15 Store-Bought Ranch Dressings, Ranked Worst To Best

If your local diner only has two salad dressings, ranch is one of them. The creamy, tangy dressing has been an American staple since the 1950s and has never lost its fanbase. America rarely has a recipe all of its own, but ranch dressing holds that place as the country's most popular salad dressing by a landslide. Whipping up homemade buttermilk ranch dressing is ideal, but when the sink is full of dishes and chopping anything seems like a headache, thankfully there are plenty of pre-made options. 

As a self-proclaimed ranch connoisseur, I thought I had a solid grasp on the best ranch dressings out there. I always gravitated towards my old standby, so even taking stock of the possibilities was an exciting start to this quest. I hunted down the most widespread pre-packaged ranch dressings to officially determine the best option, once and for all.

When shopping for bottled ranch, there are two avenues to consider: The condiment aisle and the refrigerated dressings and dips section. Contrary to popular belief, refrigeration doesn't mean better, and it doesn't necessarily mean more expensive. There were many factors to consider to determine the best store-bought ranches. There's consistency, acidity, herbiness, and spice, but the most important factor is how it will be consumed. While ranch was originally labeled a salad dressing, it's become a designated dip, spread, and even a marinade. I started with a small spoonful to note the true taste, then sampled each brand on a chicken tender (naturally).

15. Chick-fil-A Garden Herb Ranch Dressing

Typically fast-food brands know what they're doing, but I'd hardly identify this as a ranch dressing. It has the creamy texture of ranch and some slight tang, but that's just about the only flavor that greets the tongue. The punch of zest is almost too sour and doesn't give any other ingredients a chance to stand out. Considering it's labeled as a "Garden Herb Ranch," one would anticipate a more savory, herbaceous bite, but it's more bland than anything else. I felt it was underwhelming in just about every aspect.

I would not want this dressing anywhere near my salad, but I can possibly see the appeal as a dip. It's a golden example of a ranch that was created for dunking — specifically Chick-fil-A fried chicken. The thicker pour makes it easy to plunge a chicken tender into and the aggressive acidity could cool down a spicy buffalo wing sauce.

14. Kraft Classic Ranch Dressing

Kraft made a name for itself with American processed cheese during World War I and has been a household name for generations since. As much as I appreciate the gift of gooey mac and cheese, Kraft's ranch just doesn't measure up. Aside from the convenient squeeze bottle, I was left unimpressed. The first bite offers a little zing, but once that fades you're left with a funky aftertaste. It hardly has any of the potent seasonings you'd expect in a ranch dressing like garlic, parsley, or dill. Kraft did nail the consistency — superbly creamy — and ranch's signature tangy bite, but was lacking in overall flavor.

This is definitely one that lends itself better to chicken tenders or the crudités table, as it's thicker with no spices to distract from whatever is being dunked. It just doesn't compare to the other mid-grade brands of ranch dressing.

13. Marzetti Classic Ranch

Marzetti's ranch dressing is made with a classic buttermilk, which can be identified by smell but hardly by taste. As mentioned earlier, I made the silly assumption that refrigerated dressings would be more flavorful (considering they have a shorter ingredient list with fewer preservatives), but Marzetti let me down. Each bite does offer a tinge of acidity, but it's missing ranch's distinctive herbaceous, punchy flavor. That initial taste is a bit misleading, as it quickly fades and you're left with a rather bland experience.

It's a bit thicker than your standard dressing — closer to a dipping sauce — but it doesn't have the texture that a good dip deserves. The buttermilk makes for a creamy outcome but is almost too dense, coming off more like a mayonnaise that's not salad-friendly. The richness is a bit overpowering considering there aren't any other complementing flavors to make the dressing pop. Overall, the creamy texture might be the only redeeming quality that bumps Marzetti above lower-ranked competitors.

12. Krasdale Creamy Ranch Dressing

As one of New York's leading grocery distributors, Krasdale will commonly be the "off-brand," more affordable option on the shelf, but that shouldn't disparage its ranch dressing. At first pour, I was taken aback by the thinness of this one. With ranch so often being used as a dipping agent I've found its consistency is generally somewhere in between, perfectly balanced in density, but Krasdale is much lighter and better suited as a dressing.

For the price point, Krasdale's ranch is hard to deny. Despite its thinness, this ranch is super creamy — living up to its label — and the 16-ounce bottle should last a while depending on the consumer's preferred ranch ratio. That being said, if you're looking for pre-made ranch dressing that checks all the boxes, Krasdale isn't going to make the cut. It lacks any garlicky or herbaceous notes and the faint sour bite takes a few too many seconds to surface.

11. 365 Whole Foods Market Organic Ranch Dressing

This ranch shares the same level of creaminess as Krasdale without being too thin, bumping it ahead in the rankings. 365 Organic Ranch was generous with the peppercorns and took the tang up a notch, which makes all the difference in the world of ranch dressing. Whole Foods 365 brand allows folks to buy organic and presumably healthier snacks at a fraction of the price, like pseudo-Oreos and spicy cheddar popcorn. We often lower the bar for products we perceive as more nutritious, giving them bonus points for being supposedly all-natural, but no one should have to sacrifice taste. 

As evident by the long list of ingredients on the back of the bottle, organic doesn't necessarily translate to nutritious or artisanal. As an affordable option off the shelf, this ranch dressing is certainly a solid basic. But much like the other low-ranking ranches, it's rather bland with minimal garlic and herbs.

10. Briannas Classic Buttermilk Ranch Dressing

I've always loved Briannas' dressings, and ranch is clearly my go-to choice, but it's not my favorite of the brand's product line. It was hard to pinpoint at first, but after a few nibbles I could pick up the real standout characteristic: The pronounced sweetness. I have yet to find another bottled ranch that meets this level of creamy sweetness, but I'm not too eager to find one. The added sugar complements other bold ingredients, but it's startling for anyone who prefers ranch on the savory side like myself.

While sugary, Briannas is densely flavored with buttermilk, robust onion, and dill, making it ideal for bringing out amazing flavor in egg salad and mixing into dishes that desperately need some oomph. It's one of the thicker options by far, taking some serious muscle to shake out of the bottle, which tells me it would make for a unique dip suited to anyone with more of a sweet tooth.

9. Newman's Own Ranch

As one of the few options at my local grocery store growing up, Newman's Own was always a staple in my household. I thought this sentimentality may make me biased but, while tasty and complex, the ranch isn't as outstanding as I remember. It's extra creamy and doesn't skimp on acidity, but it could really benefit from a kick of pepper. The dressing's fresh herbs are recognizable in appearance, but not so much by taste. Similar to Marzetti, Newman's Own ranch leans more towards condiment than dressing with its mayonnaise-like body.

What bumps this dressing above the rest on the ranch rankings is the sharp sour sensation that sneaks up on each mouthful. It manages to deliver what the other unrefrigerated options could not with its punchy garlic and overwhelming zest. Other brands offer that tang, but Newman's Own is distinctly lemony with a touch of mustard. It's thick enough for a zesty dip and just thin enough to be a tangy sandwich spread.

8. Wish-Bone Ranch Dressing

Wish-bone has been around since the mid-1940s, kicking off its reputation with the signature Italian dressing. It took years for the brand to introduce a ranch dressing, but eventually, they caved to keep up with the masses and it was an instant hit. I have to admit, I looked past Wish-bone on the condiment shelf countless times with no good reason. Once we enter this price bracket, between $2 and $4, it's tough to choose between all the similar-looking options. But Wish-bone easily trumps Kraft's ranch dressing and was a close runner-up to the higher-ranked brands. While the overall flavors are relatively mild, it tastes much more like an authentic ranch dressing than its unbalanced competitors. There are no surprises with Wish-bone, and that's a comforting plus.

I found this ranch dressing much thicker than the other unrefrigerated options, while still presenting a reasonable dressing-like consistency, and I was pleasantly surprised by its instant peppery taste. This was when I realized what many of the lower-tier ranches were lacking: peppercorns. For what I would assume is one of the easiest additions to a packaged product, it's often absent. Wish-bone balances the pepper perfectly with lemon and just a hint of sweetness to deliver that traditional ranch flavor, unlike Briannas' slap-in-the-face level of sweetness.

7. Hidden Valley Original Ranch

As the mother of all ranches, no one can dispute Hidden Valley's legendary status. Before my ranch obsession began at the ripe age of 9, I foolishly thought Hidden Valley was the only one of its kind. Its popularity is well-deserved, considering the company's origin story is connected to the actual creation of ranch dressing. Shout out to Steve Henson who made this all possible by inventing ranch dressing on the Hidden Valley dude ranch. The recipe has surely evolved since Henson created it back in the '50s, but the taste has never wavered in my experience. It hits all the notes you'd hope for from a ranch dressing: pepper, garlic, acidity, and subtle sweetness. 

I sampled Wish-bone first and thought there might be a battle to hold this place on the list, but the moment Hidden Valley hit my tongue I knew where it belonged. As satisfying as the others are, I can't overlook Hidden Valley's signature ranch flavors. The recognizable seasoning is apparent in each bite, shining through the ultra-creamy texture. While that's not a unique characteristic of these ranches, Hidden Valley has perfected the consistency to suit every need. It's thick enough to hold shape but blends naturally into any salad, sauce, or marinade. Versatility has to be considered when selecting ranch dressing, after all.

6. Ken's Steak House Ranch Dressing

I went into this taste putting any preconceived notions aside (Scout's honor) but Ken's has always been my personal favorite. That was until I opened my eyes to the refrigerated section. As an extremely accessible option at a reasonable price, Ken's will always be a superior pre-made ranch dressing and even food vendors would agree. It's a popular wholesale option that outshines the majority by a long shot. If you love your local dive's ranch dressing, there's a pretty good chance it's Ken's. My years working in the industry and considering what makes ranch dressing at restaurants so much better can attest to it.

What makes this ranch dressing special is the generous amount of peppercorns — real, whole peppercorns. I've touched on the frustrating absence of pepper in many bottled ranches, so this is a welcome change. Wish-bone had a refreshing essence of pepper, but Ken's is the real deal with a full range of flavors. The tangy savoriness is perfectly balanced with onion and just the right amount of garlic. It all blends together into a creamy, velvety texture with a sharp finish. I'm always shocked when reminded that Ken's ranch comes from a bottle.

5. Toby's Ranch Dressing & Dip

I was unfamiliar with Toby's before discovering this ranch dressing and can now confidently agree with the label's statement: "Good on anything." Just like the slogan, Toby's keeps it simple. Its short list of fresh ingredients proves the advantages of refrigeration, and the creamy taste backs this up. Toby's is by far the thickest dressing (or more so dip) on this list, but it's still somehow delicate and airy. This makes it easy to whip into a salad or plop on a plate, but it could also be enjoyed by the spoonful. Unlike most other dressings, it's loaded with big chunks of garlic and a healthy dose of fresh dill.

Toby's Ranch is on the pricier end of the list at around $7 (or $6 if you're lucky enough to catch a sale) but I think it's worth the splurge. Given its thickness, a little bit goes a long way and it comes in a nice glass jar to boot. If Toby's ranch was a few dollars cheaper, it may have skyrocketed even further up the rankings.

4. Marie's Creamy Ranch Dressing & Dip

Marie's is another refrigerated dressing I hadn't explored and was seriously impressed with. It's one of the several here that's categorized as a dressing and dip which is evident as soon as a spoon hits the surface. Compared to Toby's it's practically drinkable, but overall it's a fairly thick dressing with a hint of sweetness that's ideal for every occasion.

It's far less tangy than its rivals but still has that hint of zest I'm always looking for and tons of parsley. Rather than being pulverized by a blender, the herbs are coarsely chopped to bring that homemade feeling forward. These are all winning qualities, but what takes Marie's ranch to the top is its incredible velvety texture. I thought I had tried creamy ranch dressing before, but I was mistaken — Marie's consistency is incomparable. It's light enough to toss with just about anything and doesn't have any overpowering spices to take control of a dish.

3. Bolthouse Farms Classic Ranch Yogurt Dressing & Dip

I feel like a fool for neglecting Bolthouse Farms ranch dressing for as long as I have. I always thought I was a die-hard buttermilk ranch person, but this yogurt-buttermilk hybrid has me reconsidering. The combination makes for the perfect consistency to use as either a dressing or a dip: It's sort of thick but pours super smooth. The yogurt gives it a distinctive flavor that's uniquely tart and smooth while the buttermilk gives it that quintessential ranch aroma and body.

Bolthouse Farms ranch is much more herb-centric than its counterparts, with a variety of aromatic herbs visible to the eye and taste buds. The herby dressing is balanced with the perfect amount of tang. According to the bottle, the secret behind the zest is pineapple juice which adds the tiniest splash of sweetness. Considering my instant awe for this ranch, I was surprised to see it was one of the more affordable refrigerated options at around $4.

2. Litehouse Homestyle Ranch Dressing & Dip

This ranch dressing hit me right in the nostalgia. It satisfied every tasting note I was hoping for and brought me back to the crudités platters I used to hover over during "grown-up" gatherings as a kid. My first thought when tasting Litehouse's ranch was, "This is from a jar?" The bold, familiar flavors had me convinced it was homemade, but thankfully the delicious chilled dressing can be purchased from the refrigerated section for around $5.

This is another multi-use dressing through and through, with the perfect texture for all snacking purposes. Considering I'm doing this taste test with chicken tenders, I have to make a clear differentiation. I believe Litehouse Homestyle Ranch is number one for dipping. Whether that be fried chicken or raw broccoli, Litehouse is the ideal saucy option, but I can't deny the freshness and flavor of the number one spot to follow.

1. Trader Joe's Buttermilk Ranch Dressing

Many of these ranch dressings were incredibly similar with tiny differences to set them apart, but Trader Joe's buttermilk ranch took the crown without a fight. As far as a true salad dressing goes, this is the winner. It has one of the thinnest consistencies of the bunch but by far the most flavor. I could tell it would be a hit from the first sniff. As soon as I twisted the lid off I caught a waft of garlic, dill, and parsley. The creamy taste then far surpassed the scent.

Similar to Litehouse, this ranch has chunks of fresh garlic — but about five times the amount — and if you're anything like me then that's a huge selling point. This buttermilk ranch finally provided what the others missed: A boatload of roughly chopped fresh herbs. Let's hope Trader Joe's keeps this buttermilk ranch stocked up because it's the closest thing I've found to homemade.


The 15 dressings on this list were chosen based on brand recognition, accessibility, and affordability. I picked traditional ranch dressings and original versions available widely in grocery stores, as opposed to any limited edition or flavored varieties.

I tasted each of these 15 dressings to determine the ranking. I did so by first tasting a small amount of dressing on its own to fully focus on the tasting notes, and then as a dip for chicken tenders. The highest-ranked dressings are far more flavorful with fresh ingredients that add texture, while the weaker ones lack the traditional ranch flavorings and taste artificial. I also factored in price and shelf life into the evaluation to make sure value is part of the overall ranking on this list.