I never ate salads as a kid. There was a divide in our family—there were the salad eaters and the steamed veggie eaters, and of course mom and dad, who ate both. It seems like most of the time we had salad and steamed veggies on the table so everyone was happy (well, I don’t know about mom who went to all that work…)
It seems like just about everyone who gives advice for helping kids eat veggies (or anything, really) suggests ranch dressing. Apparently it’s the universal kiddie dip. Well guess what? I never liked ranch as a kid. Nope. Everyone I knew did, but not me. No salads, no dressing.
Fortunately I had an epiphany in my mid-teens. My mom made us a salad dressing one night. It was a sweet-tangy onion vinaigrette, and I discovered that salad is AWESOME. I changed my ways from that day forward and now I would rather eat a good salad than just about anything else.
So in a nutshell, the secret to a great salad is a great dressing. If you open my fridge you will find zero bottles of dressing. Salad dressing must be created in my kitchen. I promise I don’t make my own ketchup, mustard, Worcestershire sauce or most other condiments though. I am somewhat normal (maybe? I hope?)
Most dressings that I make honestly only take a few minutes to whip up. It’s just a matter of tossing a few things in a blender. This one is no exception. Only 6 ingredients and a whirl away to a dressing that will have you licking the blender clean.
Cilantro-lime ranch is always a favorite for Latin-themed salads, and I love it. Unfortunately mayonnaise-based dressings aren’t the healthiest choice to slather on that beautiful green salad (not that that ever stops me). This avocado-lime dressing tastes creamy and indulgent but is also very nutritious, made with avocado and plain yogurt. The cilantro and lime flavors are dazzling, with delicious garlicky undertones. I think I actually would go for this dressing over cilantro-lime ranch most of the time.
It’s hard to imagine what wouldn’t taste good with creamy avocado-lime dressing. It’s delicious with grilled meat or fish, as a dip for fresh veggies, a sandwich spread, or drizzled over a fresh green salad or taco salad. It would even shine as a dip for tortilla chips. I’m not above eating it by the spoonful.
Next week I’ll share a great full-meal salad that features this avocado-lime dressing.
- ¼ cup water
- ½ cup plain yogurt*
- 1 small clove garlic
- 1/2 tsp salt
- ½ a ripe avocado
- 1 cup cilantro, leaves and stems
- Juice of ½ a lime
Place ingredients in the jar of a blender in the order given. Blend until almost smooth and serve. Add a little more water if you want a thinner dressing. Store leftovers in the refrigerator and use within a few days.
*If using thick Greek yogurt, reduce the amount of yogurt and increase the amount of water to achieve the desired consistency.