Make your own delicious, nutrient dense real food French dressing that your whole family will love!
Water, Sugar, Vinegar, Soybean Oil, Corn Syrup, Contains Less Than 2% of Salt, Modified Food Starch, Paprika,Xanthan Gum, Phosphoric Acid, Dried Garlic, Polysorbate 60, Yellow 6, Yellow 5, Natural Flavor, Potassium Sorbate And Calcium Disodium Edta (to Protect Freshness)
These are the ingredients in a popular store-bought French dressing. Let’s quickly review just some of the reasons we avoid many of these ingredients:
- Soybean oil – most likely genetically modified, hormone disruptor (Read why we avoid GMOs) (source for info on soy being a hormone disruptor)
- Corn syrup – most likely genetically modified (and seriously, sugar is the second ingredient, why is there a need to add MORE sweetener)
- Modified Food Starch – most likely genetically modified, not a real food ingredient!
- Phosphoric Acid – added to provide tang, this ingredient has been linked to lower bone density because it is thought to disrupt the “hormonal regulation of phosphorus (P), calcium (Ca), and vitamin D” (source), is not a real food ingredient (although it can occur naturally in some foods), and is also used for rust removal.
- Polysorbate 60 – Not a real food ingredient, used as an emulsifier or thickener, “it is known to be commonly contaminated with 1,4 dioxane which is known to cause cancer in animals. Often derived from petroleum.” (source)
- Yellow 6 & Yellow 5 – linked to hyperactivity in children, for a more thorough investigation of why our family avoids artificial food dyes, check out our book “Can I Get a Pickle Without Yellow 5, Please?”
- Natural Flavor – Sometimes safe, sometimes not. May be MSG in disguise. I’m always suspicious when I see this label, although it’s not always going to be a deal breaker for us.
- Potassium Sorbate – Potassium Sorbate is used as a preservative. One study found that potassium sorbate is genotoxic (causes mutations to cells). (source)
Now that we’ve gotten that out of the way, I have to admit I’m not even a French dressing fan. I find it way too sweet. However, I do love it mixed into a taco salad recipe I’ve been making for years. For that reason alone, I knew I had to recreate a homemade, real food version of French dressing.
The substitutions weren’t hard – olive oil instead of soybean oil, raw honey with all of the beneficial enzymes instead of sugar and corn syrup, vinegar and lemon juice to provide the tang associated with French dressing, and no need for coloring or preservatives. I think the color is beautiful all on its own, don’t you agree?
Try serving it in this glass salad dressing bottle or you can just mix it up in a mason jar and serve it straight from there like I do. I love using my immersion blender right inside the mason jar, it creates less dishes and less mess!
Homemade, Real Food French Dressing
So without further ado, here is a very tasty, nutrient-dense, homemade and real food version of French dressing.
- 6 oz tomato paste
- 1 cup olive oil
- ½-3/4 cup raw honey (start with ½ cup and then add more if you prefer more sweetness)
- ¾ cup apple cider vinegar
- ½ cup lemon juice
- 2 TB onion powder
- 1½ tsp unrefined sea salt
- 1 tsp paprika
- 1 tsp minced garlic
- ⅛ tsp allspice
- Add all the ingredients to a blender (or to a bowl and use an immersion blender).
- Blend until smooth.
- Refrigerate for a couple of hours to let the flavors meld together.
Don’t forget to check out the other homemade, real-food recipes in this series: