The Power of Ranch

Did you know that a plumber from Alaska is responsible for one of the most beloved condiments in the U.S.? 

The story of ranch dressing dates back to the 1940s when Steven Henson thought up the buttermilk and herb concoction. After purchasing the Hidden Valley dude ranch, he started selling his dressing and its popularity grew from there. 

According to a 2021 survey conducted by YouGov, ranch is the most popular salad dressing in the United States, with 51 percent of respondents indicating that they like it.  It's so popular that National Ranch Day is celebrated each March 10. Kevin Bryla, Chief Marketing Officer of SpotOn, points out that small additions like ranch dips can help increase order size and keep restaurants competitive in online orders. 

SpotOn pulled the numbers to see just how much Americans love Ranch — 

  • 2.4 percent of SpotOn restaurant clients have added a “Side of Ranch” to their menu in the last 12 months
  • The Midwest is well known for its love for ranch dressing, and the numbers prove it — Missouri, Michigan, and Illinois were among the top five states with “Side of Ranch” items added to their menus in the last 12 months.
  • The most commonly added items were variations of “Side of Ranch,” “Small Side of Ranch,” and “Large Side of Ranch.”
  • SpotOn is  even seeing menu items that come with a side of ranch, like "Fries and Ranch" at Shorehouse Kitchen in La Jolla, CA; "Knots & Ranch at The Pizza Bakery in Newport Beach, Ca:  "Fried Pickles with Ranch" at Rupert's At The Edge in Edgewater, CO and even "Ranch & Celery" from Fingers Wings & Other Things in Conshohocken, PA.
  • Many "Chicken Bacon Ranch" combos like Chicken Bacon Ranch Wrap at Irish Eyes Pub & Restaurant in Milton, DE; "BBQ Chicken Ranch Flatbread" at Sandbar Tiki & Grille in Englewood, FL; Chicken Bacon Ranch Tots at Sugarfire Smokehouse in Florissant, MOYou'll also find a few combos with buffalo like the "Buffalo Chkn Ranch Deep Dish" at Chicago Jaqx Pizzeria Grill & Tap in Indian Rocks Beach, FL; Buffalo Chicken Ranch Fries at Round’s on Winthrope in Millen, GA, and even a Cauliflower Crust Buffalo Ranch Pizza from Paparella's Pizzeria in Woodbury, GA.

"We've most certainly seen an uptick in ranch over the past  four years, particularly over the past 12 months," said Chris Juricich of Ginny's Neighborhood Pizza Joint & Wye Beer Co. in Murrysville, PA. "As a result, we've opened up our ranch menu option to items across the board. Customers can now get ranch on everything from salads to pizza to all types of sandwiches and appetizers. At our restaurants, we're definitely seeing ranch as a major add-on to our apps. Number one would be chicken wings, followed by French fries and pizza."

Juricich has noticed that ranch lovers have become much more sophisticated in recent years and often seek out restaurants based on the type of ranch they sell.

"We make our ranch homemade every day, so many ranch lovers seek us out for that reason!"