Dress Up Your Salad with This Healthy Avocado Salad Dressing

Recipes

Whether you fancy a light lunch or just a yummy side dish, you can’t go wrong with a freshly prepared salad. But what do you drizzle over it to give it that extra je ne sais quoi? Avocado salad dressing is a great option!

When it comes to choosing salad dressings, most of us are guilty of going for the most convenient option. If you rely on store-bought dressings, it’s time to change your ways. Why? You have zero idea what’s inside these sauces and many of them are unhealthy.

Luckily, making a dressing from scratch is far easier than you might imagine and allows you to give your dish an extra kick of flavor. Let’s take a look at how you can create a salad dressing that’s out of this world (while still being good for you).

How to Make Healthy Salad Dressing

small bowl of healthy salad dressing


So, where should you start? One of the benefits of preparing your own salad dressings at home is that you can decide just what goes into it. You can pack the dressing full of the best ingredients and give it your own unique twist. Before we get started, take a look at some top tips to help you make a healthy homemade salad dressing.

Pay Close Attention to Ratios

There are two types of people in the world – the ones who follow recipes verbatim and the ones who prefer to just ‘wing it.’ If you fall into the latter category, you should take care when making a healthy salad dressing. The ratios should be exact or you could end up overdoing it with a calorific ingredient.

Taste Your Dressing as You Make It

If you do tend to have trouble sticking to the right ratios, here’s a tip that will help you along the way. Taste your salad dressing regularly as you’re making it. Doing so will mean that you don’t go overboard with your quantities. Plus, let’s face it, it makes the cooking experience a whole lot more fun!

Avoid Cream and Mayonnaise

Many of the most common salad dressing recipes call for cream or mayonnaise. While these ingredients add oodles of flavor, they are far from healthy choices. Make a quick swap by using natural or Greek yogurt instead of these options. Easy!

Opt for Healthy Fats

‘Fat’ is not a dirty word. While you want to avoid saturated fats, no balanced diet is complete without unsaturated fatty acids. Including these in your diet is as simple as using virgin olive oil or avocado in your cooking. Give it a go!

Use Natural Sweeteners

Adding a kick of sweetness to your salad dressing recipe couldn’t be easier. Blend up tart fruit, such as pomegranates and pears, and add them into the mix. These ingredients are far better for you than syrups and just so happen to taste fantastic too.

The Best Ingredients for Homemade Salad Dressing

Making a salad dressing from scratch? When choosing ingredients for a healthy salad dressing, it’s worth considering the benefits that each may offer. Adding flavor as well as nutrients, here are some of the best ingredients you might wish to include:

Avocado

three ripe avocados on a marble cutting board

Avocado isn’t just the latest food trend, it also has a wealth of health benefits. The fats found in these fruits are far healthier than saturated alternatives. Switching from foods high in saturated fatty acids to unsaturated fatty acids from avocados could have a major impact on your heart health.

In 2015, a study from the American Heart Association[1] evaluated the impact that eating avocado had on cardiovascular risk factors. The results suggested that including this ingredient in your day-to-day diet could lower cholesterol and lead to lower levels of fat.

Garlic

two partially peeled heads of garlic

Bad breath aside, there are many reasons you should include more garlic in your diet. The root has well-documented anti-oxidizing properties[2], but that’s not all. Recent research[3] also suggests that taking an aged garlic supplement could reduce dangerous plaque build-up in the arteries which could lower your risk of heart disease.

Cilantro

fresh cilantro on a cutting board with a mortar and pestle

This ingredient isn’t just about a dash of flavor – it also has a range of benefits. Research[4] has shown that it is a powerful antioxidant and can lower blood sugar. But perhaps one of the most surprising benefits of cilantro is its effect on anxiety. One study[5] suggested that consuming cilantro has the same anxiety-fighting effects as popular prescription drugs such as Valium.

Avocado Salad Dressing Recipe

Looking for a dressing that’s as healthy as it is delicious? You might just have found it. Packed with vitamins and an irresistible taste, this avocado salad dressing is the perfect accompaniment to any dish.

The recipe takes mere minutes to make and is a real crowd-pleaser. Enjoy!

Serves: 8 | Prep Time: 5 minutes | Cook Time: 2 minutes

Ingredients

  • 1 ripe avocado, pitted
  • 1 tsp minced garlic
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 2 Tbsp freshly squeezed lime juice
  • 2 Tbsp water
  • 1 Tbsp rice wine vinegar
  • 5 Tbsp canola oil
  • 1/4 cup fresh cilantro leaves

Instructions

  1. Place the avocado in a blender or food processor.
  2. Add the garlic, salt, lime juice, water, vinegar, canola oil, and cilantro.
  3. Blend or process for 30 to 40 seconds until creamy and smooth.
  4. Transfer the avocado salad dressing to a small bowl or squeeze bottle. Use immediately or refrigerate for up to two days.

Nutrition: 130 calories (per 2-tablespoons), 13.7g fat, 0.5g protein, 2.6g carbs, 1.7g fiber

avocado salad dressing title card

Dress Up Your Favorite Salad

Now that you’ve got the details, what are you waiting for? Whipping up a delectably good avocado salad dressing is super simple. Once you’ve perfected this healthy salad dressing, why not try your hand at more? You’ll never need to buy a pre-made one again!

References

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