Dress it up a bit
Most people have a repertoire of about a dozen most often eaten meals. If your mealtime is suffering from a lack of culinary creativity, infuse your favorite recipes with new life. The right topping can change a humdrum dish into a culinary feast fit for a king.

Most cookbooks provide elaborate recipes requiring a lot of time and ingredients to prepare, but there are a variety of easy DIY dressings and sauces that will crown your everyday meals marvelously, and homemade dressings — regardless of their simplicity — always taste better than bottled. Here are a few ideas to inspire you.

Salads

Nutritionists encourage us to eat salads featuring the colors of a rainbow. Sure, it's more work to chop up vegetables or mix greens of different shades, but if you want nutritional value and especially taste, it's well worth the extra effort.

Toss in nutrient-packed ingredients such as sliced avocado, a sprinkling of raw or lightly toasted chopped nuts or seeds (such as hemp, chia, sesame or flaxseed), or crumbled feta or blue cheese (just a sprinkling for taste). For a hint of sweetness, add a few currants or dried cranberries.

Top raw or lightly steamed greens with grilled or steamed red peppers, onions and potatoes, and any of the dressings listed here.

Add some protein to turn your salad into a main course. Good protein sources that nicely accompany greens include quinoa, chicken, tuna, salmon and goat cheese.

Occasionally prepare a vegetable salad without greens.

Dressings:

You can't go wrong with these salad dressings. They're easy to prepare and require only a few ingredients that you probably already have in your kitchen. Add a pinch of salt and pepper to each if desired. Otherwise, simply whisk ingredients together and serve.

Simple

Balsamic:
1 tablespoon olive oil
2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
1 tablespoon water or maple syrup

Flax:
2 tablespoons flax oil
2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
1 tablespoon maple syrup or honey