The only thing better than restaurant style ranch dressing is Homemade Buttermilk Ranch Dressing! It is so dreamy creamy and the recipe is ridiculously easy. I will show you just how to make it! Get ready for the best salad of your life! Originally posted June 3, 2020.

overhead shot of creamy buttermilk ranch dressing in a glass bowl with a spoon in it.

The other day at dinner, Truman was slurping up his noodles rather loudly. I asked him to pipe down a bit, and he immediately pointed his finger at me, eyes wide, and yelled, “STUPEFY!!!” I laughed so hard I didn’t even have the energy to send him to a time out. Also maybe I was just a little bit too proud to care. Harry Potter references are a get-out-of-jail-free card in my house, apparently. 

It is actually so fun to see my kids get into Harry Potter. I was 11 when I read the first book, and 19 when the last one was published. But my kids are reading them way younger (Truman is 7) and reading a fantasy book at this age is way different than reading it as a teen. My sister told me that her daughters all play “Whomping Willow” together, and my kids routinely incorporate Dementors into their make believe playing. How fun is that? One of the best things about being a parent is seeing your kids grow to love the same things you love.

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buttermilk ranch dressing in a glass jar with a spoon surrounded by fresh vegetables.

How is everyone’s summer starting out?? We are STILL doing school at home. Our district has the weirdest schedule. We have a week to go before summer officially starts. Wish us luck!! I was not born to homeschool!

The Best Buttermilk Ranch Dressing

We have been having a next-level heat wave here in Sacramento this week, and all I want to eat is salad and ice cream. Mostly ice cream, but I’m going for balance, you know, ha.

a spoon being dipped into a jar of homemade buttermilk ranch dressing.

I have been making this buttermilk ranch dressing on repeat lately, so I thought I would share the recipe with you! Ranch is everybody’s favorite salad dressing, right? At least it is here in my house. It’s just so creamy and delicious, on basically any salad ever!

And no, I’m not even exaggerating when I say that this is the best buttermilk ranch dressing. I mean, for one, it’s homemade. Anything homemade is just better. It’s also made with the perfect blend of mayonnaise, sour cream, and buttermilk for the ideal balance of rich and tangy. Then it’s infused with tons of flavor thanks to fresh herbs and delicious seasonings. 

Ranch dressing is already the prom queen of dressings. I don’t know what it is when it’s homemade…Miss America?? Miss UNIVERSE???

overhead of buttermilk ranch dressing in a glass jar with fresh vegetables surrounding it.

Homemade Buttermilk Ranch Dressing Ingredients

See the recipe card below for complete instructions.

  • Mayonnaise
  • Sour Cream
  • Buttermilk
  • Minced Garlic
  • Lemon Juice
  • Salt and pepper
  • Garlic powder
  • Onion powder
  • Dry mustard powder
  • Cayenne pepper
  • Fresh parsley, dill, and chives
homemade buttermilk ranch dressing in glass jar with a spoon in it surrounded by vegetables.

Buttermilk Ranch recipe substitutions

I like the recipe just as it is written, but there are a few easy changes you can make if you don’t have everything.

First up: buttermilk. I know it’s not a common household ingredient (I only buy it when I need it for something specific) and in this recipe you can replace it with whole milk, or even regular 1 or 2% milk (although it won’t be as creamy). If you use milk, increase the amount of lemon juice you add to the recipe to get some of that tang in there that you lost from not using buttermilk.

Garlic. If you don’t have fresh garlic, you can omit it and increase the garlic powder to 3/4 or 1 teaspoon.

Fresh herbs. I wrote the recipe to include fresh herbs because they really do make for the BEST ranch dressing. But I get it: they are expensive. You could buy a few bottles of store bought ranch dressing for what it would take you to buy the herbs for one batch of this ranch. (Because of course you can’t buy 1 teaspoon of chives, you have to buy the whole bunch!)

creamy buttermilk ranch recipe being poured from a glass jar into a glass measuring cup.

How to make Buttermilk Ranch Dressing

This ranch dressing is super easy to make. It will take you 5 minutes to throw it together.

fresh herbs and spices being added to dressing in glass jar surrounded by fresh herbs and lemons.

You have the choice to use fresh herbs if you want a REALLY delicious ranch dressing, or you can go the all-dried-herbs route which is still super good. After all, that’s what the store-bought ranch that you are used to is made of! I totally prefer using fresh herbs, because, hello flavor! (Fresh dill is one of God’s greatest gifts.) But really dried herbs are still going to get you a great salad dressing.

dried herbs being added to creamy buttermilk ranch dressing.

Once you put together all the ingredients and get it nice and whisked, let it marinate in the fridge for about an hour. This will give all the flavors time to marry and get really cozy together! But honestly if you don’t have the time to wait, it’s okay. It’s still going to taste amazing!

Then get out all the veggies and feast! You will not believe how many vegetables your kids will eat if you give them this ranch dressing!

creamy buttermilk ranch dressing with spoon dipping into glass jar with fresh vegetables in the background.

Homemade Buttermilk Ranch FAQs

Why is buttermilk ranch better than other ranch dressings?

Traditional Ranch dressing is made using a mixture of sour cream and mayonnaise. Buttermilk Ranch dressing uses a mixture of sour cream, mayonnaise, AND buttermilk. 

The addition of the buttermilk adds a whole ‘nother level level of tangy goodness to the classic Ranch dressing flavors. It also thins it out ever so slightly for an ultra drizzle-able  texture.

How long does Homemade Buttermilk Ranch last?

Homemade buttermilk Ranch dressing will last in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 2 weeks.

How do you store buttermilk ranch dressing?

Buttermilk Ranch needs to be stored in an airtight container in the fridge, just like the kind you get from the store. I like to keep it in a mason jar in the fridge so I can easily pour it over whatever I’m serving it with, but any old Tupperware will do.

What kind of salad goes best with this Buttermilk Ranch recipe?

Ranch dressing is so versatile, you can serve it on pretty much any salad you like! Try it on a Loaded Cobb Salad with Chicken and Bacon, a Crispy Chicken Salad, a Green Salad with Feta and Beets, or use it on Broccoli and Bacon Salad.You really can’t go wrong!

buttermilk ranch dressing in a glass jar surrounded by fresh veggies.

What do you love to dip in ranch? I did a post of 10 Easy Holiday Appetizers a while back, all of which are so good dipped in ranch. Veggies, salads, quesadillas, fried chicken, pizza (you know it), these Bacon Wrapped Jalapeno Poppers. It’s all so good!

I made this ranch specifically to go on top of a this Crispy Chicken Salad. So Good!

More salad dressing recipes you will love!

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Homemade Buttermilk Ranch Dressing

4.64 from 50 votes
Prep: 5 minutes
Total: 5 minutes
Servings: 16
The only thing better than restaurant style ranch dressing is Homemade Buttermilk Ranch Dressing! It is so dreamy creamy and the recipe is ridiculously easy. I will show you just how to make it! Get ready for the best salad of your life!


  • 1 cup mayonnaise
  • 1/2 cup sour cream
  • 1/2 cup buttermilk
  • 1 teaspoon minced garlic
  • 1 teaspoon lemon juice
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon dry mustard powder
  • 1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 3 tablespoons fresh parsley, minced*
  • 2 tablespoons fresh dill, minced*
  • 1 teaspoon fresh chives, minced*


  • Add all ingredients in a medium bowl and whisk until combined! Taste it and see if you want to add any more salt. Refrigerate for about an hour before serving, to give the flavors a chance to marry. Or don’t. It will still taste great!
  • See notes about substitutions.


*The parsley, dill, and chives can be replaced with dried herbs. Use 2 teaspoons dried parsley, 1 teaspoon dried dill, and 1/2 teaspoon dried chives. If you don’t have fresh garlic you can increase the garlic powder to 3/4 or even 1 teaspoon. If you don’t have buttermilk, you can use whole milk instead; increase the lemon juice to 1 and 1/2 teaspoons. 


Serving: 1g | Calories: 115kcal | Carbohydrates: 1g | Protein: 1g | Fat: 12g | Saturated Fat: 3g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 6g | Monounsaturated Fat: 3g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 10mg | Sodium: 248mg | Potassium: 32mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 1g | Vitamin A: 143IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 20mg | Iron: 1mg
Course: Appetizer
Cuisine: American
Calories: 115
Keyword: Buttermilk, creamy, dressing, ranch
Did you make this? I’d love to see it!Mention @thefoodcharlatan or tag #thefoodcharlatan!

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  1. 4 stars
    I really liked the look of this recipe. You can just tell it is well thought out. I had tried a few others with less then stellar results. I like making a 1/2 recipe since it’s just the two of us. Knowing that I don’t like a strong raw garlic flavor in my creamy dressings, I did not add the raw garlic and reduced the garlic and onion powders by 1/2. I didn’t have chives so I used finely minced green onion greens. The result was really good! I did add in two pinches of sugar to reduce the acidic after taste but I really like this recipe and will be making it often. Next time, I may try some roasted garlic and see what happens… I love experimenting. TY!!

  2. Going to try this today…our local “Taco Casa” in Cincinnati uses a homemade buttermilk ranch dressing on their taco salads, so maybe this one will work. They invented the taco salad more than 40 years ago, long before all these Mexican restaurants popped up. Thanks for what sounds like a scrumptious recipe!

  3. 5 stars
    Love your recipes and homespun online voice! Thanks for posting these clean recipes. Hermione Granger would love to share your book of life recipes!
    FYI for best flavor, freshness and good health use glass jars, covered ceramic bowls or plastic for storage. I keep dressings, potato salads and puddings in XXL pyrex measuring cup.
    Metals like sterling silver (in photo) or even stainless (which is often not 100% stainless steel) will react with the acids/enzymes in dairy, lemon and salt.
    The metals can get into the food causing the food to taste metallic.
    Lemon juice, mustard, vinegar, salt, sugars will tarnish sterling silver tableware if left in the food for more than an hour.

  4. 5 stars
    Just mixed this up and it’s FANTASTIC! I just want to drink the whole thing it’s that good! Next time I’m going to try and substitute the sour cream for whole milk Greek yogurt…..maybe a little healthier but at my age do I really care? Ha! Ha! NO! This will be my always go to recipe forever!

    1. “but at my age do I really care?” hahaha!!! Life goals Jacqui haha! I’m so happy you are loving the recipe, drinkable is right. Thanks so much for taking the time to review!!

  5. 5 stars
    I’ve made this many times! It’s a perfect blend of flavors! 
    Only thing I didn’t add was the parsley. 
    It’s my go to for FREASH recipe!

  6. 5 stars
    I’ve made this recipe twice now and is delicious! The only thing I would do differently is next time I would cut down on the salt otherwise this will always be my “go to” recipe! Thanks so much for sharing!

  7. Good morn🤗🌅Karen….Your C.B.Ranch dressing looks so delicious (my daughter will be happy) :::: Is it possible to replace sour cream with G. Yoghurt?
    Thks for all  that is wonderful !! 

  8. I am having a problem finding full fat buttermilk. I can only find low fat but the low-fat makes my dressing watery. How can I get the dressing thicker when using low fat buttermilk 

  9. 5 stars
    Such a great recipe I had to contain myself from eating the whole thing in one sitting. The best ranch dressing! no more bottled dressing for me. 

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