Creamy Cafe Rio Tomatillo Dressing (Copycat Recipe)

cafe rio tomatillo dressing

This creamy Cafe Rio tomatillo dressing is made with tomatillos, ranch seasoning, cilantro, lime, jalapeño, mayonnaise, and buttermilk. This recipe is as close as you’re going to get to the original. So creamy and delicious, you’re going to want to drink it. Fresh tomatillos really give this dressing the amazing flavor that you’re going to love.

What is a tomatillo?

A tomatillo is a small, green, spherical fruit that looks like a small tomato. In fact, tomatillo means “little tomato” in Spanish. The tomatillo plant, which is a relatively disease-resistant member of the nightshade family, originated in Mexico. Tomatillos can be eaten raw or cooked. They’re perhaps most often associated with salsa verde.

Cafe Rio Storefront

The famous Cafe Rio Creamy Tomatillo dressing is part of the Cafe Rio experience. This “fresh mex” restaurant started out in Utah and is now located all over the western United States and several locations now in Maryland.

This Cafe Rio Tomatillo dressing is not only delicious on a salad but yummy

  • poured over burritos
  • tacos
  • quesadillas
  • sandwiches
  • and used as a creamy vegetable dip
cafe rio tomatillo dressing

Cafe Rio Dressing Ingredients

  • 1 (1 ounce) packet of Hidden Valley Ranch Dressing mix or better yet my HOMEMADE RANCH DRESSING MIX
  • Buttermilk / 1 cup
  • Mayonnaise / 1 cup
  • Tomatillos / 2 (husks removed and chopped)
  • Garlic clove / 1 minced
  • Cilantro / ½ bunch chopped
  • Lime juice / 1 tablespoon (more to taste or if you want the dressing a little more runny)
  • Jalapeno / 1 seeds removed (if you prefer a more spicy dressing, leave the seeds in)
cafe rio tomatillo dressing

Cafe Rio Tomatillo Dressing Instructions

1- Place all the ingredients together in a blender or food processor.

2- Blend until smooth.

3- Place in the refrigerator for an hour to chill before serving.

4-Serve as a dressing over the salad or as a dip for veggies and chips.

Recipe Tips

Use real buttermilk. If you need to substitute milk and vinegar, start with only ½ cup of the mixture and then add a little at a time until you get your preferred consistency.

Creamy Cafe Rio Tomatillo Dressing (Copycat Recipe)

cafe rio tomatillo dressing

A delicious creamy dressing with tomatillos, ranch seasoning, cilantro, lime, jalapeño, mayonnaise, and buttermilk.

  • Prep Time10 min
  • Total Time1 hr 20 min
  • Ready in1 hour 10 minutes
  • Yield10 servings
  • Cuisine
    • Mexican
  • Course

INGREDIENTS

    • 1 (1 ounce) packet if Hidden Valley Ranch Dressing mix or better yet my HOMEMADE RANCH DRESSING MIX
    • Buttermilk / 1 cup
    • Mayonnaise / 1 cup
    • Tomatillos / 2 (husks removed and chopped)
    • Garlic clove / 1 minced
    • Cilantro / ½ bunch chopped
    • Lime juice / 1 tablespoon (more to taste or if you want the dressing a little more runny)
    Jalapeno / 1 seeds removed (if you prefer a more spicy dressing, leave the seeds in)

INSTUCTIONS

1

Place all the ingredients together in a blender or food processor.

 
2

Blend until smooth.

3

Serve as a dressing over salad or as a dip for veggies and chips.

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Jan Howell

Whether it’s a new recipe, a fun craft, or some handy tips for your garden and home, I hope to empower and inspire you with skills that you can use to create joy, improved health, and to do it in a simple way.

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Cilantro: The Benefits, Uses and How To Keep It Fresh

Cilantro is a beautiful bright green leafy herb that is commonly used in guacamole, salsa, curries, noodle dishes, and chimichurri sauces. Cilantro has a very distinct citrus flavor. Either you like it or you don’t. I personally love its fresh pungent flavor. Its seeds are called coriander and are often used as a cooking spice. Not only does this flavorful, bright herb taste fabulous, it also has many health benefits and healing properties.

Here are just a few of the reasons you should add it to your diet

  • It is a great source of vitamins and minerals
  • A small amount delivers the full daily value of vitamin A and K and is rich in vitamin C, potassium, and manganese.
  • Cleanses the body of toxic metals.

Cilantro supports the body’s natural detoxification processes. Compounds in the leaf bind to toxic metals and loosen them from affected tissue. This process allows metals to be released from the body naturally. If you don’t care for the taste, there are supplements that contain cilantro extract.

  • Relieves nausea
  • Prevents gas and bloating
  • Relieves indigestion and heartburn
  • Ease stomach cramps
  • Aids in efficient digestion

Cilantro produces digestive enzymes that aid in the breakdown of foods. In many cuisines, fresh cilantro accompanies hot and spicy dishes because of its cooling effects. So when you see that little sprig of cilantro on your dish, it’s not just for aesthetics! EAT IT!

  • Known to calm the nerves, and can improve sleep quality through its natural sedative effects.

How to use it?

salads, entrees, and soups

While coriander seeds can be added throughout the cooking process, fresh cilantro actually loses its strength, and health benefits when introduced to heat. It is best to add freshly chopped cilantro leaves just prior to serving in hot dishes. It can be added at any time for raw foods like salsas, guacamole, and smoothies.

 

Smoothies & Juicing

Throw a handful into your smoothies.

When I juice vegetables, I like to add a small handful of cilantro. It gives it such a fresh clean taste. However, I recommend not sending it through the juicer, it will just shred it. After you have put all the other veggies or fruits through the juicer, pour the juice into a blender and then add the cilantro. Blend until smooth. This way you will actually get some cilantro (the juice and the fiber).

Here is a recipe for a really yummy cilantro lime dressing.

How to keep cilantro FRESH?

It’s not very fun reaching in the vegetable crisper and pulling out a slimy wad of cilantro when you had counted on it for a particular recipe. I have tried several methods for keeping it fresh longer and some didn’t work so well. This particular method works like a charm. This is what you do.

1- First of all, I do recommend buying organic when you can.

2- Thoroughly wash.

 

3- Trim the bottom ends of the stems.

4- Place the cilantro in a small mason jar or glass. ( I like to use a narrow mouth jar). Fill the jar at least halfway full with cool water. Just like a little bouquet of flowers, you can enjoy a beautiful bunch of green goodness right inside your refrigerator.

5- Make an HERB TENT. Take the bag from the produce department and place it over the herb. Puff it up so there is some air in it and gather the bag around the bottom and tuck it underneath the jar.

 

6- Place in the refrigerator for up to 4 weeks. (If you don’t eat it all sooner). Check it occasionally to make sure it still has enough water in it.

Since you have already washed it, you can now easily just clip off what you need. This works really well with parsley as well.

Enjoy a little green goodness, start eating cilantro now!

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Jan Howell

Whether it’s a new recipe, a fun craft, or some handy tips for your garden and home, I hope to empower and inspire you with skills that you can use to create joy, improved health, and to do it in a simple way.

Read More

Creamy Cilantro Lime Dressing

cilantro lime dressing

I have been on a search for a salad dressing that is clean and doesn’t have a bunch of additives and dairy in it. I FOUND ONE! This recipe for creamy cilantro lime salad dressing is definitely a KEEPER.

It is creamy and there is no dairy. It is flavorful, without any MSG. The ingredients include simple things, most likely you have in your kitchen right now.

I seriously could drink the stuff.

Cilantro Lime Dressing Ingredients

  • 1/2 ripe avocado
  • 1 lime (juiced)
  • 1/2 cup cilantro
  • 1-2 TB olive oil
  • 1 garlic clove (minced)
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1/4 tsp sea salt

 

Cilantro Lime Dressing Instructions

  • Place all the ingredients into blender or food processor and mix until well blended

This cilantro lime salad dressing is so yummy over salads, as a dip, with tacos, fish, and chicken.

cilantro lime dressing

This is cilantro lime dressing is VERY GOOD on pizza!

Let me know in the comments what you think of it, and what you have tried it on.

Creamy Cilantro Lime Dressing

cilantro lime dressing
This recipe for creamy cilantro lime salad dressing is definitely a KEEPER. It is creamy and there is no dairy. It is flavorful, without any MSG. This dressing is yummy on salads, as a dip, with tacos, fish and chicken.
  • Prep Time5 min
  • Cook Time50 min
  • Total Time55 min
  • Yieldapprox. 1 cup

INGREDIENTS

    • 1/2 ripe avocado
    • 1 lime (juiced)
    • 1/2 cup cilantro
    • 1-2 TB olive oil
    • 1 garlic clove (minced)
    • 1/2 cup water
    • 1/4 tsp sea salt

INSTUCTIONS

1

Place all the ingredients into a blender or food processor and mix until well blended

 

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Picture of Jan Howell

Jan Howell

Whether it’s a new recipe, a fun craft, or some handy tips for your garden and home, I hope to empower and inspire you with skills that you can use to create joy, improved health, and to do it in a simple way.

Read More