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Salad Dressing without Vinegar or Mayo??

Chandler114 Apr 27, 2014 01:28 AM

Hi! I am new here, so If I am posting this in the wrong section please let me know!
Ok, Well, here is my question. I cook quite often, and my BF is NOT a picky eater. A couple thing's he doesn't like but he can eat.
But the one thing he HATES is salad dressing. He likes almost all the veggies/fruits/nuts/meats that go into salads, but HATES vinegar and mayonnaise. Even the tiniest amount hidden in something and he can taste it and gags.

SO what are some good ideas for a flavorful, yummy salad dressing with no vinegar or mayo? I know lemon juice and olive oil are good, but they are so boring after about the 5th time... we both like to eat healthy and he really wants to like salads, but veggies in a bowl are very boring! Lol.
Thank everyone for their help.

Extra info
-No food allergies.
-BF doesn't like eggs, or cheese.(But can eat them)
-We try to eat as little pork as possible, but other meat or meat fats are fine.
-He likes mustard in small amounts. (Go figure. Weird.)

Thanks again!

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  1. monkeyrotica RE: Chandler114 Apr 27, 2014 06:11 AM

    I make a Green Goddess dressing without the mayo. I don't miss it. Annie's makes a version, but I don't really care for it. The tahini overpowers the other flavors.


    1. ElsieB RE: Chandler114 Apr 27, 2014 06:12 AM

      Avocado pureed in blender with lime and spices?
      Creme fraiche as a base instead of mayo?

      1. m
        magiesmom RE: Chandler114 Apr 27, 2014 06:17 AM

        Tahini and lemon juice thinned with water

        Buttermilk and herbs

        1. t
          tastesgoodwhatisit RE: Chandler114 Apr 27, 2014 06:23 AM

          Japanese roasted sesame dressing.

          Two homemade ones I quite like

          - Mix together lemon juice and zest, olive oil, and a bit of miso paste.
          - Lemon juice, olive oil, anchovy paste and freshly ground black pepper.

          Indian chaat masala is a powdered mix of roasted spices which is meant to be sprinkled on food (no cooking needed). It goes quite well on salads.

          1. s
            Springhaze2 RE: Chandler114 Apr 27, 2014 06:30 AM

            Welcome! I make a salad dressing with lemon juice, olive oil, Parmesan (or Romano) cheese, garlic, salt and pepper. It comes out almost creamy and you don't really know that it's cheese in there. The ratio is 1/4 cup lemon, 1/3 cup olive oil, 1/2 cup cheese, with 1 garlic clove. My husband does not like Parmesan or Romano cheese but likes this dressing.

            Another option is to use salsa, maybe thinned with a little olive oil, as a dressing or how about honey mustard?

            1. g
              gildeddawn RE: Chandler114 Apr 27, 2014 06:35 AM

              My biggest suggestion is buttermilk-based dressings. You can make ranch without the mayo, by subbing sour cream or greek yogurt, for example. Blue cheese is also a classic buttermilk-based dressing, but since he doesn't like cheese, that might be a no-go.

              1. s
                schrutefarms RE: Chandler114 Apr 27, 2014 09:11 AM

                Olive oil/lemon juice/garlic

                1. linguafood RE: Chandler114 Apr 27, 2014 09:50 AM

                  You could use buttermilk and yogurt as a sub for mayo. Add herbs you like and/or garlic.

                  I woulda suggested Caesar dressing, but since your BF doesn't like eggs or cheese, I guess that's not a good idea.

                  1. fldhkybnva RE: Chandler114 Apr 27, 2014 10:10 AM

                    Does he like yogurt? I use full fat yogurt to replace mayo most of the time.

                    1. hotoynoodle RE: Chandler114 Apr 27, 2014 10:18 AM

                      he hates ALL vinegars? for example, i really dislike balsamic, but will often use rice vinegar in dressings.

                      you can use any other citrus in addition to lemon -- be sure to include the zest for added oomph.

                      yogurt makes a good mayo alternative.

                      depending on the veggies, nut butters thinned with water and mixed with citrus are also good as dressings.

                      1. ninrn RE: Chandler114 Apr 27, 2014 10:47 AM

                        Here's a recipe for a green apple salad dressing with no vinegar or mayo:

                        1 green apple, cored (Granny Smith)
                        1/2 cup water
                        1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil
                        3 to 4 cloves garlic
                        1 to 2-inch piece of fresh ginger, peeled
                        Herbamare, another seasoned salt or just plain sea salt, to taste

                        Blend everything in a blender, check salt and blend again.

                        I also sometimes make a peanut dressing with peanut butter, soy sauce, lime juice and some chili paste, all thinned with water. It's very nice on a salad with some shredded red cabbage, sprouts, red pepper and roasted peanuts. I usually add some Chinese black vinegar, too (it's also called Chinkiang vinegar). It's aged so long it has almost no vinegar tang left, and I think if your boyfirend doesn't mind the amount of vinegar in prepared mustard he probably won't even be able to taste the vinegariness of black vinegar when it's mixed with peanut butter. But if he can't stand that either, the acid from the lime juice and chili paste is enough.

                        A similarly nutty-tasting dressing can be made by combining miso, tahini and some water. If you put those things in a blender with some shredded carrots and a little fresh ginger and puree completely, it makes something like that carrot dressing they serve in Japanese restaurants. Only add salt after it's blended and you taste it, because the miso itself is very salty.

                        One last thought is to just use salsa as a salad dressing, maybe with a little sour cream stirred in if you want it to be creamy.

                        1. Ttrockwood RE: Chandler114 Apr 27, 2014 11:05 AM

                          I often make a super quick salad dressing by whisking together lemon juice and hummus, or instead of lemon a splash of milk or almond milk. Takes seconds.

                          This carrot ginger dressing is amazing, the rice vinegar is very mild, although you could try swapping it out with a little more lemon

                          I love this recipe and make lots of the yogurt dressing to have for salads:

                          Other ideas would be to use a salsa as salad dressing, or mix olive tapenade or pesto with a thinned plain yogurt or just olive oil and lemon.

                          Try making your basic dressing with different citrus like lime, grapefruit, or orange.

                          This link has 15 great dressings (and tons of salad ideas), the curried dressing and avocado are two i've loved:


                          1 Reply
                          1. re: Ttrockwood
                            Chandler114 RE: Ttrockwood Apr 27, 2014 07:41 PM

                            Wow thanks!! I will save those links!

                          2. eatzalot RE: Chandler114 Apr 27, 2014 12:15 PM

                            Several people already mentioned Lemon juice. In French "Vinaigrette" tradition, lemon juice is a standard alternative to vibegar, and it even gives some unique flavors in dresdings with olive oil.

                            Goes particularly well with some chopped fresh herbs, like chives and tarragon.

                            1 Reply
                            1. re: eatzalot
                              Chandler114 RE: eatzalot Apr 27, 2014 07:42 PM

                              Thanks. Everyone on here has been so helpful!

                            2. greygarious RE: Chandler114 Apr 27, 2014 01:42 PM

                              Soy sauce and variations thereof like Maggi, teriyaki, tamari....combined with ponzu, lemon juice, or other acid, plus neutral oil and optional splash of roasted sesame oil.

                              1. p
                                pavlova RE: Chandler114 Apr 27, 2014 01:49 PM

                                I don't like vinegar of any sort either, so I always replace it with lemon or lime juice in any recipe. Many of the ones I make have already been mentioned: olive oil, lemon and maybe Dijon mustard and shallots; ranch with lots of fresh herbs (though I love mayonnaise, you could sub sour cream); avocado and lime with fresh green chiles or even better, with roasted tomatillos; miso dressing; tahini and lemon ones, pomegranate molasses and lemon juice/olive oil; sesame oil and soy and lime. Good luck!

                                1. BobB RE: Chandler114 Apr 27, 2014 01:58 PM

                                  Olive oil, lemon juice, salt, pepper, a bit of sugar, and some Dijon mustard. Whisk well - the mustard is a natural emulsifier, making it come out nice and creamy.

                                  1. p
                                    PrairiePie RE: Chandler114 Apr 27, 2014 02:43 PM

                                    I just made this one a couple of days ago and it is delicious - Roasted Poblano. No vinegar. Lime juice, olive oil, buttermilk.


                                    1. Karl S RE: Chandler114 Apr 27, 2014 02:56 PM

                                      Olive oil without an acid will be too rich on many palates (also, if it's a powerfully flavored one, it can benefit by being diluted with another oil) ; consider amplifying your array of oils. Walnut oil is classic for salads. Hazelnut oil is great with roasted vegetable salads, and sesame and pumpkin seed oils can be used as condiments.

                                      1 Reply
                                      1. re: Karl S
                                        linguafood RE: Karl S Apr 27, 2014 03:10 PM

                                        Of course, what a great suggestion! Nut oils make all the difference and are really wonderful in all kinds of combinations (maybe the BF could abide sherry vinegar or something even mellower like white balsamic -- those are wonderful with nut oils in vinaigrettes, with or without mustard).

                                      2. m
                                        mwhitmore RE: Chandler114 Apr 27, 2014 04:04 PM

                                        EVOO and salt is all I usually use. Any appropriate favorings (mustard, herbs) could be added.

                                        1. mcsheridan RE: Chandler114 Apr 27, 2014 04:58 PM

                                          Not a drop of vinegar nor a smidgen of mayo in this tasty Green Goddess dressing: http://www.seriouseats.com/recipes/20...

                                          1 Reply
                                          1. re: mcsheridan
                                            Chandler114 RE: mcsheridan Apr 27, 2014 07:43 PM

                                            Thank you!

                                          2. biondanonima RE: Chandler114 Apr 27, 2014 06:08 PM

                                            A pureed chimichurri (made with lemon or lime juice instead of vinegar) makes a great salad dressing - in the blender, the copious quantities of herbs give it a creamy texture without mayo.

                                            2 Replies
                                            1. re: biondanonima
                                              Chandler114 RE: biondanonima Apr 27, 2014 07:43 PM

                                              Thank you, so do I just read how to make chimichurri for the amounts of herbs and what not? Is it hard?

                                              1. re: Chandler114
                                                biondanonima RE: Chandler114 Apr 27, 2014 07:53 PM

                                                Very easy and flexible. A classic chimichurri will have parsley, oregano, garlic, a little crushed chili flake, a bit of acid (vinegar or lemon), oil, salt and pepper - here's a basic recipe: http://www.simplyrecipes.com/recipes/... It's not normally blended, but I like the blended texture for salad dressings.

                                                Anyway, you can add any fresh herbs you like to it, and change the proportion of acid to oil depending on your taste preference and how you want to use it. My DH is a cilantro freak, so I often just shove a bunch of cilantro and a bunch of parsley in the blender with a few garlic cloves, a couple of tablespoons of vinegar and a couple of tablespoons of oil and let it rip, then taste for balance/seasoning later.

                                            2. s
                                              Springhaze2 RE: Chandler114 Apr 27, 2014 06:33 PM

                                              I really like the gazpacho dressing in this salad, you can definitely substitute lemon or lime juice for the vinegar.

                                              1. ipsedixit RE: Chandler114 Apr 27, 2014 06:49 PM

                                                Pico de Gallo salsa with an extra squeeze of lime

                                                Soy sauce, dijon mustard and honey (blended together)

                                                Miso, horseradish powder and sugar

                                                1 Reply
                                                1. re: ipsedixit
                                                  Chandler114 RE: ipsedixit Apr 27, 2014 07:44 PM

                                                  Oh that sounds interesting! I am half hispanic and never even thought of pico. Haha He would like that!

                                                2. LMAshton RE: Chandler114 Apr 27, 2014 11:19 PM

                                                  I've used things like tzatziki or savory spiced yoghurt (yoghurt, cumin powder, coriander powder, salt, maybe some lemon juice - something along those lines) as salad dressings. I know other people who use hummus instead of mayo in their potato salads.

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