Parmesan Peppercorn Dressing is a beautiful blend of savory Parmesan flavor, peppery heat, and tangy creamy texture. And it takes minimal effort to make!
I’m a condiment girl all the way. I like “the works” on top of hot dogs and burgers, blue cheese for my wings, mustard to dip pretzels in, and ketchup and/or hot sauce drizzled on eggs. For me, the dressing can make or break a salad!
And did you know that dressing on salad isn’t just for flavor? The healthy fats from salad dressing actually help our bodies absorb the nutrients from the vegetables in salad. (Read more about how fat helps our bodies optimize nutrient absorption on WebMD, NPR, and American Heart Association.)
Instead of buying store-bought salad dressings, which are usually made with sugar, a lot of salt, preservatives, additives, and low-quality oil, I like to make my own dressing. My Parmesan Peppercorn Dressing has a lovely balance of savory Parmesan and peppercorn flavor, in a delicious, creamy base. I like to use this dressing on green salads, coleslaw, and pasta salads, and as a dip for veggies and grilled chicken.
What is the Healthiest Salad Dressing?
There are two basic types of salad dressing, creamy and vinaigrette, each with endless variations. Both are easy to make at home, and have a variety of store-bought flavors available. Vinaigrette has a base of oil and vinegar, while creamy dressings have a base of mayo, cream, buttermilk, yogurt, or another creamy ingredient.
When it comes to store-bought salad dressings, a few things to look out for are sugar content, sodium content, type of oil, and other additives and preservatives. Because I want to avoid sugar and additives, minimize sodium, and choose a high-quality oil in my salad dressing, I usually opt for a homemade vinaigrette that contains only vinegar and oil.
Oil and Vinegar Salad Dressing – Vinaigrette
A vinaigrette is an oil and vinegar salad dressing, and it’s very easy to make! I like to use raw unfiltered organic apple cider vinegar and extra-virgin olive oil to make vinaigrette, but you can use any type of oil and vinegar that pair well with the flavor profile of your salad. For example, with a salad of strawberries, goat cheese, and spinach, a balsamic vinegar and extra-virgin olive oil vinaigrette would pair well. Alternatively, if you want a similar but slightly milder flavor profile, you can dress your salad with fresh lemon juice and oil.
You can add other flavorings to your vinaigrette, such as salt, pepper, other spices, fresh herbs, mustard, honey, etc.
To make a vinaigrette, the ratio of oil to vinegar is typically 3 parts oil to 1 part vinegar. For example, 3 tablespoons olive oil to 1 tablespoon red wine vinegar. However, you can use any kind of oil and vinegar you like.
Salad Dressing Balsamic Vinegar
I like to add a touch of honey and Dijon mustard to a balsamic vinegar salad dressing. Here’s my easy go-to recipe:
- 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
- 1 tablespoon good-quality balsamic vinegar
- 1 teaspoon raw honey
- 1/2 teaspoon Dijon mustard
- 1/8 teaspoon salt
- 1/8 teaspoon black pepper
Simply whisk together all ingredients, and enjoy on top of your favorite salad!
Does Oil and Vinegar Dressing Need to be Refrigerated?
If you make a salad dressing of only oil and vinegar, it does not need to be refrigerated. However, if you use lemon juice instead of vinegar, the dressing needs to be refrigerated. Additionally, if you add fresh herbs (such as parsley, thyme, basil, etc.) or fresh aromatics (like garlic, ginger, etc.), the dressing must be stored in the fridge.
More Creamy Homemade Salad Dressing Recipes:
- Low Carb Ranch Dressing
- Creamy Italian Salad Dressing
- Honey Mustard Dressing
- Creamy Avocado Ranch Salad Dressing
- The Best Creamy Blue Cheese Dressing
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Parmesan Peppercorn Dressing
- Whisk together all ingredients to combine.
- Store in a glass jar in the fridge for up to 5 days.
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