A Salad Confessional


Good morning!

Ohhhh Saturday mornings are my absolute favourite time of the entire week! Eric and I watched some cartoons and ate cereal. Good times. :mrgreen:

I realized this morning that I have been keeping something from you all. Well, two things actually.

The first one is what I like to call Fudgsicle Soft Serve


Oh yes.

1 large frozen banana, a glug of almond milk, and 1/2 tablespoon of cocoa powder! It tastes just like a soft, melting fudgsicle. Process in a food processor for a couple minutes and…BOOM.


Now onto salad talk.


Salads are a staple in my diet. I love experimenting with different toppings and dressings. The lettuce is really like a blank slate- what ever you decide to put on it always comes out fabulous.


Better Than Bottled Balsamic Vinaigrette

The easiest and most delicious homemade dressing I have ever made!

Adapted from Dreena Burton’s Eat Drink & Be Vegan ‘Back-to-Basics’ dressing.


  • 2.5 tablespoons balsamic, white, or red wine vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard or regular mustard
  • 2 tablespoons pure maple syrup
  • 1/4 teaspoon sea salt
  • Ground black pepper to taste
  • 1/2 minced clove of garlic (optional)
  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

Directions: Toss all ingredients into a bowl and whisk! Makes about 1/2 cup of dressing.


This was sooooooo easy. I can’t believe I bought bottled stuff for all those years!

This dressing has an array of delicious flavours:

  • sweet– maple
  • tang– vinegar
  • Buttery and smooth– olive oil

It is SO GOOD!

I had a hunch this would pair perfectly with some dried cranberries. I also sprinkled on some sesame seeds for fun.

The next get together I host I am definitely going to make this dressing. It tasted like a gourmet salad!


Confession #2:

I have recently weaned myself off a long fat-free salad dressing kick.

I bought the fat free stuff for years and years. I was a die hard fan…even though I admit, I couldn’t pronounce many of the ingredients on the bottle.

I always thought that if I used the regular stuff with oil I would be consuming too many calories. But you know what I discovered? A little bit of the GOOD stuff- with fat!- is much more satisfying than drowning the salad in fat free dressing. I have just a couple tablespoons of this homemade dressing on my salad and it is perfection. The olive oil gives the salad more satiety too.

When you use the real stuff, less is more.


I used to be the fat free QUEEN, my friends. I bought fat-free cheese slices, fat-free yogurt, fat-free ice cream, fat-free cool whip, fat-free candy, fat-free cookies, etc!

It is quite funny because now I eat a ton of healthy fats in my diet, from avocados to nut butters, chia seeds to olive oil. I never used to eat any of these things in the past because I was scared of the fat. My poor body was deprived of healthy fat for years. Luckily I am making up for lost time! :mrgreen:



I’m off to shower and then hit the road to meet Krissy at a huge outlet mall. So excited!!The perfect activity for this rainy Saturday.

At least the snow is almost gone…


Have a Fabulous Saturday!


Happiness is a way station between too much and too little.
~Channing Pollock

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{ 47 comments… read them below or add one }

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Allie (Live Laugh Eat) March 13, 2010

FOr some reason, no matter how restrictive my eating was I never shied away from fat. I was eating avocados when I wouldn’t eat a lot of other foods. Not sure why to tell you the truth. However, this summer I worked at a place where they served us all our meals and they were low fat. I had the craziest appetite and cravings all the time and didn’t realize it was my low fat intake to blame. I was eating almond butter by the jar and figured it out halfway through that fat kept me satiated like none other.


Jennie {in Wonderland} March 13, 2010

OMG I used to be the fat-free princess. I ate fat-free salad ‘spray’ [like water, basically, with no flavour], I wouldn’t eat guacamole because of all the ‘fat’ in it, I would buy diet hot chocolate, fat-free tomato sauce, I didn’t eat any oils… I thought fat was the enemy.

I didn’t realize that actually, the chemicals I was ingesting are the terrible thing… not to mention all the fake, processed sugars. Just gross.

Now I love oily salad dressings, avocado … I never buy anything that says ‘diet’ or ‘light’ or ‘fat-free’. Why buy fake food when you can eat the real thing?


Angela (Oh She Glows) March 13, 2010

You just reminded me that I used to use the fat free butter on popcorn. ewwwww


Jennie {in Wonderland} March 13, 2010

I used too as well! I bought the ‘Smart Pop’ popcorn and I had that for lunch with a diet coke and a ‘Soup at hand’ diet soup… gross x million.


mountain girl March 13, 2010

I so agree with the fat thing! I was kind of scared of fat too…but now a HUGE part of my diet is fat: EVOO, raw seeds and nuts, coconut, coconut, coconut. I actually just posted my latest concoction for some really easy carob-coconut “chocolates”…FULL of goods fats and nutrients!


Carbzilla March 13, 2010

Hooray for getting off the Fat Free train. When they take those fats out, they put all sorts of awful fake stuff back! I’ve lost 15 lbs eating healthy fats so whoever said fat makes you fat is a liar liar! (Well, they have to be the correct fats – I’ll give ’em that)


Jane March 13, 2010

Grated ginger added to you homemade dressing is great too.


Jane March 13, 2010

I stopped using Fat Free when I discovered that they add a ton of sugar to F. Free products to enhance the taste and make up for the lack of fat. So using F. Free is like trading one evil (fat) for another (too much sugar).

Homemade is the way to go….has anyone tried a Tahinin based dressing….yummy.



rosy March 13, 2010

Someone mentioned this already, but salad + full fat dressing are a complementary pair. You need the fat in the dressing to absorb fat-soluble vitamins like A, E, D, and K. Any time you’re having veggies, a good fat source will help satiety and help absorb all that goodness.

Great blog!


Lin March 13, 2010

Thanks so much for the salad dressing recipe… I’ve been wanting to try a homemade one for a while now and this looks so simple and delicious… btw, a Green Monster update. After becoming a fan of your blog, I have now given up a decades-long morning coffee w/cream & sugar, and gotten addicted to the GM instead. Expanding outward from the basics, I now regularly add mixed dark salad greens and baby tomatoes to the spinach, along with almond butter, mango, blueberries, avacado, and chia seeds. They are so good, and wow, the energy you get from them!! I find that if I add a drizzle of honey and a shake or two of cinnamon, it always has a sweet flavor regardless of whatever veggie I am using and tastes like a regular fruit smoothie. Often I have two a day.
Have fun shopping!!….if it were me, I’d be hitting the shoe stores in particular. (Shoe addict as well as GM’s) :)


MaryB March 13, 2010

The dressing sounds amazing but you mention a ‘maple flavor’ and I don’t see anything maple in the ingredients?
And curse you for posting that recipe for Fudgsicle SoftServe! It’s bad enough that I am addicted to Green Monsters! :D


Angela (Oh She Glows) March 13, 2010

Opps- I forgot to add in 2 T of maple syrup…it’s in there now! :)


Staceyhttp://stacey-healthylife.blogspot.com/ March 13, 2010

Absolutely love your post today. I was the same way about salad dressings. I use to only use the fat free, but now that my nutrition knowledge has grown I know that it is better to use an oil salad dressing and toss my salad in a couple tsp. of it. The fat free is so loaded with random fillers. I also use more nuts and nut butters in my cooking. I used to never eat nut butters for about 10 years, and now I am because I know some good healthy fat is a good thing.

I would suggest the book In Defense of Foods, and Food Rules. It really gave me an even better understanding into eating healthier and avoiding fillers and chemicals.


Gina March 13, 2010

I was a vegetarian who was fairly obsessive about getting a lot of protein. I ended up eating huge amounts of fat free dairy products and egg whites. It started to make me feel like crap, and was more or less the catalyst for my becoming vegan.

Now I have a whole avocado in my breakfast every day, and if I feel like something else, there is always coconut or almond butter or some kind of healthy fat. My body LOVES fats. I know you talk a lot about binge eating in the past and it is something I have dealt with on and off (doing good right now!), but if I do binge now, I notice my body does better if its something like peanut butter rather than something like oreos. Now, that seems like an obvious thing, but in the past, the reasons for that totally puzzled me!


Therese March 13, 2010

When I first started losing weight I had no idea just how LITTLE fat I was consuming throughout my day as I was such a low-fat queen! When I tracked my food for a week I realized that I was well under my fat quota every single day. So I started adding avocado and olive oil to my food and now I’m off low fat stuff almost completely. Not only does my food taste better, I FELL better because my body is getting what it needs! AND it helps with portion control because instead of eating a lot of something low in fat, I’m eating just a little something with more fat. 90lbs down and I can say it works!!!

I’ve tried that ice cream but with peanut butter before! YUM! Perhaps I’ll make that to have with lunch today! Thanks for reminding me!


Kathleen March 13, 2010

1 large frozen banana, a glug of almond milk, and 1/2 tablespoon of cocoa powder! It tastes just like a soft, melting fudgsicle sounds like my kind of thing. I still use some fat free/sugar free things but I read the labels and try to choose the best for me. Example, I am NOT giving up my flavored creamers in my coffee so that one I use the sugar free because the caloies are so low. I would use plain but I can never get the flavor right and then it ruins my coffee.


Kelly Michelle March 13, 2010

mmmm, my newest banana ice cream favorite is making banana ice cream and adding two frozen cherries to the processor as well, soooooo good, with or w/o the cocoa powder.


Kirsten March 13, 2010

I agree restaurant salads are usually horrible. They either skimp on ingredients or scatter a few pieces of chopped tomato/onion on top.


Tiffany @ A Dantat's Life March 13, 2010

i also buy a lot of fat free products due to the calorie worry. i know good fats are healthy for you, so i’m trying to slowly incorporate those foods into my diet. i still buy a lot of fat free foods, but now i also use EVOO, lots of nut butters, low (not full yet) fat cheese, and avocado.

i’m actually not a huge fan of traditional salad dressings, so i never really bought the fat free kinds. i like to top my salads with bbq sauce, salsa, or hummus instead!

your fudgesicle softserve looks gorgeous. i have a frozen banana in the freezer that would be perfect for it!


Juli March 13, 2010

It’s all about the healthy fats, baby!!!!! Never been a fat-free person (thanks mom), but my sister went through it and it really messed up her belly. I just try to watch portions with my whole fats. Tastes better and feels better:)

I can’t wait to try that dressing! And that pudding. Yes please.


Lindsay (Waking Up Hungry) March 13, 2010

I am also a fat free master! I am starting to see the benefits of good fat vs. bad fat. I’ve known the basics behind that fact, but I am learning to see that in a much broader spectrum. Thanks for the tip!


Marissa March 13, 2010

What a great soft serve! I am so trying this today! It’s 730 in the morning is that too early? I think not!! LOL!

I love full fat dressings too. I agree that a little goes a long way!


Michelle @ Eatingjourney March 13, 2010

I think that the FF foods are the reasons I have so many tummy problems. They are HORRIBLE. Just eat the real stuff, enjoy it and be satisfied. I don’t touch it at all anymore.


Angela (Oh She Glows) March 13, 2010

splenda used to give me horrible stomach pains


Anna @ Newlywed, Newly Veg March 13, 2010

Ugh– I agree!! I HATE going to a restaurant and paying 10 dollars for two pieces of iceberg lettuce and a tomato!


Jessica @ The Process of Healing March 13, 2010

Oh girl, if you were the fat free queen then I was the fat free princess :) I can’t BELIEVE the amount of junk that I poured into my body just because it had no fat (but God only knows what it DID have). I have now embraced fat in my diet, healthy fats in the form of nut butters, avocado, nuts, olive oil, salmon, etc. and guess what… the fat hasn’t made me fat! Ha but that was really something that I was afraid of in the past. Real foods, whole foods, do your body SUCH good.


Jenn March 13, 2010

No more fat free in my arsenal. I also discovered that it was so much better tasting and better for me to use good products that were healthful and nutritious.
Can’t wait to try the Fudgiscal softserve.
Love your blog, I tripped over it by accident last week and have been back everyday!


Estela @ Weekly Bite March 13, 2010

I use to be the queen of fat-free dressing… that was A LONG time ago!

Now I prefer either the lighter version or the real deal ;)


Ameena March 13, 2010

I used to love fat-free everything too but I’m proud to say that my fridge is completely empty of that stuff now! I only use dressings that I make for the most part.


Jenn (eating bender) March 13, 2010

Fudgsicle soft serve? Seriously? SERIOUSLY?! I thought banana soft serve was good but the addition of the chocolate would be even more amazing! Thanks for the tip, Ange :)

I totally agree with you about salads. I hate when restaurants offer a “side salad” and I can’t even eat it because it looks so unappetizing. What’s the point of offering it – especially if it’s an additional charge? Your dressing looks phenomenal.

Say hello to Krissy!


Katie March 13, 2010

Two excellent recipes that I can’t wait to try now. I’ve given up all low fat stuff. Low fat usually means highly processed too. I don’t miss it at all. If I’m going to enjoy something fatty, I just have a little bit now, but for the most part I find that giving up highly processed, low fat things has also made me lose that craving for things that are bad for me. I love the taste of a homemade salad dressing with a little olive oil-one thousand percent better taste to me now than a low fat dressing that tastes like a chemical bath to my buds!


Miranda March 13, 2010

Hi, off-topic question for you. What are knee sleeves? You’ve mentioned using them for running. I can’t run right now from a weird knee injury, just wondering if these are something I should look into…


Angela (Oh She Glows) March 13, 2010
Heather (Where's the Beach) March 13, 2010

I am so completely with you on salads at restaurants. Makes me so mad really. And people will look at you like you’re being difficult by not finding wilted iceburg lettuce an acceptable meal. I mean really? Would they enjoy that as their meal?


Anais March 13, 2010

Enjoy the week-end!

I switched over to fat free before starting to lose weight, and when the weight started coming off, THAT’s when I switched over to 2% or sometimes even regular and I’m still losing weight :) They’re just so much more filling! I make my own vinaigrette, and I’ve recently switched to regular yogurt (from stonyfield – so good!!!).


Nicole @ Making Good Choices March 13, 2010

I used to be the fat free queen also! My in-laws would always tell me I need to get off of it, but like you I was worried about the fat. Almost a year ago I stopped using “fat free” products and splenda! I love this dressing too, a little bit goes a long way! I also love the trick to put the dressing on the bottom of the bowl and then toss the salad when ready to eat!


Kristin (Cook, Bake and Nibble) March 13, 2010

I LOVE salads with full fat dressing… NOW.

I SO used to be the fat-free queen. Everrrrything was fat free, sugar free… yuck. Now I eat tons of healthy fats- avocado, chia, nuts and nut butters, seeds, olive oil, eggs and the dairy I do eat- yogurt, cheese… is generally full fat, and MAYBE low fat. It is less satisfying low fat, and I tend to eat more!

Less really IS more with delicious healthy fats!


Mo @ Mommy RD March 13, 2010

I guess we were all fat-free at one time huh? Not only have I realized that adding healthy fats TASTE so much better, and give more satiety – like you mentioned, but the fat actually helps you absorb a lot of the nutrients in the salad so much better.

I love homemade dressings! Averie, at Love Veggies and Yoga has a GREAT tahini vegan Ceasar one!


Angela (Oh She Glows) March 13, 2010

that is a GREAT point about the nutrients absorbing better with fat!


Jessica @ How Sweet It Is March 13, 2010

I used to do fat free dressings too, but switched a few years ago. Now I tend to make my own like you, but I love the full fat stuff! I am so with you Ange, I hate being serve a wilty weak salad!


kelly March 13, 2010

I make a dressing similar to yours, but I add cumin and red pepper flakes. So good. So easy. I don’t buy fat-free anything anymore. I would much rather have a little less than eat all those chemicals.

Have a great day!


Lily @ Lily's Health Pad March 13, 2010

I am the same way! I used to eat fat free EVERYTHING. And it just makes no sense to me now. I used to stray away from nuts and nut butters, and now I eat them several times a day!

Have fun shopping on the rainy Canadian day!


Kristin March 13, 2010

Oh man! I use to be the Fat Free girl too! I would even proudly proclaim, “I eat fake food” Gross! My favorite was “I Can’t Believe It’s Not Butter Spray” I would drowned my veggies in it and think it was okay because it said it was fat free and calorie free. Yuck! I still can’t believe I did that some times! I find a little dollop of Earth Balance is so much better!


Jil March 13, 2010

I almost never order salads in restaurants (well. chains) for exactly that reason – plus, they somehow manage to hide THOUSANDS of calories into a salad. Ridiculous!??! I love experimenting with new dressings and toppings – dried fruit is a fave topping of mine.


Elle @ Acquired Tastes March 13, 2010

Used to be a fat-free queen as well – I used to really like those salad sprays with “no calories.” Now I try to buy whole foods that haven’t been messed around with so fat-free stuff is out.

I switched to making my own salad dressings after I saw an episode of Barefoot Contessa and she showed how it is was to just whisk a few things together!

I eat a lot of (healthy) fat now too, and I would have never done it before. I still sometimes worry I am eating too much :(

I made those black bean quinoa burgers you posted yesterday for dinner last night and they did not turn out as well as I had hoped :/


sarah (the SHU box) March 13, 2010

YES homemade dressings are SO much better! i usually improvise mine — it always comes out different, but always better than what you buy. olive oil, different vinegars, lemon juice, honey or maple syrup, +/- mustard, and spices — so good!

and YAY outlets :)


Jenny March 13, 2010

I’m just adding nut butters and real, full-fat cheeses back into my diet.

I was really missing out!

And I love a good guacamole:)


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