Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Ceasar Salad-esque Dressing using Real Food Ingredients

We love Caesar salad dressing in our family, all our boys do especially. But I have yet to find a bottle of Caesar salad dressing at a store that uses healthy oils and other real food ingredients. Even organic/natural brands, such as Annie's Naturals, use cheap, highly processed oils like soybean oil and canola oil for their main ingredient. These cooking oils are relatively new to the human diet and really, let's face it, devoid of taste! For further information on these oils I would suggest reading this article by Dr. Mary Enig and Sally Fallon. It is definitely worth a shot at making your own fresh, healthy dressing if you enjoy a delicious salad.

Caesar-style Dressing Recipe:


1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil (use a bit more if dressing is too thick)
juice of 1 lemon or large lime
1/2 cup finely shredded Parmigiano Reggiano or aged Manchego cheese
2 anchovy fillets (preferably from a glass jar)
2 small cloves garlic, pressed or finely grated
2 tsp dijon mustard
1 tsp apple cider vinegar
salt and pepper to taste

Directions for making Caesar-style Dressing:

1. Mix everything, except salt and pepper, in a food processor or blender for a minute or two. Adjust flavor to your liking by adding real sea salt, freshly ground pepper or more lemon/lime juice. Reserve dressing in the fridge until ready to dress your favorite salad, or up to 3 days.

Frugal shopping tip: check your local Greek market or Middle Eastern market for amazing deals on olive oil, I found a gallon of extra-virgin olive oil for 22$ at Bill's Imported Foods. Otherwise, you can also find good quality olive oil in bulk at your local co-op, it's generally 8$/lb here in the Twin Cities.

I am sharing this post with the Nourishing Gourmet's Pennywise Platter and with Food Renegade's Fight Back Friday!

I am also entering this recipe in the Nourished Kitchen's Olive Oil Recipe Contest!


  1. This sounds like the Sally Fallon Caesar dressing recipe I made just a few days ago. My dressing lacked flavor so I added a few more spices and it was ok. Yours looks good!

  2. It is pretty flavorful, bt adding extra anchovies and plenty of lemon or lime jice helps! I actually lent out my copy of NT, I'll have to compare recipes when I get it back.

  3. Emily, this looks yum - for the cheese - is it a 1/2 cup, 1/2 pound, ? Also, do you think adding whey would let it keep longer?

  4. Gina- oops! it is 1/2 a cup, lightly packed cheese! I haven't ever tried using whey in homemade condiments so I'm not sure. You could up the vinegar amount to give it a bit more of a "preservative" effect. hth!

  5. It's been so long since I've made a homemade Ceaser salad, I'm so glad you posted this. My husband would really enjoy this. Adding grilled chicken goes well. Yumm.

  6. I love homemade caesar, also thanks for the shopping tip, I'll have to try looking around for EVOO.