Make Ahead

Buttermilk mayonnaise, Ranch-style

October  4, 2022
0 Ratings
  • Serves 4
Author Notes

I've been making David Leite's milk mayonnaise as my homemade mayo for a while now, mostly because it comes together more easily for me than an egg mayo, but also because I love the brilliant white color. I noticed one time when I forgot to add the lemon juice before blending that the mixture didn't thicken up until I added some acid. The next time I had some buttermilk on hand I decided to give it a go as the base, as it is both emulsified and acidified. Lo and behold, it worked, and it makes a great base for an herbed dressing or dip. Now instead of mixing the right ratios of mayo, buttermilk, and yogurt for a ranch dip I just emulsify it all together. —prettyPeas

What You'll Need
  • buttermilk mayonnaise
  • 1/3 cup buttermilk
  • 2 cloves garlic, pressed (or 4 cloves roasted)
  • 2/3 cup oil, neutral (may substitute up to 1/4 cup with olive oil)
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • Ranch dip
  • 1 bunch batch buttermilk mayonnaise from above
  • 2 tablespoons yogurt
  • 2 teaspoons fresh dill
  • 1 tablespoon chives or scallions
  • 1 tablespoon other fresh herbs
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
  1. buttermilk mayonnaise
  2. Add pressed garlic to buttermilk and blend with immersion blender.
  3. Add oil slowly in a thin stream. Once mixture begins to emulsify it is safe to add oil more rapidly. I haven't broken this emulsion once (thought I've messed up traditional mayonnaise several times).
  4. If mixture hasn't formed a "thick dressing" consistency after adding all the oil add a bit of lemon juice or other acid (no more than 1/2 tsp.) and blend fully. I've had different results with different buttermilks.
  5. Salt and pepper to taste.
  1. Ranch dip
  2. Chop herbs to smallish pieces which won't wind around the immersion blender.
  3. Blend all ingredients until smooth. If mixture isn't thick enough add additional yogurt and oil and reblend.
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  • prettyPeas
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2 Reviews

prettyPeas February 3, 2011
Thanks for noticing my variation--the milk mayonnaise was like a great leap forward for me. I've always enjoyed making (not truly) emulsified dressings with the hand blender with tomatoes, garlic, etc and oil, but starting with a truly emulsified mixture makes so much sense. The buttermilk version is a bit thinner, but that makes it work perfectly as a sauce.
David L. January 21, 2011
The variations of this just recipe just keep getting more and more interesting. This sounds fantastic. And any acid will thicken the mayo, as long as the acid concentration is high enough. I have to try this version the next time I make my olive dip, which uses the milk mayonnaise as the base. Thanks!