Once upon a time, I was one of the many consumers buying a very popular ranch seasoning used to make veggie dips, or as a side served with chips. Without a doubt, it could always be found at social gatherings and events when I was growing up. And undeniably, we would all gather around the table and devour it. You know the seasoning mix I’m talking about, it’s probably “hidden” in your cupboards right now.
But was it really the ranch dip that people loved OR was there something in the mix tricking everyone into wanting more and more? Sounds fishy, but keep reading.
If you haven’t guessed it yet, the seasoning mix I am referring to is the Hidden Valley mix. It’s got some great packaging, but when you look at the ingredient label, written in ALL CAPS, a purposeful move to make reading the ingredients difficult, you will notice there is nothing health promoting in the package. In fact, using this seasoning mix will only increase your overall toxic load and trick your brain into wanting to eat more, even when you aren’t hungry.
Let me break it down for you so you can make a more informed choice, take back control and just do it yourself. Recipe to follow!
- Maltodextrin –> can be derived corn, rice, potato starch, or even wheat. If it is derived from wheat, it will say so on the label as wheat is one of the 7 allergenic foods that must be labeled on a package. Now, since it does not mention being derived from wheat, it could be derived from GMO corn, which we want to avoid eating. Maltodextrin has been found to “impair cellular anti-bacterial responses and suppresses intestinal anti-microbial defense mechanisms.” Aka, it’s bad for your gut.
- Buttermilk –> definitely not organic or from grass fed cows, and most likely sourced from cows given antibiotics and growth hormones, among other toxic chemicals that disrupt your hormonal system, can make you fat, and change your metabolism. In addition, if cows are given GMO feed, than it can also be contaminated with GMOs.
- Monosodium Glutamate –> a “flavor enhancer” that tricks your brain into wanting to eat more. Commonly called, MSG, this is a common ingredient used by companies to sell more product. Many people are allergic to it and it has no beneficial health value. It is a way to engineer food to taste better. It also goes by other names, however, here it is in plain sight.
- Lactic Acid –> could be a GMO
- Dried Garlic –> not organic, grown with toxic chemicals
- Dried Onion –>not organic, grown with toxic chemicals
- Spices –> so what spices are actually being used here? I’m not sure myself!
- Citric Acid –> could be a GMO, usually derived from corn (definitley a GMO)
- Less than 1% of: calcium stearate, artificial flavor, xanthum gum, carboxymehtylcellulose, guar gum –> why are any of these needed?!!!! Can all be irritating to the gut!
So as you can see, these ingredients are not going to do anything, other than build up, add to the cumulative toxic load in our bodies, and make us sick. And if you already struggle with gut issues, this is going to make it worse. Let me show you how you can make it WITHOUT any of the above toxic ingredients. All you need is nature!
Get the recipe below for a DIY Ranch Seasoning Mix that you can keep stored in a glass jar for up to 6 months, and a recipe for a dairy free ranch dip that will surely make your guests happy!
The Ranch Seasoning
SEASONING MIX INGREDIENTS
1/4 cup parsley
2 Tbsp dill
2 Tbsp onion granules
2 Tbsp garlic granules
2 Tbsp chives
1 Tbsp minced onion
**all spices are in the dry form
Combine all ingredients in a glass jar and mix together. Use masking tape to label with name and date. Store in cupboard for up to 6 months.
The Ranch Dressing or Dip
1-2 Tbsp ranch seasoning, depending on taste preferences
Lemony cashew cheese, get recipe here
Combine seasoning mix with the lemon cashew cheese. Mix well. Sprinkle with chives, onion granules, dill and parsley. Serve with a vibrant array of freshly cut vegetables!
- Taste —> Once you make the dip, do a taste test to decide if you would like a stronger flavor. If so, you can add individual spices to your liking or another 1/2 Tablespoon of the seasoning mix.
- Spices —> You can purchase all spices in the bulk section of your local health food store. Be sure to choose organic to avoid irradiated spices and other additives. Or grab your spices here from fellow culinary nutrition expert, Christy Varicat.
- From dip to dressing –> Adjust the consistency of your cashew cheese by adding more or less water to make a dip or dressing.