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Ina Garten is no stranger to pre-dinner party prep. (She wrote a book titled Make It Ahead for heaven’s sake.) But her latest time-saving tip truly takes the cake salad.

Garten explained in an Instagram video that when it comes to pre-making a salad, she likes to whip up her favorite four-ingredient vinaigrette and pour it into the bowl before the lettuce.

Why, you might ask? Because leaving the dressing at the bottom of the bowl instead of tossing the salad means the leaves remain fresh until it’s dinner time.

The Contessa also dished up the recipe for her easy-to-make vinaigrette, which includes some lemon juice, a half a cup of good olive oil, a teaspoon of kosher salt and half a teaspoon of pepper.

Whisk until it’s mixed and voilà, you’re basically Ina Garten.

RELATED: The Contessa Has Spoken: This Is Ina Garten’s All-Time Favorite Side Dish

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