Salad is a healthy and delicious food option – perfect for those on a diet, trying to lose some weight, or simply wanting to eat healthily. It is made of leafy greens and other fruits, vegetables, and meat. What makes it more delicious are the different types of dressings used. These may include ranch dressing, balsamic vinaigrette dressing, and more.
But did you know that aside from salads, you can also use salad dressings to cook different dishes or foods? The use of salad dressing goes beyond adding a splash to leafy greens. Based on the research done by the Association for Dressings and Sauces, Americans use salad dressings in far more ways than you would imagine. But what do you think are these ways? If you are also curious, read on as we’re giving you a list of the unique ways to cook with salad dressings.
1. Marinate Steak
To marinate your steak, you can mix Italian salad dressing with Worcestershire sauce, salt, and pepper. Doing this will give the steak a bold, tangy flavor with the right amount of spice. It is also very easy to do. And the longer you let it marinate, the more flavor you can get.
2. Flavor Chicken
Chicken is an excellent source of protein for lean muscle building. However, it has a bland flavor. But no worries, as you can also use salad dressings to add flavor to it. You can sprinkle the chicken breasts with some salt and pepper, then brush some honey mustard dressing before grilling or baking. You can either make the dressing yourself or buy one from supermarkets.
In addition to being flavorful, honey mustard vinaigrette is also rich in vitamins that can help boost your metabolism and detoxify your body.
3. Dress Pasta
A Greek yogurt-based salad dressing is perfect to be mixed into some cold pasta. This type of salad dressing is thick and creamy, high in protein, and low in sugar. It is even healthier if you use whole grain pasta and add chopped vegetables, such as tomatoes, olives, broccoli, and onion.
4. Grilling Skewers
Instead of using the classic barbecue sauce, why not try salad dressings instead? Before you put your skewers on the grill, put a lightly sweet dressing such as raspberry vinaigrette on them for added flavor. This is also a great substitute instead of using oil or a heavy barbecue sauce. Plus, it can add some big, bold flavors while remaining healthy. To make it more delicious, you can also add in some peppers, onions, and even fruits like mango or pineapple, which will go along well with the sweetness of the salad dressing.
5. Use Salad Dressing with Potatoes
You can improve the flavor of potatoes by using a vinegar-based salad dressing instead of heavy mayonnaise. Instead of boiling potatoes, chop them up and roast them until they get softer and slightly crispy.
Combine the equal parts of olive oil and red wine vinegar with the lemon juice, green onions, and spices in a separate bowl. Toss the cooked potatoes with the dressing and enjoy a potato salad that doesn’t leave you feeling bloated.
6. Slathering on Slow-Cooked Meat
If you want to make dinner quickly without spending hours on it, then this might be it. You just need to cover the meat in salad dressing and place it in a slow cooker with vegetables in the morning before leaving for the day. It will absorb all the flavors as it cooks slowly, and you will come home to a fantastic meal that only takes a few simple steps and no hover over a hot stove.
7. Use with a Burger
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We all know that burgers may not be the go-to meal on a diet, but you haven’t lived until you have tried adding a creamy salad dressing spread on your burger. Just imagine your juicy burger with gooey cheese, crunchy lettuce, and tomato sandwiched between two fluffy buns slathered in a creamy salad dressing.
8. Making Spring Rolls
Spring rolls are a slightly lighter way to enjoy Asian flavors without all the sodium. But they can still be topped with a nutty salad dressing for maximum flavor. You can wrap rice paper around anything, from fresh vegetables and grilled chicken to rice and shrimp. But make sure to add a spoonful of Thai, peanut, or sesame dressing before rolling it up.
9. Add It on Your Burrito
You might spend an extra $1 on guac in your burrito bowl, so why not add the goodness of avocado to mix with a dressing. A creamy avocado dressing goes well with rice, beans, chicken, and salsa. You need to combine a half avocado, one tablespoon of Greek yogurt, lime juice, one tablespoon of olive oil, cilantro, garlic, and salt to make a dressing that will add significant flavor to your bowl.
10. Toss Salad Dressing with Veggies before Roasting
If you are tired of the average roasted vegetables, try coating them with a salad dressing before putting them in the oven. This way, the vegetables will caramelize. Some of the best vegetables for this are onions, carrots, mushrooms, and zucchini. You can use an Italian dressing for a side dish that is surely delicious.
11. Use a Salad Dressing in a Stir Fry
You can also add some Asian dressing in the popular Chinese take-out meal, stir fry. It is essential to find dressings low in sodium and do not contain any difficult ingredients to pronounce. This will work well with sliced chicken, bell peppers, mushroom, ginger, and broccoli.
12. Coat Shrimps Using Salad Dressings
You can add a kick of flavor to shrimp by coating it with some honey lime salad dressing. This will work whether it is for baking, searing, or grilling your shrimp. Adding this salad dressing will give the shrimp a delicious flavor, turning it from a simple dish to a special one.
13. When Serving Pizza
If you want to improve the flavors of your pizza, why not try dipping, dunking, or drizzling it with some ranch salad dressing? The pizza’s crispiness and saltiness match the creamy tanginess of ranch dressings. Once you try this, you will not be able to look at pizza on its own the same way. If you want it to be healthier, stick to a thin crust pizza and use a light ranch salad dressing.
14. Braised Dishes
Did you know that when you heat salad dressings that contain balsamic vinegar, they become sweeter and more fragrant? Therefore, adding it to stew and casserole dishes is great if you want to give them some extra flavor.
These are some of the unique ways to cook with salad dressings. It is great to learn that aside from using them on salads, you can also incorporate the dressings into many different dishes. It is an easy but effective way to add unique flavors to your favorite foods.
If you are looking for more information about salad dressings, you can also click on the links below: