Housemade Parmesan Ranch Dressing

By Michael Harris-Arzon, The Simplistic Professional


Every chef has a preference as to the type of foods they want to cook.  That is why some specialize in pastries, others in a particular regional cuisine like Italian or French and then there are those the specialize in sauces. 

I started out baking and all through my childhood I told myself, and anyone that cared to listen, that I wanted to go to school at Le Cordon Bleu and become a pastry chef.  But as life happens, I ended up studying business and worked in restaraunts to put myself through school.   

Along the way, my cooking preferences changed to those of an Executive Chef and I shied away from certain things, like making sauces from scratch.  Don’t get me wrong, I knew how to make all of the basic sauces, but never ventured into creating my own sauce recipes.  Until the past couple of years, when I got into making elaborate sandwiches and as you know, every great sandwich needs a good sauce.


  • 1/2 Cup Cold Buttermilk, Extremely Well Shaken
  • 1/2 Cup Mayonaise
  • 1/4 Cup Parmesan Cheese, Shaved
  • 1 Clove Garlic, Finely Minced
  • 1 Tbs. Yellow Onion, Finely Minced
  • 1/8 Tsp. Salt
  • 1/2 Tsp. Freshly Ground Mustard Seed,  Dry Mustard Powder if fresh isn’t available
  • 2 Tbs. Fresh Chives, Finely Chopped
  • 1 Tbs. Fresh Thyme, Finely Chopped
  • 1 Tbs. Parsley, Finely Chopped
  • 1 Tbs. Fresh Dill, Finely Chopped
  • 1 Tsp. Cracked Black Pepper
  • 1 Tsp. Smoked Paprika


  1. Pour your 1/2 cup of buttermilk into a small Tupperware container and close the lid tightly.   Shake vigorously for about a minute.  This ensures that the milk isn’t separated AND adds air which lightens it up.  Making for a creamier dressing in my opinion.
  2. Into a medium mixing bowl, add your buttermilk and mayonnaise.  Mix together well with a wire whisk.
  3. If using fresh mustard seed, pour your seeds into a mortar and pestle,  grind until a fine powder.
  4. Add your paprika, cracked peppercorns, freshly ground mustard seed, fresh thyme, fresh dill, fresh chives, fresh parsley and salt.  Whisk your dressing until well combined.
  5. Finally, add your onion, garlic and parmesan cheese to your ranch dressing mixture and stir with a small spatula until well combined.
  6. Serve on sandwiches, burgers, salads etc., and enjoy!

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