Vegan Salad Dressing
When you went plant-based or vegan, what was the most difficult thing you had to find an alternative for? Some people might say burgers, others say ice cream, and another big one is cheese. One item that people may often overlook until they encounter a need for it is...Salad Dressing. But as a part of the plant-based lifestyle, you must forget the dairy! Remember all those salads you had with ranch dressing? Or what about the Caesar salads that you had when you were on a "diet". And even when you try to enjoy the vegan substitutes to these dressings, they are just filled with oil. It is not often thought about when transitioning to living a plant-based lifestyle, until it's too late to enjoy the salad.
For example, if you're out at a restaurant with friends, and you think to yourself, "I know this place has salads, so I can definitely eat plant-based here." Then the host sits you down and gives you the menu to browse. As your browse the salad list, all you see are dairy filled or oily dressings. Oh no! What do you do now? To avoid this in the future, think about the dressing before it's too late. Here are some tips to maintaining a plant-based lifestyle when it comes to the infamous salad dressings:
#1. Salad Dressing Packets
That's right. Buy or make your own salad dressing packets. It may sound weird, but it has been done. If you're going out to a restaurant and are craving a salad, you may want to bring your own to-go salad dressing packet. You could also call the restaurant ahead if you have time to see what plant-based options they have for dressing; however, even if you call and they say they have plant-based offerings, the options may still be filled with oil. And to make the healthiest decision, it would be to avoid oil as much as possible. You can find vegan salad dressing packets without oil in grocery stores, Amazon, or plant-based markets. If you have difficulty finding them, then look up recipes you can make yourself, buy a small reusable container, and bring that with you to the restaurant. It may seem weird, but it's your health we're talking about! It's okay to seem weird sometimes.
#2. Make Your Own Salad Dressing
If you're not able to find any oil-free, vegan salad dressing packets, then it's time to make your own. There are a variety of different recipes that show you that it's possible to have oil-free and vegan salad dressings. Most of them will require a blender to mix all the ingredients for the proper consistency as a salad dressing. The majority of these dressings taste fresh and pure, and are filled with so many good for you ingredients! To help get you started on making your very own salad dressings, we decided to share with you some of our favorites. Try one of these recipes below and comment to let us know how they turned out! All recipes found here.
Balsamic Vinegar Hummus Salad Dressing: The taste of balsamic vinegar in a thicker no-oil salad dressing.
Asian Mango Salad Dressing: A fruit based salad dressing with a touch of Asia.
Agave-Mustard Hummus Salad Dressing: A tangy no-oil salad dressing.
#3. Buy Premade Salads with Premade Dressings
If you love salads and don't even want to think about making your own dressing, then try out Little Green Forks! We offer a variety of 100% plant-based salads including ingredients such as kale, garbanzo beans, corn, black beans, red peppers, and so much more. Our menu is rotating so there's always multiple salads to choose from. The dressings that are paired with each salad are plant-based and oil-free. They are the perfect addition to our delicious salads! You can order an entrée size or a side salad for every day of the week if you'd like! Most salads come with a small container of dressing inside the salad so you can pour on however much you would like. These are just a few of the salads we have:
Southwestern Salad: Enjoy a tex-mex kick of corn and beans in this romaine salad with a tangy cilantro lime dressing. Ingredients: Romaine, black beans, bell pepper, corn, cherry tomato, scallions, cilantro, lime juice, white wine vinegar, garlic, agave, salt, cumin. Allergens: Gluten (In the Vinegar), Gluten
Quinoa Kale Salad: Enjoy a refreshing salad of quinoa and kale tossed with bell peppers and grapes and dressed with a sweet lemon mustard vinaigrette. Ingredients: Red seedless grapes, quinoa, kale, red bell pepper. Allergens: Gluten
Kale Greek Salad: New twist on the traditional Greek salad with chickpeas and kale!Ingredients: Kale, cherry tomato, cucumber, garbanzo beans, red onion, kalamata olives, water, lemon juice, red wine, vinegar, parsley, garlic, oregano, sugar, salt, pepper. Allergens: Gluten (In the Vinegar), Gluten
Bonus Tip! Here are a couple of different salad dressings that we found online that would also be a great addition for salads made at home, salads taken to parties, or even could be put into a reusable container and brought to a restaurant.