DIY Ranch Dressing

I always said I'd never make our condiments. Most of them (with perhaps the exception of catsup, which can be safely home canned) take too much time for too little product, I always said. Then I ran out of Ranch  and couldn't get to the store.

If your kids are anything like mine, Ranch is a food group. So I decided to try my hand at making a batch.

There are a ton of different Ranch recipes out there, but I settled on one featured over at Pennies on a Platter - solely because I had all the ingredients on hand. The end result didn't taste exactly like store bought tasted much, much better!

Time it takes: About 5 minutes
Yield: about 2 cups
Cost: about $3.16 (scroll down for a complete cost breakdown)

DIY Ranch Dressing:

1/4 cup milk
1 teaspoon white vinegar
3/4 cup mayonnaise
3/4 cup sour cream
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 tablespoon freshly squeezed lemon juice
1 handful of chopped chives
1 handful of chopped parsley leaves
1 garlic clove
1 teaspoon salt (optional)
Freshly ground black pepper

1. Measure out the milk and add the vinegar to the cup. Set aside.

2. Using a blender (I use an immersion blender, but a traditional blender works, too), puree the ingredients until only small bits of the herbs can be seen. Add the milk, a little at a time, until the desired consistency is reached. (I usually use 1/4 cup.) The Ranch dressing will thicken once chilled.

This Ranch lasts a couple of weeks in the fridge - but more than likely, it will be gone before then!

Cost Breakdown:

1/4 cup milk = .06 cents (at $1/L)
1 teaspoon white vinegar = .003 cent (at $2.82/gal)
3/4 cup mayonnaise = .78 cents (.13 cents/oz.)
3/4 cup sour cream = .65 cents (at $1.72/lb.)
1 tablespoon olive oil = .11 cents (at .23/oz.)
1 tablespoon freshly squeezed lemon juice = .56 cents (at .56 cents per lemon)
1 handful of chopped chives (free, since I grow them)
1 handful of chopped parsley leaves (free, since I grow them)
1 garlic clove (free, since I grow it)
1 teaspoon salt (less than 1 cent)
Freshly ground black pepper (less than 1 cent)

Negatives: I usually purchase Hidden Valley Ranch dressing at Walmart for $1.25 per cup. This homemade Ranch dressing costs $1.58 per cup - more, if I had to purchase certain ingredients I grow.

Positives: This Ranch tastes amazing! Plus there are no unhealthy preservatives or processed ingredients. An added bonus is that you could use lower fat dairy to make the dressing more healthy. Some folks substitute yogurt for the milk/vinegar mixture.


  1. Hmmm... I just might give this a try! I've been forcing my kiddos (and hubby, haha) to eat raw veggies. Since that time, ranch really has become a staple here. LOL

  2. I make my own ranch dressing too but without the mayo. I add a touch of mustard instead and sometimes for a little sweetness - honey. My kids love it and I am just happy to know what's in the goo. :)