Mayonnaise is a thick and creamy dressing that is commonly used as a condiment and in dips and sauces. It's traditionally made with oil, vinegar or lemon juice, mustard and egg yolk.
So when my son was diagnosed with a severe allergy to eggs, my household simply avoided mayonnaise. However, I recently got motivated to find an allergy-friendly alternative to mayonnaise in preparation for summer barbecues and picnics.
I did some research and found there have been many attempts to make egg-free mayonnaise using silken tofu or cashews. However, I was thrilled to discover easy recipes for vegan mayonnaise with aquafaba (canned chickpea water) that tasted almost identical to traditional mayonnaise.
Here's how I made allergy-friendly mayonnaise free from eggs and top allergens:
Traditional mayonnaise is delicious and fascinating in its simplicity, so I wanted to keep the ingredients as close to the original as possible. The main ingredient change I made was to replace the egg yolk in traditional mayonnaise recipes with three tablespoons of aquafaba, the water from canned chickpeas. I drained a can of unsalted chick peas to get my aquafaba. If using salted chickpeas, adjust the amount of salt you add to your mayonnaise recipe. Ground mustard is also used to help flavour this mayonnaise, but can be omitted from this recipe if you have a mustard allergy.
The methodology for making egg-free mayonnaise is similar to making traditional homemade mayonnaise. In this recipe I used a hand blender or immersion blender, but a regular blender or hand whisk will produce the same results (however, the hand whisk might take longer).
Start by placing the chickpea liquid, vinegar, lemon juice, salt and ground mustard (if using) into a small deep bowl or cup and mix these ingredients with an immersion blender until combined.
With the blender running, slowly add oil to the mixture one tablespoon at a time. Make sure to keep the immersion blender in constant motion. The mayonnaise is ready when the mixture is thick and doesn't run off of the immersion blender when lifted out of the mixture.
This egg-free mayonnaise keeps for up to one week refrigerated in an airtight container or jar, and can be used as a substitute for mayonnaise in all recipes. Create dips by mixing it with your favourite spices. I quickly whipped up a maple curry dip by mixing in a pinch of curry powder and some maple syrup to taste, and an herbed aioli by whipping in a clove of garlic with some basil and oregano. The possibilities are endless!
Allergy-friendly vegan mayonnaise recipe
3 tbsp. unsalted aquafaba
1/2 tsp. salt
1 tsp. apple cider vinegar (or wine vinegar)
2 tsp. lemon juice
1/2 tsp. dry/ground mustard (optional)
3/4 cup light olive oil
- Place vinegar, lemon juice, salt, chickpea liquid and ground mustard (if using) into a small deep bowl or cup. Mix these ingredients with an immersion blender until it's combined.
- With the blender running, slowly add the oil to the mixture 1 tbsp. at a time. Make sure to keep the immersion blender in constant motion so that all of the ingredients combine. Continue to blend until the mixture becomes very thick.
- The mayonnaise is ready when the mixture is thick and doesn't run off the immersion blender when lifted out of the mixture.
- Transfer the mayonnaise into an airtight container or jar, and store in the refrigerator for up to one week.
Pauline Osena is a food allergy advocate and founder of HypeFoodie.com, an online resource for allergy-friendly living. This former dairy junkie became an expert in allergy-friendly cuisine while figuring out how to feed her child with multiple food allergies. Pauline aims to inspire culinary adventures and experimentation with her series, "An Allergy-Friendly Makeover," and shares the valuable knowledge she has gained from her trials, errors and adventures in living with food allergies with "The Allergy-Friendly Top 10." Pauline's short-term goals include getting a full night's sleep and drinking her entire cup of coffee while hot.