Recipe: The Best Ranch Dressing

Monday, January 28th, 2019 at 3:53 pm

When Daniel and I were first married, he affronted my frugality by declaring that he preferred refrigerator case ranch dressing to the off-brand off-the-shelf stuff I had been used to purchasing.

This was an affront because, not only did it cost about three times more, it also had a shorter shelf life (therefore increasing the probability that it would go bad in the fridge before we had a chance to use it all.)

So I began a quest to make a cheaper refrigerator case ranch dressing – that would still not be too much work.

This is what I’ve come up with…

Pour 2.5 cups buttermilk in a 4-cup liquid measuring cup.

Ranch dressing, step 1

Add mayonnaise to make 4 cups (that’d be 1.5 cups if you’re counting).

Ranch dressing, step 2

Add 6 tablespoons of Hidden Valley Ranch dressing mix.

Ranch dressing, step 3

Whisk together until smooth and then pour through a funnel into a 40 oz ketchup bottle. Refrigerate and use as desired.

Ranch dressing, step 4

(Do you struggle to get your ketchup jars clean? Try filling them half full with hot water and shaking up thoroughly immediately after finishing the bottle. Empty the bottle and pour in a little white vinegar to cut the red stuff out. Shake and empty. Shake again with hot soapy water then rinse. Voila!)

The Best Ranch Dressing

  • 2.5 cups buttermilk ($0.80)
  • 1.5 cups mayonnaise ($0.77)
  • 6 Tbsp Hidden Valley Ranch dressing mix ($1.02)
  1. Pour buttermilk into 4-cup liquid measuring cup.
  2. Add mayonnaise to make 4 cups.
  3. Add ranch dressing mix.
  4. Whisk together until smooth and then pour through a funnel into a 40 oz ketchup bottle. Refrigerate and use as desired.

Prices listed are non-sale prices at my cheapest stores (Walmart for the buttermilk and mayo, Sam’s Club for the ranch dressing mix.) Ranch dressing mix frequently is eligible for “Instant Savings” at Sam’s Club, so my usual price is even lower. My entire recipe costs $2.59 for a little over 32 ounce – or $0.08/oz. Marzetti costs $4.98 at Walmart for a 24 ounce jar ($0.21/oz). Great Value brand non-refrigerated dressing (which is vastly inferior in taste) costs $0.06/oz. So I consider this quick recipe to be a real deal!


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