While we put all of that effort into the main dish, sometimes all we’re missing in the end is a little bit of flavor. Eating real food opens a world of opportunity in the kitchen, but it also slims down our ready-made options.
This is especially true of bottled dressings, dips, and sauces. While perusing the labels of the condiment aisles, you’ve likely come to the sad realization that most bottles contain soy, corn and sugar.
Don’t let it get you down; all it takes to break out of a kitchen rut is a tasty drizzle of something that tastes familiar.
Whether you’re looking for that perfect dairy-free tzatziki or ranch for wing night, we’ve rounded up 10 simple, delicious, and nutritious paleo dressings to take your meals to the next level.
1. Five ingredient paleo ranch from Fed & Fit
Ranch dressing might be the most beloved of all condiments. It’s creamy, tangy, and goes with everything. It’s the chosen dip for buffalo wings, celery sticks, and ooey, gooey slices of pizza, so it’s reputed as a “junk food” of sorts.
Let’s redefine our idea of the over-processed, fake bottles of ranch at the store, though. A salad tossed in this delicious and simple paleo ranch is a fresh and nourishing lunch option.
With just five ingredients, this olive-oil based paleo salad dressing should be a staple in your fridge door. Get the recipe from Fed & Fit here.
Product recommendation: Primal Kitchen ranch dressing
.2. Healthy homemade French dressing from Paleo Spirit
If you order a standard French dressing while eating out, you’re likely going to be served something loaded with fake ingredients including sugar. Besides; unrefined, processed oils and added sweetener are some of the main culprits to look out for in condiments.
This is a sweet paleo salad dressing option, but this recipe uses honey in favor of the corn syrup found in many major brands. An apple cider vinegar base gives the French dressing its flavor, while tomato paste creates that familiar, vibrant orange drizzle for your greens. Get the recipe from Paleo Spirit here.
3. Italian dressing from Cook Eat Paleo
If you’ve got plenty of herbs on your hands, consider whipping up a bottle of this classic Italian dressing. Quality olive oil is key if you want to recreate the perfect taste, so choose wisely.
Although most brands you find on the shelves will contain sugar, this particular dressing isn’t meant to be sweet. The paleo salad dressing is a simple red wine vinegar and oil infusion, flavored with both fresh and dried herbs, and garlic (of course), like all good Italian cuisine.
Serve with salad starters before the zoodles and meat sauce for an authentic tasting comfort food meal. Get the recipe from Cook Eat Paleo here.
4. Caesar Dressing from Jay’s Baking Me Crazy
Chicken caesar salad is a perfectly paleo (or primal) option, with or without the cheese. The main problem? The dressing itself. We all know that a caesar salad cannot be true if you don’t have that creamy goodness drizzled on top.
Luckily, making an authentic-tasting paleo salad dressing from whole food ingredients couldn’t be simpler. Anchovies and lemon juice will bring max flavor to the most basic of salads.
Who said salads were boring? Just don’t forget a healthy dose of freshly cracked, coarse black pepper on top. Get the recipe from Jay’s Baking Me Crazy.
Product recommendation: Primal Kitchen caesar dressing
5. Dairy-free green goddess dressing from Oh She Glows
What’s more fun than covering your greens in more green? Not much. This dressing is generally comprised of mayo and sour cream lending you a thick and sturdy coating for your salad.
Fortunately, we’ve got a recipe that skips the dairy without skipping flavor or texture. Avocado and tons of fresh herbs like basil and parsley pack in the healthy fats and fresh taste. Eat like a goddess and feel like a goddess (or a god…) Get the recipe at Oh She Glows here.
Product recommendation: Primal Kitchen green goddess dressing
6. Zesty ginger dressing from Cavewoman Cafe
Maybe the only thing that’s more fun than dressing your greens in more green is dressing them in orange. You could opt for French dressing, but this zesty ginger flavor serves as a better option for Asian-inspired slaws and salads.
Carrots give it a sweet bite and a bright hue while fresh ginger and coconut aminos bring out the slightly spicy, slightly salty profile that can truly hold a dish down. Don’t limit yourself to leafy greens – this would be a fantastic paleo salad dressing to bake poultry with as well. Get the recipe from Cavewoman Cafe here
7. Creamy Thai peanut dressing from Detoxinista
Here we have another contender for an Asian-inspired dish. Unfortunately, the flavour and texture in a peanut sauce comes from, well, peanuts. The good news?
Paleo-friendly nut and seed butters lend the same qualities you’re going after just as well. This sauce uses sunflower seed butter to achieve optimal results, but you could use cashew butter, almond butter, or tahini as well.
A little honey to sweeten and crushed red pepper flakes to spice will turn this into a staple paleo salad dressing recipe worth dipping anything in. Get the recipe from Detoxinista here.
8. Avocado, cilantro & lime sauce from Paleo Newbie
In an effort to cover all the bases in this paleo salad dressing round-up, a sauce for all things Mexican-inspired had to be included. Think homemade burrito bowls with a piquant green sauce just begging to be poured generously on top – this is it.
Avocado, lime juice, fresh coriander, and jalapeno peppers compile all of the standard taco bar condiments into one delicious dip for meats, veggies, and salads.
Serve with cauliflower rice bowls or mixed up with shredded meat on plantain tortillas for a genuine south-of-the-border taste. Everyday is Taco Tuesday when you’ve got a jar of this handy. Get the recipe from Paleo Newbie here.
9. Paleo Tzatziki Sauce from The Real Food Dieticians
And lastly, we’ve got your main squeeze for Greek and Mediterranean dishes. Tzatziki is generally made with yoghurt, but this dairy-free option uses coconut milk and paleo mayo in its place.
Cucumber and dill lend this spread its fresh, cool bite. Serve this on a chilled zoodle salad or dip lamb and veggie kabobs in it for a luxurious, “I can’t believe it’s not takeout” dinner at home. Get the recipe from The Real Food RDs.
10. Meyer lemon vinaigrette from Cali Zona
Meyer lemons are like the lovechild of lemons and oranges. This means they’re just a tad bit sweeter than your average lemon, which makes them the perfect fruit to whizz up a dressing with.
After all, we like a little sweet on our salads! This vinaigrette is refreshing and a little fancy as it uses champagne vinegar for flavor. Get the recipe from Cali Zona here.
What are your favourite healthy salad dressings? Share the staples that end up in your fridge without fail below.
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