Homemade Ranch Seasoning & DIY Ranch Packet
How to make homemade ranch seasoning in 2 tasty ways: a dairy-free dry ranch spice blend, and a DIY ranch packet with buttermilk powder! Use the dry ranch seasoning mix to add herbaceous ranch flavor to any dish, without the dairy. Or use the copycat buttermilk ranch seasoning as a lower-sodium & additive-free substitute for Hidden Valley ranch packets!
What is ranch seasoning?
Dry ranch seasoning is a mixture of dried herbs & spices like parsley, dill, chives, onion, & garlic powder. It’s basically a spice blend that you can use as a dairy-free substitute for ranch dressing mix. To make a true copycat of Hidden Valley ranch packets, just combine those ranch spices with dried buttermilk powder! If you love those store-bought packets like I do, the homemade buttermilk ranch dressing mix is the perfect substitute, without any additives.
Homemade Dry Ranch Seasoning Ingredients
- Dried Parsley
- Dried Dill
- Garlic Powder (or dried minced garlic)
- Dried Minced Onion (or onion powder)
- Dried Chives
- Salt & Pepper
Copycat Buttermilk Ranch Packet
- Dry Ranch Spices (above)
- Dried Buttermilk Powder
What are the ingredients in Hidden Valley packets?
Similar to this homemade mix, Hidden Valley ranch packets contain buttermilk, salt, dried garlic, dried onion, & spices. But otherwise, most of the ingredients are processed additives & preservatives—like maltodextrin (the first ingredient, a highly-processed carbohydrate), monosodium glutamate or MSG, & artificial flavors (among others). This doesn’t mean Hidden Valley packets are “bad,” or that we can never choose to eat them! Rather, the intention here is to understand what we’re eating, so we can make informed choices about what’s right for each of us.
Which is Healthier: Store-Bought or Homemade Ranch Packet?
- Ingredients. Whether you’re buying taco seasoning or ranch packets, store-bought seasoning mixes usually contain some processed additives. Some are harmless, some are questionable, and some people may be sensitive to specific additives, like MSG. By making your own DIY ranch seasoning mix at home, you can keep it dairy-free if you need to, you skip the additives, and you know exactly what goes into it.
- Sodium Content. Similarly, store-bought seasoning blends are almost always higher in sodium—and many contain both salt and MSG. Hidden Valley ranch seasoning packets contain 60mg sodium per ¼ tsp, whereas my copycat buttermilk ranch powder has only 13mg sodium per ¼ tsp. If you want a low-sodium ranch seasoning, homemade is a great option!
- Convenience. As easy as it is to make this ranch seasoning at home, buying the premade packet is ultimately quicker & simpler. And, if using a Hidden Valley ranch packet makes your week easier or less stressful, that is a health benefit worth acknowledging! On the other hand, if you don’t have a ranch packet at home but you do have dry ranch spices, throwing together a homemade ranch seasoning mix can save you a trip to the store.
- Flavor. If you love the taste of Hidden Valley ranch seasoning and a DIY version just doesn’t cut it, then give yourself permission to enjoy the seasoning you love! Denying ourselves the foods and flavors that bring us joy only creates scarcity and stress—which can negatively impact our health. I encourage you to lighten up on yourself and make choices based on what feels right for you.
How to Make Ranch Seasoning from Scratch
- In a bowl or jar, combine dried parsley, dried dill, garlic powder, dried minced onion, dried chives, salt, and pepper.
- Optional: Add dried buttermilk powder to make a copycat version of store-bought/Hidden Valley ranch packets.
- Whisk well or shake the jar until the ranch seasonings are integrated.
- Store your DIY ranch seasoning mix in a sealed jar or airtight container at room temperature, and it will last for up to 1 year.
How much seasoning is in a ranch packet?
A 1-oz packet of Hidden Valley buttermilk ranch seasoning contains ~3 Tbsp of dry ranch powder total. So, to substitute for 1 store-bought ranch packet, you can use 3 Tbsp of homemade buttermilk ranch powder, or 4-5 tsp of dry ranch seasoning. (The dry spice mix is a bit more concentrated without the buttermilk power, so you only need half as much.)
How to Make Ranch Dressing with Homemade Seasoning
The Hidden Valley ranch packet suggests combining a 1-oz seasoning packet with 1 cup mayo + 1 cup milk to make ranch dressing. And if you’d like, you’re welcome to use this same basic formula with your homemade seasoning! But for a tastier, creamier, lightened-up ranch that’s still super simple, try my 4-ingredient homemade ranch dressing—using the dry seasoning or powder mix.
- With Dry Ranch Seasoning: Combine 4 tsp dry seasoning with ⅓ cup each of mayo, plain yogurt, and buttermilk—plus a squeeze of lemon juice. For me, using some actual buttermilk gives this the rich, tangy, creamy taste of classic ranch that I crave!
- With Buttermilk Ranch Powder: Combine 3 Tbsp ranch powder with ¾ cup milk, ½ cup mayo, and ½ cup sour cream or Greek yogurt. This lightened-up version cuts down on the mayo, without sacrificing any flavor or creaminess.
Watch my Ranch Salad Dressing video to see how I use my DIY ranch seasoning to make a super-simple dressing!
Other Ways to Use Homemade Ranch Dressing Mix
- Ranch Dip: Use the dry ranch seasoning mix to make a creamy ranch veggie dip with yogurt or sour cream. Or make a dairy-free Whole30 ranch mayo dip with avocado oil mayo!
- Protein Dry Rub: You can use either version of homemade ranch seasoning to make baked ranch chicken wings, ranch grilled pork chops, or any ranch-seasoned protein you like.
- Season Everything: Let this copycat ranch mix become your new go-to spice blend! You can add ranch flavor to roasted veggies, make your own ranch roasted chickpea snacks, season French fries or a baked potato, add it to pizza or macaroni. Have fun with it!
Homemade Ranch Seasoning Mix
Dry Ranch Seasoning
- 1 Tbsp dried parsley
- 2 tsp dried dill
- 2 tsp garlic powder, (or dried minced garlic)
- 2 tsp dried minced onion, (or onion powder)
- 1 tsp dried chives
- ½ tsp salt
- ½ tsp pepper
Optional: for DIY Buttermilk Ranch Packet
- ⅓ cup dried buttermilk powder
- Add all herbs and spices to a bowl or jar.
- Optional: Add dried buttermilk powder to make a DIY version of store-bought ranch packets!
- Whisk well or shake jar to integrate.
- Store homemade seasoning mix in a sealed jar or airtight container at room temperature for up to 1 year.
- Use DIY ranch seasoning to make homemade ranch dressing or ranch dip—or to add ranch flavor to protein, veggies, or anything you like!
- Recipe yields ~3½ Tbsp dry ranch seasoning mix.
- (Or yields ~½ cup DIY buttermilk ranch powder. To substitute for a 1-oz store-bought ranch packet, use 3 Tbsp ranch powder.)
To make homemade ranch dressing:
- Combine 4 tsp dry ranch seasoning mix with ⅓ cup mayo, ⅓ cup buttermilk, ⅓ cup plain yogurt & a squeeze of lemon juice.
- Or combine 3 Tbsp buttermilk ranch powder with ½ cup sour cream or Greek yogurt, ½ cup mayo, and ¾ cup milk.
Nutrition Notes:Nutrition per 1 tsp buttermilk ranch powder:
10 calories | 0.8g fat | 0.8g carbs | 0.1g fiber | 0.2g sugar | 0.3g protein
51mg sodium | 3mg cholesterol Below nutrition is provided for 1 tsp dry ranch seasoning (without buttermilk powder).