Condiment Madness!!

August 07, 2013

I have a confession to make-I am an incorrigible condiment lover. Sauces, dips, dressings-you name it. I even ‘invented’ my own sauces back home in Oz. American mustard mixed with BBQ sauce, peanut butter mixed with vegemite...unfortunately store bought condiments are a minefield of refined seed oils, sugars and soy and, as I recently found out, it can take literally hours to find one that you’re happy to feed to your family. Luckily yours truly has taken the grunt work out of shopping for that saucy goodness.

I decided to survey Whistler’s three grocery stores to find out just how hard it could be to find paleo friendly condiments. I crunched the data on all 355 savoury condiments available at Whistler’s three grocery stores. The most consistently paleo-friendly condiment is mustard (generally mustard seed, vinegar, salt and turmeric for colour) however seeded mustards tend to have sugar added. Quite a few salsa products turned out to be sugar and seed-oil free which was a great find. Pasta sauces were a mixed bag and mayonnaises and tomato/bbq sauces performed the worst.

The condiment aisle of the supermarket breaks down to look like the graph below. A surprising 46 products met my criteria (no added sugar, soy, seed oils, dairy or harmful additives). If you do eat dairy, another four products were a-ok.

The main offender was sugar, in a whopping 60% of condiments. I didn’t look into any soy sauces, or soy based sauces e.g. teriyaki, kecap manis because it goes without saying that these contain soy.

A couple of brands seem to have caught on to the growing anti soy/canola sentiment and have adopted the sneaky practice of bringing out ‘olive oil’ mayonnaise's and salad dressing. On inspection though, these ‘olive’ products still use canola or soy oils in addition to olive oil.  If you take a look at the graph below you can see that sugar and soy were the main offenders, found in almost 60% and 35% of sauces that I found.


So which condiments passed the mustard, so to speak?


Mrs Renfro’s (except pineapple, mango and raspberry flavours), Wholly salsa, Que Pasa Mexicana, Que Pasa pine, Western Family mild/med hot, La Costena salsa verde, La Costena salsa, Tostitos medium/mild, Tostitos roasted garlic, Old Dutch med/mild


Bornier** wholegrain, Bornier white wine Dijon, Bornier Dijon, Hergstenberg Dijon, Maille au raifort, Maille Dijon, Simply Natural mustards, Grey Poupon Dijon, French’s Dijon, Western family Dijon, Een organic brown


Earth Island soy free veganaise*

Pasta sauce

Lucini tomato basil, Lucini Tuscan marinara, Rao’s pasta sauces (whole range), Mama Mary’s, Classico spicy red pepper/fire roasted tomato and garlic, Mezzetta Napa Valley range, Western Family organic tomato basil

Salad dressing

Bolthouse raspberry vinaigrette, Cranberries Naturally citrus dressing, Cranberries Naturally balsamic dressing


Busha Brown’s jerk rub, Woodland liquid smoke, Tabasco original/milder jalapeno, Louisiana hot sauce, Cholula hot sauce, Frank’s Original hot sauce/chilli lime hot sauce, Hoy Fung sambal oelek, Mum’s Okanagan hot sauce

If you enjoy cooking as much as I do there are some great paleo food blogs out there with recipes for mayo or bbq sauce for example. My favourite sauce is chimichurri, a fresh, summery Argentinean sauce that pairs perfectly with any meat or fish. Here’s how I make chimichurri:


Argentinean Chimichurri Makes about 1 ½ cups

·        A bunch of parsley

·        A bunch of cilantro

·        A mild red pepper, deseeded

·        Juice of half a lime

·        Half a garlic bulb, skinned

·        ¾ cup extra virgin olive oil

1/3 cup balsamic vinegar

Salt and pepper to taste

Throw everything into a food processer until smooth. Taste for seasoning and adjust to your taste. WARNING: This sauce is dangerously addictive.

If you’re partial to salad dressings, check out Caveman Grocer’s condiments category!

*contains high oleic safflower oil. See MarksDailyApple as to why high oleic sunflower/safflower oils may be worth your money.

**contains sulphites- avoid if asthmatic or you have a sulphite sensitivity

Until next time, happy eating!                                                                                                                                    



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