Low Carb Blender Ranch Dressing (THM S)

This post contains affiliate links, which means I receive a commission off of purchases made using these links. If you’re interested in fitness, the Trim Healthy Mama lifestyle, or just living a more healthy life, please consider using one or more of the links below. The money made helps me feed my growing family and keeps this blog running with free recipes. Thank you!

This homemade ranch dressing is so easy to make, you’ll never want to buy bottled again!
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What if I told you homemade ranch was just a turn of your blender away? Well, brace yourselves, because it’s true!

This ranch batch blended beautifully in my Ninja blender, and it only took a few minutes.

This recipe makes about 1 1/2 cups of salad dressing, however you can stretch it a little further. My dressing tends to thicken after refrigeration, and the flavor will intensify, so you can thin it out with a little half and half, almond milk, or water if you prefer.

My kids love this dressing with literally anything – cut veggies, salad (yes, they eat salad ^_^), nuggets, pizza, you name it. I love this dressing because I get to control the quality of ingredients, and because it tastes incredible. [Seriously, it’s better than those $5 bottles of organic dressing at the grocery store. AND IT DOESN’T COST YOU $5 A BATCH.]

Blender Ranch Dressing (THM S)

  • Servings: Multiple
  • Time: 10 minutes
  • Difficulty: Easy
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Credit: Erin Murray, My Fling with Food

Ingredients

  • 1 c mayonnaise
  • 1/2 c sour cream (full fat is fine. I used reduced fat, because it had slightly fewer carbs than full fat)
  • 1/2 small bunch fresh parsley
  • 1/2 small bunch fresh chives, roughly chopped
  • 1/4 c fresh dill
  • 2 small cloves garlic, roughly chopped
  • 2 tsp white balsamic vinegar
  • 5 dashes hot sauce
  • salt and pepper
  • half and half or plain, unsweetened almond milk to thin, optional

Directions

  1. Place all ingredients into a high-powered blender and blend well. Adjust the seasoning as needed, and thin with half and half or almond milk if desired.
  2. Place into a pint mason jar and refrigerate for at least 2 hours before use. Keeps in the fridge for up to 2 weeks.

Creamy Jalapeño Ranch Sauce (THM S)

This post contains affiliate links, which means I receive a commission off of purchases made using these links. If you’re interested in fitness, the Trim Healthy Mama lifestyle, or just living a more healthy life, please consider using one or more of the links below. The money made helps me feed my growing family and keeps this blog running with free recipes. Thank you!

If you are lucky enough to have a Chuy’s Tex-Mex restaurant near you, then I bet you already know the sauce I’m talking about. We discovered Chuy’s over the summer, and now my daughter begs to go there at least once a week. We try to appease her by going once or twice a week.

On to the legendary Creamy Jalapeño Sauce. At Chuy’s, you can put this sauce on anything you want – tacos, enchiladas, nachos, chile rellenos, and even dips your chips in it. It’s ah-mazing. It has a hint of ranch flavor, a ton of freshness, and just a little *bite* of fresh jalapeño.

After I made some wildly successful Homemade Buttermilk Ranch, I decided to build on that recipe to replicate copycat Chuy’s Creamy Jalapeño Sauce.

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What’s wonderful about this recipe is that it takes maybe five minutes to put together. You throw all of the ingredients into a food processor or high-powered blender and whip together until everything looks uniform. Then taste, taste, taste! Add more flavor as you wish – more dill, more cilantro, salt, pepper, etc. Make it your own! What you end up with is a fresh, creamy, slightly spicy sauce.

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A few tips…

*Grate or finely mince the garlic prior to blending it. Garlic can be tough for blenders and processors to get to, because it’s already small so it will get “chunked” instead of blended.

*Finely chop the jalapeño prior to blending it as well. Again, just helps ensure that you won’t end up with chunks of jalapeño. If you would like tips on how to take the seeds and ribs out without setting your hands on fire with pepper juice, check out my how-to here.

As with any homemade dressing/sauce, the flavor will intensify over time. It’s best to stir it before each use.

Use this fabulous sauce on your salads, tacos, enchiladas, as dip for crudités, or anything else your heart desires.

Creamy Jalapeño Ranch Sauce

  • Servings: Multiple
  • Time: 7 minutes
  • Difficulty: Easy
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Credit: Erin Murray, My Fling with Food

Ingredients

  • 1 c mayonnaise
  • 1/2 c reduced fat sour cream
  • 1 large handful fresh cilantro
  • 1/2 fresh jalapeño, seeded and finely chopped
  • 3 Tbsp fresh parsley
  • 3 Tbsp fresh chives
  • 1 large clove garlic
  • 1 tsp white balsamic vinegar
  • 1 tsp gluten free Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 small sprig fresh dill, or 1/2 tsp dried dill, fronds removed and roughly chopped
  • salt and pepper
  • half and half to thin out as needed

Directions

  1. Place all ingredients into a high-powered mixer or food processor and blend well.
  2. Adjust seasoning as needed. Store in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 2 weeks.

Wedge Salad with Buttermilk Ranch Dressing (THM S)

This post contains affiliate links, which means I receive a commission off of purchases made using these links. If you’re interested in fitness, the Trim Healthy Mama lifestyle, or just living a more healthy life, please consider using one or more of the links below. The money made helps me feed my growing family and keeps this blog running with free recipes. Thank you!

I’m probably preaching to the converted here, but I’ll go ahead and say it – ranch dressing rocks my world.

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I’ve spent time scouring store brands trying to find something that’s Trim Healthy Mama compliant while keeping within my budget, and it’s either a unicorn or it doesn’t exist. Most brands have varying sugar levels, and it seems the sugar levels and price have a variable relationship. Smaller levels, higher price. Quite frankly, I’m just not willing to pay upwards of $5 per bottle for something I’m not sure I’ll enjoy.

Enter: homemade ranch.

Honestly, it blows my mind how much better homemade dressings/sauces taste than store brand. I’m not even remotely exaggerating!

After mixing this dressing together, I really had to refrain from drinking the entire bowl.

I chopped everything by hand, but if you like the pieces smaller feel free to use a food processor.

*NOTE: Even If you’re using a food processor, still grate the garlic so that you don’t get any large pieces. I used a fine hand grater.

Start off by making a homemade buttermilk from unsweetened almond milk and apple cider vinegar.

Combine all other ingredients in a small bowl, season with salt and pepper, and add the buttermilk to your desired consistency.

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It tastes best when it has a few hours to hang out in the fridge, but straight from mixing to serving works too. The taste will deepen over time.

The first night, I paired this with one of my favorite classic sides: the wedge salad. There’s something about a wedge salad that feels so simple yet elegant. Even when I make it at home, I feel like I’m in a fancy steakhouse.

The best way to get your iceberg wedges is to start by cutting the stem end off the head of lettuce. Then cut diagonally down toward the center twice, and rock your knife side-to-side to free your wedge slice from its prison.

Add it to a bowl with some chopped seedless cucumbers, tomatoes, blue cheese crumbles, and bacon. Season with a little salt and pepper.

And finally, drizzle on your homemade ranch dressing.

Store the dressing in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 2 weeks (although I’m almost certain it won’t be around that long), stirring before each use. This recipe makes about 8 servings.

Buttermilk Ranch Dressing (THM S)

  • Servings: Multiple
  • Time: 5 minutes
  • Difficulty: Easy
  • Print


Credit: Erin Murray, My Fling with Food

Ingredients

  • 1 c mayonnaise
  • 1/2 c reduced fat sour cream
  • 1/2 c unsweetened, plain almond milk
  • 1/2 tsp apple cider vinegar
  • 2 garlic cloves, finely grated (I use a hand grater
  • 4 Tbsp fresh chopped parsley
  • 3 Tbsp fresh chopped dill
  • 2 Tbsp fresh chives
  • 1/2 tsp white balsamic vinegar
  • few dashes hot sauce
  • salt and pepper

Directions

  1. Combine almond milk and apple cider vinegar in a small bowl and set aside. This makes your “buttermilk”
  2. Combine the remaining ingredients in a medium-sized bowl.
  3. Add the reserved buttermilk until the mixture reaches your desired consistency. Adjust salt and pepper as needed.
  4. Store in an airtight container in the fridge.

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Seared Tuna Salad with Wasabi-Orange Vinaigrette (THM Deep S)

This post contains affiliate links, which means I receive a commission off of purchases made using these links. If you’re interested in fitness, the Trim Healthy Mama lifestyle, or just living a more healthy life, please consider using one or more of the links below. The money made helps me feed my growing family and keeps this blog running with free recipes. Thank you!

Sushi is my kryptonite. In a former life, I must have been Japanese because I cannot get enough of this cuisine.

Even when I’ve been through both of my pregnancies, I had to sneak sushi every now and again. (SHHH! Don’t tell) I just can’t stay away from the stuff for 40 whole weeks – inconceivable!

But, alas, I can’t always spend a chunk of change at my favorite sushi place. So, I have to find ways to satisfy my cravings at home.

>Seared Tuna Salad with Wasabi-Orange Vinaigrette (THM S)

  • Servings: 2-3
  • Time: 10 minutes
  • Difficulty: Easy
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Credit: Erin Murray, My Fling with Food

Ingredients

    For the Salad:
  • 1-lb sushi grade ahi tuna
  • 2 Tbsp gluten free soy sauce
  • 1/2 in piece of ginger, grated
  • 2 large cloves garlic, grated
  • 4-7 large leaves romaine lettuce, torn
  • 1/2 hothouse cucumbers, julienned
  • 1 small carrot, peeled and julienned
  • 2 radishes, thinly sliced
  • 2 scallions, thinly sliced
  • 1 small red bell pepper, thinly sliced
  • 1 avocado, thinly sliced
  • For the Vinaigrette:
  • 2 heaping tsp no-sugar orange marmalade, such as Polaner’s All Fruit
  • 1.5 Tbsp rice wine vinegar
  • 1-2 pea-sized dots of wasabi paste (the kind you get on a sushi plate – the green stuff. You can ask the sushi chefs at your grocery store for a small container of it.)
  • 2-3 Tbsp EVOO
  • salt and pepper

Directions

  1. In a shallow dish, combine the soy sauce, garlic, and ginger with the tuna and marinate it on the counter for 7-10 minutes.
  2. While that’s happening, chop all the ingredients for the salad and add them to 2 medium bowls.
  3. Heat a large cast iron skillet over medium-high heat. Add the tuna and sear 1-2 minutes on each side (top, bottom, and sides also). Remove it from the pan, slice into 1/2 in slices and cube into large chunks. Add it to the salads.
  4. In a small bowl, whisk together all the ingredients for the dressing and divide it evenly over each salad. Toss to combine.

There is seriously nothing more gorgeous than a hunk of seared tuna. It’s fatty and delicious without being heavy or weighing you down.

Sprouts has had a great price on ahi tuna this summer! You can get a 1-lb filet for between $5.99 and $7.99.

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Grilled Chicken Tabbouleh Salads (THM E)

This post contains affiliate links, which means I receive a commission off of purchases made using these links. If you’re interested in fitness, the Trim Healthy Mama lifestyle, or just living a more healthy life, please consider using one or more of the links below. The money made helps me feed my growing family and keeps this blog running with free recipes. Thank you!

Prep work will go a long way in this meal, but even without the prep you can still get in and out in under 30 minutes.

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What is tabbouleh, you ask? Tabbouleh is a Middle Eastern salad typically made with bulgur wheat, veggies, lemon, and herbs.

To get this into THM territory, I used quinoa in place of the bulgur wheat.

I gotta say, even for an E meal, this meal was packing the flavor and protein. This isn’t one of those E meals that leaves something to be desired after. It will fill you up for hours! In fact, it would make a wonderful take-to-work lunch.

What’s going to take you the most time will be the quinoa tabbouleh, so get that going first. Quinoa is best when you rinse it prior to cooking, and I like to “toast” it slightly in my sauce pan before adding the chicken broth or water. The toasting helps to separate the grains and keep them slightly al dente. Plus, it adds a little extra flavor, which is never a bad thing.

While the quinoa cooks, go ahead and prep the tzatziki dressing. Combine yogurt, mint, water, lemon zest, lemon juice, garlic, red pepper flakes, salt and pepper. Cover and refrigerate until your ready to serve.

When the quinoa is cooked, add it to a bowl with the cucumber, tomatoes, scallions, parsley, EVOO, mint, lemon juice, salt and pepper. Remove it to the fridge until you’re ready to put the salad together.

Next, grill the chicken breasts. My shortcut tip here is to use scallopini cut chicken breasts. They cost the same as normal cut ones, but they’re cut thinner so they cook faster. I season them simply with salt and pepper and throw them onto my cast iron grill.

Now you’re ready to build the salads!

Pick your favorite green salad mix – I always gravitate towards baby spring mix, because it’s less bitter than other blends. Throw in some extra Romaine and/or red/green leaf lettuce for some padding (and, really, we all need those greens). The tabbouleh already has tomatoes and cucumbers in it, but you can add extra if you desire. Pile the tabbouleh on top of your greens, then add the sliced chicken, and dollop on the creamy tzatziki dressing.

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This is definitely going to turn into a weeknight go-to for us. The effort was minimal, but this dish packs some big flavors. Plus, it’s a light summer meal that doesn’t heat the kitchen or require blood, sweat, and tears.

Perfect combo, ammiright?

Grilled Chicken Tabbouleh Salads (THM E)

  • Servings: 2-4
  • Time: 45 minutes
  • Difficulty: Easy
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Credit: Erin Murray, My Fling with Food

Ingredients

    For the Tabbouleh:
  • 1 c cooked quinoa
  • 1/2 English cucumber, lightly skinned and finely chopped
  • 2 Roma tomatoes, seeded and finely chopped
  • 3 Tbsp lemon juice
  • 1/4-1/2 c mint
  • 1 Tbsp EVOO (Extra Virgin Olive Oil)
  • 4 scallions, thinly sliced
  • 1/2 c chopped fresh parsley
  • salt and pepper
  • For the Tzatziki Dressing:
  • 1/2 c nonfat Greek yogurt
  • 1/4 c mint
  • 3 Tbsp water
  • lemon zest
  • 1 Tbsp lemon juice
  • 1 small garlic clove, grated
  • pinch red pepper flakes
  • salt and pepper
  • For the salad:
  • Mixed salad greens
  • Romaine lettuce leaves/Red or Green leaf lettuce
  • tomatoes, cucumbers, onions, etc. (optional)
  • Sliced, grilled scallopini chicken breasts

Directions

  1. To make the tabbouleh, combine quinoa, cucumber, tomatoes, scallions, parsley, EVOO, mint, lemon juice, salt and pepper. Cover and refrigerate until serving.
  2. To make the dressing, combine the yogurt, mint, water, lemon zest and juice, garlic, red pepper flakes, salt, and pepper. Stir to combine, cover, and refrigerate.
  3. Preheat your grill to medium heat and coat it lightly with coconut oil spray. Season chicken with salt and pepper and grill 3-4 minutes on each side until cooked through. Set aside and cover with foil to continue cooking.
  4. Build salads with romaine and mixed greens on the bottom, 1/2-3/4 c tabbouleh, sliced grilled chicken, and a drizzle of the mint yogurt dressing.
  5. For lunches, keep the salad greens, tabbouleh, and dressing separate until serving for optimal results.


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RaWednesday

I think we all can relate to one thing when it comes to cooking fish – fish stank.

I love cooking and eating fish. I hate the aftermath of the stink it leaves in my kitchen.

So, when I can eat fish and leave it raw it’s really the best of both worlds. The cherry on top is that sushi-grade tuna is on sale A LOT during the summer months. Just during the last month or so, ahi tuna has been on sale at Sprouts three out of four weeks – win!

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Seared Sesame Tuna with Wasabi-Ginger Zoodles (THM S)

  • Roughly 1-lb ahi tuna filets (I had 2 fairly large, thick filets which resulted in a little over a pound.)
  • Black and white sesame seeds
  • Salt and pepper
  • Veggies for spiralizing (I used 1 English cucumber, 1 small zucchini, 1 carrot (those were a challenge. Unless they are LARGE, don’t do it.), and 6-7 baby beets)
  • 1/3 c low sodium soy sauce
  • 1/8 tsp wasabi (the paste! you can get a small dab of it from the sushi chefs by the seafood section)
  • 1 inch grated fresh ginger
  • 1.5 Tsp rice vinegar
  • 1-2 Tsp EVOO or liquid coconut oil

Spiralize the veggies into a large bowl. Whisk together the soy sauce, ginger, wasabi, vinegar, and oil in a small bowl. Pour the dressing over the veggies, toss to coat, and sit it in the fridge until the tuna’s done.

Season the tuna liberally with salt and pepper. Combine a few palmfuls each of the black and white (regular) sesame seeds, and rub them onto all sides of the filets. Place them onto a hot grill  pan (medium-high) heat and sear 1-2 minutes on each side.

Slice the tuna, I personally like it on the thick side. Grab a bowl, place your veggies in the bottom, top with the seared tuna and add a small drizzle of soy sauce over the top.

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Finito! Enjoy. 🙂