Summer is easily the best season for fresh produce, no matter where you live. It only takes one trip to the farmer’s market or grocery store to completely stock your fridge with fresh treats. Additionally, several health benefits are associated with eating more vegetables, from improved blood pressure and lower levels of chronic inflammation to improved skin health. One of the easiest ways to increase my vegetable intake is to make my own homemade salad dressings. Having a homemade dressing full of flavor on hand makes it easy to add a side salad to any meal and gives me a delicious sauce to top leftover veggies whether or not they’re on veggies. greens (anything can be a salad if you get creative enough). Not only does this help me increase my intake of nutritious produce, but it also helps me reduce food that might otherwise go to waste due to its short shelf life. Homemade salad dressings usually rely on staples like oil, spices, and vinegar that you may already have in your kitchen, saving you money. Plus, many pre-made versions of your favorite salad dressings have lots of added salt, sugar, fats, and thickening agents, so making your own lets you control the ingredients and amounts used. After trying to make your own Caesar dressing or balsamic maple dressing with shallots, you’ll never want to go back to buying from the store. For more budget-friendly, beginner-friendly recipes, tips and tricks, check out Thrifty.