Mayonnaise gets a lot of hate in the healthy eating world, but I actually love mayo. Sure, it’s high in calories, but I think it’s delicious, packed full of nutrients, and it’s 100% “real” food. What’s to hate? I’m not saying you should take a spoon and down a bowlful of the stuff, but spreading a couple of tablespoons on a sandwich or adding a half cup into a dressing isn’t the health no-no that I think a lot of people feel like it is.
And mayo is even healthier when you know exactly, 100% what’s included in it, and you can do that by making it at home. Mayo is so incredibly easy to make at home, and you get to have complete control over the flavor and ingredients. I tend to use fresh lemon juice and olive oil in my homemade mayo because I love the bright and fresh flavor that it makes, but you could easily use whatever combination of ingredients makes a mayo that you and your family love. Either way, the process is the same.
Back in the olden days, the key to good homemade mayo was a steady whisking hand and a decent dose of patience, but I’m all about using technology to get good mayo now. You can use a stand mixer, hand mixer, or a food processor, but I really like using an immersion blender and the little cup that comes with it. The tall, narrow cup works really well for small amounts of mayo, and it helps the mayo come together really quickly.
First up, in the cup, whisk together two egg yolks, a tablespoon of Dijon mustard, a hefty pinch of salt, and a tablespoon each of apple cider vinegar and lemon juice (you can also use white vinegar for a more mild flavor).
The next part takes some patience. Put 1 1/4 cups of olive oil (canola oil, avocado oil, and grapeseed oil all work, too) in a spouted measuring cup. And with the immersion blender going on low, drip a drop of the oil in. And then another drop. And another drop. Keep dripping the oil in a drop at a time, until the mayo starts to thicken up a bit. Don’t rush it! Just put in a drop at a time while the immersion blend does its work.
Once the mayo starts to look about like the thickness of melted ice cream, you can start streaming in the oil in a more steady stream. Keep the immersion blender going.
It seems counterintuitive, but the more oil you add, the thicker and thicker the mayo will get. Pour until all the oil is in, and you’ve got some beautiful, thick, creamy mayo! It’s like magic. Beautiful, delicious, kitchen magic.
Taste the mayo for seasoning (you might want to add more salt), and then store it in an airtight container in the fridge. Use it just like you would store-bought mayo. It’ll keep a few weeks no problem. Although, it’s pretty tasty stuff, so it might not actually last that long!
This makes about a cup and a half of homemade mayo, and you could easily halve this recipe if that’s too much to keep around. If the raw eggs wig you out, you can use pasteurized eggs (which are available at many supermarkets), although I don’t worry too much about it. Unless you are immunocompromised, the chances of getting sick from raw eggs is extremely slim—but, obviously, that’s a decision for you to make for yourself and your family.
Now go make yourself some homemade mayo!