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Transporting salad dressings to a party?

Does anyone have any good ideas on transporting salad dressings to a party? I make my own dressings and am often in charge of taking salad to the inlaws.

I had been using canning jars for years because i would just shake up a vinaigrette in the jar and take it along for the ride. We have just used a spoon to take out the dressing at time of serving and drizzle it on but it can be a bit messy.

Does anyone have a different method that doesn't involve taking dressing and putting it into a different serving vessel then back again at a party? Something that is pourable and not really messy would be fantastic!

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  1. Try one of those carafe-style juice bottles (plastic), just soak off the labels.

    1. My mum has something that is used for exactly that purpose but I don't really know its name, and googling isn't helping. Maybe someone else knows. It's a plastic pot, about 20cm tall and 12cm in dia, and has a spout. Then it has a lid that fits inside with a kind of plunger button thing to make an airtight seal. It's about 30 years old though! Yeah, not that helpful, sorry...

      1. http://tinyurl.com/43ssdle I found this on Amazon.

        I bought a simpler version of this at Boxer Restaurant Supply in downtown Portland, OR this past summer. What I bought is an indented' polycarbonate vessel that you use to mix and shake a vinaigrette in. The lid snaps off and on. Just yesterday, I noticed a similiar vessel in plastic or polycarbonate at the grocer's. Its lid has a separated on/off hole with lid, so a vinaigrette could be simply poured without snapping off the entire lid.

        I have also used a handled glass bottle with its own cork.

        I would check restaurant supply houses, online or walk-ins, and Amazon for what you think would work best. I like simple, myself. The 2 vessels I bought are dishwashable, and they were relatively cheap. But if you are likely to be making very thick dressings, they might not be ideal.

        1. When I buy vinegar in an appealing bottle, I save the botlle. I use that to make, store and transport my home-made dressiongs. The neck is usally designed for pouring, so it's not messy for self-dressing at a party.

          1. I bought one of those "Good Seasons" carafes for just this purpose. It's easy to keep leftover dressing in the fridge for the next day also. You get the packet of dressing mix along with it, but you can toss it. I assume they still sell these in the salad dressing aisle at the grocery store?

            1 Reply
            1. re: DGresh

              +1 on this. Yep, these work really well for vinaigrette and creamy dressings alike. You can get them where they sell the dry dressing packets next to the croutons and bacon bits, etc. We really like these because they're glass and we avoid plastic (especially when introducing an acid!!!)

            2. When we cleaned out my grandmother's house, I claimed a couple of vintage Good Seasons salad dressing cruets for this purpose. They have a nice vintage cut-glass appearance, and came with plastic lids for easy shaking and transportation. I believe the cruets are still sold in grocery stores, but you could probably find a few at a thrift store.

              1. Are there any ingredients in your dressings that you can't find at your in-laws? Why not just make it when you get there?

                Or, you could use one of those German beer bottles with the ceramic tops with rubber stoppers. Easier to pour out of than a canning jar.

                2 Replies
                1. re: 512window

                  Although the rubber stoppers will deteriorate if they come in prolonged contact with the oil.

                  1. re: sr44

                    True, but I figure it would make it for one trip.

                    Then, you could drink another beer!

                2. I use plastic squeeze bottles that are less than a dollar at WalMart. I have a few at work so I have homemade dressing in the refrigerator there as well as at home. I no longer over dress my salads like I do when I pour out of a bowl or carafe.

                  1. These polycarbonate jars don't look pretty but they're basically unbreakable, have a slightly flared lip that's pretty drip-resistant, and seal tightly: http://www.containerstore.com/shop?pr... .

                    1. Back when supermarket salad dressings actually came in glass bottles, I saved them and soaked off the labels so I now have several dozen with matching caps which are all dishwasher safe, which I use for parties. But a few years ago when I was making my own vinegar and needed several dozen bottles to send out for gifts, I found these people and have been getting bottles from them ever since:

                      http://www.specialtybottle.com/sauceb...

                      They're relatively inexpensive and you don't have to buy a lot.

                      But I also use pint canning jars as above and find they work just fine as well.

                      1 Reply
                      1. Plastic squeeze bottles from the kitchen shop/baking supply shop, or re-purposed juice (12 oz) or sauce bottles work nicely for thicker dressings. For thinner vinegarette dressings, I have used wine bottles with cork, and plastic wrap around the whole works for transport.

                        1. Go to your Friendly Local Restaurant Supply Store and pick up squeezable bottles. They're the ones you think of when old-school burger joints have squeeze bottles of mustard and ketchup on the table, only translucent white plastic. Make your dressing in the bottle, then put a piece of plastic wrap over the mouth of the bottle, and screw the lid on tight. When you get to the party, remove the plastic wrap, and squirt the dressing on the salad. If your host loves the dressing, let 'em keep the bottle, they're only about a buck.

                          1 Reply
                          1. re: JK Grence the Cosmic Jester

                            I do that too. And if the dressing is thick (or chunky with garlic bits, herbs, nuts), I cut the tip with scissors to widen it, just like a pastry bag. Some of those bottles come with a cap for the tip, nice for transport.

                          2. I haven't had to do this for some time, but here's how I did it:

                            Get some wonderful Grolsch beer, in the 15.2 oz old swingtop bottles. (http://www.grolsch.com/en/the-swingtop/

                            )

                            Enjoy the wonderful beer.

                            Wash the bottles thoroughly, including the rubber-edged stopper.

                            Let air dry thoroughly.

                            Use the Grolsch bottle to hold your wonderful dressing and close the swing top. You'll transport the dressing with nary a drip.

                            2 Replies
                            1. re: jmckee

                              +1
                              although, a bit hard to clean after using for creamy dressings

                              1. re: KarenDW

                                A little trick: After rinsing, half-fill with soapy water and several pie weights. Seal and shake gently. You should get most of the creamy goodness off the first time. You may have to repeat, but I've had great luck with this.

                            2. Update: I found a solution accidentally last night while walking through a discount store. I saw a couple of syrup dispensers such as what you would find at a diner. I was considering some of the ideas on this thread and they are all really good. For my usual vinaigrettes at least I think this will work and I will make a different choice if I decide to do a thicker dressing since the pouring hole is pretty small. Haven't tried it out though since I just bought them last night.

                              Wanted to include what I found for anyone else looking for a solution in the future. Thanks everyone!

                              1. You can use a squeeze bottle, covering the top of the bottle with plastic wrap before screwing on the lid for transport. You can shake it, unscrew the lid, remove the plastic, screw lid back on and squeeze/drizzle.