Okay, it’s a salad. What could possibly be wrong about eating a salad? Nobody ever complained about fresh lettuce, tomatoes and olives tossed together with a few bits of grilled chicken. That sounds delicious and has fewer calories than a full main meal, of course. Or does it?
Dressing Down The Facts
All around the healthy grilled chicken and fresh produce is a carb-loaded solution with synthetic ingredients and preservatives that are good enough to fatten you up.
The devil is in the dressing. Caesar salad has perhaps one of the most calorie-high dressings you could possibly consume, particularly if you’re eating out at a restaurant where it is lapped up in bigger portions.
Even those who buy ‘light’ versions of the dressing for home use, are only fooling themselves. Light versions are high in sodium and sugar content, and may only be less calorific than the full-fat version by a small fraction. And in the case of Caesar salad dressing, it’s pretty fattening, all on its own to begin with.
If you’re looking to have a satisfactory meal of Caesar salad (1 serving with dressing), brace yourself for 500 calories, of which 306 calories come from the fat in the dressing alone. Perhaps this might awaken you to the truth behind the label: 1tbsp contains 78 calories, and typically a Caesar salad warrants 2tbsp, on average.
Stick To Homemade Preps & Use A Caesar Salad Vinaigrette Dressing Instead
Stir 2tbsp white wine vinegar, 1tbsp Dijon mustard, 1tbsp balsamic vinegar, 1tsp lemon zest, 1tsp sugar (optional), 1/2tsp Italian seasoning, 1/4tsp salt, and 1/8tsp black pepper together in a bowl. Gradually whisk in 2/3 cup olive oil to make an emulsion or thickened vinaigrette mixture. Stir in 1 clove minced garlic. Add 1/2 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese (if you must). Together, these ingredients will make a rather generous amount of dressing and collectively contain 128 calories. And yes, it’s just as delicious.