like
– Pour on salad and enjoy!

What I pair it with:
Literally everything. I put it on top of brown rice bowls, fish, chicken, and every type of salad!

What are your go-to salad dressings?

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  1. Melissa said:

    My go-to dressings are whatever is on sale at Stop&Shop!? Lol wrong answer. Every one I currently have in my fridge is just “ok” so clearly I need to branch out. These all look delicious (and not as intimidating to make as I thought!), but I want to try the caesar one first. Caesar always tastes amazing when it’s fresh.

    4.22.19 · Reply
    • Julia said:

      Hahah I can’t even eat most store-bought dressings anymore. These are SO much better I promise you. Let me know how it goes with the Caesar!

      4.22.19 · Reply
      • Melissa said:

        Clearly I don’t make a lot of salads at home ‍♀️

        4.22.19 · Reply
  2. Steph said:

    Never thought of putting maple syrup in a salad dressing – I’ll have to try it out!

    4.22.19 · Reply
    • Julia said:

      I like a little bit of sweetness in all of my dressings and maple syrup does a good job of that without having to add to much!

      4.22.19 · Reply
  3. Libby said:

    Yummmm! These look delicious! I am for sure going to make the avocado green goddess!! Sounds amazing!! And its healthy under a big bowl of kale, right?! 🙂

    xx Libby
    https://premedwearspearls.blogspot.com/

    4.23.19 · Reply
    • Julia said:

      Totally! Enjoy it 🙂

      4.25.19 · Reply