Grilled Vidalia Ranch Dressing

by R.B. Quinn and Min Merrell
grilled vidalia ranch dressing

Make a quick batch of our Grilled Vidalia Ranch Dressing with leftover char-grilled sweet onions.

Sweet Vidalia onions are in season just in time for grilling season. They’re an instant side dish sliced and grilled alongside your steaks, burgers, chops, or sausages. From a half a buck to a buck a pound, Vidalias are about the best deal in the store. Five pounds will go faster than you think. The Vidalia, America’s favorite sweet onion and the official state vegetable of Georgia, is in your supermarket produce section right now.

Get them on the grill and you’ve got one less side dish to worry about. The sweet charred flavor provides nice umami to backyard steaks and beyond. We’re grilling the onions to serve with burgers, pork tenderloin, lamb chops, even chicken. How about a side of sweet onions with kielbasa or fat links of Italian sausage?  Or, just make the relaxed hot dog fest seem a little fancy.

Cut the onions into about 1/2 inch thick slices. Sweet Vidalia onions need only a few drips of oil and a sprinkling of salt before grilling. A skewer keeps the slices intact while getting tossed around on the grill. Or, for more surface area contact with the heat use a metal grill basket and let the rings separate at will. Serve grilled onions warm or at room temperature.
What about the leftovers? What to do with a bunch of slightly slimy cold grilled onions? You’ll be glad you have them for Grilled Vidalia Ranch Dressing.
This dressing is a simple combination of mayo and Greek yogurt plus the onions, parsley, and a little balsamic vinegar. Buttermilk is usual for ranch, but here Greek yogurt works particularly well for adding body to the dressing. Otherwise, the juicy onions tend to make the dressing a little watery. You can make the onions and dressing even if you don’t have a grill. Char the onions in a hot skillet or under the broiler instead. One cup charred Vidalia pieces is about 1 medium onion.

Keep the salad simple when the dressing sounds fancy.



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