For most of us, ranch dressing was a childhood go-to when the parents forced us to eat yucky vegetables. For some, ranch dressing remains a trusted sidekick for not only salads but also pizza.
Opinions on this subject are split, to put it lightly. Those who love ranch dressing on pizza are all in and are largely unabashed in their love for its creamy consistency and tangy flavor. Those who are opposed to it, however, are genuinely opposed to it.
You'll be hard-pressed to find Swiss-style neutrality when it comes to ranch dressing on pizza, but we're here to explain both sides of the story and offer up one scenario in which everyone should reach for the ranch.
Yes, we all can get along, even when it comes to one of the world's most hot-button issues. Let's dig in:
Where Did Ranch Dressing Come From?
Ranch dressing was the creation of Steve Henson, a California man who owned a Hidden Valley Ranch property in the 1950s. Henson and his wife made the dressing for guests, and it quickly became the highlight of the tour. Later, the Hensons began mass-producing their ranch dressing and, in 1972, they flipped their company to Clorox for a cool $8 million.
That $8 million sum may seem light given the popularity of Hidden Valley dressing today, but that amount translates to nearly $48 million in today's dollars. Not bad for a couple of ranch owners with a knack for kitchen experimentation.
How Ranch Dressing is Made
Recipes vary depending on brand and fat content, but the standard Hidden Valley is a 50/50 blend of buttermilk and mayonnaise with a spice blend that is heavy on parsley, thyme, onion powder, and garlic powder. Oh, and it's got MSG, too, because MSG is fantastic and a low-cost source of umami flavor.
A Use For Ranch Dressing That Even The Haters Can Appreciate.
Should traditional pizza be topped with ranch dressing in New York or Italy? Probably not, but there is a time and place for ranch dressing that everyone can get behind. We're talking, of course, about buffalo chicken pizza, a mashup pie that could never be complete without a hefty drizzle of ranch dressing.
If you think ranch never belongs on a pizza, we dare you to try a buffalo chicken slice with ranch. It may not lead to you substituting the crushed red pepper shaker with a bottle of Hidden Valley, but you'll at least gain a bit more perspective and understanding for the pro-ranch crowd.