Cool Kids Cook: Orange Balsamic Dressing


garden greens

People who work hard, keep a vision and just go for it in achieving their goals constantly inspire me. 13 year-old Kid Chef Eliana totally falls into the inspiration category. She is already a cookbook author and host of the nationally syndicated “Cool Kids Cook!” radio show and I am lucky enough to be her guest this week.

My segment with “Cool Kids Cook!” is airing today 4:00 pm PST on VoiceAmerica’s Kids Channel. Tune in to hear my chat with Eliana about engaging kids in the garden and kitchen, with delicious and fun results.

It was fun to share about how in our home fresh food is healthy food. It’s been proven with both our garden at home and the school garden where I volunteer, when kids are involved in the growing process, they are much more likely to eat what they grow.


This is a recipe we talked about on the show. It’s an easy salad dressing I make with my girls— it’s super fresh and light. Salad dressings are a great job to give kids ownership of in the kitchen. You can’t make a mistake, if they go too far in one direction you can always add more oil or acid to balance it out. Growing up making the salad dressing was always my job in the kitchen and I remember feeling so proud that my mom entrusted me with this task.

A mason jar is great for concocting salad dressings. Kids can measure the ingredients right into the jar (math and following directions!) and then screw the lid on and  give it a good shake. Have them practice as taste testers, trying it out and adding a little more of this our that until they are happy with the results.

salad dressing

Cool Kids Cook: Orange Balsamic Dressing

Orange Balsamic Dressing


Note: White balsamic vinegar is perfect for summer and great with kids- it’s lighter than normal balsamic plus (bonus) it doesn’t stain!


3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

Juice of 1 medium orange

1 tablespoon white balsamic vinegar

¼ teaspoon of salt

Dollop of honey (optional)


To make the dressing, just grab a mason jar with a lid.  We always have a bunch of these jars around the house from canning or making jams. Have your kids measure and pour all the ingredients into the jar and take turns shaking it up.


When it’s dinnertime, add a few tablespoons of the dressing to your garden greens and toss the lettuce using tongs.  Taste it before you add more dressing.  The flavor of fresh lettuce is so delicious you don’t want to drench and wilt your greens.