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No Stressin’ about Dressin’

Hate seeing that long list of scary ingredients that you can’t even pronounce on your salad dressing labels?

Dressing

Ever realize you’ve run out of dressing right after chopping that last piece of celery for your giant kale salad?  Getting sick and tired of the dressings you’ve bought?  Do we really know what’s in those “healthy” dressings that we are using on our fresh organic produce?

Here are a few of the common ingredients put in salad dressings:

Artificial Sweeteners:   Typically found in dressings that claim to be low in calories or sugar free.  Ingredients including Aspartame (Equal, NutraSweet) or Sucralose (Splenda) are put in dressings to replace the sweetness of sugar.  This reduces the amount of calories but increases your risk of headaches, stomach pains, skin rashes, brain tumors and cancer, to name a few of the side effects.

Canola Oil, Soybean Oil, etc.:  Cheap alternatives to olive oil.  Most soybean oils used in dressings are genetically modified.  Even if you find olive oil listed in the ingredients, notice the placement – it’s usually listed towards the end which means it’s not the primary oil.  I’d also like to point out here that if it says fat-free on the label, it should be a trigger to check the sugar content – it’s usually extremely high!   High quality fats such as olive oil help you absorb vitamins found in your vegetables.

Caramel Color:  Contains 4-MEI which is known to cause cancer.  This ingredient is KNOWN to be a carcinogen!  The state of California has even listed it officially as a toxic ingredient.

Flavor Enhancers:  Ingredients like MSG and Autolyzed Yeast Extract are added to dressings to deepen the flavor.  These have an addictive effect on the human body – it keeps you wanting more, and thus eating more.  It’s no wonder people have trouble losing weight by going on salad diets!

Natural & Artificial Flavors:  Any “flavor” listed is written as such because it was created in a lab and not from the pure ingredient.  Just put the natural ingredient in your own dressing.

Preservatives:  Ingredients such as Calcium Disodium EDTA, Potasium Sorbate, Natamycin, Sulfur Dioxide, Sodium Benzoate are added to keep dressings “fresh” while they sit on a shelf in a warm factory.  Preservatives such as the ones listed have been linked to cancer, obesity, hyperactivity, and asthma.  Home-made dressing will keep for months in your cold fridge without adding these harmful preservatives.

Emulsifiers:  Ingredients such as Xanthan Gum, Food Starch and Polysorbate 60 are added to dressings to thicken the consistency and keep the ingredients mixed together.  Do we really need to add carbs to our dressings?  Just give your own home made dressing a nice shake every now and then so it will naturally thicken.

And this is only a small, condensed list.  We haven’t even gotten started on High Fructose Corn Syrup!  So what can we do?!

Make our own dressing!  It’s quick, easy, healthy and super fun.   You can use any ingredients you have around your house:  olive oil, tahini, lemon juice, spices, braggs liquid aminos, apple cider vinegar, the list goes on!

Kale Salad with Rose Petals

Here are two simple recipes to start you off:

 

Tahini Mustard Dressing

3 TBS Tahini

2 tsp Dijon Mustard

2 tsp Olive Oil

1 Clove Fresh Pressed Garlic

1 tsp Liquid Braggs Aminos

½ tsp Apple Cider Vinegar

Fresh Squeezed Lemon Juice from 1 Lemon

Spices: Oregano, Sea Salt, Fresh Ground Black Pepper, Cayenne Pepper all to taste

Water for consistency if needed

 

Put all ingredients in a jar and mix together with a spoon.

 

Miso Ginger Dressing

2 TBS Miso

2 TBS Olive Oil

1 tsp Fresh Grated Ginger

Fresh Squeezed Lemon Juice from 1 Lemon

½ tsp Agave Nectar or Honey

Water for consistency if needed

 

You can shake the ingredients vigorously in a jar or blend in a blender.

 

Play around with any ingredients you have around your kitchen.  It’s fun to create new flavorful dressings for each salad.  Have fun with it and enjoy!

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