Welcome to week 2 of my AIP seasoning series! I kicked off last week with my favorite Taco Seasoning and today I’m cooling things down with an herb-packed Ranch Seasoning blend that you can use to liven up a whole
ranch range of dishes… without all the crap you’ll find stashed in the store bought options out there.
While we’re talking about crap, here’s the list of ingredients from a pretty popular purveyor of standard ranch seasoning mix, brace yourselves!
“Maltodextrin, buttermilk, salt, monosodium glutamate, lactic acid, dried garlic, dried onion, spices, citric acid, calcium stearate, artificial flavor, xantham gum, carboxymethylcellulose, guar gum.”
So, to translate: it’s a mixture of grain derived filler, flavor enhancers and gut irritating gums, with a dairy based twist. Oh, with a glorified garlic seasoning, to taste. Sounds… pretty damn gross, really. If you’re looking to avoid dairy, grains and general food additive anarchy, you’ll want to skip this stuff. The thing is, there’s really no reason for half that stuff to be in there from a flavor perspective. I mean, dried seasonings are pretty dang shelf stable without all that goop.
Which means I haven’t monkeyed with the concept of ranch seasoning too much at all, other than to avoid those bullshit ingredients. So you’ll find all the usual suspects in this ranch seasoning blend: parsley, dill, garlic, onion and chives all give that classic, familiar flavor profile, sans skanky ingredients. No need to reach for one of those dodgy little packets, pouches or packages!
You will notice I have one little addition that is a tad unusual. I like to add a smidge of nutritional yeast to my ranch seasoning mix: it adds a nice savory note that gives a little extra depth and it has a richness that you lose when you ditch the dairy and can no longer have that buttermilk tang of traditional recipes. Don’t worry, it’s optional and you can skip it if you want. (A side note: If you have a problem with yeast / fermented foods in general or make dietary modifications for MTHFR, you should avoid nutritional yeast; otherwise, it’s fine for AIP in general. You do you, boo.)
A couple of other quick notes. I don’t like to add salt to my seasoning mixes because I like to season each dish that I make separately. I find I’m less likely to under or over salt that way; plus, adding salt to the mix is basically a filler and I prefer to have mixes that are straight seasoning, take up less space and are flavor focused. But each to their own! You can totally add salt, to taste, if you wish. As it stands, this ranch seasoning blend will yield you about 1/2 a cup, or 40 g.
I like to simply mix up this ranch seasoning mix in a bowl and transfer it to an airtight container, because I like to fold this into dips for a nice, herb flecked texture. If you want something a little finer, though, you can pop all the ingredients into a mini food processor or spice mill to give it a few quick pulses. It’ll pour from a shaker easier that way. Just don’t over process it or you may find it gives food a little green tinge, particularly in dips!
I’ll be following this post in a few days with an easy, speedy recipe that uses this Ranch Seasoning mix! In the meantime, we especially like to use it on chicken, folded into coconut cream or avocado based dips, whipped into dressings or even sprinkled over jicama slices for quick little snack. What’s your favorite way to use Ranch Seasoning at home? (Grab the recipe for my Ranch Guacamole here!)
Use this blend here: Ranch Guacamole.
Next week in the AIP Seasoning Series: Persian Seasoning.
Did you miss my earlier AIP Seasoning Series posts?
This post was included in the AIP Recipe Roundtable.
- MIX: Add all the ingredients to a bowl and stir through to combine evenly. Transfer to an airtight container and store at room temperature. Give a little shake or stir before using as the finer ingredients can settle to the bottom.
- PULSE: This is totally optional, but for a more even mixture, you can pop all the ingredients into a mini food processor or spice mill and pulse just a few times. Don't over process the mixture or it will have a tendency to turn things a little green!
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