Sorry, Hidden Valley – Homemade ranch is the way to go

Garden-fresh homemade ranch dressing is easy to make and so much better than the store-bought brands.

No joke, I was so excited when I whipped up a batch of homemade ranch the other day for two reasons:

  1. The taste is amazingly fresh.
  2. One more single-use plastic product to do away with.

Our herb garden is looking quite robust at the bungalow, so it’s time to start using them in everyday recipes. After squeezing the last drop out of our biweekly bottle of Hidden Valley Ranch, it was time to try my hand at homemade ranch.

This recipe is certainly not an exact science. I gathered a handful of recipes and noticed they used generally the same ingredients. So I made my own version, and it was glorious. It was bad news for our biweekly ranch purchase. So it’s official, Hidden Valley, we’re breaking up with you.

There are ways to make it vegan and some call for different combinations of the base ingredients. This homemade dressing was heavy on the garlic, and honestly, I’d have it no other way.

Better than Hidden Valley, homemade ranch dressing is divine

Homemade ranch can be made with dried or fresh herbs. I chose the latter route and it did not disappoint. Trust me when I say there’s nothing more satisfying than growing your own ingredients.

This recipe makes a great salad dressing or dip. Or if you want to fill a swimming pool with it and dive right in, I can appreciate that too.

If you don’t have all the exact ingredients on hand, this recipe is flexible. If fresh isn’t your jam, go with dried herbs. It’s all gravy baby.

Garden Fresh Ranch Dressing

Here’s what I used:

  • 1 Tbsp Dill
  • 1/2 cup Parsley
  • 1 Green Onion
  • 1 Tbsp Shallot
  • 4 Small Cloves Garlic
  • 1/2 cup homemade buttermilk*
  • 1/2 cup sour cream
  • 1 cup mayonnaise
  • Salt to taste
  • 1-2 Tbsp Water (optional)

To make the homemade buttermilk:

  • Whole milk, half and half or heavy cream
  • 1 Tbsp Lemon juice

*If you have actual buttermilk on hand, good for you! You can skip step 1. I like to whip up a buttermilk substitute since it’s not something I typically have.


  1. Make the buttermilk substitute. Mix your milk of choice with the lemon juice. Let it sit for 10-15 minutes, it will start to curdle a bit. (I put mine in a mason jar and shake it up before use)
  2. While the buttermilk sits, finely chop the parsley, dill, green onion and shallot. Check out my garlic peeling trick.
  3. I combined the buttermilk and chopped ingredients in my nutribullet and pulsed to combine. If you are ok with the ranch being a little more chunky, you can simply combine ingredients in a bowl. I wanted the garlic to be more incorporated.
  4. In a large mason jar or similar container, combine the mayonnaise and sour cream. Mix in the garlic herb buttermilk.
  5. Salt to taste and cover. Place in fridge for at least an hour.
  6. Add water until desired consistency. (I did this after it set in the fridge but you can do it before too)

You’ll never go back to store-bought ranch again

Depending on what type of milk product you use in the base, will depend on how thick it sets. If you blend the herbs like I did, your ranch will most likely come out a little green.

Dried herbs will give you a more white ranch. You can most likely skip the pulsing together if you use garlic powder versus fresh garlic.

It’s been a really long time since I’ve purchased any type of vinaigrette dressing, this will now be the case with ranch dressing. If you make your own garden fresh ranch, please let me know so we can die over how good it is together.

What product will I break up with next? I’m thinking I want to try a homemade mayonnaise….

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