Make or Buy: Salad Dressing

Speaking of saving money…

We eat a lot of salad with dinner.  It seems to be one of those dinner staples.  Everything else changes or rotates–with the exception of salad.

Oh, to be sure, depending on what’s in season, the type of salad changes.  Greek salad and caprese salads are popular in late summer.  Grain salad with roasted vegetables is a nice change of pace in fall and winter.  But green salad is the mainstay.

But the way to make a green salad really enjoyable–even night after night–is great salad dressing.  And the best salad dressing will even save you money.  That’s because the only dressing worth eating is composed of mostly what you already have in your kitchen cupboards.

That’s the catch.  You have to make it.

But once you get into the habit of making it, you’ll never look back.

Especially when you can whip up a batch that will last all week and will taste better than anything you can buy.

Here’s my favorite vinaigrette dressing, adapted from a Martha Stewart recipe.

Ingredients

  • 1/4 cup vinegar, use your favorite
  • 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • lots of fresh ground pepper
  • Pinch of sugar
  • 1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil (or more to taste if it’s too acidic for you)
  • clove of garlic, put through a garlic press

Place all ingredients into bottle/container and shake well.

There’s tons of flexibility with vinaigrette.  Change up the type of vinegar or oil.  Add fresh herbs, Parmesan cheese, garlic or other ingredients and you will never tire of your salad dressing.

For a large family sized salad:

Ingredients

  • 2 Tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 Tablespoons fresh lemon juice
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1 teaspoon mayonnaise
  • 1 teaspoon balsamic vinegar
  • lots of freshly ground pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt

Place all ingredients into bottle/container and shake well.

Any container will do or you can buy one like this with easy measurement guidelines and instructions for several different dressings:

And the internet can provide you with endless variations on dressings to experiment with.  If you’ve ever whisked an egg white or shaken a can of whipping cream (whoops, another item to make at home!), you can certainly make salad dressing.  It’s simple, delicious, and easy on the wallet.  

Definitely make.  You won’t be disappointed. 

What are your favorite salad dressings?

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4 thoughts on “Make or Buy: Salad Dressing

  1. I couldn’t agree more about making your own salad dressing! It is not only a money saver but you know what is in it and that is as important in my house hold! Once you get hooked on making your own salad dressing there is no going back!!! Thank you for the post!

  2. I still remember the first time I saw someone make their own salad dressing. I was so impressed….just mayonaisse and pickle juice. Easy and delicious. Since then I have experimented and made many a salad dressing. It IS fun. Thanks for your great postings Robin.

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