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Chipotle Cilantro Lime Ranch

Vegetarian

Smoky, zesty, and fresh; this quick and easy chipotle cilantro lime ranch packs a punch. It’s great on Mexican-style salads, for dipping veggies, or even on a burger or sandwich. Naturally gluten-free and vegetarian.

Top down shot of chipotle ranch in a jar with sliced bell peppers and cilantro.

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What’s to love about this recipe?

  • It’s simple! Making homemade ranch dressing is so incredibly simple that after you’ve made it for the first time you’ll question why you ever bought the pre-packaged (and less than stellar) stuff from the store. It’s seriously just a matter of combing all the ingredients.
  • It’s quick! This chipotle ranch takes just five minutes to prepare.
  • It’s fresh and flavorful! With fresh herbs like cilantro and chives, freshly squeezed lime juice, and plenty of spices including smoky and earthy chipotle powder this ranch dressing is not only natural and unprocessed but bursting with flavor.
Jar with ranch dripping down the side with veggies.

Ingredients (+ notes & substitutions)

Ingredients for chipotle cilantro lime ranch (see recipe card).
  • Cilantro: There is no need to remove all the stems, however, the larger ones should be avoided.
  • Mayonnaise: While I’m not a big fan of overly “mayonniase-y” ranch dressings, I have found that it is necessary to incorporate it for the sake of texture and body.
  • Sour cream: Sour cream also aids the texture and gives the ranch some tang.
  • Buttermilk: To thin it out and add flavor.
  • Lime juice: I urge you to use freshly squeezed lime juice if you’re able – one to two limes should be sufficient.
  • Chipotle powder: I realize this may not be a spice that you keep on hand at all times but you seriously should! Over the last couple of years, it has become one of the most used spices in my kitchen. Chipotle powder is the result of grinding smoke-dried jalapeno peppers – it’s smoky, earthy, and spicy. I use it all the time in Mexican sauces, to season meat, and more. Look below for the product link for one of my favorite brands of chipotle powder (and dried chiles!).
  • Garlic powder: If you prefer to, you can skip the garlic powder in favor of a garlic clove. Fresh garlic adds some bite and can be a bit overpowering so I advise choosing a small-sized clove if you do opt to go this route.
  • Ground black pepper
  • Kosher salt: Feel free to add more to taste.
  • Onion powder
  • Fresh chives: A traditional ingredient in ranch dressing, chives add a mild oniony flavor and freshen things up.

How do make chipotle cilantro lime ranch? (+tips)

  1. Use a blender or an immersion blender to process all the ingredients aside from the chives until smooth and combined. *** This recipe calls for 1/4 cup to 1/2 cup of buttermilk. If you prefer this dressing to be on the thicker side, I recommend starting with 1/4 cup of buttermilk then adding one tablespoon at a time until desired consistency is reached.
Dressing in a blender.

2. Transfer the mixture to a jar or bowl and stir in the chives.

Bowl of ranch with chopped chives.

Serve immediately or refrigerate for later.

How to store

Refrigerate in an airtight container for up to one week. Keep in mind that this dressing will thicken as it is refrigerated. Freezing not recommended.

How to use this ranch dressing:

  • Drizzled on a Mexican-style salad.
  • As a dip for veggies including cold cuts and french fries.
  • Slathered on a burger or sandwich.
  • As the base for a Mexican-style pasta salad sauce.
Jar of ranch dressing with a spoon and cilantro and multicolored bell pepper slices.
Close up of jar of chipotle cilantro lime ranch with a spoon.

More recipes for ranch dressing you may like:

  • Dill(icious) Ranch: This refreshing homemade ranch is easy to prepare and ready in just five minutes. It’s full of fresh herbs including mucho dill. Wonderful for dipping or to dress a salad. Naturally gluten-free and vegetarian.
  • Garlic Ranch: Homemade buttermilk ranch with fresh herbs and lotsa garlic (it’s got some bite!). Super easy prep and ready in just five minutes. Naturally gluten-free and vegetarian.

If you make this chipotle cilantro lime ranch I’d love your feedback. Please leave a comment and/or a rating below as I greatly value your opinion. Or snap a pic and tag me on Instagram @taoofspiceblog. Love, light, and happy cooking ya’ll

Jar with ranch dripping down the side with veggies.

Chipotle Cilantro Lime Ranch

Yield: ~ 1 1/2 cups
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Total Time: 5 minutes

Smoky, zesty, and fresh; this quick and easy chipotle cilantro lime ranch packs a punch. It's great on Mexican-style salads, for dipping veggies, or even on a burger or sandwich. Naturally gluten-free and vegetarian.

Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup cilantro, packed
  • 1/2 cup mayonnaise
  • 1/2 cup sour cream
  • 1/4-1/2 cup buttermilk (see notes) 
  • 3 tablespoons lime juice
  • 2 teaspoons chipotle powder
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 teaspoon onion powder
  • 2 tablespoons finely chopped chives

Instructions

  1. Use a blender or an immersion blender to process all the ingredients aside from the chives until smooth and combined.
  2. Transfer the mixture to a jar or bowl and stir in the chives. Serve immediately or refrigerate for later - it will thicken in the refrigerator.

Storage: Refrigerate in an airtight container for up to one week.

    Notes

      • This recipe calls for 1/4 cup to 1/2 cup of buttermilk. If you prefer this dressing to be on the thicker side, I recommend starting with 1/4 cup of buttermilk then adding one tablespoon at a time until desired consistency is reached. Keep in mind that the dressing will thicken with time in the refrigerator.
    Nutrition Information:
    Yield: 12 Serving Size: 1
    Amount Per Serving: Calories: 92Total Fat: 9gSaturated Fat: 2gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 6gCholesterol: 10mgSodium: 280mgCarbohydrates: 2gFiber: 0gSugar: 1gProtein: 1g

    The nutritional information provided is computer generated. It is only an estimate and intended for informational purposes only. Nutrition details may vary depending on various factors such as origin, freshness of ingredients, etc

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