Friday, February 4, 2011

How to fix messed up Homemade Mayonnaise

I've been making homemade mayo for a few months now. The taste doesn't even begin to compare to store bought. One day when I was making it the girls asked what I was doing. I told them I was making mayonnaise and of course they wanted to taste it. I stuck the tip of a spoon in the mayo and let them taste it. They then wanted to eat it by the spoonful! We use it like a dip, using it sometimes instead of ketchup on our hotdogs and sausages. And when you make it with pastured chicken eggs, healthy oils and even ferment it a bit for probiotics, it's good to eat by the spoonful if you so wish to! Evey once in awhile something goes wrong when you make homemade mayo. Usually you don't get an emulsification going with your egg yolk before you start pouring in your oil. Well this has happened to me twice, and I just wanted to let you know... it can be fixed!!!

The recipe is here: How to make Homemade Mayonnaise. I don't use the whites every time. Sometimes I save them back for other recipes, by freezing them.

Yuck... didn't emulsify when I used my food processor today.

If your mayo isn't emulsifying correctly pour it from your processor/blender into a pourable mixing cup. I actually had about a little over a cup of oil/mustard/egg/lemon here before I realized it wasn't going too well!

Clean out your blender or move onto another device. Today I messed up twice. (Last time this happened to me I fixed it on the second go, today it took me three total tries.) I moved from my processor to my blender, but when that didn't work, I pulled out the metal bowl and whisk.I wasn't going to give up! Doing it by hand can be harder but it is easier to see how the emulsification is going.

In a clean bowl (or clean blender) break one new egg yolk and 1 tsp of mustard. Whisk and whisk until the egg yolk barely starts to get fluffy. Then slowly, slowly, slowly drizzle a bit of the "ruined" mayo into the egg. Set it down and whisk until it is completely incorporated. Pour a couple of teaspoons in at a time, whisking the entire time. I found it was easier to pour, sit the oil mixture down, and whisk again. Then repeat.

Eventually it will get thick and yummy! Taste and add more lemon/salt as needed. The yolks from pastured chickens will make the mayonnaise more yellow than store bought. Add a couple of tablespoons of whey (strained from yogurt) and set the mayo out at room temperature for 7 hours. This will ferment the mayo (adding probiotics!) and preserving it so it will last for weeks in your refrigerator instead of a few days. When I first heard about this I was a bit skeptical too, but sure enough it works!

(I entered this post in Kelly the Kitchen Kop's Real Food Wednesdays!)


  1. Thank you so much for this post. I have a very runny batch of homemade mayonnaise in my fridge right now and wanted to see if I could save it. Otherwise I would have just made dressing, which is good too. But now I will try your technique.

  2. Thank you! This saved the mayo I was making! I've made mayo many times, and for some reason the two times I tried today failed miserably. Thanks to you, I was able to salvage it!

  3. So glad my method worked for you! Every once in awhile the emulsification just doesn't take!

  4. Thank you! This saved my mayo. Was bummed that I'd be wasting eggs and a cup of oil. My first attempt at mayo by myself worked great so I decided to try some for guests who were coming over for burger night. It failed just as they arrived, and this saved my emulsion. Only problem: after they left. Oh, well :), thanks, though!

  5. Thank you, this worked. I don't think I'll go back to machine-made mayonnaise. The hand whisking was quick and relatively painless. It's just frustrating that it sometimes takes 3 tries (and an hour of my time) to get mayonnaise to work.

  6. Thank you everyone for leaving a reply! I pretty much make mayo by hand now. I just seem to get better results. I've also stopped using the whites, since I keep reading conflicting info on whether or not the whites (even from pastured eggs) is good for you. Plus using the whites lends to a runnier mayo. I also found that adding the salt to the beginning with the yolk and mustard somehow helps the emulsion hold. Sometimes I put a tiny dash of sugar too. Playing around with the basic recipe is fun. I love trying different oils and vinegars for completely different mayo!

  7. Many thanks. A bad batch on my very first go and this fixed it. Still a bit runny, but looks great still I plan to use part of it for home made coleslaw dressing. Thank you.

  8. This totally fixed my failed mayo! My arm nearly fell off from all the whisking, by it worked perfectly.Thanks so much!

  9. Many thanks for this post. You did save my mayonnaise this evening as I had failed 3 times! I definitely will return to this technique.

  10. Thank you so much, this just saved my mayonnaise. I skipped the mustard since I allready had enough of it in the failed mixture :) It turned out creamy and delicious

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  12. OK, so I have made mayo with a stick blender for a few years. Generally easy .

    But yesterday, no chance. It was not curdled or separated, just stayed a nice liquid, uniform colour , but it would not thicken.
    First I started with one egg and 250ml of oil. Same as always , a bit of mustard powder, 4 teaspoons of lemon juice, 4 of water, a whole egg and a bit of salt.

    It just did not thicken.

    Tried again ,by starting with another batch, a fresh egg, clean utensils , a different light olive oil, to start it off. then use the old mixture as oil and this time slowly drizzled it in.

    Same result again, a perfectly uniform egg and oil sauce. I have since tried again and again.
    Tried the stick blender, with blade, with emulsion disk, even the egg whisk/beater attachment.
    Even gone to the extent of leaving all ingredients out over night to get to exact same temperature, though they were to begin with any way.

    I tried posting about this earlier but my post disappeared. think I said 2 litre of oil, wasted, but actually a lot less, probably about 750ml. Thought it had all been dumped but I see my partner did not actually pour it away.

    Also up to 6 eggs now.

    What else can this oil and egg mix be used for? Just microwaved a saucer of it and used it as an 'omelette ' for egg on toast.

    Any other ideas to save pouring it down the sink? Quiche?

  13. I'm so glad I found this link on a search!
    Thanks for saving our mayo.!!

  14. Yesss, so glad I found this. I was able to salvage my first ruined batch. Thank you!

  15. Was great to find this. So didn't want to waste my mayo!

  16. Great post! I made a hot sauce with oil and vinegar (and hot peppers of course) that was supposed to turn out like mayo. Mine came out runny and I wanted to thicken it. I don't want to use an egg yolk though. However, your tip about adding the whey is a great idea! I make my yogurt out on the counter and I will add some whey to the sauce and leave it thinnish. I like the idea of adding probiotics.


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