Monika’s Molecular Meals: Whole30 Ranch Dressing

Monika Knapp By Monika Knapp | 10 May 2020 540 views
whole30 ranch dressing

Delicious DIY Whole30 Ranch

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Have you ever looked at the ingredients in a bottle of Hidden Valley Ranch?

Vegetable oil (arguably the worst of the oils according to recent research)…

“Natural flavors”…

Phosphoric acid…

Xantham gum…

Disodium Inosinate, and the list goes on and on… 

And yet, Ranch continues to be the salad dressing of choice for Americans, year after year.

(Even though those ingredients… particularly the ones that sound like nasty chemicals… are NOT something I want to put on my salad or any other food!)

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So I decided I wanted to make a healthier version of Ranch–more specifically, one that’s Whole30-friendly.

This better-for-you Ranch is:

  • Creamy (without any actual dairy)…
  • Garlicky, herb-y, and exploding with flavor…
  • And easily as “addictive” to dip fresh vegetables, appetizers, and just about anything in as the bottled stuff…

Plus?

It comes together in less than 10 minutes, and I’m guessing you already have everything you need (minus the fresh herbs, maybe!) at home to make it.

And honestly, to me at least… I think it tastes BETTER than the Ranch dressing you can buy at the store!

Here’s how it’s done:

FTH’s Whole30 Ranch

Equipment Needed: Mason jar (optional if using food processor method); handheld immersion blender or food processor

Recipe Time: 10 minutes

Makes: About 2 cups

Ingredients

  • 1 whole egg plus 1 egg yolk
  • 1 1/2 cups avocado oil, grapeseed oil, or liquid flavorless coconut oil (see Recipe Note)
  • 2 large cloves of garlic
  • 1 Tbsp finely chopped dill
  • 1 Tbsp finely chopped chives or scallions
  • 1 tsp finely chopped parsley
  • 1 tsp Dijon mustard
  • 1 tsp fresh lemon juice
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • Onion and/or garlic powder to taste (see Recipe Notes)
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Directions:

1) Layer the ingredients in your blending container.

If using a handheld immersion blender:

Add the whole egg and yolk to the bottom of the mason jar (or whatever jar you plan on blending in).

On top of it, layer the oil, followed by the garlic, mustard, and lemon juice.

Place your immersion blender at the bottom of the container, then tilt the container a little and begin blending. After a second or two, you should see the mixture start coming together.

If using a food processor:

Add the whole egg and yolk, garlic, mustard, and lemon juice to the bowl of the food processor.

Begin to pulse and, while pulsing, drizzle in the oil. When fully emulsified, stop pulsing.

2) Add the herbs, do the final blend, and dress (or dip)!

If using a handheld immersion blender:

Add the herbs and optional spices and stir to combine. If you think it needs to be blended further, feel free to blend it a bit more (but be careful of bruising the herbs).

Taste and adjust with salt and pepper as needed, then serve.

If using a food processor:

Add the herbs and optional spices, then pulse a few more times. Taste and adjust as needed.

That’s it!

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Recipe Notes

  • You might be tempted to try using olive oil in this recipe, but I’m telling you right now, that would be a BIG mistake! Olive oil becomes overpowering in a mayonnaise, and downright rancid when it’s blended for too long. So stick to the neutral oils here–avocado and grapeseed work beautifully, or if you have a favorite brand of coconut oil that isn’t overly “coconut-y” and stays liquid at room temp, that would work too.
  • I generally stay away from ingredients like onion and garlic powder because too much can make your food taste artificial, but in an aggressively seasoned dip or dressing like Ranch, they’re a welcome addition.

3 Whole30-Approved Snack Ideas To Make The Most Out Of This Mouth-Watering Ranch…

Anytime I have DIY Ranch at home, here’s how I use up the leftovers (especially if I’m sick of salads).

Because there’s no way I’m letting any of that deliciousness go to waste! Especially when you can make so many tasty variations, like these…

1) Sweet Potato Chips With Spicy Ranch

Slice a sweet potato using a mandoline or sharp knife, and parboil the slices in salted water for 3 minutes.

Drain the potatoes, then fry in avocado or grapeseed oil heated to 325 degrees Fahrenheit. Flip occasionally–they’re finished when the slices no longer release bubbles.

Set the chips on a paper towel-lined plate and season with salt and (optionally) smoked paprika.

Add a few pinches of smoked paprika to your Ranch, then serve as a savory spicy snack.

2) Raw Veg With Ranch & Caramelized Onion Dip

Prepare your favorite raw vegetables, and set aside. Meanwhile, slice 1-2 onions and saute in olive oil over low heat for 20-30 minutes, or until meltingly tender. Season with salt as you go.

If you want the dip to be a bit punchier, add 2 Tbsp of balsamic vinegar to the onions while you cook them, about 10-15 minutes in. (Feel free to throw in some fresh herbs like thyme, too.)

When the onions are fully caramelized, take them off the heat. Add the onions to the bowl of a food processor, along with as much Ranch as you like, and blend to combine.

Season and serve alongside the raw veg.

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3) Buffalo Cauliflower With Ranch

Preheat your oven to 425 degrees Fahrenheit.

Toss the florets from one head of cauliflower with avocado or grapeseed oil, salt, optional smoked paprika, and Frank’s Red Hot Sauce to taste.

When the oven is preheated, roast the cauliflower on parchment or a nonstick baking pan until crispy and dark on top and no longer raw, about 20-30 minutes.

When the cauliflower is done, remove it and arrange it on a serving platter with the Ranch. Add more Frank’s Red Hot to taste, and enjoy!

How Snacking Can Actually Help You Lose More Weight

For most of us, Ranch dressing is a guilty pleasure we refuse to give up. Maybe you eat it with actual salads… or like my one friend, you have it with pizza. I don’t judge.

But it’s also known to be extremely unhealthy.

If you’re a fellow Ranch-lover, you’re going to LOVE this.

The savory, garlicky, herby flavor is just perfect for dressing up carrots, celery, broccoli, and other veggies… and thankfully, this recipe is healthy enough that you’re not “undoing” all of the nutritious value of those veggies!

And when you have fresh veggies and a healthy dip like this one… you don’t need to feel guilty about some extra snacking!

In fact, depending on what you snack on… snacking could even help you lose weight.

(That sounds like the weight loss plan for me!)

For example, one study found that when people snacked on protein-rich foods before bedtime, they burned an average of 441 MORE calories per day.

So this high-protein dip is a great place to start… and if you add in some more protein right before bed (and throughout the day)… you could find yourself burning fat and dropping pounds fast.

Eat Ranch dressing and lose weight? Dreams do come true.

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[This post was updated by Fit Trim Happy on May 10, 2020.]