The best vegan buttermilk ranch dressing doesn't come in a bottle or a jar, it's made right in your kitchen with the freshest ingredients. Once you taste this homemade ranch dressing, you'll never want to eat any other kind.
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HOMEMADE VEGAN BUTTERMILK RANCH DRESSING
My husband (Alex's dad) loathes mayonnaise. The sight of it makes his face turn as white as the condiment itself.
Because of his disdain for mayo, we never had a bottle of creamy ranch dressing in our refrigerator. Ever.
Then we went vegan and everything changed.
We felt better, we looked better, we ate even better, and we made ranch dressing with cashews instead of eggs.
Yes, that's right, we actually had ranch in the house!
Now, I'm not saying that he eats it. He doesn't, because he has a serious phobia about "white gloppy food."
However, it doesn't make him want to run for the hills screaming, so there's that.
There's nothing gross about whipping up cashews with fresh herbs, and he gets that. So.......
We get to enjoy dipping veggies, smothering salads, or making our Twice Baked Ranch Potatoes in this ranch dressing without him looking at us with utter disgust.
I'd say that's progress, wouldn't you?
WHAT'S IN VEGAN RANCH DRESSING?
- RAW CASHEWS
- LEMON JUICE
- WHITE WINE VINEGAR
WHAT IS BUTTERMILK?
I know what you're wondering. How can you call it "buttermilk" dressing if there isn't any buttermilk in the ingredients?
Easy. Buttermilk is the liquid leftover after churning butter. It's basically a tangy fermented type of milk.
You can make your own buttermilk by adding acid, such as lemon, to milk and letting it sit for a while until it begins to curdle.
OR, you can add lemon to the ground cashews and water (which is essentially cashew milk).
Adding lemon to cashew milk gives the milk the same tanginess that you'd find in buttermilk.
HOW TO MAKE NO MAYO RANCH DRESSING
First things first, you need a good blender to break those cashews down into the creamiest dressing ever.
Linda is a fan of Blendtec. Click the photo below to learn more.
Alex is a fan of Vitamix. Click the photo below to learn more.
Soak the cashews in water overnight, or, boil them in water for 15 minutes, or until they're soft and puffy. This will ensure that they break down into a super creamy sauce.
Once they're soft and puffy, drain the water and rinse them.
Put the water, lemon, vinegar, cashews, garlic, and salt in the blender and blend on a high speed for about 1 minute.
Turn the blender off and scrape the sides, and the lid if there are whole pieces of cashew stuck on the lid.
Blend for another minute, or until the dressing is creamy and smooth.
You shouldn't be able to detect any solids in the dressing.
Pour the dressing into a bowl and stir in the herbs.
Taste it and add more salt if needed.
TIPS FOR MAKING THE BEST EGG-FREE RANCH DRESSING
- Make sure that the cashews are really soft. This will ensure the creamiest dressing.
- Use the freshest herbs you can find.
- Add more water to thin it out if you don't like a thick dressing.
- Alter the garlic and/or salt to suite your taste
IS RANCH A DIP OR A SALAD DRESSING?
If you want to use it for a dip, add the water slowly until it's thick enough to cling to vegetables, chips, or whatever you're dipping into it.
For a salad dressing, add a little more water so it's thinner and will cover the vegetables in the salad without being too thick and gloppy.
HOW LONG DOES RANCH DRESSING WITH CASHEWS LAST?
You can store this in a covered container in the refrigerator for up to a week.
Keep in mind that because this is made with cashews, it will thicken quite a bit as it sits. All you'll need to do is add a bit of water or even cashew milk to thin it out.
FIND MORE DELICIOUS SAUCES AND DRESSINGS IN OUR COOKBOOK, GREAT VEGAN BBQ WITHOUT A GRILL
This recipe can also be found in our first cookbook, Great Vegan BBQ Without a Grill. Click HERE to learn more about it. Or click the photo below.
Here are some of the other sauces you'll find in our cookbook:
- Big Mama's Homemade BBQ Sauce
- Have-It-Your-Way Chipotle BBQ Sauce
- Sweet Home Alabama White BBQ Sauce
- Horseradish Pesto
- Vegan Ailoi
- 10 Minute Homemade Chimichurri
- Smoky, Buttery Buffalo Sauce
- Avocado Lime Sauce
HERE ARE A FEW MORE VEGAN BBQ RECIPES FROM OUR COOKBOOK
Vegan Southern-Style Creamy Potato Salad
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The Best Vegan Ranch Buttermilk Dressing
- 1 cup raw cashews soaked or boiled (see note)
- 2 tablespoon lemon juice
- 1 tablespoon white wine vinegar
- ½ cup plus 3 tablespoon water see note
- 1 clove garlic see note
- ½ teaspoon ground sea salt see note
- ¼ cup flat leaf parsley finely chopped
- 3 tablespoon chives finely chopped
- Drain and rinse the softened cashews and put them in a high-powered blender.
- Add the 2 tablespoon lemon juice1 tablespoon vinegar, ½ cup plus 3 tablespoon water (see note), garlic clove (see note), and salt (see note), and blend on a high speed for 1 minute. Scrape the sides and the lid if necessary, and blend for another minute, or until the dressing is smooth and silky. You shouldn't be able to detect any solids from the cashews.
- Pour into a bowl and stir in the ¼ cup chopped parsley and 3 tablespoon chopped chives and stir until well combined.
- Taste and adjust add more garlic and/or salt if desired.
- The Nutrition Facts are an estimate only.
- Soak the cashews in water overnight or boil them in water for 15 minutes. They should be soft and puffy so they break down into a creamy texture.
- Add more water if you prefer a thinner dressing.
- If you're making a dip, add the water slowly until you get the desired thickness.
- Taste and adjust the salt and garlic to suite your taste. If you are watching your sodium intake, add the salt slowly and taste.
Phala Bowles says
Cashews do not need to be soaked at all actually. Unless you wish I forgot to take time to soak them and was in a hurry so threw them in the blender and they turned out the same. Just fine no problem. Just sharing for those in a hurry cant wait to try this version of ranch. 💚❤
Linda Meyer says
Hi Phala! Yes, if you have a high powered blender it can work without soaking. We've had great luck and bad luck not soaking them, so we usually do. We hope you enjoy it. 🙂
Christine @ Run Plant Based says
Yum this looks excellent and simple, thanks!
Linda Meyer says
Thank you! It's so simple and so good. 🙂
Thank you so much for sharing this with us!
Your recipes are amazing!
Happy Monday and lots of love from Germany,
Linda Meyer says
Thank you so much, Anna! You made our day. Lots of love from Chicago right back at you. xoxo
My granddaughter is allergic to cashew nuts, with that said I'm always looking for other products to use and still get the flavors, is there something you would suggest. My life has changed since she came into the world, I want her to be able to experience foods that I've enjoyed which can be hard at times. She's allergic to red fruits and some nuts. Two days ago, I made spaghetti with a green enchilada sauce, because she's allergic to tomatoes (Yes, tomatoes...go figure), we call our kitchen the test kitchen LOL. Once we make something, we pray that we don't give her something that going to cause her to break out into hives, because it's not pretty. I have to say we are not vegan, we are vegetarians and your recipes work best for my family because she's also allergic to dairy.
Linda Meyer says
Hi Marie, thank you so much for commenting. Your granddaughter is truly lucky to have such an awesome grandmother. Often times you can substitute sunflower seeds for cashews. we haven't tried using them for this, but we suspect that they would work. You would want to use unsalted, and just follow the same directions for the cashews. Please let us know if you try it and how it turns out. xoxo, Linda and Alex