Summertime Salad Dressings From Scratch

One of our favorite things to eat during the hot summer months is salad. In this post we share two of our favorite summertime salad dressings that you can make from scratch. And your family is sure to enjoy!

summertime asian salad life full and frugal

The Perfect Summer Meal

The summer months are fast approaching. Believe it or not, it will get hot! Which is hard for us here in West Central Ohio to imagine, with the 48 degree evenings we’ve had over the last week or so.

Summer is such a joyous time, but the truth is most of us don’t like to cook when the weather is hot. It’s not fun to heat your house up when it’s 90 degrees outside. And as they say, a hot woman is a mean woman! One way to combat the heat is with lighter meals that are composed of a lot of salads.

asian tahini peanut dressing life full and frugal

Homemade Salad Dressings Are Healthier

The problem with eating a lot of salads is that most people buy and eat commercially made salad dressings from the grocery store.

About 15 years ago I became a member of the Weston A Price Foundation. After I joined the group, I read the Nourishing Traditions cookbook from cover to cover. I was a bit horrified to learn about all of the chemicals, preservatives, and rancid oils that are used to make commercially produced salad dressings. Learning about these ingredients convicted me to start making my own dressings and I have not looked back.

summertime salad dressing ingredients life full and frugal

Homemade Salad Dressings Are Easy to Make

There are so many ways to make salad dressings. You can mix it up by using all kinds of different oils, vinegars, herbs, and spices. I learned a great trick from Alton Brown many years ago: All you need to make salad dressings come together is oil, vinegar, and dijon mustard. After that, the sky is the limit!

Salad dressings can transform your plain-jane salad into something exotic or even sophisticated. You can even learn to recreate all of those old standby dressings that you have always enjoyed, but gave up after reading the label.

Below are two of my favorite salad dressing recipes that you’re sure to enjoy. The first one I created after my sister Serena got a salad from Panera that had some sort of Asian fusion dressing that I loved. I knew I could figure out a way to recreate it for myself. The second recipe was inspired by an article I read in Bon Appetit magazine. The article was about an authentic Italian American meatball supper. This recipe is my take on a creamy Italian salad dressing.

summertime salad dressing prep life full and frugal

Asian Tahini Peanut Dressing

  • 1 tsp Dijon Mustard
  • 2 Tbs Tahini
  • 3 Tbs Creamy Peanut Butter
  • 1/3 Cup (or to taste) Coconut Sugar
  • 1/2 – 1 tsp Dried Red Pepper Flakes
  • 1 tsp Ground Black Pepper
  • 2 tsp Sea Salt
  • 1 bunch of Cilantro
  • 2 or 3 Green Onions, chopped (or Shallots)
  • 1 Tbs fish sauce
  • 3 Tbs Sesame Oil
  • 2 Tbs Soy Sauce
  • 1/2 cup Rice Wine Vinegar
  • 1/3 cup Raw Apple Cider Vinegar
  • 1 1/4 cups Raw Sunflower Oil
  • 3 or 4 Fresh Garlic Gloves, pounded with 1/4 tsp Salt
  • 1 piece of Grated Ginger (about 2 or 3 tsps)
  • 2 Limes, juiced and zested

Directions: Place all of the ingredients in a Vitamix (or Ninja, or food processor), and blend well. Place the dressing in a glass jar and refrigerate for up to 3 months. Enjoy!

asian tahini peanut salad dressing life full and frugal

Creamy Italian Dressing

  • 1 cup Sour Cream
  • 1 tsp granulated Onion
  • 3/4 tsp granulated Garlic
  • 1 Tbs dried Parsley
  • 1/2 tsp dried Oregano
  • 2 Tbs Cane Sugar
  • 1 tsp Dijon Mustard
  • 3 to 4 cloves of Garlic, pounded with 1/4 tsp of Salt
  • 1 tsp Ground Black Pepper
  • 1/2 cup White Wine Vinegar
  • 1/4 cup raw Apple Cider Vinegar
  • 1 cup Extra Virgin Olive Oil


Place all of the ingredients in a Vitamix (or Ninja, or food processor), and blend well. Place the dressing in a glass jar and refrigerate for up to 3 months. Enjoy!

Remember that recipes are just guides! Feel free to mix these up with your own twist. We hope you enjoy these summertime salad dressings from scratch!



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1 Comment

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