Insalata Mista with Buttermilk-Chive Dressing

March/April 1997, The Essential EatingWell Cookbook (2004)

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A simple “mixed salad” is irresistible with our healthful version of everybody's favorite buttermilk dressing.

Insalata Mista with Buttermilk-Chive Dressing

Makes: 4 servings, about 2 cups each

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  • 1 clove garlic, unpeeled
  • 1 tablespoon reduced-fat mayonnaise
  • 1/4 cup buttermilk, or nonfat plain yogurt
  • 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon tarragon vinegar, or white-wine vinegar
  • 1/4 teaspoon honey, or sugar
  • 2 tablespoons snipped fresh chives, or scallion greens
  • Salt & freshly ground pepper, to taste


  • 1 large or 2 small heads butterhead lettuce, (Bibb or Boston), torn into bite-size pieces
  • 1/4 pound fresh mushrooms, wiped clean and sliced
  • 2 medium carrots, peeled and coarsely grated


  1. To prepare dressing: Skewer garlic clove with a fork. Place mayonnaise in a small bowl. Using the skewered garlic to stir, gradually blend in buttermilk (or yogurt), oil, vinegar and honey (or sugar). Gently stir in chives (or scallions). Season with salt and pepper. Leave the garlic in the dressing until ready to toss salad, then discard.
  2. To prepare salad: Just before serving, combine lettuce, mushrooms and carrots in a large salad bowl. Add dressing and toss to coat well. Taste and adjust seasonings.

Tips & Notes

  • Make Ahead Tip: Cover and refrigerate for up to 2 days.


Per serving: 79 calories; 5 g fat (1 g sat, 3 g mono); 2 mg cholesterol; 7 g carbohydrates; 3 g protein; 2 g fiber; 137 mg sodium; 364 mg potassium.

Nutrition Bonus: Vitamin A (120% dv).

Carbohydrate Servings: 1/2

Exchanges: 1 vegetable, 1 fat

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