Where’s the Cake??
While we’re probably best known for our sweet treats and baking essentials, there’s a whole side to vanilla that some people never take the chance to experience. When applied to savory recipes, vanilla can cut acidity, enhance rich flavors and provide a well-rounded, mellow sweetness. We’ve been putting vanilla extract and vanilla beans in savory applications from salsa to sauces for years and years!
Expert Story – The Secret to Better Salad Dressing Can Be Found in the Baking Aisle
The Kitchn posted an article recently about just how powerful a dash of vanilla can be in salad dressing recipes! From their story “Here’s how it works: Vanilla lessens the bite of bitterness and tempers acidity while making sweet ingredients taste more like themselves. As you know from baking, vanilla is usually more of a background player to other ingredients — something you might not be able to call out, but an ingredient you miss when it isn’t there. It does the same thing in a salad dressing. The round, mild sweetness of vanilla enhances the flavor of sweet salad additions, like berries, but it’s also great with veggies that lean toward the sweeter side, like roasted beets or sweet potatoes. It also tempers pungent flavors, like strong cheeses, garlic, and raw red onion.”
- A more “traditional” use for vanilla in salads is definitely fruit salad. Our Winter Fruit and Berry Salad with Tangerine Dressing is sensational – just a tiny bit savory.
- Kale Salad with Wild Rice and Pomegranate is a no-brainer option for lunch, a light dinner, or even as a holiday side dish. It holds up well to transport, is light but hearty. Without the sausage, it’s a vegetarian option packed with flavor!
- We doubled up on the vanilla bean in this recipe for Jicama Salad with Vanilla Bean Goat Cheese – you’ll use half of a vanilla bean in the decadent goat cheese and the remainder in the light vinaigrette.
- Can you go wrong with a Roasted Beet Salad?? We don’t think so! We’ve stacked ours for presentation, but honestly, it’s delicious thrown on a plate or in a tupperware for a to-go lunch.
- For a yummy spring and summer lunch, try our Classic Chicken Waldorf Salad Recipe! It’s the ultimate salty, creamy, sweet, tart flavor and perfect on greens or even in a pita.
- Tomatoes, check! Basil, check! Mozzarella, check! Vanilla bean, check, check, check! You’ll never look at Caprese salads the same after you try our Caprese with Vanilla Bean Olive Oil and Vanilla Bean Balsamic Glaze!
Let us know what you think about vanilla in savory recipes and if you have any favorites of your own!