Better-for-You Buttermilk Ranch Dressing — with extra recipe links!

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Update:  As I made a fresh batch of this tasty dressing for the big game tonight, I thought it worth linking in a few more ways I like to use this beyond the typical dressing or dip.  Also, my friend, Carrie, kindly figured out the nutritional information which I have included below. Whether you are a Ravens or a 49ers fan — or just like to watch the commercials — I wish you a festive Super Bowl evening and a great week ahead!

Who likes veggies dipped in ranch?  We do!  And this easy recipe for ranch dressing is much healthier and every bit as tasty as store-bought versions, dare I say more so?  The load of veggies I brought home from market yesterday inspired me to make a fresh batch.

While I often think of a veggie tray as a healthy, kid-friendly hors d’oeuvre, it is also a terrific option to a salad for a casual dinner.  Think sloppy Joes served alongside this rainbow of veggies.  It’s a speedy and satisfying dinner that is rather healthy, too.  If you make the ranch dressing ahead of time, quite a few simple salads and sides are within your quick grasp.  What’s more, you can make a double batch and keep in in your fridge for a week, maybe two.

I have figured out some fun ways to incorporate this dressing into various recipes over the years; it adds great flavor and moisture with little in the way of extra fat and calories. One favorite use is in a copy-cat version of my favorite restaurant salad: Chicken Quesadilla Salad. Individual Baked Cheddar-Broccoli Rice Cups, Tex-Mex Chopped Salad and Grilled Steak Salad are other novel ways to incorporate the dressing.  Oh, BLT Ranch Pasta Salad is a big-time favorite here, too!

When I buy buttermilk for the ranch dressing, the leftover is also a great reason for me to make either my favorite Slow-Baked Banana Bread or White Chocolate-Cranberry Scone recipe. Hmmm. Which should it be??

Note:  Carrie from the very delicious Carrie’s Experimental Kitchen made my recipe and calculated the following nutritional information based on a yield of one cup and a total of eight servings per cup:

Calories 62, Carbs 1.2g, Fat 5.9g, Protein 1.1g, Fiber 0g

Carrie has a new cookbook out so if you are looking for family-approved, Mediterranean-inspired meals based on foods you probably have on hand, pop over her way!  I love my copy!

Better-for-You Buttermilk Ranch Dressing
The instructions for the chicken are for a heart-shaped piece of chicken, as pictured below. My kids love this preparation, but feel free to serve it in any shape you desire!
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Ingredients
  1. 1/3 cup low-fat buttermilk
  2. 3 tablespoons Chobani 2% plain yogurt
  3. 3 tablespoons mayonnaise
  4. 1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
  5. 2 tablespoons canola or olive oil
  6. 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
  7. 3 tablespoons minced chives
Instructions
  1. Whisk all ingredients together.
  2. Dressing will keep for a week or so, covered, in the refrigerator.
The Fountain Avenue Kitchen http://fountainavenuekitchen.com/

BLT Ranch Pasta Salad

Chicken Quesadilla Salad

Individual Baked Cheddar-Broccoli Rice Cups

Simple Garden Salad made special!

Grilled Steak Salad

Tex-Mex Chopped Salad

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