As much as I adore mayonnaise, sometimes it’s nice to mix things up. When I want a change here are my favourite mayonnaise substitutes.
What is Mayonnaise?
Mayonnaise is a classic french sauce made from egg yolks, oil and vinegar or lemon juice. It’s creamy, rich and absolutely delicious. I love it on everything from broccoli to my breakfast poached eggs.
The Best Mayonnaise Substitutes
1. Greek Yoghurt
A nice thick Greek yoghurt seasoned with salt and pepper, makes an excellent mayonnaise substitute. Especially if you’re looking for something lighter, fresher and egg-free.
If you’re looking for a mayonnaise substitute to use on a sandwich or burger, a slick of good old-fashioned butter will do the job.
3. Tahini Sauce
Tahini is a sesame seed paste that gives hummus its distinctive nutty flavour. It makes an excellent mayonnaise-like sauce by mixing together 3-4 tablespoons each of tahini, lemon juice and water. Sometimes I add a crushed clove of garlic but often I don’t.
4. Almond Sauce
Almond sauce is creamy and nutty and goes well with so many foods – a lot like mayonnaise – well apart from the nutty bit.
Just puree 100g (3.5oz) almond meal (almond flour), 100g (3.5oz) water, garlic (if using) and 2 tablespoons lemon juice using a stick blender or regular blender. Season with salt and stir in 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil. Whole almonds can be substituted for the almond meal but you’ll need to process for longer to get a creamy sauce.
Or see full recipe here.
5. Other Nut Sauces
Use the recipe above for almond hummus but substitute cashews, macadamias, walnuts, hazelnuts or pecans. Each nut brings a slightly different flavour. Cashew is especially delicious.
6. Tahini Yoghurt
I often make a sauce by stirring together equal amounts of tahini and Greek yoghurt and a generous amount of salt. It’s lovely and creamy. And can be substituted anywhere you’d normally use mayonnaise.
This will take your dish in a completely different direction, but if you’re using mayonnaise as a sauce, more often than not pesto will make a lovely fresh green substitute.
Essentially mayonnaise made with melted butter instead of oil.
How to Make Mayonnaise
My favourite method is using a stick blender. It only takes a few minutes and gives gorgeous results every time.
Stick Blender Mayo
- 1 egg yolk
- 1 tablespoon rice vinegar or white wine vinegar
- 1 tablespoon boiling water
- 1 tablespoon dijon mustard
- 1 cup neutral flavoured oil
Place egg yolk, vinegar, water, mustard and a pinch of salt in a tall jug (see note above for why). Pour in oil.
With your stick blender head on the bottom of the jug, blitz on high speed. As you start to see the emulsion forming, slowly raise the stick blender so the upper layers of oil get emulsified too.
Taste and season with extra salt if needed (this can help tone down any bitterness from the oil if using olive oil) or a little extra vinegar if the flavour is too flat.
If the mayo is too runny, carefully add oil in a thin stream while mixing with the stick blender. This requires some dexterity. If too thick, stir in a little water using a spoon, one tablespoon at a time.
If your mayo splits or doesn’t form a creamy, thick emulsion, it’s OK! Just start again with a new egg yolk, vinegar, water and mustard. Pour the split mayo on top in place of the oil and cross your fingers this time.
How to Store Mayonnaise
In an airtight container in the fridge. Will keep for 1 week for home made or longer for commercial mayo. Will split if frozen.
Favourite Mayonnaise Substitutes Recipes
- Reliable Cabbage Salad
- Spinach Feta Burgers
- Japanese Omelette with Miso Mayo
- Quick Cheese Burgers with Chipotle Mayo
- Fast Roast Fish with Miso Mayo
- Green Chicken Bowls with Pine Nut Mayo
More Ingredient Substitutes
- The Ultimate Guide to Vegetable Substitutes
- Collard Greens
- Miso Paste
- Oyster Sauce
Also see see the Simple Ingredients Substitutes Index.
Have fun in the kitchen!