Finally, a restaurant-style buttermilk Ranch Dressing that everyone in the family loves. This cool and creamy homemade ranch recipe comes together in seconds with simple ingredients. It’s so quick, simple, inexpensive, and tastes way better than bottled store-bought dressings or dry packet mixes.

This recipe works great as a buttermilk ranch salad dressing or as a ranch dip for veggies and Buffalo Chicken Wings. If you love the flavor of restaurant ranch, this homemade ranch dressing is a must-try.

A spoon drizzles ranch dressing into a measuring cup.

This post may contain affiliate links. Read my disclosure policy.

Buttermilk Ranch Dressing Recipe

Over the years we’ve bought MANY brands of ranch dressing, but few have been kid-approved. The only one that my little ranch connoisseurs actually liked had some pretty awful ingredients in it, and I couldn’t bring myself to buy it again.

I’ve been working on this buttermilk ranch recipe ever since, and I’ve finally perfected it. And as a bonus, my kids LOVE it. They tell me it tastes just like their favorite restaurant ranch dip. High praise.

This homemade ranch dressing is rich and creamy, perfect for drizzling over salads (try it on a Garden Salad), or serving as a dip with, well, just about everything. Plus, the ingredients are super simple and you probably already have everything you need in your refrigerator and spice drawer.

Ranch Dressing Video

Watch Natasha make restaurant-style buttermilk ranch in seconds with just a handful of easy ingredients. Trust us, you’ll want to smother this dressing over everything.

What is Ranch Dressing?

Ranch is cool and creamy, with a flavor that’s irresistibly tangy and garlicky. There’s a reason it’s the most popular dressing in the US! Ranch is a favorite condiment and dipping sauce, used on salads, veggies (like Roasted Broccoli), chips, Pizza, and just about anything else.

Ranch dressing is made with a creamy base and when you use buttermilk as the main ingredient, it becomes a Buttermilk Ranch. We love combining buttermilk, sour cream and mayo for the ultimate creamy consistency that makes it creamy enough to drizzle as a dressing and thick enough to serve as a dip.

Buttermilk ranch dressing in a glass measuring cup with a whisk.

Ingredients

If you’ve ever wondered, “Why is restaurant ranch dressing so good?” The answer is simple: the right combination of ingredients and store-bought packet mixes aren’t as good. Below is a quick look at what makes the best ranch dressing, with the full recipe available in the recipe card.

  • Buttermilk – Buttermilk makes ranch dressing ultra creamy and tangy. Alternatively, you can use kefir, which is a fermented milk drink. You can also make an easy buttermilk substitute, see the section below for details.
  • Sour Cream – Either full-fat or low-fat sour cream.
  • Mayonnaise – Use your favorite brand of real mayo.
  • Vinegar – Plain white vinegar is perfect, otherwise, apple cider vinegar also works.
  • Herbs and Seasonings – This dressing is flavored with a combination of onion, parsley, dill, garlic, plus salt and pepper. You can use fresh or dried herbs (see tip).
The ingredients for homemade buttermilk ranch dressing.

Pro Tip: If you are serving this dressing to kids, you may want to use dry herbs. Fresh herbs are lovely but the garlic and chives can seem a little spicy and overpowering for little ones. Otherwise, the sharp flavors do tend to mellow out a bit after a couple of days in the fridge.

Can I Substitute Buttermilk?

As mentioned, if you don’t have buttermilk, you can use kefir instead. Or, in a pinch, you can make your own homemade buttermilk substitute with regular milk and white vinegar. This is very easy to do:

  1. Combine 1 tablespoon of white vinegar (or lemon juice) with enough milk to make 1 cup.
  2. Stir, then leave the mixture to sit and curdle for 5-10 minutes and stir again. 

Tada, homemade buttermilk. This is a handy substitute that you can use not just in this ranch recipe, but in baking as well.

How to Make Ranch Dressing

Making buttermilk ranch dressing from scratch couldn’t be easier. Simply combine all the ranch ingredients in a bowl and give it a good whisk to combine. 

You can adjust the seasoning to taste. I prefer to use a little more salt when I’m making this ranch recipe as a dressing, and a little less when serving it as a dip.

Side-by-side images of the ingredients for ranch dressing being combined and whisked together in a measuring cup.

Pro Tip: Let the dressing sit covered in the refrigerator for at least 2 hours or overnight, to give the flavors time to meld.

Common Questions

Is buttermilk ranch the same as ranch dressing?

Both are ranch dressings made with a base of sour cream and mayo. This recipe includes buttermilk, which makes the texture a little creamier.

Why do they call it ranch?

Fun fact: The original dressing was invented by a plumber in the 1950s. He owned Hidden Valley Ranch in California, which is where the name (and famous ranch brand) comes from. Here’s more info on the history of ranch dressing.

Can I double the recipe?

Absolutely. If you’re making enough ranch for a party, go ahead and double the ingredients. The more the merrier and it keeps well in the refrigerator.

Buttermilk ranch dressing in a glass measuring cup with a spoon.

Ways to Use Buttermilk Ranch

This homemade ranch dressing recipe serves 6 as a salad dressing or 8-10 as a dip. Here are some easy ways to use it:

Make-Ahead

We love having mason jars of fresh homemade salad dressing in the fridge, ready for any occasion. Here’s how easy it is to store your buttermilk ranch:

  • To Refrigerate: Store your ranch dressing covered in a jar or airtight container and refrigerate it for up to a week. Give it a stir or a shake before you use it in case some separation occurs. Add additional salt to taste if needed.
  • To Freeze: Freezing homemade ranch isn’t recommended since the taste and texture tends to change once it’s thawed. I always prefer to whip up a fresh batch.
Buttermilk ranch dressing in a glass jar.

We hope you’ll also be foregoing store-bought ranch dressing after trying this easy homemade recipe. If you love the flavor of ranch as much as we do, try our Jalapeño Ranch and Avocado Ranch Dressing, too.

More Homemade Dressings and Dips

I’ll be the first to admit some things are easier to buy at the store, but these homemade dressings and dips are absolutely worth making from scratch. They taste better and often have better ingredients than storebought. Here are more tasty dip recipes and condiments to make at home:

Natasha's Kitchen Cookbook

Homemade Ranch Dressing Recipe

5 from 149 votes
Author: Natasha Kravchuk
Cool and creamy Buttermilk Ranch Dressing comes together in seconds with simple ingredients. This homemade ranch recipe serves 6 as a salad dressing or 8-10 as a dip.
Prep Time: 2 minutes
Total Time: 2 minutes

Ingredients 

Servings: 6 servings
  • 1/2 cup cold buttermilk, or kefir
  • 1/2 cup cold sour cream
  • 1/2 cup real mayonnaise
  • 1 tsp white vinegar
  • 1 tsp onion powder, or 2 Tbsp finely chopped chives
  • 1 tsp dried parsley leaves, or 2 Tbsp finest chopped Italian parsley leaves
  • 1/2 tsp dried dill, or 1 Tbsp chopped fresh dill
  • 1/2 tsp garlic powder, or 3 medium garlic cloves (1 Tbsp finely grated garlic)
  • 1/2 tsp fine sea salt, plus more to taste
  • 1/2 tsp freshly cracked black pepper, or to taste

Instructions

  • In a bowl, combine all of your ranch ingredients and whisk together to combine. Add more salt to taste. As a dressing, 3/4 tsp salt is nice and as a dip, you can get by with 1/2 tsp salt. Cover and refrigerate for at least 2 hours before serving.

Notes

*Store in an airtight container or mason jar in the refrigerator for up to 1 week. 

Nutrition Per Serving

168kcal Calories3g Carbs2g Protein17g Fat4g Saturated Fat8g Polyunsaturated Fat4g Monounsaturated Fat0.03g Trans Fat17mg Cholesterol350mg Sodium83mg Potassium0.1g Fiber1g Sugar114IU Vitamin A0.3mg Vitamin C56mg Calcium0.1mg Iron
Nutrition Facts
Homemade Ranch Dressing Recipe
Amount per Serving
Calories
168
% Daily Value*
Fat
 
17
g
26
%
Saturated Fat
 
4
g
25
%
Trans Fat
 
0.03
g
Polyunsaturated Fat
 
8
g
Monounsaturated Fat
 
4
g
Cholesterol
 
17
mg
6
%
Sodium
 
350
mg
15
%
Potassium
 
83
mg
2
%
Carbohydrates
 
3
g
1
%
Fiber
 
0.1
g
0
%
Sugar
 
1
g
1
%
Protein
 
2
g
4
%
Vitamin A
 
114
IU
2
%
Vitamin C
 
0.3
mg
0
%
Calcium
 
56
mg
6
%
Iron
 
0.1
mg
1
%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.
Course: Dip, Dressing
Cuisine: American
Keyword: buttermilk ranch, homemade ranch, how to make ranch dressing, ranch dressing recipe
Skill Level: Easy
Cost to Make: $
Calories: 168

Natasha Kravchuk

Welcome to my kitchen! I am Natasha, the blogger behind Natasha's Kitchen (since 2009). My husband and I run this blog together and share only our best, family approved and tested recipes with YOU. Thanks for stopping by! We are so happy you're here.

Read more posts by Natasha

Leave a Comment

Recipe Rating




Comments

  • Sherry
    February 1, 2024

    Perfect! No excuse to ever buy bottled again. Natasha takes any guess work out for us.

    Reply

    • NatashasKitchen.com
      February 1, 2024

      Thank you, Sherry!

      Reply

  • Erica Randall
    January 12, 2024

    This is THE. BEST. Ranch recipe ever! It’s creamy, and the flavor is spot on. Trust the recipe, don’t do what I did and add more dill. Let it sit in the fridge for a bit to allow the flavors to meld. You won’t be disappointed.

    Reply

    • Natashas Kitchen
      January 12, 2024

      I’m so happy you enjoyed that. Thank you for sharing that with us, Erica!

      Reply

  • HELEN VOKOLOU
    January 6, 2024

    In Greece where I live they don’t have sour cream. What can I use instead?

    Reply

    • NatashasKitchen.com
      January 6, 2024

      Hi Helen! Greek yogurt would be the next best thing.

      Reply

  • Jemima Miller
    November 28, 2023

    Great flavor! I don’t like Ranch, but I fell in love. Will make over and over.

    Reply

    • NatashasKitchen.com
      November 28, 2023

      Hi Jemmima! I’m so glad to hear that.

      Reply

  • Sharon S.
    November 3, 2023

    The only Ranch Dressing I will use from now on. Have gone through so many bottled dressings in the last 6 months and we all have hated them all. Out of desperation I found your version and everyone has loved it. Thank you so much! I honestly would give it 10/5 stars if I could.

    Reply

    • NatashasKitchen.com
      November 3, 2023

      That’s wonderful to hear, Sharon! I’m so glad you found this recipe.

      Reply

  • Lynn Weizel
    September 26, 2023

    Awesome ranch dressing. I will never buy it again in a bottle. Thank you Natasha.

    Reply

    • Natashas Kitchen
      September 26, 2023

      You’re welcome, Lynn! I’m so glad you loved it!

      Reply

  • Heather
    September 11, 2023

    Best tasting ranch I’ve ever had! Can it be frozen for future use?

    Reply

    • Natashas Kitchen
      September 11, 2023

      I’m so glad you loved it! Freezing homemade ranch isn’t recommended since the taste and texture tends to change once it’s thawed. I always prefer to whip up a fresh batch.

      Reply

  • Cynthia
    August 10, 2023

    So delicious! My kids raved about it. I didn’t have buttermilk so I used regular milk. I did notice it was missing that tang, so next time I will definitely make sure to have buttermilk on hand.

    Reply

    • Natashas Kitchen
      August 10, 2023

      It really is best with buttermilk. If you don’t have any on hand, you can make your own by mixing milk and lemon together. 1 cup buttermilk = 1 Tablespoon lemon juice + enough milk to measure 1 cup. I hope that helps.

      Reply

  • Robyn
    July 14, 2023

    Creamy and delicious! Our new favorite dressing! Thanks for yet another hit recipe!

    Reply

    • NatashasKitchen.com
      July 14, 2023

      You’re very welcome, Robyn! Thank you for sharing.

      Reply

  • jean m nielson
    June 18, 2023

    I’ve tried several recipes, but this is fantastic!!! Our absolute go to! Thanks Natasha!

    Reply

    • Natasha's Kitchen
      June 18, 2023

      Aaaw, that’s wonderful feedback. Thanks so much!

      Reply

  • Paula Anton
    June 11, 2023

    Will powdered buttermilk reconstituted work instead of fresh buttermilk?
    I love your recipes!

    Reply

    • Natasha's Kitchen
      June 11, 2023

      Thank you, Paula. We’re glad that you’re enjoying them! Alternatively, you can use kefir, which is a fermented milk drink. You can also make an easy buttermilk substitute, see my notes above for details on this.

      Reply

  • Cathy
    June 9, 2023

    I just made this and it is delicious and so easy to make! I had everything in my pantry! Definitely a keeper! Thank you Natasha!

    Reply

    • NatashasKitchen.com
      June 9, 2023

      You’re very welcome, Cathy! I’m so glad you enjoyed the recipe.

      Reply

  • Bryan
    June 7, 2023

    I can finally live a good life with good ranch. 5 stars!! Thank you.

    Reply

    • NatashasKitchen.com
      June 7, 2023

      Hi Bryan! I’m so glad you love this recipe. Thank you for the feedback.

      Reply

  • Netanya
    May 27, 2023

    I made this for the first time a week ago. I swear my dad ate a full cup of dressing with his salad it was so good! I’ve had to keep it in stock since then.

    Reply

    • NatashasKitchen.com
      May 27, 2023

      I’m so glad it was a hit! Thank you for the feedback.

      Reply

  • Gurel Edna
    May 11, 2023

    Natasha thank you for all your recipes….everyone of them has been a hit…you are amazing and I will always ❤ be your loyal fan…keep those recipes coming… your loyal friend…

    Reply

    • NatashasKitchen.com
      May 11, 2023

      You’re very welcome! I’m so glad you are enjoying them. Thank you for the love and support!

      Reply

  • Tracy
    May 4, 2023

    This is so much better than the Ranch packets, my new favorite go to

    Reply

    • NatashasKitchen.com
      May 4, 2023

      I’m so glad to hear that, Tracy!

      Reply

  • Melissa Caley
    April 19, 2023

    Hello!
    This looks delicious and I can’t wait to make it. 🙂
    Is one serving 2 Tablespoons? Just curious for calorie reasons. LOL! Thank you so much!

    Reply

    • Natashas Kitchen
      April 19, 2023

      I hope you love it, Melissa! If you divide the whole recipe into 6 servings to get the most accurate per serving size.

      Reply

      • Melissa Caley
        April 20, 2023

        Thank you so much! I will do that. I am sure this will be my go to from now on!!! 🙂

        Reply

        • NatashasKitchen.com
          April 20, 2023

          You’re welcome! 🙂

          Reply

As Featured On

Never Go "Hangry" Again!

Get weekly updates on new recipes, exclusive giveaways plus behind the scenes photos.