Much like salad dressings, commercially available condiments are a large source of hidden sugars, trans fats, and unnecessary food additives. When I began my research on fermented foods, I discovered that condiments used to have a very important role in the diet. Fermented chutneys, sauerkrauts, ketchups and other condiments provided the needed probiotics to keep the gut flora happy and balanced.
Unfortunately, nowadays, condiments are rarely fermented and instead filled with harmful ingredients like high fructose corn syrup. And instead of consuming small, beneficial amounts as an accoutrement to each meal, we’ve become dependent on slathering our greasy, nutrient deficient food with these sauces in order to make them palatable.
The good news is, it is very easy to make your own condiments at home! Even if you don’t want to ferment them, homemade versions are much healthier–although I will warn you, they don’t keep for as long because they lack the preservatives found in processed condiments, so it’s best to make small batches.
Here are some recipes to try for a few of the most popular condiments:
Ketchup from Neo-Homesteading
Mayonnaise from Traditional Cooking School
BBQ Sauce from My Humble Kitchen
Ranch Dressing from Real Food Enthusiast
Check the labels on mustards, but they seem to be one of the few clean condiments available. But if you want to make your own, this Horseradish Mustard from Rising Moon Nutrition sounds delicious!
Important disclaimer: I have no medical training. Just lots of passion for real food! Please consult your own doctor and do your own research in support of my suggestions. It’s an important part of taking control of your health!