Zero Calorie Salad Dressing [for hot sauce lovers]

Zero Calorie Salad Dressing [for hot sauce lovers]

It’s been a while…but I’m back for the moment to tell you about a salad dressing I made that has practically no calories at all. [To be technical, all four ingredients in this dressing have 0 calories on the label, but there very well may be a trace calorie or two 🤷‍♀️.]

Look, finding salad dressings that are even low calorie is a challenge, so this, my friends is a near miracle. The only catch is, in order to like this dressing, you’ll need to love hot sauce…

I’m going to tell you all about it, but first, a rant about salads…

Salad Rant

I have been extolling the virtues of salads since I began this blog five years ago. [In fact, I just searched through google photos for a picture of salad and I think I actually have more photos of salads than I have of my own face.] Personally, I eat a fresh vegetable salad almost every day. The only problem with a salad [besides potentially out of season and pesticide ridden produce] is the calorie bomb usually found in the dressing.

For the past ten years, I have eaten my salad with oil and vinegar or a squeeze of fresh lemon. And that is all well and good, but if I want to load my salad with chick peas and avocado AND a tablespoon of EVOO [120 kcals, btw], well, that adds up. So, sometimes I want something a little lighter and I’ll tell you all about it, but first, a caveat about extra virgin olive oil.

EVOO Caveat

I am in NO WAY saying that EVOO is unhealthy or that you shouldn’t eat it. Quite the contrary. Extra virgin olive oil is wonderful for you — especially when it’s high quality and cold pressed and drizzled onto a fresh veggie salad [or drizzled raw on anything really]. So adding it to salad is a healthful and filling choice [due largely to the healthy fats in EVOO]. In fact, you can add that drizzle of olive oil right along with this salad dressing if you wish.

I personally, consume A LOT of olive oil and use it in many, many dishes. So sometimes I skip it in my salad. No biggie.

Now, on to the salad dressing…but first, the story of my inspiration.

Story of Inspiration

I was riding my stationary bike in the basement the other day and following along on an absolutely BRUTAL HIIT ride with my favorite Peloton coach, Robin Arzón, when she said “I use hot sauce for salad dressing.” She was meaning this metaphorically, I think, since hot sauce is her favorite analogy for ridiculously high resistance on the exercise bike, but I thought to myself…I would like to have hot sauce as a salad dressing. That sounds delicious.

I finished the ride first, but then I immediately googled “hot sauce salad dressing recipe.” Nada. I mean, I found some spicy Mayo recipes [that ain’t going to work] and I found some spicy honey mustard recipes [nope], but nothing like what I was looking for. I wanted something that tasted like Franks RedHot, but was not just plain ol’ RedHot, which would maybe be a little too spicy even for me. [And ya’ll, I LOVE spice.]

So, then I went into my kitchen and did a little mixing magic and voila! A hot sauce salad dressing.

None of these measurements are exact because mixing magic does not involve measuring things. Just throw some of these ingredients into a jar and shake. If you no likey, add some more of this or that and try again.

Ingredients: mustard, vinegar, hot sauce, lime juice.

Generally speaking, the ratio I use is about 2 parts mustard to 1 part vinegar [I’ve tried rice vinegar, white wine vinegar and red wine vinegar so far]. Then I add enough hot sauce to make it SPICY [and to prevent it from tasting like just mustard] and a few splashes of lime juice. Too spicy, add more lime juice. Too thin, add more mustard. Too thick, add more vinegar. Adjust per your personal tastes.

I for one LOVE hot sauce. I have been putting it on [or in] every savory thing I eat— except salads and I don’t really know why. I love this dressing so much and the fact that it happens to have no calories is just a bonus.


Alright, so if you like heat, try it out and lemme know what you think.



6 thoughts on “Zero Calorie Salad Dressing [for hot sauce lovers]

  1. Cool! I don’t know if we have hot sauce in Australia. I will check it out. But I am curious as to why you count your calories so carefully? I don’t get the impression you’re trying to lose weight. I am very lucky to have a very efficient metabolism and have never had to worry about my weight. But I do care about health. And I am learning that you can look healthy and seem healthy and think you’re eating healthily but be secretly accumulating fat around your liver or glucose in your blood. And only a blood test gives you the truth on this. Keto diets are happening all around me. But not so much calory counting.


    1. There might not be hot sauce in Australia?! I’m very curious to know. Maybe it’s just a thing in the Americas. 🤷‍♀️ As for calorie counting, I don’t actually count my calories any more, but I do generally watch how much I eat. When I first became healthy 15 years ago, I started with calorie counting because I didn’t know any other way and that’s how I lost my initial weight (60ish lbs), but now I do focus more on being healthy and eating clean than on calories. Unfortunately, I was not gifted an efficient metabolism and I gain weight very easily if I eat too much. I seem to require fewer calories than the average woman, even with all my exercise, so I have to be careful. And, of course, you are right that weight is not the only or even best indicator of health, but I manage my weight because I am a long-distance runner and so even a few extra pounds makes a difference when running 26+ miles. But I totally agree, appearances can be deceiving. We should all be focused more on health, but unfortunately society (in America at least) is very appearance focused — which is why keto is so popular. Perhaps I should have called it a keto dressing since it is that as well, but I don’t really believe in the healthfulness of keto diets so I don’t want to promote them. I’m curious to know what you learned about the causes of liver fat and blood glucose levels. These do seem to be increasing health problems and I don’t know much about them.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. My brother in law is the true officionado on keto. He was told he was pre diabetic and went for broke to combat it. I was shocked then because my husband’s whole family have always been health conscious … but more in the avoiding fat and salt kind of camp. Anyway they’re smart people and youtube was their friend (videos where sources are referenced for investigation). According to his research, on a modern western diet, we are bound to accumulate glucose and fat. We eat too much and too often and our body never has time to catch up. So he went off carbs almost totally and very low sugar (he even bought monk fruit sugar which is full of fibre and protein). He lost weight ( I thought he was too thin) but he also got his bloods healthier. That took about a month I think. Now the challenge is the maintenance part. Full keto isn’t a good idea long term. So he is trying to find the happy balance. Now his Mum is doing the same thing. Never thought I would see the day. But the blood numbers persuaded her.


      2. Sorry I am going on and on. I keep thinking of other stuff to say. I think it would be really hard to be keto and vegetarian because the other focus of keto (apart from fat) is protein. I haven’t ever really figured out how I would be a healthy vegetarian but I guess if you ate enough eggs, tofu, nuts, dairy and beans…. are they good sources of protein? Actually that sounds yummy. I could do that. By the way… I just googled. There is something at our local supermarket called “Frank’s Hot Sauce” so that’s probably it. We have sriracha, and tabasco and chilli this and pepper that and of course wasabi. So we don’t lack in hot options. I go for sambal because I grew up in Indonesia. But I will check out what’s in hot sauce next time I’m shopping.


      3. That makes a lot of sense to me (about keto treating the effects of a western diet). I watched a documentary once about high fat diets being used to treat lots of different health issues, but most people I know going on keto diets (and nearly every client I ever had as a personal trainer) are trying to lose weight…which is good in a way, but it’s also just putting a bandaid on the deeper lifestyle issues (like lack of physical activity and eating too many refined and processed carbs). I actually tried carb cycling as a vegan, which is basically cycling between high carb days and no carb days and it was nearly impossible. There was so little I could eat. Beans and legumes are good sources of protein but they are also high in carbs, as are most fruits and vegetables and many other foods that are very good for the body. I was basically eating tofu and nuts. So I gave that up after a few weeks. 😂 Would be much easier as a vegetarian tho – or even pescatarian. But from my own education and experience, I think a balance is best and that includes all three macronutrients AND adequate physical exercise. Unfortunately, our society (again, I can only speak for what I know here in America) is focused on treating issues after they happen rather than preventing them.

        Now, I’ve gone on forever. Lol Nutrition is a complicated and fascinating science. I always love to hear more about what other people are trying and what is working for them. 👍

        And Franks is my favorite! It’s basically just made of hot peppers and vinegar.

        Liked by 1 person

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