Can You Use Mayo Instead of Eggs?

Reviewed on 12/8/2020

This is not recommended
This is not recommended

This is not recommended. Though mayonnaise, also referred to as mayo, contains egg yolk, it does not provide as much protein as present in a single egg. A hundred gram of eggs provides 13 grams (26% of daily recommended intake) of proteins while the same quantity of mayo gives only 1 gram (2% of daily recommended intake) of proteins. The egg yolk is only used as an emulsifier in mayonnaise and not as a nutritional element. Hence, we do not recommend the use of mayonnaise instead of eggs.

What is the difference between homemade mayonnaise and commercially available mayonnaise?

Mayonnaise is a popular condiment found in various American, Italian, and Mexican dishes. It is most commonly found as a spread on various food items, such as sandwiches, burgers, and pizzas. It is a semisolid oil in water (O/W) emulsion that contains oil, vinegar, egg yolk, and spices (mustard or pepper). Careful blending of these ingredients gives the mayonnaise its typical flavor and creamy taste.

The egg yolk in the commercial preparation of mayonnaise is always a pasteurized one. The mayonnaise is prepared in a way to keep it safe; it contains acidic items, such as vinegar or lemon juice that act as preservatives. Hence, it is rare for the mayonnaise to get contaminated with bacteria. Once it is opened, it can be stored in the refrigerator for up to 2 months. Discard it after 2 months.

Homemade mayonnaise is made using raw eggs that are generally not cooked or pasteurized. The United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) does not recommend eating uncooked or undercooked raw shelled eggs. This is due to the possibility of the presence of Salmonella bacteria in the undercooked or uncooked eggs. Consumers are also not able to pasteurize eggs properly at home.

After making homemade mayonnaise with pasteurized eggs or egg products, it should be refrigerated (but not frozen) and used within 4 days. Frozen home-made mayonnaise can curdle but not store bought mayo.

Regardless of the type of mayonnaise, mayonnaise-based dishes should not be kept out for long and always be refrigerated within 2 hours.

Is mayonnaise unhealthy?

Yes, the conventional mayonnaise is high in calories (100 calories per tablespoonful) and contains 65%–80% fat. The fat in the mayonnaise plays an essential role in maintaining the texture, appearance, and flavor of the mayonnaise. It also helps preserve the mayonnaise for a longer time. However, this amount of fat is unhealthy because it may cause unnecessary weight gain and increase your cholesterol levels.

If you want to relish mayonnaise, look for the labels, and choose low-fat mayonnaise over the conventional or high-fat mayonnaise. The labels may also contain the number of starches or sugars used in place of fat to improve the flavor. Choose the one that fits in your diet.

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References
Mirzanajafi-Zanjani M, Yousefi M, Ehsani A. Challenges and approaches for the production of a healthy and functional mayonnaise sauce. Food Sci Nutr. Published online July 18, 2019. doi: 10.1002/fsn3.1132

Ask USDA. Is Homemade Mayonnaise Safe? July 17, 2019. https://ask.usda.gov/s/article/Is-homemade-mayonnaise-safe

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