Whether it’s a dip for a chip, a spread for a sandwich or a dressing for a salad, mayonnaise is arguably the most versatile condiment there is. But if your loyalty lies with the big brands, you might want to reconsider, after two cheaper own-label options beat them to the top spot in our blind taste test.
More than 70 mayo fans dipped their way through bottles of Heinz and Hellmann’s, as well as own-brand mayonnaise from Aldi, Asda, Tesco and other supermarkets.
It was a close-run contest, but in the end, we only found two supermarket bottles worthy of being Best Buys, while one of the big brands finished up last.
Head to our guide to the best mayonnaise to find out which supermarket mayo came out on top.
Easy egg mayo sandwich recipe
The traditionally British egg mayo sandwich really is as simple to make as it sounds. All you need is bread, eggs, mayo, and a squeeze of lemon juice.
We asked our chef, James Adams, to run through his basic egg mayo recipe:
- Boil two eggs in a pan for seven and a half minutes.
- Once cooled, peel the eggs and grate them into a bowl.
- Add 40g of mayonnaise, 5g of lemon juice and a pinch of salt to taste.
- Mix everything together.
- Butter two slices of bread and layer with your filling.
If you want to balance out the richness of the sauce, add a dash of malt vinegar. Or you could freshen it up by mixing through a handful of cress.
Don’t pair your eggs with a substandard mayo – see our round-up of the best mayonnaise.
Is it worth making your own mayonnaise?
Opting for homemade means you can control what goes into your mayonnaise and get the exact flavour you want. It’s easy to make, and James advises that if you’ve got the time, homemade typically tastes better than shop-bought alternatives.
But to avoid waste, you want to make sure you’re going to be able to eat it all before it goes off, which is after no more than a couple of days.
Supermarket mayo can last for a year or more unopened in the cupboard, and then several months once opened in the fridge thanks to the presence of various preservatives, stabilisers, and acidity regulators.
We’d suggest sticking with shop-bought mayo for everyday meals, while opting for homemade on special occasions.
How to make mayonnaise
James recommends avoiding flavoured oil and instead using a cold-pressed rapeseed oil, a light olive oil or a pomace oil as a base.
From there, it’s a case of mixing egg yolks with Dijon mustard and your choice of acid, be it lemon juice or white wine vinegar. Then slowly emulsify it with the oil using a food processor or blender.
Food processor reviews – try your hand at making mayo at home
How we tested mayonnaise
The mayonnaise was assessed by a large panel of consumers who regularly buy and eat mayonnaise. The make-up of the panel broadly represents the demographic profile of adults in the UK.
Each mayonnaise variety was served with carrot batons and assessed by 72 people. The panelists rated the taste, texture, aroma and appearance of each product and told us what they liked and disliked about each one.
The taste test was blind, so the panellists didn’t know which brand they were trying, and the order in which they sampled the mayonnaises was fully rotated to avoid any bias.
Each panelist had a private booth so they couldn’t discuss what they were tasting or be influenced by others.