What is Vegan Mayo Made Of?

what is vegan mayo made of
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Vegan mayo has become a popular alternative to traditional mayonnaise, particularly for those following a plant-based diet. But what is vegan mayo made of? Unlike conventional mayonnaise, which is typically made from eggs, oil, and vinegar or lemon juice, vegan mayo uses plant-based ingredients to achieve a similar creamy texture and tangy flavor.

Key Ingredients in Vegan Mayo

Plant-Based Oils

The base of vegan mayo is usually a plant-based oil. Common choices include:

  • Soybean Oil: Widely used due to its neutral flavor and availability.
  • Sunflower Oil: Another neutral option that is high in vitamin E.
  • Canola Oil: Popular for its light flavor and low saturated fat content.
  • Olive Oil: Offers a richer flavor and is high in monounsaturated fats.

Plant Proteins and Emulsifiers

To replicate the emulsifying properties of eggs, vegan mayo relies on plant-based proteins and emulsifiers such as:

  • Aquafaba: The liquid from cooked chickpeas, which can whip up similarly to egg whites.
  • Soy Milk or Almond Milk: Provides the necessary protein content to stabilize the emulsion.
  • Lecithin: Often derived from soy or sunflowers, lecithin is a natural emulsifier that helps keep the oil and water from separating.

Acids and Flavorings

To give vegan mayo its characteristic tangy flavor, various acids and seasonings are added:

  • Vinegar: Usually white vinegar or apple cider vinegar.
  • Lemon Juice: Adds acidity and brightness.
  • Mustard: Often used both for flavor and its natural emulsifying properties.
  • Salt and Sugar: Balance the flavors and enhance the overall taste.

Thickeners and Stabilizers

To achieve a smooth, creamy consistency, vegan mayo may include thickeners and stabilizers such as:

  • Cornstarch or Tapioca Starch: Helps to thicken the mayo.
  • Xanthan Gum or Guar Gum: Stabilizers that maintain the desired texture and prevent separation.

Popular Variations

Avocado Mayo

Made with avocado oil and sometimes even blended with ripe avocados, this variation is rich and creamy with a distinct avocado flavor.

Cashew Mayo

Uses soaked and blended cashews as a base, resulting in a thick and creamy consistency that is also nutty in flavor.

Tofu Mayo

Silken tofu provides a protein-rich base that blends into a smooth and creamy mayo alternative, often favored for its higher protein content.

Making Vegan Mayo at Home

Creating vegan mayo at home is straightforward and allows for customization of flavors and ingredients. A basic recipe includes:

  • 1 cup of plant-based oil (such as canola or sunflower)
  • 1/2 cup of unsweetened soy milk or aquafaba
  • 1 tablespoon of vinegar or lemon juice
  • 1 teaspoon of mustard
  • Salt to taste

Blend all ingredients together until emulsified and creamy. Adjust seasoning as desired.


Vegan mayo is a versatile and delicious alternative to traditional mayonnaise, made from plant-based oils, proteins, and emulsifiers. Whether store-bought or homemade, it offers a cruelty-free option that fits into a vegan lifestyle without compromising on taste or texture. For more information on plant-based products, visit the home page.

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