Substitute for olive oil: what's a low omega-6 salad dressing?

by (24343) Updated January 08, 2013 at 9:22 PM Created October 31, 2010 at 9:09 PM

I'm ditching olive oil based salad dressing. What can I substitute for it? Here's what I've brainstormed so far:

  • Coconut oil. Pro- Tastes good. Con- Might make me feel queasy at times. Also, I'm already eating lots of saturated fat, and I don't want to go all the way. (This is just my preference, based on lack of evidence/precedent for diets with >50% saturated fat composition)
  • Fat-free dressing. Pro-no omega 6! Con- Masks the taste of fatty salad add-ons, has carbs (not a ton, so not a huge deal).
  • Some kind of ranch without much oil?
  • Nothing? I don't mind no dressing, but dressing tastes good. It dresses the salad up, ya' know?

I want my daily fat breakdown to be low PUFA (~5-10%), high MUFA (~40-60%), moderately high saturated (~30-50%). Even the freshest fish often makes me gag, so I'm trying to keep omega-6 as low as possible for balancing purposes, hence the salad dressing switch.

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12 Replies

7300 · October 31, 2010 at 10:39 PM

macadamia nut oil is lower in pufas and n-6 than olive oil. It's a bit expensive, but it's what I use. Even though I don't really eat salads anymore...

12118 · October 31, 2010 at 9:16 PM

I discovered recently that I'm perfectly fine with dressing using a flavored vinegar, such as balsamic vinegar, raspberry vinegar, and foregoing oil altogether. (There are plenty of other vinegars that would work: apple cider, etc.!) I often add a fattier protein with this (bacon, salmon, crumbled boiled egg, etc.) to make up for the lack of an oil.

Works for me as I'm only very occasionally in the mood for the taste of olive oil.

1174 · October 31, 2010 at 10:38 PM

i use bacon fat for dressing a lot.

sometimes, especially when the vegetables in the salad are fresh and in season, i use warm bacon fat by itself.

you can also doctor it with the same kinds of things that go into classic oil-based dressings: red wine vinegar, mustard or dry mustard, etc.

280 · October 31, 2010 at 9:33 PM

I take my Magic Bullet blender and mix coconut milk, raw yolk, dijon, lemon, garlic and sea salt (other herbs from my garden that float my boat) blend and enjoy. More yolk makes it thicker.

239 · November 03, 2010 at 7:21 PM

Ranch dressing is easy to make at home. I use half mayo (homemade from olive oil) and half sour cream or full fat greek yogurt, plus some mashed up garlic & onion, salt & pepper. Add some crumbled cheese or bacon for variety (bleu cheese is awesome!).

You can reduce the proportion of mayo to reduce the olive oil content to your liking.

BTW, don't skip the fat on your salads entirely, unless you've got lots of fat in the rest of your meal. Many of the nutrients in salad vegs won't be assimilated without fat.

1383 · November 01, 2010 at 12:38 AM

Avocado oil is excellent.

60 · October 31, 2010 at 10:03 PM

x2 on the vinegar option. Recently I've been using rice vinegar (1/2c), diced or minced garlic (~4Tbs), lemongrass paste (1tsp), ginger paste (1tsp), and a couple drops of toasted sesame oil. The sesame oil is high in omega 6 but lots of flavor comes from this very small amount.

I make another simple dressing in large quantity by taking the big jug of lemon juice from Costco, removing about 1 1/2c of it and adding back in about 1/2c Dijon mustard and dried herbs/spices (garlic being the only required one).

3365 · January 08, 2013 at 9:22 PM

I just use raw cider vinegar. Veggies are yummy, no need to smother em.

1244 · January 08, 2013 at 8:36 PM

Herbs. Basil is especially good in salads.

Include moist foods like beetroot in your salad if you want to substitute the oil texture.

571 · January 08, 2013 at 7:45 PM

I just threw some salsa verde on my salad and it tastes pretty good.

I don't love the flavor of olive oil, it's kind of overpowering. Is there an olive oil out there without such a strong flavor?

6140 · November 01, 2010 at 12:27 AM

I love vinegar too but to add... Another idea if you miss the cling and mouthfeel of oil I would try a little unflavored gelatin to give it cling and texture. The other choice would be Guar Gum. I would feel more comfy with this then with fat free salad dressings because I like controlling the ingredients.

1410 · October 31, 2010 at 9:31 PM

What about flax oil with lemon and a gluten-free mustard to make a vinaigrette?

I've also heard of people making bacon-fat based dressings... just need to warm it to soften first I guess.

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