Homemade dressing is perfect for smaller households and those who can never use a full bottle of store-bought dressing. My homemade buttermilk dressing is thick and flavorful.

homemade buttermilk dressing in small mason jar

This dressing is creamy, full of garlic flavor & oh so delicious over a salad or used as a dip for fresh vegetables and amazing with fresh crisp cucumber sticks or homemade onion rings. Make a day ahead to give the flavors time to meld together and mellow.


buttermilk salad dressing ingredients

dry buttermilk powder: I keep dry buttermilk powder handy for recipes that include buttermilk. The powder is less wasteful and I always have it handy.

When buttermilk powder is mixed with water, produces a thinner liquid than the cultured buttermilk you find in the dairy case. Reconstituted buttermilk isn’t suitable for drinking, and is intended to be used for cooking only.

Buttermilk powder can be used the same way cultured buttermilk is in most recipes.  It will add flavor and acts as a leavening agent. Buttermilk powder is best used in baked goods, especially biscuits and cakes.

As you probably guessed, if you rarely use buttermilk in your recipes, buttermilk powder is great to have in your pantry.  Store the powder in a sealed container or airtight container under dry and cool conditions for up to a year. 

granulated sugar: helps to balance the other flavors in the dressing.
spices: basil, minced onion, and garlic powder are added for flavor.
dry mustard: is used to give the dressing a bit of tang and tone don the mayonnaise flavor.
mayonnaise: I cook classic and use Best Foods mayonnaise but the type is your personal taste preference.
water: used to thin out the dressing

If you think you will make this often then mix up a larger batch of the dry ingredients to make even smaller quantities easily.

Easy Instructions

  1. Combine dry ingredients in a bowl
  2. Whisk or stir in the mayonnaise. I like using my mini rubber spatula from Heirloom Living.
  3. Mix in the water. add more or less than indicated to achieve the desired consistency.
  4. Store in a small jar covered and stored in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.

Serving Ideas

  • dollop on fish
  • serve with cut-up vegetables
  • breadsticks or pizza
  • sandwich spread in place of plain mayo
  • and my favorite, with French fries!

I love making my own dressing and if you are looking for an oil-based dressing you might enjoy my classic Dijon Vinaigrette or for something different try this Tempura Dipping Sauce.

I’m really trying to make my own condiments when it’s practical. Another easy recipe to try is my bread and butter pickles.

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homemade buttermilk dressing in small mason jar

Homemade Buttermilk Dressing

This dressing is creamy, full of garlic flavor & oh so delicious over crisp lettuce wedges or used as a dip for fresh vegetables. Make a day ahead to give the flavors time to develop and mellow.
5 from 1 vote
Print Pin Rate
Course: Condiments
Cuisine: American
Prep Time: 3 minutes
Total Time: 3 minutes
Servings: 4 servings
Calories: 116kcal
Author:Sydney Dawes


  • 2 tablespoons dry buttermilk powder
  • 1 ½ teaspoons granulated sugar
  • ½ teaspoon dried basil
  • ½ teaspoon dried minced onion
  • ¼ teaspoon dry mustard
  • teaspoon garlic powder
  • pinch of salt
  • ½ cup mayonnaise
  • 1 tablespoon water


  • Combine dry ingredients in a bowl
  • Whisk in the mayonnaise.
  • Mix in the water. add more or less than indicated to achieve the desired consistency
  • Store in small jar covered in refrigerator for up to 3 days.


  • Real buttermilk adds a tangy flavor and creamy texture that can’t be matched. If you can’t find buttermilk, add a tablespoon of lemon juice or vinegar to a cup of milk and let it sit for about 10 minutes until it curdles slightly.
  • If using fresh herbs remember that dried herbs are more potent, so use 2-3 times the amount of fresh herbs.
  • Let your dressing chill in the fridge for at least an hour before serving. This allows the flavors to meld together. It’s even better if you can make it a day ahead.
  • Whisk your dressing well to combine and emulsify the ingredients fully. This will help it stay together and not separate. You can also use an immersion blender or mini food processor for this task.
  • If your dressing is too thick, you can thin it with a little bit more buttermilk or even some milk. If it’s too thin, try adding more mayonnaise or substitute sour cream.


Serving: 2tablespoons | Calories: 116kcal | Carbohydrates: 4g | Protein: 2g | Fat: 11g | Saturated Fat: 2g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 9g | Cholesterol: 8mg | Sodium: 139mg | Sugar: 4g
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5 from 1 vote (1 rating without comment)

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