Delicious, flavorful ranch dressing recipe from scratch, packed full of fresh herbs and spices.
Nothing can replace homemade ranch dressing. The recipe is so easy and so delicious; the balance of flavors is just right.
It's super thick and creamy, and could be used as a ranch dip by just adjusting the milk (or buttermilk) measurement and adding sour cream along with the mayo. The recipe for both are included below.
Why it's better to make your own ranch
It would take longer to go to the store than to whip this up, and it blows other bottled ranches away, with just a few simple ingredients. Since it's homemade, you are avoiding additives like high fructose corn syrup.
Why this recipe is the best
This is hands down, the best ranch dressing recipe for a couple of reasons. Besides the obvious seasonings, it's important to get the balance of sweetness and acidity right. Almost all of the times that ranch dressing has tasted off, it has been the result of not using the right amount of sugar, or acid.
Using a good quality mayonnaise can help, or make Homemade Mayonnaise.
The difference between regular ranch dressing, and buttermilk ranch dressing, is just that it's made with buttermilk instead of regular milk. If you ask me, buttermilk is king.
If you don't have buttermilk in your fridge, you can make a substitute. Stir 1 tablespoon of lemon juice or white vinegar into 1 cup of milk, and let it sit for 5 minutes. What you'll notice after is a thickened, more acidic milk very similar to store bought buttermilk.
***If you find yourself throwing buttermilk out, you've got to check out my post on How to Make Buttermilk Powder! It's a game changer.
Making ranch dip
To make this ranch into a dip, only use a tablespoon of milk and a 50/50 blend of sour cream and mayonnaise. See recipe notes for more details.
- Try Ranch Dressing Seasoning Mix, and just stir in the milk and mayo, or sprinkle on potatoes, bread dough, and veggies.
- Try it on this dressing on Bourbon BBQ Chicken Pizza, it's the best!
- Follow the dip recipe, and use as a sauce base with this Whole Wheat Pizza Crust.
- Got zucchini? Drizzle the dressing over Garlic Ranch & Zucchini Pizza.
- Check out this healthy Avocado Ranch Dressing.
Buttermilk Ranch Dressing
- Mixing bowl
- 1 ½ cup mayonnaise
- ¼ cup buttermilk or milk (use one tablespoon if making dip)
- 2 tsp white vinegar or lemon juice
- ½ teaspoon sugar more or less to taste, depending on mayo brand, aim low to start
- ½ teaspoon fine salt more or less to taste, depending on mayo brand, aim low to start
- ½ teaspoon garlic powder
- ½ teaspoon onion powder
- ½ teaspoon dried or fresh dill optional
- 1 tablespoon dried or fresh chives
- 1 teaspoon dried or fresh parsley
- ⅛ teaspoon pepper
- Whisk all ingredients well; don’t leave any lumps.
- Store in a mason jar or other container and let chill at least 1 hour before serving.
- Ranch dressing is always better if it's been chilled for at least an hour, but it's not required. Just know that if you make it in advance, it's going to taste even more delicious after chilling in the fridge. Can be stored for up to one week.
- To make dip use only 1 tablespoon of milk, with ½ cup mayonnaise plus ½ cup sour cream. Whisk together and chill for at least an hour or overnight. Can be stored up to one week.
- Take care when using salt and sugar. Depending on whether you use store bought mayonnaise or homemade mayonnaise, you may have to use more or less salt. Different brands have different sweetness and sodium levels. So aim low to start, and add more as necessary.