Step away from the ranch dressing! There are approximately 15.6 grams of fat (2.4 of which are saturated) in only 2 tablespoons of that stuff — and let’s be honest, you don’t plan on stopping at 2 tablespoons. Try these recipes for a yummy AND healthy alternative that actually adds nutrients to your salad.
Red pepper vinaigrette
In case you thought it impossible to make a vinaigrette without oil: It’s not. This high-flavor, low-calorie (and extremely low-fat!) vinaigrette from Food.com uses apple juice, cider vinegar, onions, garlic, roasted red peppers and seasoning to create a healthy dressing with a whole lotta flavor.
Zesty avocado cilantro buttermilk dressing
Just the name has us craving it — we didn’t even need the beautiful photo. Healthy creamy dressings are hard to come by, but Skinnytaste found that low-fat buttermilk and avocado do the trick without ruining our diets. In addition to being creamy, it also offers a nice kick — the recipe includes garlic, scallion and jalapeno.
Smoked paprika vinaigrette
Looking for something a little different? You won’t find this in the grocery. This recipe from Eating Well uses smoked paprika, which is made from smoke-dried red peppers and adds an earthy, smoky flavor. Add olive oil, sherry vinegar, a shallot and Dijon mustard, and you’ve got yourself a flavorful, light salad dressing that you can drizzle over your salad or, as the site suggests, slices of grilled eggplant.
Creamy cranberry dressing
Antioxidant-rich cranberries are key to this delightfully tart salad dressing from Elana’s Pantry. It also uses orange juice, an ingredient you don’t usually see in salad dressing recipes but works beautifully in this one. Keep this gluten-free recipe in mind for Thanksgiving.
Strawberry poppy seed dressing
Poppy seeds don’t just belong on bagels, people. If you like to top your salads with something sweet, this strawberry poppy seed dressing from Simple Bites might be the perfect recipe for you. Bonus: There’s another recipe — for strawberry salad with sugared almonds — on the same page.
Low-calorie, low-fat homemade ranch
What was that? You’re still grumbling about how you’ll miss your ranch dressing? Well, you won’t — because we found an awesome low-fat, healthy ranch dressing recipe that somehow only manages to contain 1.75 grams of fat — in the entire mason jar! Fluffi Mama blog posted the secret to this anomaly: nonfat Greek yogurt, Hidden Valley ranch dressing mix and 1% milk. Creamy, low-calorie, low-fat, delicious and packed with probiotics. What more can you ask for?