Every home cook has an arsenal of tools and tricks in the kitchen that come in handy time and time again. Creating a good ranch dressing is one of those skills, whether you need it for your hot wings, chicken fingers, crudités, buffalo shrimp, or of course, your salad.

From the store to the kitchen to the table: The Basics outline the steps that get you from raw ingredients to your dinner tonight, free of complicated techniques. It’s a method you’ll remember and whip out whenever you like. It is the most basic way to make the thing you’re making.


  • 2-cup Mason jar or other container with a tight-fitting lid
  • 1 cup well-shaken buttermilk
  • 1/4 cup mayonnaise
  • 3 tablespoons sour cream
  • 3 tablespoons finely chopped parsley
  • 2 tablespoons finely chopped chives
  • 4 teaspoons white wine vinegar or lemon juice
  • 1 medium garlic clove, finely chopped
  • salt and freshly ground black pepper


  1. Put all of the measured ingredients into the jar or container. Season with salt and a generous amount of pepper.
  2. Tightly close the lid and shake the container to evenly distribute all of the ingredients. Put the dressing in the refrigerator and let it sit for at least an hour before using—this will allow the flavors to meld. Taste and season with additional salt and pepper if desired. The dressing will last up to three days in the refrigerator.


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