Healthy cilantro pepita dressing

This healthy cilantro pepita dressing is a delicious salad dressing that just wraps up a taco salad or served as a accompaniment when a refreshing sauce like a chimichurri sauce is needed.  The acidity from the vinegar, the creaminess from the yoghurt and the refreshing taste of cilantro makes this such a versatile dressing and sauce.  The best thing about this dressing or accompaniment is that it's my healthy yet still tasty version of the shelf-stable, store-bought El-torito Restaurant version of salad dressing.  This dressing is made with Greek yoghurt instead of mayonnaise which gives that needed tang, is less caloric and SO MUCH healthier for you!

I catered lunch for a women's church retreat.  This dressing was so well received that some of the ladies were asking if they could take the dressing home in paper cups!

Tips for making this healthy cilantro pepita dressing

This dressing requires a blender or a food processor.  A small electric chopper is not powerful enough to blend the ingredients.  For small quanities, use an immersion blender.

Immersion blender

Immersion blender for small jobs

Cheese

The recipe uses Mexican Cotija cheese.  If that is not available, freshly grated parmesan works really well and lately, is my prefered cheese! 

Pepitas

Use roasted, salted pepitas (pumpkin seeds).  Blending these seeds into the dressing gives the dressing body and helps thicken the dressing.

Greek yoghurt

I like using the 5% yoghurt for the creaminess and thickness. Non-Greek yoghurts don't tend to be thick enough to hold up as a dressing.

Blending

Although very tempting, do not place all the ingredients into the container and blend. Trust me!  It takes longer to blend the cilantro and by the time you get the cilantro to an indistinguishable green paste, the yoghurt which should wait until the end, thins out. Blend the ingredients in two stages.   Do not overblend the dressing with the yoghurt as this tends to make the dressing thin.

Blend all the ingredients except the Greek yoghurt together.

Blend all the ingredients except the Greek yoghurt together.

Add the yoghurt

Add the yoghurt when the other ingredients are well blended.

Allow the flavors to combine by allowing it to rest for half an hour in the refrigerator before serving. Enjoy and let me know what you think in the comments.

Healthy cilantro pepita dressing

HEALTHY CILANTRO PEPITA DRESSING

Michelle Sam
This delicious healthy cilantro pepita dressing uses Greek yoghurt rather than mayonnaise with the same great taste!
5 from 1 vote
Prep Time 10 minutes
Resting time 30 minutes
Total Time 40 minutes
Course Accompaniments
Cuisine American, Mexican
Servings 6
Calories 147 kcal

Equipment

  • Food processor or blender

Ingredients
  

  • 1 Tbsp roasted pepitas pumpkin seeds
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • pinch fresh ground black pepper
  • ¼ tsp sea salt
  • 6 Tbsp avocado oil
  • Tbsp red wine vinegar
  • Tbsp grated Cotija cheese Freshly grated parmesan cheese can be substituted.
  • ½ bunch cilantro
  • cup 5% Greek yoghurt

Instructions
 

  • In a hand blender or food processor, combine all the ingredients except for the Greek yoghurt.
    1 Tbsp roasted pepitas, 2 cloves garlic, pinch fresh ground black pepper, ¼ tsp sea salt, 6 Tbsp avocado oil, 1¼ Tbsp red wine vinegar, 1¼ Tbsp grated Cotija cheese, ½ bunch cilantro
  • Blend to a paste.
  • Add the yoghurt and continue to blend until well combined.
    ⅓ cup 5% Greek yoghurt
  • Do not overblend to avoid the dressing from being thin and runny.
  • Allow the flavors to combine by placing the dressing in the refrigerator for half an hour before serving.

Nutrition

Serving: 6gCalories: 147kcalCarbohydrates: 1gProtein: 2gFat: 15gSaturated Fat: 2gPolyunsaturated Fat: 2gMonounsaturated Fat: 10gCholesterol: 4mgSodium: 144mgPotassium: 33mgFiber: 0.1gSugar: 0.4gVitamin A: 61IUVitamin C: 1mgCalcium: 33mgIron: 0.1mgNet Carbohydrates: 1g
Keyword taco salad dressing
Tried this recipe?Let me know how it was or if you have any questions or suggestions!
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