Heart-Healthy Salad Dressing Recipes to Spice Up Your Summer Cooking!

healthy salad dressing recipesSo your cardiologist told you to eat more olive oil…

An important component of a heart healthy diet is lots of fresh fruits and vegetables in addition to extra virgin olive oil (EVOO). One way to combine these is in salads. With summer upon us there is an abundance of vegetables to fill your bowl with! Add nuts, avocado and beans to your salads for added heart healthy benefits.

The essentials of creating a vinaigrette are using about a 3:1 mixture of EVOO and vinegar. Then you can add mustard, honey, agave, roasted tomatoes, shallots etc to taste. Experiment and see what works best for you and your tastes! For flavored oils and vinegars I recommend “Oli and Ve” with locations in Roswell and Buckhead.

Standard Healthy Vinaigrette Recipe (one serving):

  • 1 tablespoon EVOO
  • 1 teaspoon balsamic vinegar
  • Pinch of kosher salt
  • Pepper to taste
  • ½ teaspoon Dijon mustard

Wisk components in a cup and pour over salad.  (Add one teaspoon honey/agave nectar) if you like it a little sweeter)

Healthy Roasted Tomato Vinaigrette Recipe (two servings)

(Recipe requires a food processor of some sort. I use a handheld blender)

  • 2 tablespoon EVOO
  • 6 roasted tomato halves (in oil)
  • 1 teaspoon red wine vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon honey (or agave nectar)
  • Pinch of kosher salt
  • Pepper to taste

Blend components with handheld mixer and serve over salad. If dressing is too thick add a little more EVOO and blend again.

Healthy Shallot Vinaigrette (two servings)

  • 1 shallot – chopped
  • 2 tablespoons EVOO
  • 2 teaspoons champagne vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
  • A pinch of kosher salt
  • Pepper to taste

Wisk components together and pour over salad.

Salad Recipe Ideas

  • Arugula with basil, steamed beets, walnuts, goat cheese. Dress with blood orange EVOO and cranberry pear white balsamic vinegar (3:1 ratio with a touch of salt and pepper).
  • Spinach with grapefruit, pecans, parmesan cheese. Dress with standard vinaigrette.
  • Mixed baby field greens, strawberries, walnuts and goat cheese. Dress with basil EVOO and strawberry balsamic vinegar (3:1 ratio with a touch of salt and pepper).
  • Steamed green beans:
    • Steam a cup of green beans and while warm, dress with a tablespoon of EVOO and 1-2 teaspoons of red wine vinegar and ¼ teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes. Toss ingredients together. Add salt and pepper to taste.

Dr. Alexis Cutchins

About Alexis Cutchins, MD
Dr. Cutchins recently completed her cardiology fellowship at the University of Virginia Medical Center and specializes in general cardiology, heart disease prevention and has a passion for caring for women with heart disease. She sees patients at Emory Heart & Vascular Center at Perimeter – 875 Johnson Ferry Road, Atlanta, GA, 30342, 404-778-6070 as well as at Emory Heart & Vascular Center at Midtown, 550 Peachtree Street, NE, Atlanta, GA 30308, 404-686-7878.


About the Emory Women’s Heart Program
Emory Women’s Heart Program provides cardiac risk assessment, diagnosis and heart disease care through a women-focused approach to cardiovascular care. Our goal is to help women prevent heart disease and improve cardiovascular outcomes through the highest quality patient and family-centered care, research and education. For more information visit the Emory Women’s Heart Program website.

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  • Eva J.

    Dr Cutchins,
    Your recipes are FANTASTIC! Thank you for sharing them. I am a Heart Failure Disease Manager in north Georgia and instead of the pinch of salt, I added a few drops of lemon juice…making them Heart Failure friendly and they are still VERY tasty!
    Best Regards,

    • Eva, so glad you enjoyed the recipes! Lemon juice is an excellent substitute for salt, kudos to you! Thank you for sharing. ~ Dr. Cutchins