Mayonnaise is one of those things you either love or hate. I happen to really enjoy a light slather of mayo on my sandwiches, and tuna salad just wouldn’t be the same without it. But unfortunately, once we purged our fridge and pantry of everything that contained unpronounceable ingredients and artificial preservatives and flavors, mayo was one of the things that had to go.
The good news is that making your own homemade mayo is pretty simple and straightforward. We’ve come a long way from the days of our grandmothers who used to whisk their mayo by hand for what felt like hours on end. If you’ve got a blender, food processor, or an emersion blender, you’re good to go!
Your basic mayo includes eggs, oil, an acid, and some spices. The most important thing to note is that all of your ingredients must be at room temperature! This is key to getting a nice emulsion, otherwise you can “break” your mayo and everything separates into an oily, liquid mess.
I’ll give you just the basic, simple recipe for mayo and I’ve also included a list at the end with all sorts of yummy additions to help you experiment with different flavors. Every time I’ve made mayo, it’s come out a little different because of what I’ve added or left out. So I definitely recommend trying your hand at a few variations to see what best suits your tastes!
The super easy ingredient list is just 1 cup oil, 1 egg, 1 tablespoon lemon juice, 1 teaspoon mustard powder, 1/2 teaspoon salt, and 1/4 teaspoon pepper (use white pepper if you don’t want black specks in your mayo).
You’ll put all the ingredients, except the oil, into your blender and blend for about one minute, until it’s light and frothy.
Then, turn the blender back on, and remove the fill cap (the little insert in the lid). With the blender on, s-l-o-w-l-y begin pouring the oil into the blender. A very fine, thin stream is what we’re aiming for here. Any faster and your emulsion will break (which can be fixed, but is annoying).
But don’t worry, it sounds harder than it is. Just use a measuring cup with a spout to help you control your oil stream. This step should take about a minute, probably longer since you might have to stop to scrape down the sides of the blender a couple times. You may or may not use the full cup of oil (I usually use between 3/4 and 1 cup), so stop to check your mayo at about 3/4 cup. If it’s to your liking, you’re good to go!
Transfer your mayo to a glass jar and store in the fridge for up to one week. I’ve heard of others extending the life of their mayo by fermenting it on the counter for a few hours with some whey, but I personally haven’t tried that yet. If you try it, I’d love to hear your thoughts!
- 1 egg (organic (preferably farm-fresh))
- 1 tablespoon lemon juice
- 1 teaspoon mustard powder
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 teaspoon pepper
- 1 cup oil
- Add egg, lemon juice, mustard, salt and pepper to blender and blend for one minute until light and frothy.
- Remove fill cap and, while blender is running, slowly begin pouring oil into blender in a very thin stream. This step should take at least a minute, but you may need to stop and scrape down sides of blender.
- Once all oil is incorporated, turn off blender and taste the mayo. If it's missing something, stir it in at this time. Otherwise, transfer to a glass container and store in fridge up to one week.
What Kind of Oil to Use?
My go-to oil is extra-light olive oil – if you use extra-virgin, your mayo will have a very strong olive oil flavor and won’t taste much like mayo at all. I don’t use canola oil or any other vegetable oils at all in our kitchen, but if you keep those on hand, you can definitely use those. Some other great oils to use include grapeseed oil, sunflower oil, macadamia nut oil, and even a combination of coconut oil and any of the other oils mentioned. Each one will bring a different flavor and depth to your mayo, so experiment away!
What About the Raw Eggs?
Yes, there are raw eggs in your homemade mayo, and yes, raw eggs do carry a risk of salmonella. If you’re uncomfortable with that, then by all means, I am not here to coerce you into consuming raw eggs. But what I will say is this: if you’re using organic, preferably farm-fresh eggs from a trusted source, you’re probably on the safe side. But again, we’re all adults here and can make our own decision. 🙂
If you’ve got egg allergies in the house or are otherwise avoiding eggs, no worries – I found quite a few variations to make an egg-free version of homemade mayo!
How to Make Your Own Egg-Free Mayo – This version uses heavy cream, so if you’re dairy-free, this one is not for you.
Egg-Free Olive Oil Mayo – This interesting version uses tahini, nut milk, and xantham gum.
Eggless Mayonnaise Recipes – This is a collection of different recipes using various ingredients from yogurt and condensed milk, to tofu and soy milk.
- You can use either your blender, an emersion blender or a food processor, but I found the blender to be the easiest.
- Remember – ALL ingredients must be at room temperature, so set out your egg and lemon on the counter for a few hours!
- Some recipes call for just the egg yolk, giving you a more yellow-tinted mayo. I use the whole egg and have no issue with the results. It’s easier and I don’t have to find a reason to use an egg white on the spot.
- If you ask me if this tastes like Hellman’s or Kraft or any other brand, I honestly could’t tell you. It tastes like mayo to me, and that’s why I like playing around with different spice combinations to get the flavor I’m in the mood for at the time (check the list below for ideas).
- I’ve also heard a great tip for getting a more stable emulsion is to add a tablespoon of water, but I haven’t found the need to try it so far.
- If your emulsion breaks, you can fix it by starting with a fresh bowl and add a tablespoon of water. Then add in the broken mixture a little at a time, whisking by hand, and your emulsion should start to form again.
- Vinegar for a tart flavor
- Sugar or honey for a sweeter mayo
- Chili powder
- Cayenne pepper
- Garlic powder or minced garlic
- Dijon mustard
- Hot sauce
Have you made homemade mayo before? What are your favorite add-ins and spice combinations?
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