Easy and Healthy Salad Dressing Recipes

5 Easy and Healthy Salad Dressing Recipes

Condiments made at home (like everything else you make at home!) can be much healthier than store-bought condiments. Why? Because you choose the ingredients! I always try to find the highest quality ingredients I can. For healthy salad dressing recipes, we prioritize fresh organic ingredients, extra virgin olive oil, organic citrus, high mineral salts (like Himalayan pink salt), local raw honey, and so on.

Store-bought dressings are usually made with industrial seed oils. In fact, even the salad dressings that are branded as “healthy,” seed oils are often the main ingredient. Industrial seed oils are oils extracted from the seeds of plants.  They are highly processed, refined, bleached, and deodorized and by the time they make it to the shelf of a grocery store, they are full of toxins that are harmful to our bodies and are often at the root of many metabolic diseases. These included oils like vegetable oil, canola oil, soybean oil, grapeseed oil, and more. We go further into why we avoid seed oils here.

Easy and Healthy Salad Dressing Recipes

Lucky for us, making a healthy salad dressing recipe at home is much easier than you think! We make it in bigger batches to use for a week or two, and our kids love to participate.

My favorite base for an easy and healthy salad dressing recipe is extra virgin olive oil. In our house, we don’t often cook with olive oils to preserve all the nutritional benefits, so I’m always looking for more ways to enjoy it raw or at low temperatures.

Easy and Healthy Salad Dressing Recipe: Basic Formula

The basic formula for great healthy salad dressing recipe is to include both a fat and an acid element. Then experiment with adding salt and sweetness depending on what you want your flavor profile to be. Some of my recipes have the option of adding mustard which makes the dressing a little creamier and helps the oil and vinegar bind to one another, and you can also play around with adding fresh or dry herbs and spices!

  • Fat: I typically use high quality extra virgin olive oil like Bragg’s or Lucini Italia
  • Acid: Vinegar like Bragg’s Apple Cider Vinegar or Balsamic Vinegar or Citrus
  • Salt: Pink Himalayan sea salt
  • Sweet: Raw organic honey, organic maple syrup, fruit like strawberries
  • Additional Elements: Garlic, onions, black pepper, mustard, fresh or dry herbs, spices, etc.

The five healthy salad dressing recipes below are my go-to dressings that all take under three minutes to make! Depending on what I’m in the mood for, sweet or savory, I can choose one accordingly.

My kids’ favorite is definitely the honey lime, Tarek loves the maple, and I love the apple cider, but really we love them all!

5 easy and healthy salad dressing recipes

How to Make a Great Homemade Dressing

For each of the 5 easy and healthy salad dressing recipes below, simply combine the ingredients in a mason jar, screw the lid on tight, and shake. Hand the jar to your kids and let them go to town shaking the dressing together! 

These dressings keep well, so you can make them ahead of time and enjoy them for a couple of weeks. If you put them in the fridge, the olive oil will solidify. You’ll have to think ahead to let it drop down to closer to room temperature before it will be pourable again.

Try them all out, and play around with different flavors on your own. Do you love grapefruit? Replace the lemon juice with grapefruit juice in the lemon vinaigrette. Want more flavor in your dressings? Try adding in some herbs like thyme, rosemary, or dill, or consider adding fresh fruit like strawberries. If adding more fresh ingredients or you don’t feel like chopping the garlic, you can also use an immersion blender, a regular blender, or a food processor to combine all the ingredients. 

Here are our favorite 5 easy and healthy salad dressing recipes: 

Maple Vinaigrette:

  • 2 tbsp of pure maple syrup
  • 1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
  • 3/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 1/2 tsp of pink salt
  • 1 tbsp of dijon mustard (optional)

Apple Cider Vinaigrette

  • 1/2 cup apple cider vinegar
  • 3/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 1/2 tsp of pink salt
  • 1 clove of garlic minced
  • 1 tbsp of dijon mustard (optional)

Lemon Vinaigrette

  • 1/2 cup squeezed lemon juice
  • 1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 tsp of pink salt
  • 1/2 tsp of black pepper
  • 2-3 cloves of garlic minced

Balsamic Vinaigrette

  • 1/3 cup balsamic vinegar
  • 3/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 tsp of pink salt
  • 1/2 tsp of black pepper
  • 2 tbsp of dijon mustard (optional)

Honey Lime Vinaigrette

  • 1/2 cup squeezed lime juice
  • 1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 1/2 tsp of pink salt
  • 1 clove of minced garlic (optional)
  • 1 tbsp of raw honey

My kids love dipping sliced carrots and peppers in these dressings for an extra bit of flavor. They can even add some pizazz to plain rice, roasted vegetables, and more. Salad dressings don’t have to only be drizzled on a bed of greens.

Get creative!

We hope you and your family enjoy trying out these 5 easy and healthy salad dressing recipes!

5 Easy and Healthy Salad Dressing Recipes

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Seed Oils Like Vegetable & Grapeseed Oil Are Damaging Your Health!

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  • How to differentiate between healthy and unhealthy fats
  • Where oils like sesame oil and peanut oil fit on the spectrum
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