Homemade Ranch Dressing Mix – Kitchen Shortcut

by Erin, The $5 Dinner Mom on April 14, 2011

Homemade Ranch Dressing Mix | 5DollarDinners.com

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I love, love, love my homemade taco seasoning mix. It’s convenient, cheap and oh-so-tasty. And I’m mixing up a new homemade seasoning mix today…this time for ranch dressing!

This past weekend I planted some lettuce and other cold weather veggies (more on that this weekend).  I try to eat a salad for lunch everyday and usually mix up a quick vinaigrette (yeah for cheap olive oil this week!).  And while I love my vinaigrettes, I also like variety.  I’ve been craving ranch dressing lately and much prefer this homemade version.  While I wait for the fresh parsley, dill and basil to grow up in the garden and be ready for some “fresh herbs” ranch dressing mix, I plan on using this version with the dried spices until then.

I also love this because it costs a fraction of what you would pay for a packet at the store, and makes twice as much!

Before we get to the recipe, how about a few homemade seasoning mixes to try out!

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Homemade Ranch Dressing Seasoning Mix


  • 2 Tbsp dried parsley
  • 1 tsp dried dill
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • 1 tsp onion powder
  • 1/2 tsp dried basil
  • 1/2 tsp pepper


  • Add each of the dried spices to a bowl and gently stir.

  • Store in a resealable plastic baggie or small ball canning jar with tight fitting lid  in your spice cabinet.
  • To make the ranch dressing, whisk together 1/3 cup mayonnaise with 1/4 cup milk (more or less depending on the consistency you want) with 1 Tbsp of the homemade ranch dressing seasoning mix.  Season with salt, to taste. Use immediately and can refrigerate for up to 3 days.
  • Makes about 4 Tbsp worth of mix. Or use the ratios above and mix up however much you’ll need!

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{ 132 comments… read them below or add one }

Bethany @ One Girl's Taste On Life April 14, 2011 at 9:25 am

This is a great recipe to have in your arsenal! My best friend and I tried to make ranch dressing ourselves and it was very similar to your recipe above. Once tip I have…to decrease the fat content, I used Greek yogurt. Worked like a charm! Thanks!


Erin, The $5 Dinner Mom April 14, 2011 at 9:51 am

Great idea Bethany!!!


Sherry August 4, 2011 at 6:34 am

This recipe, using the Greek yogurt also makes a great dip for veggies. My kids and grand kids love it.


Maygan April 14, 2011 at 10:21 am

love that idea. i hate mayo and almost never keep it in the house, so that sounds like a great substitute.


Kandi April 14, 2011 at 9:48 am

Thank you for sharing this! I can’t wait to try it tonight for the kids. They love ranch, while hubs and I prefer something lighter. I have some Greek yogurt too, so I think I’ll try it that way! Thanks for the tip!


Brandi April 14, 2011 at 9:55 am

If using fresh herbs, what are your measurements?


Stephanie June 9, 2011 at 1:36 pm

I use a ratio of 1:3 for dried/fresh herbs. Usually if a recipe calls for 1 teaspoon of basil, use 3 teaspoons of fresh basil. Hope that helps!


Kristine April 14, 2011 at 10:02 am

Thanks for this! My mom is allergic to MSG that is in most ranch dressing. I will send this to her!


Leighann December 5, 2011 at 9:33 am

My mom is also allergic to MSG, and ranch flavor is her favorite! Thanks for posting-she’s going to be so happy =)


Aubrey March 16, 2012 at 8:34 am

My Daughter is allergic to something, probably MSG that is in most Ranch dressings and Ranch is her Favorite too! I am going to make this next time we need some ranch in the house!


Kristin April 14, 2011 at 10:24 am

Is there any way to make the thicker ranch dip with this?


Erin April 15, 2011 at 9:56 pm

Using Greek yogurt instead of mayo like some readers suggested would definitely make it thicker.


Jim November 24, 2011 at 2:10 am

Mix the seasonings with 1/2 C powdered buttermilk.

Approx. 1 T in 1 tub of sour cream gives nice, thick ranch dip, just like you get with Hidden Valley but without the MSG and less salt.

Don’t add sugar. Not needed. Use full-fat sour cream – fat is not your enemy, sugar is.


Grammy B February 24, 2012 at 11:47 pm

Thanks for the add! I tried the powdered buttermilk along with seasonings. Did not end up with a very robust flavor however when mixed with low-fat sour cream. Maybe too much buttermilk?


Bernadette Cooper April 14, 2011 at 10:54 am

How does it taste mixed with sour cream?


Angelina November 5, 2011 at 4:36 am

I never use mayo in my ranch dressing or ranch dip sour cream and buttermilk!


Michelle S April 14, 2011 at 10:56 am

This is great! My husband’s allergic to mayo (eggs), so would I replace it with the greek yogurt? Also, will you be doing an Italian Dressing one soon? That is the one I really need, preferably with less salt than store bought package also.
Thanks for all you do!


Loy April 14, 2011 at 7:22 pm

Oops! Should have noted that I do not use the celery salt either. I didn’t remember it was still
there. I use crushed dried celery flakes, instead. I make these almost “free” by snipping off the leaves of stalks of celery, placing them in a single layer in a shallow container, and just letting them sit on my counter 2 0r 3 days until the leaves are dry. I mix hem up a little each day. I then store the dried leaves in a plastic bag and crush them to put in seasoning mixes and into soups and stews.


Michelle S April 20, 2011 at 1:50 pm

Thanks! Hoping to make some this weekend!


Melissa April 14, 2011 at 11:06 am

I am calorie counting and would love to be able to have a good ranch that is low in calories! Now I can control what it’s made of! Thank you!!!!


Astrid April 14, 2011 at 12:02 pm

This looks delicious! Does anyone know of a recipe for homemade Caesar Salad Dressing?


Shreela April 14, 2011 at 12:37 pm

Thank you SO much! While I love being frugal, I love no-additive recipes even more, since carrageenan causes me so much pain, and is being used in more and more foods (recently found it in pre-packaged deli meats!) Check the last paragraph of this page:

I’m pretty sure other kinds of kelp don’t bother me, since I tolerate California rolls just fine. I handle other thickeners fine too, just something about carrageenan and me don’t get along.

And artichokes just aren’t the same with Italian dressing LOL

Thanks again!


Chrystal @ Chrystal's Corner April 14, 2011 at 12:42 pm

Thank you so much!! I love adding to my list of things that I can make myself instead of buying pre-packaged at the store:)


Bjorn April 14, 2011 at 2:51 pm

The kids love ranch so we are going to try this one out -thank you.


Joe April 14, 2011 at 7:19 pm

Ranch dressing is the only dressing I like. The wife won’t buy bottled dressing because of all the “odd” ingredients-she likes to make most everything from scratch. I am passing this on to her for sure.


cheryl April 14, 2011 at 7:43 pm

This is a great base: I love to use buttermilk as a direct substitution for the milk, it’s fat free and makes the dressing really creamy.
You can also puree avocado in place of the Mayo and it’s green goddess dressing. This version is simply awesome when drizzled over a chilled iceberg wedge!


Angela April 14, 2011 at 7:44 pm

Oh I love this idea! Have been doing homemade taco seasoning for ages but for some reason it never occurred to me to make other seasoning mixes…thanks for the “aha” moment!


Alison P April 14, 2011 at 9:23 pm

I got a recipe years ago for using the Hidden Valley packet on cut up potatoes with a little olive oil. It was a favorite of my husband even those we are not ranch dressing fans. We haven’t had it in ages because the cost of the packets were too expensive. I am excited to try this and see if it tastes just as yummy. I am also going to try it with the sour cream to see if it makes the dip because I love that with carrots :) Thanks for the recipe!!! I am sure it will be as great as the taco seasoning which was a hit with the family :)


jenn April 14, 2011 at 10:31 pm

Love this! Another great spice recipe! Thanks!


Food on the Table April 14, 2011 at 11:26 pm

Homemade dressing sounds so good — good for the health AND the budget! The best part? All you need is a few drops of Sriracha sauce to make spicy ranch. I’d love to see recipes from you in the future for vinaigrettes or Thousand Island.


Katie April 15, 2011 at 2:37 am

So excited about this! My husband and I are Americans living overseas and can’t get the ranch packets…this is great. thanks! :)


claire April 15, 2011 at 8:37 pm

My oldest will only eat certain foods if he dips them in Ranch. I will make this homemade version and hopefully he will like it and I can save a few $$$.


Lauri @ A Day Spent May 6, 2011 at 4:32 pm

Made this today and added 2 tablespoons to about 1 cup of nonfat Greek yogurt. Makes a wonderful veggie dip!


flutemom May 14, 2011 at 1:30 pm

for the dip, use the same quantities of spices, and add them to 16 oz sour cream, also add 3/4 t. salt. deliciously creamy!!


MJ October 20, 2011 at 2:41 am

Thank you SO MUCH. Can no longer eat the store ranch dressings, due to the MSG. Once I got Asthma that will really affect the asthma. Since then I’d also read about MSG causing weight gain and metabolic issues. So this was a LIFE SAVER for me!!!!!!!!


Georgia November 5, 2011 at 12:38 pm

Do you know for a casserole recipe that calls for one package of dry ranch dressing mix, how much of this would I use?


Emily November 5, 2011 at 8:48 pm

I found your ranch dressing mix on pinterest. I never looked at the ingredients to see that they put MSG in the seasonings and mixes. Thanks for giving us a homemade version that is better for us. :)


DavetteB November 10, 2011 at 8:44 am

this is great – most of the bottles and mixes have MSG – thanks.


jessica November 26, 2011 at 5:56 pm

how can i make a ranch that last long


Karen December 7, 2011 at 12:33 pm

I have been looking for a homemade ranch salad dressing recipe! The premade ranch dressing from the store just never tastes as good. I’m going to give your recipe a try, thanks!


Steve January 9, 2012 at 5:11 pm

what is the ratio if I want to make a gallon of this?


Sierra January 25, 2012 at 11:22 am

Steve, if you multiply the recipe by 24, you’ll get just under a gallon. So use 8 cups of mayo (or Greek yogurt), 6 cups of milk (or buttermilk), and 1 1/2 cups seasoning mix (which is just under 8x the given recipe). This might not be QUITE a gallon, but it’s the closest easy conversion. Hope this helps!


Mona February 6, 2012 at 12:35 pm

Add a fresh advocado (mashed, of course) and you have a wonderful Advocado Ranch Dressing.


Mona February 6, 2012 at 12:36 pm

…and teach me there is but one “d” in avocado…lol


Deborah (Snackers Delight) February 11, 2012 at 11:46 pm

Perfect! Thank you for sharing. I am going to make this with low fat dairy..:D


Kimberly @ The Brown Eyes Have It February 23, 2012 at 12:10 am

I just found this on Ponterest and I’m so excited to try it. Do you know how much of this mix would equal a packet? I have several recipes that use a packet of mix and I’d love to use this instead.


Kari MooMama February 28, 2012 at 12:07 pm


The packets are usually 1 oz. packages, so I’d use my kitchen scale and substitute 1 oz. of the dry mix.


Donna February 23, 2012 at 9:45 am

Do you have a recipe for Catalina dressing – my husband loves it.


Donna February 24, 2012 at 10:31 pm

My daughter cannot have dairy anymore but she loves ranch dressing. Just wondering if you could use nut milk in place of the milk. cashew milk, coconut milk, almond milk.


Jennifer Dunaway February 27, 2012 at 9:35 am

Thank you so much for this ranch recipe. Now I can make ranch dressing without salt!


Kelli Newman February 27, 2012 at 11:55 am

How would I make this vegan? Any suggestions?


Erin, The $5 Dinner Mom February 27, 2012 at 12:06 pm

You could use a vegan mayo with “original” (not vanilla) rice milk…that would probably be your best bet to keep the taste as close as possible.



Holly March 22, 2012 at 1:49 pm

Avocados work awesome! but its a bit thicker probably you could use some form of milk (almond, rice ,ect) to thin it out a bit


Becky Young February 27, 2012 at 1:57 pm

Do you have a recipe for coleslaw dressing without mayo.


Anita March 1, 2012 at 8:58 am

I’m excited to try this. I always use the hidden valley packets and added sour cream and not mayo.


Ericka March 2, 2012 at 5:11 am

Can’t wait to try this!


Sharon Watson March 3, 2012 at 6:06 pm

Just started Pinterest this week and found this recipe and pinned it to my New things to try Board. Made the recipe today and it goes to my Favorite Foods and Drink Board. My comment had been about how my granddaughter Megan uses Ranch Dressing by the quart. She hasn’t tried it yet but it’s a genuine hit with the rest of the family. She’s so particular about Hidden Valley Brand we can’t even buy their lowfat variety. Thank you so much for this recipe! Even if we can’t substitute it for her, the rest of us love it. Now we’re going to try your taco mix! I’m the particular one there because I don’t care for chili powder. I’ll let you know how that comes out. Thanks again.


Kara March 9, 2012 at 3:50 pm

Found this recipe from Pinterest and I’m so happy and impressed how well it turned out! I think I added a bit too much basil though….what herb should I/can I add to counteract that?


Rachel March 10, 2012 at 10:14 pm

This is great. Instead of mayo or greek yogurt. Puree up some cottage cheese for a different healthy version


Holly March 22, 2012 at 1:47 pm

Mixing the Ranch powder (1-2T) with 2 avocados and smashing it all up make a awesome veggie dip!!


shan March 23, 2012 at 4:52 am

My family loves this mix. I blend cottage cheese until smooth, ad a dash of lemon juice, add the ranch mix, then thin with a little 1% milk. It was taste approved by my ranch addicted kids. :)


Tiffany @ DontWastetheCrumbs March 26, 2012 at 7:39 pm

Thanks so much! I plan on sharing this on my blog – I’ll be sure to link back to your fantastic ideas!


Krista March 27, 2012 at 12:17 pm

Just made it with low fat sour cream and it’s yummy! Thank you!


Sherry Hill March 28, 2012 at 12:21 pm

Does the powdered buttermilk make the dressing less runny? I’ve tried making homemade ranch in the past, it’s just so runny.



Mary March 31, 2012 at 3:32 pm

Thank you so much! I have many allergies and am always trying to find things without preservatives and additives!


Tracy April 2, 2012 at 6:23 pm

Today I made this with a teaspoon of chicken boullion (you know the Knorr’s concentrate stuff), and a fresh jalapeno. Ran it through the blender and….PRESTO….makes some amazing dip or taco salad dressing.

I’m especially fond of dill, so I tend to go heavier on it :D


Tina April 14, 2012 at 12:10 am

I use a low fat cottage cheese and skim milk well blended with the above spices, that way I am also getting a little protein kick to my dressing :)


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