There’s no need to buy it from the shelves, homemade buttermilk ranch dressing is one of the easiest, and tastiest, dressings to make from scratch.
I have a go-to salad dressing that I have to admit, I’m rather famous in the family for.
It’s a vinaigrette with tarragon and is made in our house on a rotation of at least once a week. Why haven’t I posted it on the blog yet? I’m asking myself that same question. I need to remedy that stat.
This homemade buttermilk ranch dressing isn’t one I make too often, but when I do, it is pretty much drizzled, dipped and guzzled down so there’s never much left over. I’m sharing it today as a preview of what’s coming your way tomorrow, where it is going to lace not a salad, but a sandwich that will leave you wishing for one more handful of potato chips, and just one more drizzle and dip of ranch dressing, because as Smudge declares, “Mom. This. Is. So. Good.”
She’s right, you know.
Ranch Dressing Ingredients
This dressing gets its tang from the combo of mayo, sour cream and buttermilk. I used full-fat ingredients, but if you want to create your own lower calorie versions, you can simply sub low-fat mayo, sour cream or give Greek yogurt a try. Buttermilk is naturally low-fat so you’re in the clear there. I like my dressing on the thicker side (reflected in the amounts in the recipe below), so add more buttermilk to your preference.
Fresh herbs are essential here, but I do like to use dried dill in this recipe as it’s a bit more concentrated in flavor. If you simply don’t have the fresh herbs, go for dried, a much better option than skipping altogether.
You’ll find the recognizable taste of ranch comes from the nugget of garlic in the dressing. I pretty much always prefer pressing my garlic, but if you don’t have a garlic press, simply mash the garlic in 1/8 teaspoon of salt to create a paste then add to the rest of the ingredients.
How to Make Ranch Dressing
There really is no need to buy those little packets of pre-portioned dried ranch mix. This dressing comes together quick with no fuss. Maybe a few licks of your finger, but who would fuss about that?
To make homemade ranch, simply whisk together all the ingredients and refrigerate until you’re ready to serve it. If you prefer a thinner dressing, add more buttermilk.
How to Store Ranch Dressing
You’ll want to keep this homemade ranch in an airtight container or jar in the fridge. Because this salad dressing recipe calls for fresh herbs, you’ll want to eat it within two to three days of making it.
Can I Use a Buttermilk Substitute?
Theoretically, yes. I always buy real buttermilk specifically for this ranch recipe, but a buttermilk substitute (like lemon juice and regular milk) should be fine here since you’re only using 2 tablespoons.
Tips for the Best Ranch Dressing
Obviously ranch dressing is a favorite for green salads. I prefer it on a crisp cuts of iceberg with fresh tomatoes and slices of avocado. But what you’ll usually find me using it for is dipping my pizza crust into. Yep, I’m one of those.
After you make this ranch, you can either enjoy it right away or store it in the fridge to give the flavors time to mingle. Note that the dressing may thicken up a bit once chilled. If that happens, stir in a little buttermilk to thin it out.
I don’t recommend adding more garlic than the recipe calls for, as it can quickly overpower the delicate flavor of the herbs.
More Homemade Salad Dressings to Make
- Easy Coleslaw Dressing
- Greek Salad Dressing
- Avocado Caesar Dressing
- Vietnamese Dressing (Nuoc Mam Cham)
- Lightened Up Poppyseed Dressing
- Asian Sesame Dressing
Homemade Ranch Dressing
- 3 tablespoons mayonnaise
- 2 tablespoons buttermilk
- 2 tablespoons sour cream
- 1 teaspoon champagne or white vinegar
- 1 clove garlic pressed or finely minced
- 1 tablespoon chopped chives
- 1 tablespoon Italian parsley minced
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- 1/2 teaspoon dried dill
- 1/4 teaspoon onion powder
- Pinch of cayenne pepper
Mix all of the ingredients together in a small bowl. Add more buttermilk for desired consistency. Refrigerate until ready to serve.
Note: I used full-fat ingredients, but if you want to create your own lower calorie versions, you can simply sub low-fat mayo, sour cream or give Greek yogurt a try.
More Salad Recipes You’ll Love
- The Best Fattoush Salad
- Asian Ramen Noodle Salad
- BBQ Chicken Chopped Salad
- Caprese Zucchini Salad
- Classic Three Bean Salad
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