Is there any American out there who doesn’t like ranch? We doubt it. By far the most popular salad dressing and a common flavoring for potato chips and other foods, ranch is a hot favorite in the US.
Ranch seasoning is a tangy seasoning blend made with dried herbs and spices and is a great addition to your home spice rack. You can use it to make ranch dip, ranch dressing, or simply add to your favorite protein or vegetables.
It is easily available in supermarkets all across the country and can be purchased in packet form. These small packets are incredibly convenient to use and are perfect for making your ranch dips, dressings, and marinades.
So, how much ranch seasoning is in a packet? A 1 oz. packet of ranch seasoning has around 2 tablespoons, which equals around 6 teaspoons, of dry mix in one packet.
Read on to find out more about ranch seasoning, how many packets you will need for making various amounts of ranch dip and ranch dressing, and much more:
What Is Ranch Seasoning?
Ranch dressing was invented by Steve Henson, a cowboy from Nebraska, and was served to customers at his ranch called Hidden Valley Ranch.
The dressing’s popularity resulted in customers asking for recipes and jars of the tangy dressing to take home.
To satisfy the growing demand, Henson began mailing out packets of the dried ranch seasoning to his customers, which soon turned into a mail-order business.
From there, the business was acquired, leading to the launch of bottled dressings and packed ranch seasoning.
Although several brands sell ranch seasoning, Hidden Valley Ranch remains synonymous with the original ranch dressing and is by far the most popular brand of ranch seasoning in the country. You can get it here on Amazon.
To say that Americans can’t get enough of ranch is an understatement. Other than using it to top salads, it is used as a dip for just about anything you can think of, from chicken wings to pizzas, chips, and veggies.
Many cooks have even harnessed its potential as a ready-made seasoning to add a zesty punch to their dishes, such as baked chicken, mashed potatoes, and meatloaf.
How To Use Ranch Seasoning
While ranch dressing and dip remain the most popular uses of ranch seasoning, there is so much more that you do with it. You can use it as a:
- Seasoning for pork chops, tacos, meatballs, and fish sticks
- Topping for cheesy bread, corn on the cob, pretzels, and spicy roasted chickpeas
- Mixed in potato salad, coleslaw, deviled eggs, and green bean casserole
This is just the tip of the iceberg, though. Like other popular seasonings and spice mixes, ranch seasoning is a great and versatile ingredient that you can incorporate in several ways into your cooking.
How Much Ranch Seasoning Do You Need?
The amount of ranch seasoning you need will depend on what you are making and the recipe you are following.
When making ranch dressing or ranch dip, you will require different amounts of ranch seasoning, depending on the serving size you wish to prepare, although most recipes call for 1 oz. packets of the dry mix.
Using 1 packet of ranch seasoning, which has around 2 tablespoons of the dry mix, you can easily prepare delicious ranch dressing by mixing it with mayonnaise and whole milk.
To make ranch dip, combine it with sour cream and let it chill in the refrigerator before serving.
Can You Make Ranch Seasoning At Home?
While there are several great ready-made ranch seasoning options available in the market, you can also make yours at home!
You’d be surprised at how easy it is to prepare this delicious spice mix and how it uses common herbs and spices that are most likely already sitting in your kitchen pantry.
Here are the ingredients required to make ranch seasoning at home:
- Dry buttermilk powder
- Garlic powder
- Onion powder
- Mustard powder
- Dried parsley
- Dried dill
- Dried chives
- Dried tarragon
- Fine sea salt
- Fresh cracked black pepper
The best part about making ranch seasoning at home is that you can adjust the ingredients according to your specific dietary needs and restrictions.
For a vegan option, you can substitute the buttermilk power with vegan milk powder. Alternatively, you may use soy milk powder or coconut milk powder as well.
Simply combine all the ingredients and keep them in an airtight container away from sunlight, air, and moisture.
To use homemade ranch seasoning in place of the store-bought variety, use 3 to 4 tablespoons in place of 1 packet.
How Long Does Ranch Seasoning Last?
Spices and dried herbs are among the most long-lasting foods you’ll find in your pantry. If stored properly, they last for years not months.
Stored properly at room temperature, a packet of ranch seasoning will retain the best quality for about 18-24 months.
The best way to tell if the dry seasoning has gone bad is by the way it looks and smells. If it develops a weird odor, flavor, or appearance, or if there is mold growth, discard it immediately.
Store-bought ranch seasoning usually comes with a best-before date, which indicates the time it will retain its best quality.
If the packet is unopened and there are no visible signs of spoilage, you can safely use the product after the date has passed.
For homemade ranch seasoning, the fresher the herbs and spices you use in the mix, the fresher it will stay and the longer it will last.
You can always make or buy small batches of the seasoning and refresh your supply every few weeks or months, depending on your use, to make sure you always get the freshest product.
How To Store Ranch Seasoning
Store-bought ranch seasoning comes in sealed packets and bottles which, if left unopened, can be stored as is in a cool, dry place in your kitchen pantry.
However, once opened, it needs to be stored properly and kept away from sunlight, air, and moisture. The same applies to homemade ranch seasoning.
Store the ranch seasoning in an airtight container, immediately closing the lid tightly after every use. Make sure to never leave it open on the kitchen counter.
Place the container in a cool, dry, and dark place, such as a kitchen cabinet or the pantry. Refrain from storing it in areas that are prone to moisture, humidity, and condensation, such as near the stove, sink, or dishwasher.
Also, avoid adding the dried seasoning into a steaming pot or pan directly from the container since it creates moisture inside.
Instead, use a completely dry spoon to sprinkle the seasoning since wet utensils may also result in moisture and bacterial growth.
How Long Does Homemade Ranch Dressing Last?
Homemade ranch dressing that contains fresh sour cream and buttermilk must be kept in the refrigerator in a well-sealed container, where it should last for up to 2 weeks.
Whether you use homemade ranch seasoning or the store-bought variety, you need to be careful about how you store it and keep it fresh by not dipping anything, such as a vegetable or piece of chicken, directly into the container.
When you want to use the ranch, take out as much as you need in a separate bowl. This prevents the introduction of any harmful bacteria or contaminants into the full batch.
What Can You Use Instead Of Ranch Dressing?
Although ranch dressing has a unique flavor that cannot be substituted with any other type of dressing, there are other options you can go for when you are in short supply.
The best alternative to ranch dressing is to use ranch seasoning mix and combine it with some mayonnaise and whole milk.
If that is not an option, you may use ranch dip instead. You can easily prepare it at home or get the ready-made store-bought variety.
The best substitute depends on the recipe you are using and, of course, your personal preference.
Italian dressing, honey, hummus, avocado dressing, and tomato sauce are all great alternatives to use in place of ranch dressing for salads and other recipes.
Now that you know all about ranch seasoning and how much there is in a packet, here are a few additional questions we thought you might have:
Is ranch seasoning gluten-free?
The original ranch seasoning by Hidden Valley is both gluten-free and keto-friendly and is perfect for individuals with these special dietary restrictions.
Can you substitute ranch dip mix for ranch dressing mix?
Since both ranch dip mix and ranch dressing mix share more or less the same ingredients, they can be used interchangeably.
The main difference is that ranch dip mix contains sour cream or mayonnaise while ranch dressing mix contains buttermilk.
How much taco seasoning mix is in a packet?
While the total amount depends on the size of the packet and brand of seasoning, a typical packet of taco seasoning contains 2 tablespoons of the dry seasoning mix.
If you’re looking for an easy homemade ranch recipe, here’s a great video that covers one!
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