All agree: the base of ranch dressing is buttermilk and mayo. Recipes mostly deviate re: use of fresh or dried herbs. And then there’s an issue currently giving chowhounds night sweats: whether the real key to the ranch flavor we know and love is (shudder) MSG. Several hounds swear it’s true!
dano, who says of MSG in ranch dressing, “this WILL make it, believe it or not,” shares the ingredients he used in a restaurant’s recipe: Equal parts buttermilk and mayo; plus salt, MSG, onion power, garlic powder, black pepper, and dried dill.
Several hounds recommend Penzey’s Buttermilk Ranch dressing mix, which is handy to have on hand and make up whenever you’re in the mood.
Here’s MollyGee’s recipe:
1 cup mayonnaise
1/3-1/2 cup buttermilk (depending on how thick you like it)
1 tsp white vinegar
1/2 tsp salt
1 or 2 cloves minced garlic
2 T chopped parsley or dill
2 T snipped chives
2 green onions, thinly sliced
freshly ground pepper, to taste
Whisk together mayonnaise, buttermilk, and vinegar, then add and mix in remaining ingredients. Will keep 3 or 4 days in refrigerator.
Board Links: ISO Ranch Dressing Recipe