Finally, a Healthier, Paleo Version of Ranch Dressing—and 8 Tasty Ways to Enjoy It

November 2, 2016

When Kenneth Henson first developed ranch dressing in 1949, the recipe was pretty simple. The combination of buttermilk, garlic, onion, and fresh herbs tasted so fresh, so wholesome that customers at his Hidden Valley Ranch in Santa Barbara, Calif. went nuts for it. Henson eventually sold both the ranch and the dressing, and the rest is history.

Now, ranch dressing is the most popular salad dressing in the United States. But the stuff sold on grocery stores shelves today is a far cry from Henson’s original recipe. The leading brand lists vegetable oil as the first ingredient, followed by xanthan gum, modified food starch, and monosodium glutamate (MSG). Not exactly fresh, or good for you.

Thankfully, there’s a better way to get your fix: Primal Kitchen Ranch Dressing. It has all the garlicky, creamy flavor of the original, without the dairy, sugar, or artificial ingredients. Plus, Primal Kitchen ranch dressing is organic, gluten-free, Paleo-friendly, and compatible with Whole30 diets.

Now you’re probably thinking: the foods usually served with ranch dressing aren’t exactly healthy, either. That’s where we come in. Check out this roundup of our favorite pizza, burger, and wings recipes—made a little bit more nutritious, so you can enjoy them with a clear conscience. Don’t forget the Primal Kitchen Ranch Dressing!

Cauliflower Buffalo “Wings”

Cool down these spicy buffalo cauliflower “wings” with a side of ranch. Though they’re completely vegetarian, the buttery buffalo sauce gives each bite a savory, hearty flavor reminiscent of real meat.

Fried Chicken Wings

A cayenne-laced batter is the spicy secret to our gluten-free fried chicken wings, which are perfect for dipping. Serve them with celery stick and baby carrots, sports bar–style.

Protein-Style Burgers

When you order a protein-style burger at a restaurant, it often comes with just a touch of sauce (whether ketchup, mustard, mayo, or some combination thereof). Sometimes, that’s just not enough. But when you make your own sliders at home, no one will judge you for slathering on the ranch.

Portobello Sliders

Mushrooms aren’t just a burger topping—here, they’re the bun, too! Sandwich portobello caps around bacon, caramelized onions, goat cheese, avocado, and tomato for a slider you won’t soon forget.

Parsnip Fries

Potatoes aren’t the only root vegetable you can turn into french fries. Slightly sweet parsnips crisp up nicely—especially when you fry them twice in lard.

Paleo Breakfast Pizza

Has any food-condiment pairing ever been more perfect than pizza and ranch dressing? Don’t think so. Skip the greasy pepperoni, and opt for a gluten-free and Paleo-friendly breakfast pizza dressed up with bacon, eggs, mushrooms, and spinach instead.

Homemade Chicken Nuggets

Here’s a great alternative to those mystery meat chicken nuggets from the drive-thru. Our version is made from ground chicken, coconut flour, and flaxseeds, and baked to perfection.

Chopped Chicken Salad

Chopping all the ingredients—chicken, hard-boiled eggs, tomatoes, avocados, lettuce—before assembling the salad keeps every bite perfectly balanced. Take the recipe up a notch by omitting the lemon vinaigrette, and drizzling creamy ranch over the top.
Photo credit: Alicia Cho

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Annalise Mantz

Annalise is a foodie, Brussels sprouts lover, grammar nerd, and political pet aficionado.

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