A Salad for Salad-Haters with Creamy Basil Dressing

Creamy Basil Salad 3

I created this recipe using ingredients from SPUD, who supplies me with an online credit. As always, any opinions I express about the products are my own.

As you may or may not remember, I’m not a fan of salads.

There aren’t too many salad recipe ’round here, except for ones with roasted veggies, beans, dried fruit and maple syrup.

Needless to say, I was surprised when SPUD delivered my weekly haul and the first thing I wanted was to whip up a fresh, simple salad. Guess I’m evolving, huh?

Like many salads, this one is all about the delicious, creamy dressing. Cashews are a great substitution for dairy, but if you’ve got a nut allergy, try sunflower seeds instead. Or, you could omit the nuts and seeds entirely and throw in some olive oil to make it a vinaigrette.

In the making of this salad, I learned it’s crucial to cut the veggies into small pieces for two very important reasons:

1. You won’t have long strands of lettuce slapping you in the cheeks, causing you to wonder if you’ve got dressing on your face even though you’ve wiped it four times.

2. You’ll get a little bit of every vegetable in one delicious bite.

To transform this into salad a full meal, include a scoop of beans, toss in some veggie falafel or add an extra handful of nuts. I topped mine (pictured below) with a fantastic fermented nut cheese I learned to make while I was in Toronto at Meghan Telpner’s urban culinary retreat.

Creamy Basil Salad 7

Get $20 off your first SPUD order by entering my special coupon code ‘Sondi’ at the checkout (it’s valid on orders of $40 or more). It’s a sweet deal: you get forty bucks worth of organic groceries for only $20. SPUD has locations in Metro Vancouver, Victoria, Calgary, Seattle, Los Angeles and San Francisco.

4.0 from 1 reviews
A Simple Salad with Creamy Basil Dressing
Prep time
Total time
gluten-free, dairy-free, vegan, soy-free, egg-free, grain-free
Recipe type: Salad
Serves: 2
  • ½ a head of romaine lettuce, leaves washed and dried
  • ½ a field cucumber, chopped
  • 3-4 Roma tomatoes, de-seeded and chopped
  • ½ cup cashews, soaked overnight and drained
  • ¼ cup water
  • ¼ cup fresh basil leaves
  • 1 tbsp lemon juice
  • 1 large clove of garlic, chopped
  • ¼ tsp salt
  • splash of maple syrup (optional)
  1. Chop up or shred your lettuce into bite-sized pieces. Toss them into a bowl, along with the cucumber and tomatoes.
  2. In a blender, combine the cashews, water, basil leaves, lemon juice, garlic, salt and maple syrup. Whirl until everything is creamy. Taste, and adjust seasonings if needed.
  3. Dollop the dressing over the salad and serve.


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2 Responses to A Salad for Salad-Haters with Creamy Basil Dressing

  1. Sue May 26, 2014 at 5:14 pm #

    I usually don’t like salad but this was really lovely. The sauce was perfect and I enjoyed every mouthful.


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