Here's How to Make TikTok's New Favorite Salad: Mother Earth's Ranch

Baked by Melissa is back with another viral salad—but how does this recipe stack up again her Green Goddess?

Remember the internet-breaking green goddess salad from TikTok? Before that video from creator and cupcake business owner, @BakedByMelissa a.k.a. Melissa Ben-Ishay, I really didn't think a salad could ever—or would ever—cause that much buzz. And from a cupcake company, no less! But there I was, alongside seemingly millions of others, putting more vegetables in my grocery cart than perhaps I ever have (as embarrassing as that is to admit) to recreate her salad at home.

And recreate I did. Many, many times. Melissa's salad, and further, style of making salads, has become a staple of my lunches ever since. Her tips for chopping up the veggies super small, using a blender or food processor for seriously creamy dressings, and, of course, eating salad like salsa by scooping them up with crunchy tortilla chips, changed my salads forever.

That's why, when I saw Melissa had posted a new salad that already amassed over 1 million likes and exponentially more views in a matter of days, I knew I had to break out my blender and give it a try. So how does her newest viral creation—Mother Earth's Ranch salad—stack up to the O.G.G. (original green goddess)? Let's get into it.

How to Make the Viral "Mother Earth's Ranch" Salad

Melissa's take on ranch dressing, like many of her recipes, is completely vegan. It's starts with many of the same staples from her other dressings: cashews, lemon juice, garlic, nutritional yeast (a common vegan substitute for parmesan) and lots and lots of fresh, verdant herbs.

The big difference between this ranch and Melissa's green goddess dressing? According to a reply Melissa commented on the TikTok video, "Green goddess is based on pesto (basil) this one is based on ranch (dill and chives)."

Everything goes in a blender or food processor until smooth and creamy, and that's it! In the video, Melissa says this dressing is so nutrient-dense that, rather than serving over a rainbow of veggies like her usual salads, she prefers to pair this with just some crisp iceberg lettuce. If you want the full recipe, you can find below.

How to Make TikTok's Mother Earth's Ranch Even Better

So, how does it taste? Good! Like ranch? Not really. Well it depends on your version of ranch. If you, like many, think of a certain secret valley when you think of ranch, then this may disappoint. But if you are looking for a tangy, dill-forward dressing, then you'll love this. Like Melissa's green goddess dressing, the first thing you taste is herbs. The cashews make it shockingly thick and creamy; to the point that it was so thick on day two, I had to add a little lemon juice to thin it out.

In lieu of the traditional buttermilk, this ranch gets its tang from a combination of lemon juice and nutritional yeast. I found myself craving a little more acid, so I added some lemon zest, as well, but I think a tablespoon of white vinegar or pickle juice would add a lot in the tang department.

Additionally, if you've never tried nutritional yeast, give it a taste before adding. The amount that Melissa's recipe calls for is significant, and you can definitely taste its signature somewhat nutty, cheesy, honestly, yeasty flavor. If it's not exactly your favorite flavor, just reduce the amount from ⅓ cup to ¼ cup and taste it before adding the full amount.

Overall, I thought the dressing was super satisfying, especially when paired with crunchy, watery (in a good way!) iceberg lettuce. I liked it and so long as you go in with managed expectations—that it tastes like a vegan version of ranch and not creamy, buttermilk-based steakhouse ranch—and enjoy the flavor of dill, you will probably like it, too.

TikTok's viral mother nature ranch dressing, a ranch salad dressing, with a dressed salad in the background.
Courtney Kassel

Baked By Melissa's "Mother Earth's Ranch" Dressing Recipe

  • 1 large head Iceberg lettuce
  • 3 lemons
  • ½ cup olive oil
  • 3 cloves garlic
  • 1 small shallot
  • 1 cup spinach
  • 1 cup dill
  • 1 cup chives
  • 1 green onion
  • ⅓ cup nutritional yeast
  • 1 cup raw cashews
  • 1 teaspoon salt

Chop iceberg lettuce into bite-sized pieces, transfer to a large bowl and set aside. Add all other ingredients to a high-powered blender or food processor and blend until smooth, about 30 seconds. Add dressing to lettuce, toss to coat, and serve.

One final note: this recipe yields a lot of dressing—enough to dress a big salad that feeds 4 to 6 people, two nights in a row. I halved the recipe and it still made more than a heaping cup of dressing.

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