This BLT Ranch Salad with Quinoa is a healthy and hearty meal that will fill you up and keep you powered up for the rest of your day. Sponsored by Wolf Gourmet.
I am not a big salad eater. They typically do not fill me up nor seem appetizing to me. I prefer heartier meals, but over time I have learned to fall in love with salads by making them.. well, heartier. This could be the addition of meat, but also an assortment of vegetables to keep things lively. I even shared my tips on how to build a better salad here. For me, the key to eating healthy is to trick myself into thinking that I am eating a big-honking-hearty meal that doesn’t leave me hungry.
One of my favorite ways to trick my brain (and stomach) is to mix in some quinoa into my salad. Quinoa is gluten-free, packed with fiber and protein, gives you energy and.. ta-dah, fills you up! The beauty of quinoa is that it cooks quickly, taking about 15 minutes. Fluff it with a fork and add it to your salad warm or cooled off, whatever you prefer.
Another trick I have found to making salads more appetizing is homemade salad dressing. My husband is guilty of bringing home store-bought dressings. They rarely get used by me and they typically go bad before they are even half-way done. I suppose I have become a salad dressing snob.
So when Wolf Gourmet sent me their brand new Wolf Gourmet High Performance Blender, I was ridiculously excited. I thoroughly love the stainless pots and pans Wolf sent me a few months ago. I knew this blender was going to WOW me.
My husband and I went a little crazy testing it out. This is one real bad boy blender and we enjoyed checking out all of it’s capabilities:
- Serious power with its ultra-responsive variable speed and 2.4 peak HP motor that propels the blades to speeds over 210 mph. The dial lets you easily choose the speed you need.
- The digital control panel is uber-cool.
- There are 4 program speeds, smoothie, ice crush, puree and soup. Yeah, we tested them all. You can also pulse smoothly.
- The extra-large 64 oz. Tritan™ jar is shatterproof and BPA-free. The lid has a sweet two-piece cap that includes an emulsion cup so you can easily add ingredients slowly when blending. Perfect for emulsifying olive oil… or salad dressings!
- For being a high-performance blender, this beauty isn’t the size of a monster and fits perfectly under standard-size cabinets.
- Perfect for entertaining and family meals, The blender is perfectly sized to fit under standard-size cabinets.
We mixed cocktails, smoothies and soups. This blender works fast and smoothly, leaving no chunks or lumps behind. This is one powerful and beautiful blender. And it is very easy to clean. I happily gave away my old blender and proudly show off my new baby on my kitchen counter.
So after all our mixing and blending experiments, I decided to make homemade ranch dressing for this post. Why did I not do this earlier in my life???!!! I am a sucker for ranch dressing, one of the few store-bought dressings that I secretly enjoy. Don’t judge me. Homemade ranch is ridiculously easy to make. Again, why did I not do this earlier in my life???!!! I am totally and completely hooked.
Since I prefer a little more zing in meals, my version of homemade ranch dressing has plenty of garlic and the addition of apple cider vinegar. I also packed in my favorite herbs: dill, chives and parsley.
I made this BLT Ranch Salad because it’s still summer, and we are bursting with gorgeous heirloom tomatoes. And bacon. A little bacon makes any salad so much more appetizing.
This giveaway is now closed. Congratulations to my winner, Katie Miller!
The awesome folks at Wolf Gourmet are giving away one of these high performance blenders to one lucky reader! To enter, just subscribe to my blog and leave a comment below! Giveaway disclosure: To enter you must be 18 years or older and reside in the 50 United States. Prize cannot be shipped to P.O. Boxes. Contest expires August 15, 2016. Who’s ready to start blending?
- 1 cup mayonnaise
- 1/2 cup sour cream
- 1/4 cup minced parsley
- 2 garlic cloves, crushed
- 1 TBS minced fresh chives
- 2 tsp apple cider vinegar
- 1 tsp dried dill
- 1 tsp Worcestershire sauce
- 1/2 tsp ground black pepper
- 1/4 tsp kosher salt
- 1/2 cup buttermilk
- 1 cup quinoa
- 2 cups water
- 5 oz spring mix greens
- 1 lb bacon, cooked and crumbled
- 4 radishes, thinly sliced
- 1-pound of heirloom tomatoes, cut into wedges
- In a blender mix together mayonnaise, sour cream, parsley, garlic, chives, vinegar, dill, Worcestershire sauce, salt and pepper until smooth.
- Add buttermilk* and blend again to combine.
- Pour dressing into a bottle, seal and refrigerate for one hour for flavors to meld together.
- Meanwhile, in a small pot add quinoa and 2 cups water. Cover pot and bring water to boil. Once boiling, reduce heat to simmer and cook until water is absorbed and quinoa is tender, approximately 15 minutes.
- Fluff quinoa with a fork and cool to room temperature, approximately 20 minutes.
- Place spring greens mix in a large serving bowl.
- Toss the cooled quinoa with the greens.
- Scatter cooked bacon, radishes and tomatoes over the salad greens.
- Serve with refrigerated ranch dressing.
* for thicker dressing, add 1/4 cup of buttermilk
While dressing is in the fridge, you can cook the bacon. I like cooking bacon in the oven. Line a baking sheet with heavy duty aluminum foil and lay bacon in a single layer. Cook for 15 mins or to desired doneness at 400ºF. Drain cooked bacon on a plate lined with paper towels to cool.
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 712Total Fat: 59gSaturated Fat: 15gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 41gCholesterol: 102mgSodium: 1680mgCarbohydrates: 15gFiber: 2gSugar: 5gProtein: 30g