There's really no reason at all for you to buy the nasty ranch dressing from the store that's still full of crappy vegetable oils and other scary ingredients. The ranch packets of seasonings are no better, so skip those too. (Yes I bought both of those before I knew better.)
After playing around with it, finally this homemade ranch dressing recipe really does taste better than “Hidden Valley Ranch”, which is all we used to eat around here. It's super easy and fast to whip up too!
It’s a bonus when healthy real food can taste the way our twisted palates expect from our days of eating the disgusting junk. (I also wanted my 5-minute homemade mayo to taste “as good as Hellmans”, and that tastes so much better too, thankfully, since the ingredients in the store-bought stuff are just gross!)
Homemade Ranch Dressing Recipe
- 3/4 cup this mayo OR my simple 5-minute homemade mayo-- just don't use the regular stuff from the store with the heart-killer oils: canola or soybean, not to mention the funky chemical preservatives and other unrecognizable ingredients!
- 1/2 cup sour cream, pastured sour cream is best for the most nutrients (or even better, use dairy kefir to get more healthy bacteria in there, note that this will make it a bit more thin though)
- 1 Tablespoon fresh or dried parsley or oregano, or I just use Italian seasoning-- organic if possible
- 1-2 teaspoons organic garlic powder and/or onion powder
- 1/2-1 teaspoon sea salt, more to your taste
- 1/2 teaspoon pepper, or more to your taste
- A handful of chopped fresh cilantro is really good in here too!
- Mix all the ingredients together well. If it’s too thick for salad dressing, add a little milk. If it’s too thin for a ranch veggie dip, add a little more sour cream, and then more herbs and spices as needed when you taste-test to get it just right. This is not an exact science and it's so yummy!
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Kelly, thank you sooo much for this fabulous recipe. Folks, you might as well double it, as you will wish you did.
This is how I made it dairy-free: Instead of sour cream, I used the So Delicious brand of Coconut Milk Yogurt (I’m lucky enough to have 24-oz containers available in my local supermarket!). I used the Hain brand of mayo, fresh garlic, Celtic salt, pepper, and HEAPS of fresh parsley and cilantro, much more than what seemed responsible — I used the whole bunch of each. And that’s what did it! I could have put in even more. All the people who have claimed to not like cilantro loved it just as much as everybody else — it truly tasted like the real deal, except better.
I used it in this pasta salad for a crowd:
16 oz macaroni or rotini, might as well make it gluten-free
2 red bell peppers, diced
4 ribs celery, sliced/diced
1/2 cup minced red onion
1/2 to 1 cup finely chopped Niçoise olives
2 or 3 cups diced cooked turkey or chicken
1 bunch fresh parsley, minced
1 tsp salt
1 cup Ranch dressing — you may need twice that if it looks dry–
the noodles tend to absorb quite a bit
Cook noodles and mix in everything.
Wow, thanks so much for sharing how you made it dairy-free, many will appreciate that I’m sure! 🙂
Laurel Clark says
Use buttermilk made from raw milk also, best flavor.
Jessica Thimmesch says
That salad looks delish! I know what I want for dinner now. 🙂
Diane Dhawan says
Thanks for the recipe Kelly of one of my favorite dressings.
Sandra Archibald says
Yesterday I was searching for a good recipe. Lol
Trixie Grohman Ferguson says
Oh Yay! Glad you linked to your mayo post. I was just thinking the other day that I needed to go back and find that again. LOL
Susan Ballou says
Just made homemade ranch and it was better than any store’s version!!
I wanted you to know how much I like the Ranch dressing. I have made it when my mayonnaise does not turn out. I use Gordon Ramsey’s mayonnaise recipe made with a stick blender. When it fails,
I have searched high and low for something to do. Your recipe for Ranch dressing is perfect.
Cathy, you have no idea how happy this makes me when I hear great feedback like this, thanks so much for taking the time to do it!
ah, a double-sauce (mayo too!). I didn’t realize that ranch dressing didn’t have cheese in it.
You could always add some Parmesan, yum!
thanks for all the great recipes. I’m wondering what ingredients are in your “seasoning salt”? I don’t have any and would like to copy cat it but have no idea what I’d use to substitute.
Thanks again! 🙂
OK, I just pulled out my Simply Organic “All-seasons salt” to look and see for you:
Sea salt, organic paprika, organic cane sugar, organic garlic, organic onion, organic celery seed, organic oregano, organic turmeric, silicon dioxide (anti-caking agent – booger, I didn’t know that was in there).
My mayo came out great… but could you perhaps specify a little more how to make it with the stick blender? Because mine totally shorted out and died… bummmmerrr. Was I not supposed to have it running the whole time? Or did I just have a lousy stick blender? haha anyway, the mayo still came out good even without my getting in the last bit of oil… :o)
oops! meant to post this on your homemade mayo recipe page… I’ve been clicking around a lot today!
Hmmmm, with the stick blender it takes a very short time (a minute or two) and the mayo is done, bummer that yours died?!! Not sure what happened!
oh, I had mine on for quite awhile because I was trying to add the oil reeeaallly slowly… haha apparently a little too slow.
also – my husband LIKED the mayo!!! He is a Hellman’s freak and doesn’t like anything but… but he said this one was good! so thanks!! 🙂
Darlene Abror says
I had the same thing almost happen. Mine didn’t totally die, but got VERY hot. I made it again and this time did it a little faster. It got hot, but not as hot as the first time. I’m still learning and experimenting. Thanks so much for the info! It will help to know this for future batches!
I started making Ranch dressing with yogurt. I added a package of Ranch seasoning because I had it on hand, even though it has junk in it. My next step is to make my own seasoning. I like the smooth, creamy/tangy taste when it’s used with yogurt.
I have been making homemade mayonnaise now for about 4 weeks. You recipe and method helped tremendously. Thank you for doing all the experimenting. I have found I like avocado oil the best. Now I will be trying your homemade ranch dressing. It sounds wonderful. Thanks again.
Do you mean in the stuff at the store?
Frustrating, I know…
This is easy to make, though!
MSG is in it! grrr among a list of other things
Oh, and I didn’t have seasoned salt so I used just a little normal salt instead.
I tried this and thought it was really tasty — thanks! Definitely a keeper! I didn’t use homemade mayo though, as that’s something I haven’t gotten to making yet. I used Hain safflower mayo.
Try more fresh garlic or garlic powder! 🙂 I like a lot but the fam doesn’t go for it.
Sarah W says
That is a good suggestion. Will lemon juice do anything crazy like make it curdle or separate? (I’m thinking I’m missing the tanginess of a buttermilk based or buttermilk imitated flavor.)
Hmm, I don’t think so, maybe try it in a small amount first. That sounds good!
Sarah W says
I just made this recipe the other day, also using your mayo recipe. I used half EVOO and half refined sesame oil in the mayo. However, the ranch dressing is lacking tang and zip. I taste the oil most of all… what could I add to give it a more zesty flavor? some lemon juice? more spices?
Oh! I can’t wait to try this! My 5 year old son will eat anything dipped in Ranch! This will be so much healthier for him:)
I was at a restaurant the other day and they had something they called Salsa Mayo on their fries. I want to know how to make it because it was delicious. The mayo itself was quite mild in taste, without being thick and it was fairly yellow, but not as yellow as Kelly’s. Then for the salsa part it was just chunks of celery, red onion and capsicum mixed in the mayo. I have made mayo at home but I used a completely different recipe and its far too thick and sweet to compliment the chunks. Does anyone have any thoughts? I’ve tried to make mayo before using the traditional recipes, egg yolk oil etc, but it ended up tasting just like egg and oil. I have looked up salsa mayo online and all i get told to do is mix store bought mayo with store bought salsa. Yuk!
Any thoughts appreciated.
yes feel free to post my recipe, maybe someone can try it with anchovie paste and see if it’s good
OK, I talked to Jeanne, she said she just guessed at these ingredients for homemade worcestershire: vinegar, molasses, anchovy paste (by tuna in the store), onion powder, salt, garlic, chili pepper, and water to thin down if needed.
If anyone out there would like to experiment with amounts, I’d love to post that recipe along with Valerie’s Caesar dressing! (I know I wouldn’t get to this for a while.) Maybe I’ll go ahead and post the recipe anyway (if it’s OK with you Valerie) along with this info and a request for someone to experiment, more people would see it in a new post…
Sorry for thinking as I type…………
I’ve got some original lea and perins from the UK and it doesn’t contain HFCS, and claims no msg. I know that in the UK they still make it the same way as the original over 100 yrs ago, it’s aged in wood barrels which would give that wonderful flavor that people try to immitate with msg. The Lea and Perrins website even admits that there are slight variations in the recipe made in the USA factory vs the UK. I’ve also wondered about using anchovie paste, have you ever used it?
Hi Valerie, I’d love to post this recipe, but first, do you know of a good replacement for worcestershire? Last I looked this had msg or corn syrup in it, can’t remember now.
I’ll ask my friend, Jeanne, I think she had a replacement idea for this.
Thanks and glad the mayo is working for you, too!
I am in LOVE with your mayo recipe!! I also had several bad batches of mayo, but I’ve done yours twice (and even once by hand with a wisk) and it came out beautifully. And the ranch dressing as well. I don’t know if you have a place to share recipes but I just used the homemade mayo to make the best Cesear Salad dressing.
1/4 c homemade mayo
1/4 c olive oil
juice of 1/2 lemon
2 cloves garlic-crushed
several dashes worchestershire sauce
sea salt and fresh ground pepper to taste
just mix everything! it’s best if you let it sit for a while in the fridge
Charity, yes, you can use the organic yogurt from the store.
Regarding the whey, can I use the organic plain greek yogurt you can buy in the stores or does it have to be homemade version? Thank you!!!
Laura, what a GREAT and simple tip, thank you!!!
A simple way to get a quick tbsp or two of whey is to slip a coffee filter over a jar, securing it with a rubber band. Fill with 2 or 3 tbsp of yogurt and in ten minutes, you have whey… In the jar below.
Yay Katie, that’s so fun that he liked it!
Katie @ Kitchen Stewardship says
So the sesame/olive oil mayo turned out well enough that when used in this recipe, my husband says two things: “That tastes like ranch dressing.” And, “You’ve renewed my faith in homemade dressings…I was beginning to give up!” Woo hooo! Thanks, Kelly!
Katie @ Kitchen Stewardship
Katie, OK, I just fixed it at my mayo post. Thanks!
Katie @ Kitchen Stewardship says
Kelly, I think you should update your recipe to show that you used refined sesame oil. Luckily I used half olive oil, but I still think the sesame flavor will be a bit strong, b/c mine wasn’t refined. It thickened up GREAT with just 2 egg yolks and the stick blender, though!
Katie @ Kitchen Stewardship
Thank you so much! My husband just brought home the Hidden valley ranch powdered package for dips and we were both grimacing at the ingredients.
For Cara who said her daughter gets a rash from ranch – it’s most likely the MSG or the egg yolk. My daughter also broke out in a red patchy rash all over her sweet 2- year old face after dipping in ranch and getting some of it on her cheeks.
Can’t wait to try this!
[email protected] says
Wow, that is great! Who doesn’t love ranch! Thanks for linking up to Tempt My Tummy Tuesday.
Wow, that sounds really good. Looks like it’s gluten free but not dairy free. Wish I could try it. Thanks for sharing it on Friday Foodie Fix!
Hi Melanie, at the mayo post I talk about the different oils I tried. Some still say that a mild olive oil worked good for them, but I thought the sesame oil had the least flavor so the other flavors in the mayo could come through. Let me know how it comes out for you! (You, too, Martha, and everyone else who tries it!)
Melanie Nader says
Thank you so much for this, I have been looking for a great ranch recipe. Can’t wait to try it out! One question…what kind of oil should I use for the homemade mayo for the best taste in the ranch?
Thank you so much! I can’t wait to try this. My hubby loves the Hidden Valley Ranch and I haven’t found a homemade one yet that he wants to use instead.
Hi Debbie, thanks for reading my blog! Yes, you can make the mayo without the whey, it just won’t keep as long and it won’t be lacto-fermented. (Not as healthy, but still much better than store-bought!) I don’t know if you can buy it, but it’s SO easy to get it from hanging yogurt that you really don’t need to.
LN, how precious. Give Rose a smooch for me and tell her I said she’s very welcome!
Please, everyone who said you were going to try this, let me know what you think after you make it!
Melissa Multitasking Mama says
My 13 year old eats ranch on everything! Thanks for giving me a healthy recipe to try.
Melissa Multitasking Mama
Amy Green says
My husband is a huge ranch dressing fan…me, not so much. I still make it from scratch for him, though. I think he would like your version. I found you via Friday Foodie Find today – love your blog. You have a wealth of informatin here. 🙂
Amy @ Finer Things says
Can’t wait to try this. We go through a LOT of ranch dressing!
Amy @ Finer Things
Kelly, I absolutely cannot wait until you perfect the sourdough bread! I have a great starter that makes delicious crackers, pancakes, etc. But all my breads have bombed!
I’ve been waiting on the mayo recipe too, and am going to try it tomorrow. 🙂
Local Nourishment says
Yup, yup, yup. This is good eats. I RAN to the kitchen to make it when I saw the recipe up. My youngest (the allergic one) loves ranch but I haven’t found a good recipe till I saw yours. I changed it a mite, using freshly grated onion and garlic, creme fraiche instead of sour cream and fresh parsley. I don’t keep seasoned salt around, but a little salt with a teensy shake of paprika seemed to do the trick.
Rose says, “Thank you Mrs. Kop! Thank you, thank you thank you!”
I make ranch like 8 or 9 times a week (OK, I don’t but sometimes I wish I did 🙂 and it’s always a little different. My standard recipe is 1/2 and 1/2 mayo and sour cream, lots of dill, a fair amount of garlic powder and a small amount of onion powder, salt, pepper and italian seaosoning or basil. For 1/2 cup mayo and 1/2 cup sour cream I would use a tablespoon of dill, a teaspoon of garlic and about a 1/2 tsp of onion, a little less italian seasoning and salt and pepper to taste. I thin with milk/kefir or olive oil/vinegar if I’m going to be putting it on lettuce. If I don’t have mayo in the house I just go without and maybe add a little oil and vinegar to the sour cream. Sometimes I use yogurt instead of sour cream. Sometimes I use tiny diced red onion or sliced green onion instead of powder. Sometimes I crank up the black pepper, sometimes I hardly add any. Blue cheese, farmers cheese or feta are all nice additions.. but then you might be leavig the realm of ranch!
Dill and garlic, that’s the secret to a good ranch!
Yum. My family is a Ranch family (personally I prefer Bleu Cheese but I accomodate them). This looks great. I just finished some buttermilk that turned out as thick as sour cream so I’m thinking I’ll utilize it in this dressing.
I need to try this. My daughter gets a rash from Hidden Valley Ranch, which totally creeps me out. What on earth is in that stuff? Thanks for sharing!
msg monosodium glutamate
Brilliant Moms-Robin says
I can’t wait to try this recipe. We love ranch dressing!
karen c. says
i will try this. i make the powdered simply organic ranch too but instead of mayo or sour cream, i use my homemade raw milk yogurt. it’s runny but is great for salad dressing.
Also, I read your mayo post. I haven’t had success in the past with my own mayo, but am willing to try yours, will let you know!
Katie, I make mayo all the time using an immersion blender. It has never failed. I throw all the ingredients in the jar I’m going to store it in, including the oil and cold eggs and blend. Works every time without fail. No sitting around slowly pouring in the oil. Try it!
I have a homemade powdered recipe that I like, but my husband isn’t as keen on, so I am eager to try this recipe to see if he likes it better. Thanks!
I have been following your blog for about a month now. I appreciate all the hard work and research you do. It has helped me so much. I too am a hellmans and hidden valley ranch girl. Couldn’t get into the organic powered ranch dressing or the organic mayo. I will try both of your recipes. Do you need the whey in the mayo? Can I buy whey instead of making it?