Make Your Own Vinaigrette - Never Buy it Again!

I don't even remember the last time we bought vinaigrette salad dressing from a store.

It's been years since we've had the three, four or six plastic bottles of dressing all 3/4 full taking up room in the fridge door. Since I discovered how ridiculously easy it is to make my own, I make some in a small batch (half a cup at a time, maybe?) and use it til it's out. Lather, rinse, repeat

One of the most useful kitchen gadgets I've ever bought is this salad dressing cruet...




It's got measurements and recipes on the side (much like some martini shakers). I bought it from Victorian Epicure, but you can get ones like these anywhere. Or use a glass drink bottle that's been cleaned out and has a secure lid. Pour everything into the bottle, shake til combined, pour, enjoy.

It's not about making the perfect Greek Dressing, or fruity vinaigrette, it's about knowing the basic formula and having ingredients on hand so that you can make an infinite number of dressings - the only thing limiting you is your imagination!

Basic ratio: One part vinegar to two parts oil.  

(Depending on what you're actually using though, and your taste, your preferred ratio may be different. ALWAYS taste as you go.)

Basic formula: Oil + vinegar + seasonings + mayo (or vegenaise) (or plain Greek yogurt for the sweeter ones) to make it a little creamy, if you want. 

Here are 20 recipes to get you started:

  1. Extra virgin olive oil and balsamic vinegar (Classic)
  2. Grapeseed OR canola oil, white balsamic vinegar OR white wine vinegar, maple syrup and crushed fresh raspberries (AMAZING in the summer)
  3. Extra virgin olive oil, balsamic vinegar, juice of squeezed orange, tamari (or soy sauce) and minced ginger
  4. Grapeseed OR canola oil, white balsamic vinegar, mayo (or vegenaise), Dijon mustard, juice of squeezed lemon, fresh tarragon, salt and pepper
  5. Extra virgin olive oil, balsamic vinegar, fresh rosemary and dried chili flakes
  6. Grapeseed OR canola oil, apple cider vinegar, apple sauce and grainy mustard
  7. Extra virgin olive oil, red wine vinegar, apple sauce, crumbled goat cheese and fresh thyme
  8. Extra virgin olive oil, balsamic vinegar, crumbled bleu cheese
  9. Grapeseed OR canola oil, balsamic vinegar, crushed peach slices, torn basil and crumbled goat cheese
  10. Extra virgin olive oil, balsamic vinegar, crushed strawberries, torn basil, fresh ground pepper
  11. Grapeseed OR canola oil, white wine OR rice vinegar, mayo (or vegenaise) and dried Italian blend herbs, minced garlic
  12. Extra virgin olive oil, rice vinegar, sesame oil (for flavour, don't need a lot), juice of squeezed lime, minced ginger and dried chili flakes
  13. Extra virgin olive oil, apple cider vinegar, maple syrup, tamari (or soy sauce)
  14. Grapeseed OR canola oil, white wine OR white balsamic vinegar, plain Greek yogurt, crushed raspberries or strawberries, torn mint, fresh cracked pepper
  15. Grapeseed OR canola oil, apple cider vinegar, crumbled feta, dried oregano, juice of squeezed lemon, salt and pepper
  16. Extra virgin olive oil, apple cider vinegar, juice of squeezed lime, chipotle spice
  17. Extra virgin olive oil, red wine vinegar, minced sun dried tomato, crumbled feta, torn oregano, salt and pepper
  18. Extra virgin olive oil, fig vinegar (or balsamic vinegar or red wine vinegar) crumbled goat cheese, fresh cracked pepper. 
  19. Grapeseed or canola oil, white wine vinegar, juice of squeezed lemon, fresh cracked pepper, and fresh thyme
  20. Extra virgin olive oil, red wine vinegar, crushed cherries, dried chili flakes

Things to remember:
  • Lighter vinegars like rice vinegar, white wine vinegar or white balsamic vinegar are over-powered by extra virgin olive oil, and are best paired with canola or grapeseed oil.
  • Squeezed citrus juice acts the same as vinegar, so if you use any in your dressing, you may want to reduce the amount of vinegar.
We love having a well-stocked pantry. We have multiple types of oils, vinegars, and other seasonings so that when the mood takes me, I can run with it. As you try some of these dressings, you'll have the ingredients on hand. No need to go out and buy the entire grocery store!


Salad on, amigos!

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