Easy Buttermilk Dressing + My Favorite Summer Salad

A quick and Easy Buttermilk Dressing made with low-fat buttermilk and fresh herbs. Drizzle it on top of one of my most favorite summer salads. 

If I had to pick my favorite things in life to eat, it would have to be homemade pizza and a really good salad.

My idea of a perfect salad and Pat’s idea of a perfect salad are two completely different things. His idea of a perfect salad is iceberg, pepperoni, cubed cheddar and croutons. Oh and ranch… with lots of black pepper. *meh*

My perfect salad has a little bit of everything in it. Bright greens, colorful veggies, bacon, croutons and a good dressing. Luckily we both are on the same page when it comes to ranch. We both like it on the thin side… and with lots of coarse black pepper.

Quick and Easy Buttermilk Dressing l www.SimplyScratch.com 1

Ranch dressing is pretty much a universally loved dressing, am I right? But making ranch dressing from scratch can take a bit of time to prepare and I personally don’t always have the ingredients on hand. So I’ve adapted this recipe over the years, scaling down, omitting stuff… adding stuff, to which I now call buttermilk dressing, because… you guessed it, it has buttermilk in it.


Grab a shallot, a clove of garlic, some fresh parsley and thyme. Peel, smash, strip and mince…

add to a jar

And add it to your favorite jar or container. Of course you can play with the herbs and add fresh chives or dill… a tablespoon of both would be delicious in this dressing as well!

cider vinegar

Add in two teaspoons of cider vinegar…


Then measure and add 6 tablespoons of mayo… for the creamy factor. For a thicker buttermilk dressing, simply reduce the buttermilk a smidge.


Finally pour in a half cup of buttermilk…

salt and black pepper

… And season with about 1/4 teaspoon of kosher salt and lots of coarse black pepper.


Stir… stir… stir until nice until smooth.

Buttermilk Dressing

The whole thing takes 10 minutes tops! Now you can pop it in the fridge until you want it… or serve right away. I’ve done it both ways and both are fab. More time in the fridge will of course bring out more of the flavors.

Now… let’s talk my favorite salad.

My Favorite Summer Salad

First is the spring herb mix. Besides different lettuce leaves, there is a little cilantro here-and-there and other herbaceous goodness and this summer, my life it’s all about the herbs. LOVE <3. Then comes the tomatoes. I think most peeps can buy a container of the mixed variety at any major grocery store. But these are a mixture of sungolds, chocolate cherry, grape tomatoes and ones I have no idea what they are except that they’re GOOD. Then there is the usual; cucumbers, red onion, croutons, crispy {slab} BACON and lots of coarse black pepper.


I grilled pizza {post coming soon} and this salad with the easy buttermilk dressing was the makings of a perfect summer dinner and mighty fine leftovers too!

Homemade Buttermilk Dressing + My Favorite Summer Salad

Enjoy! And if you give this Easy Buttermilk Dressing recipe a try, let me know! Snap a photo and tag me on twitter or instagram!

My Favorite Summer Salad + Quick and Easy Buttermilk Dressing l www.SimplyScratch.com

My cookbook Simply Scratch : 120 Wholesome Homemade Recipes Made Easy is now available! CLICK HERE for details and THANK YOU in advance! 

Yield: 6 servings

Quick and Easy Buttermilk Dressing + My Favorite Summer Salad

Quick and Easy Buttermilk Dressing + My Favorite Summer Salad
A quick and easy buttermilk dressing made with fresh herbs on top of my favorite summer salad.
Prep Time 25 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Total Time 40 minutes



  • 1 shallot, minced
  • 1 medium clove of garlic, minced
  • 2 tablespoons minced fresh parsley
  • 1 teaspoon minced fresh thyme
  • 2 teaspoons cider vinegar
  • 6 tablespoons mayo
  • 1/2 cup buttermilk
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • Lots and I mean LOTS of coarse Black Pepper


  • 1 (10 ounce) package herb spring mix salad greens
  • 4 strips of thick-cut applewood smoked bacon, cubed and cooked until crispy (drained)
  • 1/2 an english cucumber, halved and sliced into half moons
  • 1 cup mixed tomatoes (cherry, sungold, chocolate etc.) halved or quartered
  • 1/2 small red onion, sliced thin
  • croutons
  • coarse black pepper



  1. In a small jar or container with a tight-fitted lid combine the minced shallot, garlic clove, parsley and thyme.
  2. Add in the cider vinegar, mayo and buttermilk. Season with kosher salt and LOTS of coarse black pepper and stir until thoroughly combined.
  3. Chill or serve right away.


  1. In a large bowl add the herb spring mix, cucumbers, tomatoes, sliced red onion, croutons, crispy bacon and sprinkle with coarse black pepper.
  2. Serve with the super delicious homemade buttermilk dressing.
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21 Responses to “Easy Buttermilk Dressing + My Favorite Summer Salad”

  1. #
    Emma — August 12, 2013 at 6:57 am

    Pure perfection!

  2. #
    Tieghan Gerard — August 12, 2013 at 8:23 am

    This is so pretty and both the salad and dressing are perfection! Simple, easy and perfect quick meal for anytime of the year!

  3. #
    april — August 12, 2013 at 9:38 am

    What a perfect salad Laurie!

  4. #
    Lauren @ Climbing Grier Mountain — August 12, 2013 at 2:59 pm

    Beautiful! Love all the flavors. And the hubs and I both like different salads too. Men are funny!! Can we have Shiner with this salad? šŸ™‚

  5. #
    Maureen | Orgasmic Chef — August 12, 2013 at 6:39 pm

    My Australian husband and I like pretty much everything different in the food department. When doing stir-fries I prepare all the vegetables and meat and we have two woks and we each cook our own. I think I could get him to like this salad and dressing though. It looks delicious.

    • simplyscratch replied: — August 13th, 2013 @ 7:59 pm

      Thank you Marueen! I hope you do!

  6. #
    Julie @ Table for Two — August 12, 2013 at 8:55 pm

    Gorgeous, just gorgeous!! I could go for a big salad right now!!

  7. #
    MC@ThousandStoryKitchen — August 12, 2013 at 10:27 pm

    Yep- that’ll do it. I’m hungry for a perfect summer supper just like this! I like your salad style- definitely going to try the ranch. Do you buy your greens mixed or mix them up yourself?

  8. #
    Stephanie @ Eat. Drink. Love. — August 12, 2013 at 11:23 pm

    I love the dressing!

  9. #
    Kelli H (Made in Sonoma) — August 13, 2013 at 12:25 am

    Yup, that’s my favorite meal right there too!

  10. #
    Laura — August 13, 2013 at 9:56 am

    Oh yum. I’m embarrassed to admit that I always reach for the packet to make my Ranch dressing. How can I not make this with how easy it is? I love all the use of fresh herbs too! Just beautiful, Laurie.

    • simplyscratch replied: — August 13th, 2013 @ 2:55 pm

      Thank you Laura! šŸ™‚

  11. #
    Sandy Coughlin — August 13, 2013 at 10:15 am

    I agree – a big ol’ salad is hard to beat! Sometimes I stick with a simple mix of fresh lemon juice, olive oil, and white balsamic vinegar for dressing. Easy and delicious!

  12. #
    Des — August 13, 2013 at 4:12 pm

    Pizza and salad is one of my favorite meals too. In fact we have it every Friday for our Friday Night Pizza Nights. We always just grab a bottle of dressing, not my fave but it’s easy. However, I am loving this post. The dressing itself is so easy, we are huge ranch people our house so it would be nice to just have a jar ready to go whenever we want to. I also am loving the salad, so many goodies! What I can’t wait for is the grilled pizza! Grilled pizza has been one of my favorite dishes this summer. šŸ™‚

  13. #
    Melanie @ Just Some Salt and Pepper — August 13, 2013 at 11:22 pm

    Looks great! I really need to start making my own salad dressings.

  14. #
    Bill — August 14, 2013 at 9:25 am

    I love buttermilk dressings and your version sounds delicious! Great post and awesome photos!

  15. #
    Phil — August 14, 2013 at 6:56 pm

    Ranch dressing is one of my favourites, but this buttermilk dressing looks even better (and healthier)! Maybe it’s time to try this instead of the store bought stuff.

  16. #
    Tania — August 15, 2013 at 10:31 pm

    I got to say, what kind of dish that involves butter milk doesn’t taste good. I meant there’s got to be none, because buttermilk taste delicious!


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