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Food at ranches can be as much a reason to take a dude ranch vacation as the western horseback riding experience. Whether you're looking forward to tucking into big plates overflowing with hearty, traditional western ranch food, or you prefer the formal, fine-dining experience with a variety of global influences, Top50 Ranches has a dude ranch vacation to suit every palate...

If you like big, hearty meals of the traditional American West...Then you'll love Rowse's 1+1 Ranch in Nebraska, USA. The cowboy fare served up at this working ranch is as traditional and authentic as their horseback riding vacations, with home-made, hearty feasts served up family-style around the dining table. With ranch-raised Angus and Longhorn beef featuring at most mealtimes, Rowse's 1+1 prides itself on serving up "food that sticks to your ribs" - just what you need after long days on cattle drives. Think New York strip steak, fire-grilled veggies, bacon cheddar potatoes, homemade dinne rolls, and a big helping of cheesecake to round things off. Food at ranches doesn't get heartier than this!

If you like light and healthy recipes...Then you'll love Echo Valley Ranch and Spa in British Columbia, Canada. Healthy food at ranches is more common than you might think, and this Canada guest ranch is leading the way, using home-grown ingredients to produce healthy, gourmet meals. Special diets are not a problem at this luxury dude ranch, whose menu features lifestyle dishes such as 'Eat for Your Blood Type'.

Eat healthy at Echo Valley Ranch & Spa

If you like fine dining and five-star cuisine...Then head to Zapata Ranch in Colorado or The Ranch at Rock Creek in Montana. Both of these USA ranch vacations have top-class chefs at the helm, so expect ranch food as good as you'd find in any five-star city restaurant. Zapata's executive chef is the award-winning Mike Rosenberg, who was personal chef for the Carnegie family and has catered for many high-profile events, most notably JFK Jr's wedding. At The Ranch at Rock Creek, head chef Joshua Drage conjures up five-star gourmet meals like Kettle House beer-braised pork shoulder with Calimyrna figs and melted leeks.

If you like great steak...Then you need to take an Argentina horse riding holiday! Argentina food and wine is famous throughout the world, not least at Top50's Argentina ranch vacations - Estancia Los Potreros, Estancia Ranquilco and Estancia Huechahue. Paired with a full-bodied glass of Argentine Malbec wine, steak doesn't get better than this.

If you like hot and spicy food...Then you'll love a Mexico horse riding holiday. Head to Rancho Los Banos in northeast Sonora, Mexico, and feast on traditional Mexican food such as Carnitas with flour tortillas, beans and rice, Chicken fajitas, Fresh guacamole tamales, Quesadillas and beans, and Enchiladas. Delicioso!

If you want ranch food to be locally and ethically sourced...Then you'll love Free Rein Ranch in British Columbia, Canada. Treating guests to ethical menus created around locally sourced produce, the Canada guest ranch is an advocate of the "100 Mile" diet and buys as much of its produce as possible from local suppliers within a 100-mile radius.

If you like world cuisine...Then you'll love Triple Creek Ranch in Montana, USA. Executive chef Jacob Leatherman embraces a variety of global influences in his ranch food. Take a culinary journey around the world as you feast on traditional French dishes, innovative south western cuisine, and West Indian specialities, classic central American fare, and other international fusions.

If you like your wine as much as your food...Then you'll love Vista Verde Ranch in Colorado, USA. The luxury Colorado dude ranch includes all wine and beer in your stay and thoughtfully pairs each of the dishes on its menu with its selection of wines. Viewing wine as an integral part of the dining experience, Vista Verde boasts a chef who is trained in wines of the world and even leads weekly wine tastings for guests to enjoy.

If you like chocolate and desserts...Then you'll love The Hideout Ranch in Wyoming, USA. Each October, the Wyoming guest ranch invites Belgian artisan chocolate-makers for two weeks, who host chocolate clinics and chocolate-tasting events for guests and to inspire the ranch’s chefs in their chocolate ranch recipes.

If you like BBQs and grills...Then you'll love Alisal Ranch in California, USA, with its annual BBQ Bootcamp week. Guests taking their dude ranch vacations at any other time of the year can savor Chef Godé's thick steaks, chicken and ribs grilled over Alisal oak.

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