Tieghan Gerard's Simple Hack For Dairy-Free Ranch Dressing - Exclusive

Half Baked Harvest founder Tieghan Gerard knows her way around dressings like Dorothy knows her way around Oz. And as with any master of her trade, she has a few sauce-making magic tricks up her sleeve. Take, for example, the genius dairy-free ranch hack that the "Half Baked Harvest" author divulged in a recent exclusive interview with Tasting Table

Buckle up, folks. The key to a delicious, vegan-friendly ranch is the same green fruit that stars in our favorite breakfast toasts and chip dips: avocado. "[You can] use it pureed into a dressing, and make like a creamy avocado ranch without actually using any sour cream, or dairy, if you are dairy-free," Gerard said. 

Avocado, you ask? If you and guacamole are fast friends, you already know that its creamy textures and buttery taste profiles fall well within optimal dressing territory. Besides, if avocado can masquerade itself in everything from ice cream to pound cakes, why not a dairy-free ranch? 

How to use avocado for a dairy-less ranch

For an avocado-based ranch, you'll need the fruit to be blender-ready, probably at the guacamole-ripe level. "You just want to kind of blend [the avocado] with your food processor, probably add a little bit of water, add all the herbs," Gerard told Tasting Table. Which herbs are we talking? At Tasting Table, we use celery seed, mustard powder, onion powder, oregano, chile flakes, dill, and parsley for our buttermilk ranch.

If you're not on a dairy-free diet but want to make avocado ranch because the process truly is that easy — or because avocado is a king in your kitchen — go ahead and add parmesan. If you are dairy-free, skip the cheese. And, either way, you should add lemon, as Gerard suggested. 

Last but not least, you'll need a liquid to achieve an optimal dressing consistency. "If you want to keep it non-dairy you can do a non-dairy milk [to] thin it out, and then you have your avocado-based ranch dressing," Gerard explained.