Homemade mayonnaise

Mayonnaise, I find that there’s nothing like it – if it’s self made. For me, homemade mayonnaise is a comfort food. One of those things that I could always count on either my grandmother or my mum to be able to whip up in no time. I was passed on this torch when I was 14.

While my mum taught me the recipe over the phone, I very carefully whipped an egg yolk with some olive oil and made my very first batch of mayo ever.

One weekend, we were having some friends and family over at my dad’s, and one of my aunties mentioned my grandmother’s famous homemade mayonnaise. Everyone went “Ohhhhh yummmm” at unison. My dad asked me if my mum had taught me, and when my answer was no he shoved the phone on my ear to get cracking.
While my mum taught me the recipe over the phone, I very carefully whipped an egg yolk with some olive oil and made my very first batch of mayo ever. Everyone who was there that day said it was great, but the best compliment came from my uncle Jorge. He said it tasted exactly like his grandmother’s. And so the story goes: my great grandmother taught it to her daughter, my grandmother, who in turn taught it to her daughter-in-law, my mum, and thus the recipe was passed onto myself. I feel very proud to have been trusted with it, and ever so slightly reluctant to share it like this, but I won’t be selfish. It’s too good not to share and spread the love!


Here’s what you’ll need:

  • one egg
  • olive oil (or any other good quality oil such as sunflower or rapeseed)
  • some salt and pepper, and lemon juice
  • garlic, fresh or powdered (optional)
  • a deep plate and a fork, and a kitchen towel
  1. Place the towel on the countertop, and the plate on top so it won’t slide.
  2. Separate the yolk from the white, and reserve the white in the fridge (see step 7).
  3. With the yolk in the plate sprinkle some salt and add one tablespoon of olive oil, and thoroughly mix with the fork in a circling motion. Make sure the yolk and the oil have mixed well before you continue each step.
  4. Continue adding one tablespoon oil each time, again making sure it’s completely mixed before adding anymore.
  5. If you add too much oil at once, tilt the plate to the side and try and scrape off the oil to use later. Don’t mix too much oil with the egg all at once or your mayo will separate. It can be hard to get it to mix again once it’s separated, it usually means starting all over.
  6. Repeat step 4 as many times as you can (there’s only so much oil one egg will mix with). If you see that it’s getting too oily, that’s your clue that the mayo is done. Eventually your mayo will get thicker, that’s another way to know that your doing it right.
  7. This is an optional step: retrieve the reserved egg white, and pour one tablespoon at a time, mixing it well with the mayo. This will soften the consistency and make it runnier. I like it more on the thick side, but my mum prefers it runnier. It’s just a matter of taste!
  8. Finally add salt and pepper to taste, and I personally love to add a dash of lemon juice – gives it a nice tangy kick-. Mix well and serve.

Ready to eat up! It’s great with french fries, the way the Germans and Dutch eat them, with different types of salad, or you can use it to make one of my famous leftover mayo meals.


  • For those garlic lovers out there, join the club! If you have fresh garlic, you can mash it using a mortar and pestle, a garlic crusher, or just a sharp knife, and add it to the mayo to give it an allioli flavour. If you have powdered garlic, just add as much as you like directly to the mix.
  • If you want to make a bigger batch, you’ll need more eggs and oil. Just follow the recipe as is, and once you’ve finished a one-egg mayo, add more egg yolks and continue adding oil until your batch is big enough.

*Note: Some people might find homemade mayonnaise too “eggy”, and to those people I would say that they probably don’t really like eggs and should therefore stay away from real mayonnaise. Stick to the store-bought or whichever floats your boat!