Avocado Oil Mayo with Lemon Zest & Herbs

Homemade Real Food Mayo is wonderful treat. Silky and lusciously delicious! And this Avocado Oil Mayo is one of my secret sauces and a staple in my Real Food Toolbox.

And less processed than anything you'll buy at the store. Next time you're shopping, go ahead and step into the Mayo aisle to test this theory. Pick up a jar, and read the ingredients. Even seemingly healthy mayos will contain suspiciously unhealthy ingredients.

So do yourself a huge Real Food favor and start making your own mayo. It will take some time, but well worth the effort. When you control the ingredients, you can trust that it is Real :-)

I adapted this from the "Olive Oil Mayo" recipe posted by Melissa Joulwan on her website Well Fed. Her recipe is less zippy, so if that is your preference, then try hers instead. No worries with me - Just make your own, and we'll all be happy!

Melissa has fabulous recipes, by the way, with lots of options to adjust for your taste. So I highly recommend her website and books as a great resource for recipes. Melissa follows a Paleo Diet, which is a stricter form of a Real Food lifestyle, so her recipes are definitely Real Food compliant.

(Note to Vegans - Melissa developed an eggless mayo recipe. I have not tried, so can't offer any insights. But like I said, her recipes are great, so may be worth a go.)

Here's a  video with my recipe for Avocado Oil Mayo. Please enjoy, and I'll wrap things up afterwards with some notes and product recommendations.

Avocado Oil may be hard to find. And some brands are very expensive. I buy Avocado Oil at Costco where it is $9.99/Litre. I also offer some product links below for brands available on Amazon.

"Light" olive oil works too (instead of avocado). In fact, you'll note that Melissa's recipe is olive oil based. You can buy light olive oil brands at the local grocery. And may even be a better budget-friendly option than avocado oil. But generally avoid Extra Virgin Olive Oil. The olive flavor can be overpowering (and a whole cup can be expensive). I've also read that processing that amount of EVOO in a food processor can create a bitter taste. I know...I know... I use EVOO in my recipe, but it's not a lot, and doesn't taste too olive-y or bitter. At least not to me. And the EVOO is an optional ingredient, so feel free to omit.

In culinary terms, an "emulsion" refers to the mixing of liquids with different properties (like oil & vinegar in dressings) so they combine or come together for a period of time. The emulsion with dressings is temporary - that's why you have to shake the dressing before using it.

But with Mayo, the combination is oil with eggs & juice/vinegar. And the emulsion needs to be permanent, so that nothing separates, like dressings do. The slow drizzle of oil into the egg mixture, while continuing to process creates this permanent emulsion. And having all ingredients at the same temperature (i.e., room temp) helps this reaction along too.

The Mayo will thicken as it chills in the fridge. So if yours seems a little thin at first, no worries. If it does not firm up to your liking, don't throw it out - YIKES - please don't do that! Just give it a good stir, and use it as a dressing for salads or drizzle over veggies (raw or cooked).

Minced herbs are optional, but it's a good way to "rescue" herbs that may turn soon. And if you don't feel like or don't have time for mincing by hand, just toss the whole herbs in the food processor. They'll mince during the 1st minute of processing.

Don't have a food processor? Again not a problem. Melissa says to use a blender, either a standing one or hand-held. Since I've only used a food processor, I'll defer to her recipe for instructions on this.

But if you don't have any of this equipment then guess what - a bit of arm strength, a whisk, and patience will get you there too. Just make sure to combine and whisk all ingredients EXCEPT the avocado (or light olive) oil first. Then carefully and slowly drip the tiniest bit of oil at a time, whisking between drips, and you'll get that luscious emulsion.

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I used this method when I first starting making mayo, but switched to the food processor because homemade mayo became a staple at our house. There is always a jar in our fridge. So the food processor was a quicker and more efficient use of my time.

I note in the video that this Mayo is good for up to 1 week past the expiration date of the egg. I write the expiration date on a small post-it note, and stick it on the lid of the jar. But it honestly does not last that long, especially because it has so many uses. Of course, you can calculate a week past the expiration date, and write that down. Whichever you choose, I recommend staying consistent. 

Also for food safety, avoid cross-contamination with Mayo. Homemade or store-bought, you should never use the same utensil to scoop, spread, and scoop again. This is cross-contamination, and it's bad. I use one utensil to scoop from the jar. And a different utensil to spread on the food. As long as the scooping utensil does not touch any other food (i.e., touches only the Mayo), it's OK to keep using it to scoop again.

So there you have it. The ins and outs of homemade mayo. I do hope you try this recipe and when you do, be sure to Post Comments to share your thoughts.

Product Recommendations

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