Copycat Houston Buttermilk Garlic Salad Dressing

I’ve never been to a Houston’s restaurant. Their food sure looks awesome. So though I can’t say this copycat of their buttermilk garlic salad dressing is a true copycat, I can say it is fantastic. Like slurp-slurp-I-love-salad-more-than-ever-now fantastic. This is Ranch dressing to the max. Thanks mostly to the garlic.

Copycat Houston Buttermilk Garlic Salad Dressing

Make sure you let the dressing ‘get happy’ in the fridge overnight before serving. It makes a huge difference. And make a double batch because this copycat Houston’s buttermilk garlic salad dressing isn’t just for salad. It’s great for dipping wings. And veggies.

Copycat Houston Buttermilk Garlic Salad Dressing

I can't say this copycat of Houston's buttermilk garlic salad dressing is a true copycat, I can say it is fantastic. Like slurp-slurp-I-love-salad-more-than-ever-now fantastic.
Course Salad Dressing
Cuisine American
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 5 minutes
8 hours
Servings 2 cups
Calories 1001kcal
Author Mike

Ingredients

  • 2/3 cup sour cream
  • 1 cup mayonnaise
  • 1/4 teaspoon garlic minced, smashed
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 teaspoon paprika
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon mustard powder
  • 2 tablespoons sugar
  • 1/2 cup buttermilk

Instructions

  • Place all ingredients in a blender and process until smooth. Alternatively, place all ingredients into a large bowl and whisk well.
  • Cover and refrigerate overnight before using.

Nutrition

Calories: 1001kcal | Carbohydrates: 19g | Protein: 5g | Fat: 101g | Saturated Fat: 23g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 94mg | Sodium: 1417mg | Potassium: 233mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 19g | Vitamin A: 730IU | Vitamin C: 4mg | Calcium: 169mg | Iron: 1mg

Nutritional values are approximate.

Copycat Zax Sauce

It was one of those days where I just needed a bit of a kick of inspiration. It was cold out and I just wanted to eat something out of a box. I didn’t want it to be blah though, so I made a batch of this copycat Zax sauce. Sure, I just dipped chicken fingers in it at first, but after that I used the sauce on sandwich wraps and hamburgers. It’s great no matter what you slather it on. Or dip in it.
copycat-zax-sauceI was going to add some heat, some kick to this copycat Zax sauce, but I talked myself out of it. And I’m glad I did, too. It’s really quite good just as it is.

Oh did I mention you can dip French fries in this too? Why aren’y mayonnaise-based dipping sauces for fries aren’t more popular in the US? It’s such a welcome change from ketchup.

For dipping sauces, try my copycat of Chick-fil-A’s dipping sauce, firecracker dipping sauce or my chili dipping sauce. All are great for dipping my crazy-good chicken fingers.

Copycat Zax Sauce

Sure, I just dipped chicken fingers in it at first, but after that I used the sauce on sandwich wraps and hamburgers. It’s great no matter what you slather it on. Or dip in it.
Course Sauce
Cuisine American
Cook Time 1 hour
Total Time 1 hour
Servings 1 cup
Calories 840kcal
Author Mike

Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup mayonnaise
  • 1/4 cup ketchup
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

Instructions

  • Whisk together all ingredients until smooth.
  • Refrigerate for at least 1 hour before using as a dip for chicken fingers, fries, or slathering on a burger or chicken sandwich.

Nutrition

Calories: 840kcal | Carbohydrates: 19g | Protein: 2g | Fat: 84g | Saturated Fat: 13g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 47mg | Sodium: 1271mg | Potassium: 268mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 15g | Vitamin A: 393IU | Vitamin C: 3mg | Calcium: 30mg | Iron: 1mg

Nutritional values are approximate.

Copycat Dreamland BBQ Sauce

I found a big batch of smoked pulled pork in the freezer the other day. I was going to make one of my ‘usual’ BBQ sauces but this copycat of the sauce at Dreamland BBQ in Alabama has been on my to-try list for a while so I made a few quarts of it.

Copycat Dreamland BBQ Sauce

Visiting Dreamland BBQ (and honestly, just about any BBQ joint) is also on my to-do list, so I can’t vouch for how much of a copycat it is, but I can vouch for how good it is. Not too thick, not too runny with just a hint of heat. It’s a great all-purpose BBQ sauce.
You can make this sauce as shown, or play with it to suit your own needs. I was looking for a light red sauce, and that’s exactly what I got. The beauty of a good BBQ sauce like this is you’ve got a great base for your preferences. Want more heat? Add more cayenne. A little sweeter? More sugar. Thicker? Let it simmer a while longer. You can’t go wrong with Dreamland BBQ sauce whether you follow the recipe to a T or use it as a starter for your own version.

This sauce is fantastic on my Backyard BBQ wings.

Also try my copycat Sweet Baby Ray’s BBQ sauce and Wood Shop’s BBQ sauce.

Copycat Dreamland BBQ Sauce

Visiting Dreamland BBQ (and honestly, just about any BBQ joint) is also on my to-do list, so I can’t vouch for how much of a copycat it is, but I can vouch for how good it is.
Course Sauce
Cuisine American
Prep Time 15 minutes
Total Time 15 minutes
Servings 2 quarts
Calories 447kcal

Ingredients

  • 28 ounces tomato puree
  • 1/3 cup prepared yellow mustard
  • 3 cups water
  • 1 1/2 cup apple cider vinegar
  • 1/4 cup dark corn syrup see my note
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice freshly squeezed
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • 1 tablespoon brown sugar
  • 2 tablespoons chili powder
  • 1 tablespoon dry mustard
  • 1 tablespoon paprika
  • 2 teaspoons cayenne
  • 2 teaspoons onion powder
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder

Instructions

  • Note: Dark corn syrup makes for a nice dark syrup with a hint of molasses. For a lighter syrup, use light corn syrup.
  • Place puree and yellow mustard in a large saucepan and whisk until combined.
  • Whisk in remaining ingredients and bring to a boil.
  • Reduce to a simmer and simmer for 30 minutes, stirring often.
  • Keep in the fridge for 2-3 weeks.
  • Note: If you prefer a thicker sauce, combine 1/4 cup corn starch and 1/4 cup cold water and whisk into the sauce as it simmers.

Nutrition

Calories: 447kcal | Carbohydrates: 95g | Protein: 11g | Fat: 5g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Trans Fat: 1g | Sodium: 1974mg | Potassium: 2247mg | Fiber: 13g | Sugar: 67g | Vitamin A: 5411IU | Vitamin C: 57mg | Calcium: 185mg | Iron: 10mg

Nutritional values are approximate.

Copycat Jason’s Deli California Club Sandwich

Back in my high school days I worked in a no-name sub shop. I made some mighty darned good sandwiches if I do say so myself. But honestly, nothing I made was as good as this copycat Jason’s Deli California Club sandwich. First, we didn’t make sandwiches on croissants, which give the sandwich such a nice light buttery flavor. And I had no idea then what alfalfa sprouts were. Now I love them on a sandwich, along with guacamole. This sandwich would’ve been a big seller at the sub shop where I worked.
Copycat Jason's Deli California Club SandwichI used a spicy guacamole to offset some of the sweetness of the croissant in my copycat Jason’s Deli California club sandwich. You can use ‘normal’ guacamole instead, or try my copycat of Jimmy John’s avocado sandwich spread instead.

I also could not find alfalfa sprouts at any of the grocery stores near our house. None of them. In fact one doesn’t carry sprouts any more at all. Luckily I found some bean sprouts. They aren’t the same thing as alfalfa sprouts but they did add a similar texture.

Also try my copycat Red Robin BLTA.

Copycat Jason's Deli California Club Sandwich

I used a spicy guacamole to offset some of the sweetness of the croissant in my copycat Jason’s Deli California club sandwich.
Course Main
Cuisine American
Prep Time 10 minutes
Total Time 10 minutes
Servings 4 servings
Calories 646kcal
Author Mike

Ingredients

  • 4 croissants halved horizontally
  • 1 pound deli turkey meat thinly sliced turkey sandwich meat
  • 1 sliced tomato
  • 1/2 cup alfalfa sprouts I substituted bean sprouts
  • 1/2 cup guacamole
  • 8 slices sweet onion
  • 4 strips bacon cooked crispy
  • 4 tablespoons mayonnaise
  • 4 slices Swiss cheese

Instructions

  • Divide ingredients between the 4 rolls.

Nutrition

Calories: 646kcal | Carbohydrates: 39g | Protein: 31g | Fat: 41g | Saturated Fat: 15g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 111mg | Sodium: 1892mg | Potassium: 654mg | Fiber: 4g | Sugar: 12g | Vitamin A: 1010IU | Vitamin C: 11mg | Calcium: 185mg | Iron: 3mg

Nutritional values are approximate.

Quick Fix Copycat McDonald’s Chicken Sandwich

I love cooking meals from scratch. But sometimes reality hits and I have to throw something together that doesn’t require a lot of preparation. That’s where this quick fix copycat of McDonald’s chicken sandwich comes in. In less than 30 minutes I get to enjoy a rather tasty chicken sandwich. Heck it even has fresh toppings on it and a rather tasty (but incredibly simple) sauce. Hey, it’s not bad when you’re in a crunch, and I often find myself making little changes to mix things up a bit.
quick-fix-copycat-mcdonalds-chicken-sandwichAdd a little kick to your quick fix copycat McDonald’s chicken sandwich by substituting Tyson’s spicy chicken patties, adding a slice of pepper jack cheese, and adding Sriracha instead of onion powder when making the sauce.

Also try my copycat of McDonald’s addicting French fries.

Quick Fix Copycat McDonald's Chicken Sandwich

I love cooking meals from scratch. But sometimes reality hits and I have to throw something together that doesn’t require a lot of preparation. That’s where this quick fix copycat of McDonald’s chicken sandwich comes in. In less than 30 minutes I get to enjoy a rather tasty chicken sandwich.
Course Main
Cuisine American
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Total Time 25 minutes
Servings 2 servings
Calories 331kcal
Author Mike

Ingredients

For the McChicken sauce

  • 1/4 cup mayonnaise
  • 1 dash onion powder

Instructions

  • Heat the chicken per package instructions.
  • Meanwhile, make the sauce by whisking together the ingredients.
  • Toast the buns if desired. Slather both bun halves with the sauce.
  • Add the heated chicken patties, lettuce and tomato (and onion if using) and serve.

Notes

Nutritional values do not include the chicken patties.

Nutrition

Calories: 331kcal | Carbohydrates: 26g | Protein: 6g | Fat: 23g | Saturated Fat: 4g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 12mg | Sodium: 405mg | Potassium: 270mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 6g | Vitamin A: 2616IU | Vitamin C: 12mg | Calcium: 98mg | Iron: 2mg

Nutritional values are approximate.

Copycat Quizno’s Italian Sub

I used to work just down the street from a Quizno’s. I went there often for lunch. Ok, very often. I loved their toasted bread and great meats and toppings. Now I work from home and I prefer to make my own lunch, so I make a copycat of the classic Quizno’s Italian sub, my favorite item on their menu.

The sweet balsamic dressing and pesto are what really make this sandwich memorable. Even if you don’t follow the recipe for the toppings exactly, make the dressing and add the pesto.
Copycat Quizno's Italian SubI find pepperoncini peppers to be a must-have on a sub. And on a pizza for that matter. I prefer them over pickles. They’re crunchier and tangier and really wake up whatever you put them on.

Also check out my copycat of the Battalion Chief Sub from Firehouse Subs and Subway’s Italian BMT.

Copycat Quizno's Italian Sub

I used to work just down the street from a Quizno’s. I went there often for lunch. Ok, very often. I loved their toasted bread and great meats and toppings. Now I work from home and I prefer to make my own lunch, so I make a copycat of the classic Quizno’s Italian sub, my favorite item on their menu.
Course Main
Cuisine American
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Total Time 25 minutes
Servings 6 servings
Calories 799kcal
Author Mike

Ingredients

For the sandwiches

  • 6 sub rolls or 2 loaves French bread, each cut into 3 equal sizes
  • Sweet balsamic dressing see below
  • basil pesto I used store-bought
  • 1/3 pound sliced salami
  • 1/3 pound sliced pepperoni
  • 1/3 pound sliced ham
  • 12 slices mozzarella cheese
  • dried oregano
  • 12 slices tomato
  • 12 slices onion
  • 6 leaves green leaf lettuce
  • 8 ounce black olives sliced, drained
  • Pepperoncini peppers

For the sweet balsamic dressing

  • 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
  • 2 teaspoons brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
  • kosher salt
  • freshly ground black pepper

Instructions

For the sandwiches

  • Preheat your oven to 300 F.
  • Split rolls horizontally and place onto baking sheet(s).
  • Brush one cut side of the bread with the dressing.
  • Spread about 1 tablespoon of the pesto onto the other side of the cut bread.
  • Add meats and cheese and sprinkle lightly with the oregano.
  • Bake for 10 minutes.
  • Add remaining ingredients and serve.

For the sweet balsamic dressing

  • Whisk all ingredients until well combined.

Nutrition

Calories: 799kcal | Carbohydrates: 43g | Protein: 36g | Fat: 54g | Saturated Fat: 18g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 107mg | Sodium: 2567mg | Potassium: 503mg | Fiber: 4g | Sugar: 10g | Vitamin A: 2056IU | Vitamin C: 11mg | Calcium: 343mg | Iron: 12mg

Nutritional values are approximate.