Dips, Dressings, & Sauces recipes

The BEST Caesar Salad Dressing {gluten free, low carb}

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Do you ever eat an amazing salad at a restaurant and then try to recreate it at home with bottled dressing from the grocery and just doesn’t taste the same? Yeah, I’ve been there too. That’s why I make all of my dressings from scratch at home! And let’s face it, a Caesar salad is only as good as its dressing. So I had to come up with a recipe that tastes like it does at my favorite restaurants, and this one NAILS IT!

I started by gathering the basics, such as mayo, fresh parmesan, dijon mustard, Worcestershire sauce, anchovy paste (found near tuna in the store), lemons, and garlic. And don’t forget the salt and fresh black peppercorns in a grinder! Trust me, you’ll want to grind your peppercorns for an authentic taste rather than using finely ground black pepper for this recipe. I don’t have anything fancy, just this McCormick Black Peppercorn Grinder from my local grocery store.

So let’s talk about the ANCHOVY PASTE…it comes in a tube like toothpaste and can be stored in the fridge after it has been opened. It sounds disgusting, but it is essential to Caesar dressing. You could use canned whole anchovies instead, and melt them down in a skillet…yes, they disintegrate when cooked in hot olive oil and become infused with the oil. But it’s much easier and less expensive to squeeze the little tube and store the rest in your fridge for future use.

Now let’s get into the PARMESAN. Parmesan cheese is a major component of Caesar dressing, and for the best flavor, you’ll want to buy a wedge of fresh parmesan and grate it yourself. It sounds taxing, but it’s much easier than you think, and you’ll be able to shave a few slices off the same block for garnish. If you choose to buy the pre-grated stuff, choose one without added ingredients like cellulose. Boar’s Head makes a great parmesan that doesn’t have any unnecessary ingredients…it’s pricey, but it’s worth every penny! To grate parmesan yourself, you’ll need a hand grater. And to shave off a few slices for garnish, I just use a vegetable peeler!

When it comes to LEMON JUICE, nothing is better than the real thing. So grab a lemon from the grocery store and and get to squeezing! I use a citrus squeezer to make sure I get the most juice I can from the lemon, and it filters the seeds out for me. If you choose to buy a store-bought lemon juice, which I don’t recommend, do NOT opt for ReaLemon because it contains sulphites and lemon oil which lead to an artificial taste. If you can’t imagine squeezing a lemon and simply must use the bottled stuff, Santa Cruz Organic Pure Lemon Juice is the only one I would recommend because the only ingredient is organic lemon juice. But for the sake of flavor in this dressing, I urge you to just buy a lemon and squeeze it!

GARLIC is one ingredient where fresh is best, but minced garlic in a jar works too. So either way you go here, you can’t go wrong!

DIJON MUSTARD tends to have added ingredients, but I have found that the grocery’s generic brand doesn’t, so that’s what I go for. It’s cheap, good quality, and delicious!

WORCESTERSHIRE SAUCE is hard to pronounce, but it add so much flavor to salad dressings! Lea & Perrins is my favorite brand because it says Gluten Free right on the bottle!

Let’s face it, EXTRA VIRGIN OLIVE OIL can be expensive! But some brands are actually worth the added price tag because they offer an unbeatable flavor. For this recipe, any extra virgin olive oil will do. You don’t have to break the bank to get good quality here!

If you ask me, there’s no MAYO like Duke’s Mayo, but please feel free to use your favorite mayo for this recipe since the mayo is the base! Hellman’s Vegan Mayo is a great option if you want to make this recipe egg free. Some Caesar recipes call for oil and egg yolks as the base, but I prefer a creamy Caesar and use mayo as the base…and it tastes amazing!

So let’s get to making this recipe…

The BEST Caesar Salad Dressing {gluten free, low carb}

Seriously, this is better than all of the Caesar dressings I've ever had! It reminds me of the one I used to get at the hotel I worked at in my early twenties, and that one was simply sensational!
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Course Salad
Servings 12 servings
Calories 138 kcal

Ingredients
  

  • 1 cup mayo I use Duke's
  • 1 tbsp minced garlic about 3 cloves
  • 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
  • 1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce make sure it's gluten free
  • 1 teaspoon anchovy paste
  • cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • ¼ teaspoon black pepper
  • juice from one lemon

Instructions
 

  • Add all ingredients to a mixing bowl and stir to combine
  • Store in an airtight container in fridge for up to 2 weeks

Nutrition

Serving: 2tablespoonsCalories: 138kcalCarbohydrates: 0.8gProtein: 1.1gFat: 14.5gSugar: 0.2g
Keyword caesar dressing, caesar salad dressing, easy caesar dressing, gluten free caesar dressing, the best caesar dressing
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