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How much salad dressing do you use?

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Old 12-07-2008, 01:59 PM   #1
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Default How much salad dressing do you use?

The standard serving of salad dressing is two tablespoons (30 ml). That's an eighth of a cup. Two tablespoons of a vinaigrette type dressing seems like a tremendous amount of dressing to me. A thick dressing is probably not a choice if you're watching calories. How much salad dressing do people really use? How much on a side salad and how much for a salad that's a meal?

I use 1-2 tsps (5-10 ml) on a side salad and about a TBS to a tablespoon and a half (15-22 ml) on a meal salad.
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Old 12-07-2008, 02:59 PM   #2
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I typically use 30 ml for my lunch salad which is a meal - 2 cups of spinach salad.

I can often eat side salad with nothing to very little dressing - I dip into the dressing rather then put it on my salad.
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Old 12-07-2008, 03:38 PM   #3
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A lot depends on the salad and the dressing. A thick dressing is hard to distribute, so it's harder to use small amounts. Iceberg lettuce seems to need more dressing than thinner, more delicate leaf lettuces. Thick dressing and thin lettuce is the worst combination. One leaf gets all the dressing and the rest get none.

If I use leaf lettuce and a vinaigrette I get the best dressing to lettuce ratio.
Also, at home, I often use a ziploc bag or tupperware style container to shake the dressing on a salad. I can use alot less dressing that way.

In restaurants, especially with thicker dressings, I'll often dip (not scoop) the fork in the dressing and then in the salad.
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Old 12-07-2008, 03:47 PM   #4
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I tend to only like the creamy ones, it's a weakness... :-( What I usually do is put about the serving size, usually 2 tblsp. and I put it off to the side & I dip my salad in it as I eat. I find this helps me assure that I get a taste of dressing on each bite and controls exactly how much I use, I will never add more that pile. If I run out of dressing before I'm done eating, I'm finished. I just won't eat the rest of the salad. I know kinda of a waste, but although I like salad & I eat it all the time, they can be such a calorie trap, especially if you are out eating a restaraunt.
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Old 12-07-2008, 04:01 PM   #5
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Unless you're eating a lot of salad, either in small frequent salads, or less frequent huge ones, a creamy dressing isn't all that difficult to include in the day's calorie alottment.

For myself, there are very few very low calorie dressings that I like, so I don't use them. I like vinaigrettes the best, so I use them the most, but not only because they're the best calorie bargain. Whether for calories or clothing, it isn't a bargain if you don't like it. And no single splurge, whether with cash or calories, is a budget-breaker. So if two tablespoons of thick dressing are "worth it" to you, and you can budget in the calories (or whatever it is you're counting), then that's onderful.

I think it's a little too easy to focus in on micro-details. Salad dressing, if you're not counting it, can add up pretty fast. But, if you're measuring it, use the ones that you like over the ones that save you the most calories. If you can find one that does both, bonus - but some of those have so many un-food ingredients they make me a little nervous (I'm not willing to give up my splenda, but I do try to keep it my frankenfoods to a minimum).

Marzetti's used to make a light champaign vinaigrette that I loved, and it only had 25 calories for two tablespoons, I think (or maybe it was 25 calories a tablespoon), but it was awesome. Unfortunately, they stopped making it. Now I usually make my own with oil, rice wine vinegar, splenda and seasonings. My favorite oil to use on a salad is walnut oil. I find it great for dieting - because it's so darned expensive I measure it out like gold.
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Old 12-07-2008, 05:43 PM   #6
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I love salads, but also love ranch dressing, so I make my own dressing using the Hidden Valley Buttermilk Ranch mix. I mix it with 1 cup of lowfat buttermilk and 1 cup Hellmann's new olive oil mayo. It ends up being only 28 calories per Tablespoon and tastes so close to the original that I use it as dip for veggies, too. I'll generally use about 2 T. on a salad unless it's a really big salad as a main dish, then I use 3T.
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Old 12-07-2008, 06:14 PM   #7
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I use about 1T per salad. But I generally don't eat a lot of creamy dressings (although I love them, I ahve other areas where I'd rather spend the calories).

I tend to use olive oil and red wine vinegar a lot on salads, so I just measure out 1T of olive oil and then don't count the vinegar.

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Old 12-07-2008, 07:13 PM   #8
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I use about 1T per 1 1/2 cups. For creamy dressings, I try to make home-made out of Greek yogurt when applicable. It's not quite like the original, but great in its own right.
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Old 12-08-2008, 03:34 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kaplods View Post
My favorite oil to use on a salad is walnut oil. I find it great for dieting - because it's so darned expensive I measure it out like gold.
I know what you mean. I buy a tiny little bottle of basil infused EVOO for my salads. It cost $3.99 for a bottle and I only use a teaspoon of it per salad. That way the bottle lasts me about a month.
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Old 12-08-2008, 05:30 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kaplods View Post
If I use leaf lettuce and a vinaigrette I get the best dressing to lettuce ratio. Also, at home, I often use a ziploc bag or tupperware style container to shake the dressing on a salad. I can use alot less dressing that way.

Yep yep. Everyone around me at work knows it's time to dress the lettuce when they hear the shaking begin.
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Old 12-08-2008, 05:51 PM   #11
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I use 1-2 Tbsp depending on the size of the salad, and that's an oil/vinegar type dressing.

If I have a creamy dressing I will always have it on the side and do the fork dip. Typically I estimate this at about 1 Tbsp. Hardly any is gone from the little bowl.
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Old 12-08-2008, 07:30 PM   #12
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See I never could get the hang of that. What can I say half my family is from Spain and cook in the very olive-oily Spanish way, I must add: THEY AREN'T FAT!

As a WW dropout, I remember asking the lady HOW DO YOU PUT 1 TEASPOON OF OLIVE OIL.....TINY AMOUNT....ON A BIG SALAD? I even tried Richard Simmons "salad mist" LOL I think it was at 99 cent store or something. It was lame -- like salad perfume!

I force myself to use 1 tablespoon of olive oil....with a teaspoon of Dijon mustard & 2 Tablespoons of balsamic vinegar, that is my standard, although if I had no weight issues I would use a quarter cup olive oil just for me! I love love love it....and I hate a dry salad. Sometimes I use salsa or cottage cheese with the vinaigrette which seems to bulk it up a bit.
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Old 12-08-2008, 07:36 PM   #13
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I just use vinager , no dressing.
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Old 12-08-2008, 11:53 PM   #14
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I never could make a vinaigrette with less than half oil until I found rice wine vinegar and other milder vinegars. I try to always keep a good rice wine vinegar on hand, so I can make oil-free or nearly oil-free dressings.
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Old 12-09-2008, 12:34 AM   #15
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I started by using 1 serving of blue cheese dressing which is 2 tablespoons I think (I dont have the jar handy) After I started using a scale I began weighing out my dressing and found that when I had been measuring it with the Tablespoon(s) that somehow I was using a lot more dressing that I thought. So now I measure out 1 serving of dressing or however many calories I want to allot to dressing in my count by weighing it on my scale.

I put all my ingredients in a big bowel and actually toss my salad now and usually no matter what is in there, the dressing gets pretty evenly distributed. If I do it that way, less dressing goes a lot further.
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