Ranch dressing has a reputation for being a pretty awesome sauce/dip that you can use with almost everything. I know from experience, because back in my college days all of our pizza orders would include a request for “a ridiculous amount of ranch,” which the pizza places found quite amusing. The problem with my older, wiser self is that I realized long ago that ranch dressing is pretty darn bad for you.
My issue with most bottled ranches is not so much the nutrition stats. Yes, most contain a little too much fat and salt. But my bigger issue is where this fat and salt is coming from … which is a long list of highly processed, chemical ingredients. I’ll use Hidden Valley as an example since I went through many-a-bottle of the stuff back in the day. Hidden Valley’s website promises “wholesome ingredients fresh from Hidden Valley to you.” You tell me if this is your idea of fresh and wholesome:
Uh, yeah. Soybean oil from genetically modified crops, MSG, artificial flavors, and preservatives are not what I would consider fresh and wholesome.
So here’s an idea: make your own healthy homemade ranch dressing instead … and I have the perfect recipe for you. Truth be told, this recipe contains a few more ingredients than I normally use. But I’ve tried several variations of ranch dressings, and this one tops my list so far.
Be sure to use fresh herbs. They will make a huge difference. Use regular sour cream too. The real stuff is better, and that’s because the low fat version has artificial flavors and fillers, and the full fat version doesn’t. The recipe is super healthy with plain old sour cream. How healthy, exactly? A standard 2 T serving has just 41 calories and 2.5 grams of fat.
As for the rest of the recipe, I tossed some mixed greens together with an heirloom tomato and some pepitas (pumpkin seeds). But as my college education taught me, you can pretty use this ranch dressing recipe on anything. So give it a whirl …
|Prep Time||Cook Time||Serves|
|10 min||0 min||2|
Ingredients: Mixed Greens Salad with Healthy Homemade Ranch Dressing Recipe
- 4 cups mixed greens
- 1 tomato
- 1/4 cup raw pumpkin seeds (pepitas)
- 1 oz. goat cheese
Dressing (makes about 8 servings):
- 1/2 clove of garlic
- 1/2 cup sour cream
- 1/2 shallot
- 1/4 cup Greek yogurt
- 2 T red wine vinegar
- 1/4 cup skim milk
- 3/4 tsp. kosher salt
- 1 T fresh dill
- 1 T fresh marjoram
- 1 T fresh chives
- 1 T fresh oregano
- Black pepper (to taste)
1. Mince all herbs, shallot and garlic and combine together in a mixing bowl.
2. Add remaining ingredients (except milk). Whisk together while slowly adding milk. When the dressing reaches your desired level of thickness, that’s when you should stop pouring the milk. You may need a little more or a little less than a quarter cup.
3. Divide mixed greens into two bowls and top each with a half a tomato, half the pumpkin seeds, and 2 T homemade ranch. Serve immediately and transfer the rest to a bottle for future use. Dressing will stay good for up to a week.
Nutrition Facts (salad with 2 T ranch dressing)
194 calories, 12.5 g fat, 12.5 g carbs, 9.5 g protein, 340 mg sodium
Nutrition Facts (2T of just the dressing)
41 calories, 2.5 g fat, 2.5 g carbs, 2 g protein, 180 mg sodium
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