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The Healthy Summer Condiments Your Picnics, BBQs & Parties Need

June 20, 2022

It’s the season of backyard hangs, family BBQs, graduation parties, and cocktail hours. While you’re freshening up your wine rack and stocking the freezer with prime cuts of meat, don’t forget to update your condiment stash in the fridge and pantry. Because while you can absolutely make ketchup, barbecue sauce, and mustard from scratch, it might not be the first DIY project on your summer bucket list, and that’s where we come in.

What Are Condiments?

Condiments (think mustard, soy sauce, or barbecue sauce) are typically added after cooking, and they accessorize a plate the same way a pair of earrings finishes your outfit. In short, condiments are simply non-negotiable for some dishes. (Would you eat a burger without ketchup or special sauce? Definitely not.) The word comes from the Latin condire, meaning ‘to preserve or to season’, and was first used in English to describe ‘pickling fluid, seasoning’ in the middle of the 15th century. Condiments are enjoyed around the world and many cuisines are associated with specific versions, like Parmesan in Italy or soy sauce in Japan.

Are Condiments Healthy

The short answer: not always. Using your sleuthing skills on nutrition labels is important when choosing condiments, because many conventional options include not-so-great ingredients like hydrogenated oils or added sugar. But at Thrive Market, our high standards means better-for-you condiments are available for every diet.


20 Condiments Your Kitchen Needs (and How to Use Them)

From unsweetened ketchup to black truffle mayonnaise, there’s a condiment for every summertime moment.

Ketchup

healthy summer condiments

Ketchup is best known as a sweet and tangy tomato-based condiment, but its origins began in China as a pickled fish sauce. Keep it classic or try something new—it’s up to you.

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Summer Cooking Ideas

  • Give your guests a surprise at your next cookout—ketchup leather! It’s a chef truck to keep your burger from getting soggy and a snap to make.
  • Make a dressing for pink coleslaw (a recipe attributed to the South) by whisking ketchup with cider vinegar, sugar, and hot sauce.
  • Use ketchup as a base for glazes. Try blending it with soy sauce, sesame oil and sherry to make a sweet sauce for grilled chicken or salmon.

Mustard

healthy summer condiments

Mustard makes your mouth pucker in the best way possible. The signature tang ranges from mild to spicy and jazzes up all kinds of recipes.

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Summer Cooking Ideas

  • Mix grainy mustard with mayonnaise or Greek yogurt for a sandwich spread that pairs well with roast beef and chicken.
  • Whisk a spoonful into a honey mustard dressing, or use mustard to add extra flavor to an egg salad.
  • Spread mustard on rye crackers and top with sardines and flaky salt.

Mayonnaise

healthy summer condiments

Enjoyed on its own or used as a base for other recipes, get warm weather ready with our best spreads.

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  • Primal Kitchen Avocado Oil Mayonnaise: “You would never know this is made from avocado oil—it has that traditional mayo flavor and texture.” —Lynne, Virginia
  • TRUFF Black Truffle Mayonnaise: “This is so creamy and smooth! The truffle flavor is perfect if you like it on the stronger side. I have been putting it on everything!” —Jessica, Colorado
  • Sir Kensington’s Classic Vegan Mayo: “I don’t remember why I tried this; now my go-to. I’m not a vegan, or even a vegetarian. It’s just better than regular mayonnaise.” —Mary, California

Summer Cooking Ideas

  • Make your own sandwich spreads using mayo as a base. Try stirring in vibrant basil pesto, chipotle powder and lime, sriracha, chopped pickles, or grainy mustard for one-of-a-kind flavor.
  • For an extra-crisp crust, slather mayo on grilled cheese before grilling.
  • To thicken salad dressings, add a dollop of mayonnaise along with vinegar, salt, and pepper. Bonus points for adding grated cheese!

Dressings and Marinades

healthy summer condiments

Ready-made dressings mean salad prep just got easier. Plus, there are options for every diet including keto, paleo, and Whole30®.

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Summer Cooking Ideas

  • Before grilling, marinate shrimp, chicken, or vegetables in your favorite dressing for 1-2 hours.
  • Serve your favorite dip with crisp veggies like cucumber, red peppers, and carrots for an easy appetizer.

Dips and Spreads

healthy summer condiments

Done-for-you dips and spreads is how we like to roll when the days get long.

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Summer Cooking Ideas

  • Spoon salsa over scrambled eggs, top burrito bowls, or use it as a fresh base for Bloody Marys.
  • Toss pesto in a pot of pasta, drizzle it over roasted vegetables, or serve alongside grilled steak.

Pickled Vegetables

healthy summer condiments

Pickles (and pickled veggies) add an instant flavor upgrade to burgers, nachos, and cheese boards.

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Summer Cooking Ideas

  • Include pickled beets or green beans on your charcuterie or cheese board for extra tang.
  • Mix chopped pickles with ketchup and mayo for a DIY burger sauce.
  • Use pickled vegetables (like red onions) to top pita sandwiches or taco bowls.

5 Make-Ahead Condiment Recipes

If you have some extra time, these homemade mayos, pestos, and dips will make your next summer menu even more memorable.

Avocado Pesto With Chlorella

This superfood pesto uses classic ingredients like basil and garlic, then takes things up a notch with creamy avocado, chlorella, and nutritional yeast.

Homemade Teriyaki Sauce

This savory keto-friendly sauce is ready to drizzle on rice dishes, fish, or chicken. To make the recipe vegan, opt for the alternative sweetener.

Rosemary Hollandaise

Our take on the traditional French sauce uses ghee, mayo, mustard, lemon, and cayenne for a little kick.

Mark Sisson’s Spicy Sauce

Primal Kitchen founder Mark Sisson whips up a 4-ingredient dressing that spices things up with chipotle, lime, and garlic.

Immersion Blender Mayo

Get back to basics with an extra easy mayo you can make in the blender. This Whole30®- and keto-friendly recipe is ready for your favorite sandwich, dressing, and dips.

This article is related to:

BBQ Ideas, Healthy Condiments

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