I like dairy. I mean, it seems like all the good things in life have dairy in them.
But when we decided to go on a Whole30 during the last month, I guess that was my cue to suck it up and live without.
The thing is, I eat salad every day, sometimes twice a day. That’s how much I love my buttermilk ranch dressing (because you know it ain’t the spinach bringing me back!), and I never really thought twice about it, because I use healthy, probiotic buttermilk or yogurt in my dressing, and healthy homemade mayonnaise.
But, here we are. Dairy free. For a whole month – maybe more.
My first thought was to modify our favorite paleo strawberry vinaigrette to omit the honey, but honestly, I just wanted ranch.
Nothing replaces ranch dressing.
So…. I bought cashews. Actually I ordered a three pound bag of raw cashews from Amazon, because I couldn’t find any raw cashews in our area, and all the roasted cashews contains peanut oil. Ugh.
So yes, I bought a three pound bag of halves and pieces for the dressing, as well as for the kids to snack on and to make cashew butter with.
And with a great sigh of resignation, I settled in to make what was sure to be second rate salad dressing at best.
And now I’m laughing at myself, because with just a few tweaks to the recipe, our dairy-free, Whole30 approved ranch dressing tastes so close to the real thing, you wouldn’t know it wasn’t unless someone told you!
It’s pretty amazing, and easy too!
All you need to do is soak your cashews overnight to get them nice and full of water so they’ll blend up smoothly in your food processor or blender, then make your dressing!
I still love dairy, but maybe it’s not as necessary in good food as I may have thought.
Whole30 Dairy-free Ranch Dressing
- 1/2 cup of healthy, Whole30 Approved Mayonnaise
- 1/2 cup cashews, soaked overnight, and processed until smooth
- 1 Tablespoon lemon juice
- 2–4 Tablespoons unsweetened almond milk
- 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1/2 teaspoon onion powder
- 1 teaspoon chopped parsley
- 1 teaspoon chives (optional)
- 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground pepper (optional)
- Combine all ingredients
- Mix well(you can do this right in the food processor you were blending cashews in!)
- Store in the refrigerator for up to 2 weeks.
- Enjoy on salads or anything you normally use ranch dressing on!