Updated August 30, 2016
Great gluten free salads with complementary salad dressings turn ordinary meals into showcases of tasty culinary inspiration.
It’s the special touches that make beautiful salads; think taste, texture, color, aroma and eye-appeal.
Makeover “green salads” into a rainbow filled with deep colors. Use purple cabbage instead of green, red leaf lettuce instead of butter lettuce, Belgian endive instead of Escarole, Radicchio instead of kale.
Change up a classic salad, such as Caesar Salad by throwing in some leftover chopped meats or fish, roast beef, cooked chicken or grilled salmon.
Garnish a bevy of ordinary greens with roasted hazelnuts or candied pecans, dried cranberries, cherries or fresh diced apples, and a grated cheese such as Fotina, cheddar or smoked Gouda.
Get creative with other vegetables, too. Use yellow, blue, and fingerlings for your next potato salad. Carrot salads are delightful, especially when composed of white, black, red, purple and yellow carrots.
Be adventurous with your food!
A simple swap in ingredients can change the whole essence of a salad. Try cilantro instead of parsley, leeks instead of onions, chives instead of scallions, Savoy cabbage instead of green cabbage, or broccoli instead of salad greens.
In heartier salads, such as potato salads, use steamed cauliflower or broccoli instead; swap rice for pasta, or steamed cauliflower for pasta. Instead of macaroni noodles, use whole grain penne or spinach fettucine.
Even fruit salads can do with a change now and then. Instead of cantaloupe, use casaba or honeydew melons. Substitute plums for peaches, or boysenberries for strawberries.
The idea goes for salad dressings, too.
Leave the oregano on the shelf and reach for the marjoram; same goes for the garlic powder, reach for the onion powder. Set aside the black pepper and use cayenne or smoked paprika. Push aside the ground nutmeg and use allspice or ground ginger. Replace Italian seasoning with Herbes de Provence.
Even salad dressing bases can be altered.
Use walnut, hazelnut or other expeller pressed nut oils, flavored mayonnaise or aioli, gourmet vinegars such as raspberry or champagne. Lime, orange and pomegranate juices make a pleasing flavor change.
Heavy, heartier meals can stand up to strong flavored salads and dressings that include such ingredients as cabbage, Bleu cheese and marinated olives.
Complement hot or spicy meals using salads and dressing with cool, citrus, sweet or creamy notes. Curry or Caribbean blackened meats pair well with fruit salads made with sweet dressings.
A vegetable salsa with a citrus based dressing served alongside Mexican or TexMex cuisine is a colorful meal bursting with bright flavors. Steaming bowls of peppery chili and iceberg wedges drenched in creamy buttermilk or ranch dressing make a mouthwatering crowd-pleaser anytime.
Creamy Italian Dressing Impress your dinner party guests with a perfect salad dressing . . . astoundingly good!
Mayonnaise—Key Recipe to Creamy Dressings, Dips and Sauces Make room in your refrigerator for delicious homemade gluten free mayonnaise, because you’ll never go back to store bought again!
Oil and Vinegar Dressing Recipe If you are looking for an oil and vinegar dressing recipe to kick up the flavor of your leafy greens, then you have come to the right place, because you know it is the dressing that makes the salad!
Potato Salad—Key Recipe to Satisfying Side Dishes Gluten free potato salad is a classic all American staple perfect for picnics, potlucks, backyard cookouts, or just because it tastes so good!
Red Russian Salad Dressing This gluten-free version of the vintage commercial favorite no longer available in the United States will become your next pantry essential!
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