Ranch dressing has been described as an American “mother sauce,” a statement that is funny, clever, and most importantly, correct. Ranch has its specific uses, such as green salads, or Buffalo wings (which I say grudgingly, since I’m a blue cheese dressing person), or as an accompaniment for cheap frozen pizza. But there’s one fast food ranch dressing that’s so good, I’d probably drink it straight if no one was looking. You can’t get bottles of this magical ranch at the grocery store, though. In fact, you can only get it at one place: Jet’s Pizza.
If you’re ordering a Detroit-style square pie from Jet’s, caramelized cheese crust and all (don’t forget to add the “turbo crust,” which adds garlic, butter, and Romano to the edges), then you can tack on a bottle, yes, a full bottle, of Jet’s house-made ranch. It costs a reasonable $4.49 at my nearest location, plus it comes in a reusable squeeze bottle, which is a pretty handy tool in any kitchen for later.
The dressing is naturally a great pairing for Jet’s oven-roasted chicken wings. But this stuff really sings while squirted all over a slice of pepperoni pizza. For those who are cool with ranch, but not that passionate about it, you should know that this stuff is not super “ranch-forward.” But that’s what makes it particularly great.
What propels Jet’s ranch dressing to the top of my rankings is the fact that it contains a lot of dairy. You can even taste that dairy, front and center. An old Reddit thread suggests that Jet’s seasoning blend is merely Hidden Valley ranch, which we already know is good. While a request for comment went unanswered by Jet’s, someone who may or may not be an employee just might have independently confirmed that the chain’s ranch involves Hidden Valley. Why use anything but the best?
That same source also noted there’s a particular dairy blend that gets mixed with the ranch seasoning, but didn’t elaborate further. They did note that because the house ranch is freshly made and contains no preservatives, you should try to use it all within four to five days. Once you taste it, you’ll know that’s not a problem.
The dairy element—which tastes lighter on the mayo than other versions—is what makes this ranch dressing eminently squeezable onto everything. I’ve put it on a chicken salad wrap and dipped potato chips in it within the same meal. I can easily see this playing nice with everything from frozen chicken nuggets to french fries, anywhere you’re craving a tiny bit of tanginess.
While Wingstop makes an awesome ranch dressing of its own, Jet’s ranch just has such a fresh flavor to it that it surpasses that of the chicken joint. Wingstop’s is much richer and heavier, which is delicious but harder to eat more than a little of in one sitting.
While I never thought I’d be shopping for refrigerator staples at a chain pizzeria, I guess I know where I’m going when I’ve run out of the store-bought stuff. Are any of you Jet’s ranch aficionados yet? And if you are, why didn’t you tell me about this stuff sooner?