Ranch Oyster Crackers

Ranch Oyster Crackers

These ranch oyster crackers are an excellent choice if you're looking for a quick savory snack to share with friends or family. Besides being easy, ranch oyster crackers are crunchy, craveworthy—you can't eat just one—and utterly delicious.

What are Oyster Crackers?

Oyster crackers are essentially tiny saltines, and you will find them in the cracker aisle in most grocery stores. Oyster crackers may be smooth, ridged, perforated, round, or hexagonal, depending on the brand. If you can't find them, try using mini saltines or a similar small cracker.

You won’t need a dip for these crackers because the fabulous ranch flavor is baked right into them. Fix ranch oyster crackers for a gameday get-together, party, or family movie night. Toss them in a bowl and watch them disappear!

Beyond Snacking

If you have any left, they’re fantastic soup crackers—the ranch coating adds zesty flavor to clam chowder, tomato soup, and just about any creamy soup. Toss leftover crackers on a salad for crunchy, flavorful croutons or crush them and sprinkle them over a casserole.

“These tiny little oyster crackers pack a huge punch of flavor and are pretty much irresistible! Don’t skip the garlic powder. It adds to the flavor profile.” —Diana Andrews

Ranch Oyster Crackers/Tester Image A Note From Our Recipe Tester

Ingredients

  • 3/4 cup vegetable oil

  • 1 (1-ounce) packet dry ranch seasoning (3 tablespoons)

  • 1 1/2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh chopped dill or 2 teaspoons dried dill

  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder, optional

  • 18 ounces (about 8 cups) oyster crackers

Steps to Make It

  1. Gather the ingredients.

    Position racks in the upper and lower thirds of the oven and heat to 250 F.

    Ingredients to make ranch oyster crackers

    The Spruce Eats / Preethi Venkatram

  2. In a large bowl, whisk together the vegetable oil, ranch dressing mix, dill, and garlic powder, if using.

    A bowl with vegetable oil, ranch dressing mix, dill, and garlic powder

    The Spruce Eats / Preethi Venkatram

  3. Add the oyster crackers to the bowl and toss gently to coat with a silicone spatula.

    Oyster crackers added to the ranch mixture

    The Spruce Eats / Preethi Venkatram

  4. Spread the oyster crackers in a single layer on 2 rimmed baking sheets. Bake the seasoned crackers for 20 minutes, stirring the crackers and rotating the pans in the oven halfway through cooking time.

    Seasoned oyster crackers on a baking sheet

    The Spruce Eats / Preethi Venkatram

  5. Remove the crackers from the oven and gently stir to be sure the crackers release from the pan. Let them cool to room temperature before serving.

    Baked seasoned oyster crackers on a baking sheet

    The Spruce Eats / Preethi Venkatram

Recipe Tip

A neutral oil is the best option because it won’t interfere with the flavor of the seasonings. Other options are canola oil, grapeseed oil, safflower oil, or corn oil.

Recipe Variations

  • Buttery Ranch Oyster Crackers: Replace the vegetable oil with 6 ounces (12 tablespoons) of melted unsalted butter.
  • Spicy Ranch Oyster Crackers: Add 1 to 2 tablespoons of crushed red pepper flakes to the seasoning mixture.
  • Parmesan Ranch Oyster Crackers: Add 1/2 cup of freshly grated Parmesan cheese to the seasoning mixture.
  • Lemon Pepper Ranch Oyster Crackers: Add 2 teaspoons of lemon pepper to the seasoning mixture.
  • You can also swap other seasoning packets for the ranch. Try taco seasoning, chili seasoning, or even spaghetti seasoning.

How to Store

Store leftover ranch oyster crackers in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 1 week.

Why are they called oyster crackers?

The crackers probably got their name from their roundish oyster-like shape. In his "Encyclopedia of American Food and Drink," John Mariani writes that Adam and John Exton, two English immigrants, created the first oyster crackers in their Trenton, New Jersey bakery in 1848. They called the cracker "Exton Oyster and Butter Cracker and Wine Scroll Biscuit."

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