How to:

Dress a Salad

Dressing your salad shouldn't be as hard as getting dressed in the morning. Here's a cheat sheet.

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Spinach is versatile. The world is your oyster here. It can handle creamy dressings with the thicker, older leaves, and baby spinach matches perfectly with a simple vinaigrette.


Kale is pretty easy. It’s a hefty leaf and can be hard to chew, so it’s important to use a lot of acid to help break down the texture. Also always remember to massage your kale leaves with EVOO rather than just pouring it over. It makes a world of difference.

Iceberg Lettuce

Iceberg lettuce is crunchy, but is pretty much just water. It doesn’t have much flavor. To make it a bit more interesting, creamy dressings like blue cheese or ranch work well, but so do combos of interesting flavors like caramelized onions in a vinaigrette, dips, mayonnaise based sauces, or creative uses of pickle, olive, and pepperoncini juices are great.


Grain bowls and salads go very well with softer creamy dressings that are thick enough to coat all of the elements, but also not so aggressive that they overpower the unique taste of the grains. Tahini and buttermilk bases work perfectly.


Frisée is similarly bitter, but it’s also very textured, so something with fat and salt is a good option. This would be a great place to use leftover fat in place of olive oil in a vinaigrette or emulsify a dressing with an egg yolk.


Endives are very bitter so they’re a perfect vessel for something heftier with more fat, sweetness, and creaminess. Go blue cheese for a good contrast.

Bib, Romaine, and Little Gem

Tender lettuces like bib, romaine, and little gem are crisp and light, so the dressing should be too. Try a lemon or orange juice and olive oil combo.


Arugula has a bit of a peppery taste, so pairs well with something sweet. Try a simple vinaigrette with salt and pepper and honey.