Since extra virgin olive oil should be consumed cold for best health benefits, homemade Italian dressing is a simple way to incorporate it into your diet.
There’s also a great added health benefit to consuming olive oil with your vegetables: carotenoids (beta-carotene, etc.) are best absorbed by the body in the presence of real fats, such as olive oil. You actually get more out of your veggies in a salad by putting fat on it than if you choose fat-free dressing. AND it may even protect brain function as we age. Score and double score!
When I gave up all white sugar for Lent, that nixed any storebought salad dressings for me, unless I was willing to pay an arm and a leg. I’m not. I had to learn to make my own or just use mustard on my salad (which I actually love, but it gets old after a while).
I’m also reading more and more about Genetically Modified Foods (GMOs) that are hurting our food supply and our bodies. I’m all about God-Made Food (GMF). Soybeans and corn are almost always genetically modified, and since soybean oil is rampantly overused, it’s in about every dressing on the market. That’s just another reason to avoid manufactured dressing, plus the fact that olive oil is sooooo healthy for you.
- Whisk mustard and vinegar together.
- Add olive oil in a thin stream, whisking constantly.
- Add spices and whisk.
- Store in a jar at room temperature, preferably in dark glass or in a dark cupboard, and shake well before using.
- Should last at least a month or more, especially if you are more careful about light, heat and air getting to your oil.
Is Homemade Italian dressing any Cheaper than the Store Bought Stuff?
Is homemade dressing necessarily less expensive than Kraft or a store brand? With really good sales and coupons, unfortunately not always. 🙁 I bought a gallon of organic EVOO for about $22 online, so that’s still more than $1 a cup. For organic olive oil, though, it’s a good deal. A “deal” is all relative, I guess. That means the Italian, for example, is about $2.50 for 16 oz, the standard supermarket size. However, for the nutrition you’re getting, the expense is still minimal, and avoiding high fructose corn syrup and GMOs is…priceless.
Another tasty olive oil based dressing you should try is homemade Caesar dressing.