Easy Vegan Mayo Recipe (Actually Healthy + 2 Ways!)

GFGluten Free

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Forget store-bought, make your own Vegan Mayo using this easy recipe! It’s Oil-Free, Healthy, and has both Nut-Free and Soy-Free Options.

What’s that, you say? Vegan Mayo that’s Oil-Free, actually tastes like Mayonnaise, and has both a Nut-Free and a Soy-Free option?

Yeah, you heard me right 😉

ingredients for Vegan Mayo on wood cutting board

I’m all about celebrating the flavors of whole plant foods, but sometimes you just need a little mayo in your life, ya know? And when I want Mayo, I want the almost-real-deal.  Taste, texture, and color! There I chose each ingredient in this recipe very carefully…

  • Cashews OR Tofu: some people are Nut-Free, while other avoid Soy. Therefore, I created TWO recipes using either Cashews or Tofu! I’ll share notes below on each variety, so you can decide which one you’d like to make for yourself.
  • Lemon Juice AND Vinegar: traditional Mayo has some acidity to it, so we need to include some in our recipe as well! The Mayo tasted too Lemony when I used all Lemon Juice, so I did a 50-50 split with Distilled White Vinegar to even it out.
  • Nutritional Yeast: gives a nice “dairy-esque” flavor to the Mayo, as well as more depth of flavor! A little goes a long way.
  • Dijon Mustard: again, this contributes to the “tang” that is classic to Mayo. You only need a bit, but it makes a dramatic difference!

overhead shot of glass jars of tofu and cashew mayonnaise

Each recipe has the same basic ingredients, though there are a few slight adjustments. Mayonnaise normally has a subtle sweetness to it — I found that the Cashew Mayo still had this sweetness (from the Cashews), but the Tofu Mayo did not. So we need to add a bit of sugar to the Tofu Mayo! Tofu itself also holds a lot more liquid than Cashews, so we actually need to drain and dry it a bit to get that thick and fluffy consistency that we’re looking for.

Don’t worry friends, it’ll all be in the recipe notes. Now, on to texture and color! I compared both of my homemade Mayos with a store-bought Vegan Mayonnaise, for reference.

spoons of tofu, store-bought, and cashew mayo

You’ll notice that the Tofu Mayo (left), appears a little more yellow than the store-bought Mayo (center), while the Cashew Mayo (right) appears a touch more yellow-gray. In terms of consistency, I found that the Tofu Mayo was initially more runny than the store-bought Mayonnaise, but it thickened up in the fridge overnight. The Cashew Mayo was as thick as the store-bought Mayo straight off the bat, but also thickened in the fridge. So if you’re planning to use it over time, I would suggest adding a little more water to it!

The Cashew Mayo also appears to be slightly less smooth than the other two types of Vegan Mayo, but I did not notice a difference when actually using it in recipes. That being said, you’ll definitely need a high-speed blender to make the Cashew variety.

piece of bread with 3 mayo streaks on it

Now, let’s look at spreadability! I found that all three varieties spread very well over a slice of bread. As you can see, the Tofu (left) and Store-bought (center) seem to be the most similar. However, I still found the Cashew Mayo (right) to spread quite nicely. As I mentioned earlier, you can also add a little bit more water to the recipe to get a smoother consistency.

So, what’s the deal? Is one variety of Vegan Mayo actually better than the other?

I think this is a hard one! Obviously, you may need to make one version of Vegan Mayo vs. another due to dietary restrictions, but I would say I personally prefer the Cashew Mayo over the Tofu Mayo, just slightly. Both of them taste pretty darn close to actual Mayo, but the Tofu Mayo does have a subtle “soy” flavor to it. I found that the Cashew Mayo had a much more neutral flavor, and tasted more like actual Mayonnaise.

That being said, the Tofu Mayo is still a great option and is much more budget-friendly! Not only is Tofu less expensive than Cashews, but you don’t need to have a powerful blender to make it.

glass jars of tofu and cashew mayo on wood cutting board

At the end of the day, both of these Vegan Mayos taste awesome! Traditional Mayonnaise is made with Egg Yolks and a Neutral Oil…I personally try to avoid both of those things. I was so happy when I was able to recreate the exact same Mayo consistency and flavor, but using whole food ingredients. Not only are these Mayos tasty, but it’s also pretty darn good for you too.

Feel free to use them as you would normal Mayo! Both are great on Sandwiches, in Salad Dressings, or anywhere you would traditionally use Mayonnaise. And if you do end up making both varieties, let me know which one was your favorite in the comments below!

jars of mayo, piece of bread, and mayo ingredients on wood cutting board

If you’re looking for more Vegan Spreads, you’ll also love this Vegan Chipotle Mayo and this Creamy Cilantro Dressing!

Finally, if you make this recipe and decide to share it on Facebook or Instagram, don’t forget to tag me @FromMyBowl + #FromMyBowl! I love seeing your delicious recreations 🙂

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Easy Vegan Mayo Recipe

Forget store-bought, make your own Vegan Mayo using this easy recipe! It’s Oil-Free, Healthy, and has both Nut-Free and Soy-Free Options.

  • Author: Caitlin Shoemaker
  • Prep Time: 10 Minutes
  • Cook Time: 0 Minutes
  • Total Time: 10 minutes
  • Yield: about 1 1/4 cup 1x
  • Category: Sauce
  • Method: Blender
  • Cuisine: American

Ingredients

Scale
  • 8 ozSilken Tofu OR 1 cup whole Cashews, soaked overnight
  • 1 tsp Fresh Lemon Juice
  • 1 tsp Distilled White Vinegar
  • 1/2 tsp Nutritional Yeast
  • 1/4 tsp Dijon Mustard
  • 3/4 tsp Salt
  • 1/41/3 cup water (for the Cashew version ONLY)
  • 1/4 tsp White Sugar (for the Tofu version ONLY)

Instructions

For the Tofu Mayo:

  1. Remove the Silken Tofu from its package, removing as much water as possible. Cut the Tofu into cubes and carefully place them onto a dry and clean dish towel. Let the Tofu sit on the towel for 5-10 minutes, to absorb extra moisture.
  2. Add the Silken Tofu Cubes, Lemon Juice, Vinegar, Nutritional Yeast, Dijon Mustard, Sugar, and Salt to a high-speed blender. Blend for 45 seconds, or until everything is well incorporated.
  3. Transfer the mixture to a glass jar or sealable container, and store in the fridge for up to 10 days.

For the Cashew Mayo:

  1. Drain your soaked Cashews, if they are still in liquid. Add the Cashews, Lemon Juice, Vinegar, Nutritional Yeast, Dijon Mustard, and Salt to a high-speed blender.
    1. Add 1/4 cup of Filtered Water if you are using the Cashew Mayo immediately in a recipe
    2. Add 1/3 cup of Filtered Water if you are planning on using the Mayo over time (ex: Sandwiches)
  2. Blend all ingredients together for 60 seconds, then transfer to a glass jar or sealable container.
  3.  Store in the fridge for up to 10 days.

Notes

  • I do not recommend any substitutions for this recipe; each ingredient serves a specific purpose, and if you must use it if you are looking for a realistic Vegan Mayo!
  • You MUST use Silken Tofu for this recipe, or the final product will not be as smooth. If you are using Cashew pieces in place of whole Cashews, use a heaping 3/4 cup.
  • If you forget to soak your Cashews ahead of time, you can either (1) carefully pour hot water over them and let sit for 30 minutes, or (2) microwave them in water for 3 minutes and let sit until soft.

Keywords: vegan mayo, vegan mayonnaise, egg free mayo, dairy free mayo, tofu mayo, cashew mayo

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Forget store-bought, make your own Vegan Mayo using this easy recipe! It's Oil-Free, Healthy, and has both Nut-Free and Soy-Free Options. #mayo #healthymayo #veganmayo #mayonnaise #mayorecipe #oilfreemayo #nutfree #soyfree #glutenfree #vegan #dairyfree #plantbased via frommybowl.com

About the Author

Hey there, I’m Caitlin! I make easy-to-follow, wholesome, and budget-friendly vegan recipes that are mostly gluten-free and refined sugar-free. I’m also an avid yogi, love the great outdoors, am chocolate-obsessed, and enjoy eating almond butter straight off of the spoon.

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Comments

  1. Hi Caitlin, Thank you for taking the time to compare the two mayos. Also thank you for including a non- soy version. This whole post is so well thought out and organized. Great job ! I just bought my ingredients and will post a review when I make my cashew mayo. Katie

    1. So grateful you appreciate the care put into it! We really wanted an accessible mayo since soy is often in so many of them!

  2. Hi. Love the recipe. Have only tried the tofu 9ne so far as it’s so much cheaper tham cashews (in UK anyway). Do you known if would freeze well as would love to make a big batch and store in little tubs. Thanks 🙂

    1. Hey! We’ve never tried it, actually. I feel like it might separate a bit when thawed – you could try refrigerating most of it and testing a little bit in the freezer to see how that works.

  3. I’m a very new vegan, only about two months, do you have a website or Facebook to follow, trying to do my best to cut out all the processed foods, I will be making the cashew version today and I will let you know how it turned out, thank you

  4. I am NOT a fan of “traditional” mayo at all, so much so, I never really bought it prior to becoming a vegan. However, since becoming a vegan, I decided to try this vegan (cashew based) recipe so that I can use it to make things like chickpea salad sandwiches, vegan “egg” salad sandwiches, vegan “tuna” salad, vegan potato salad, etc. This vegan (cashew based) mayo is by far THE BEST mayo I have ever tasted! It is so delicious I found myself eating spoonfuls of it…it’s that good! However, I must say this… I followed the recipe exactly for the cashew version and had to end up slightly tweaking it because it was way too salty. Since the recipe did not specify what type of salt to use, I used my “go to” which is pink Himalayan salt. Three quarters of a teaspoon of that made this may way too salty. In order to dilute some of the saltiness, I added a little bit more water, which actually worked out perfectly because the 1/3 cup of water, which is what the recipe called for, was not enough to make the mayo really smooth (atleast not for me). So with the addition of the extra water I was able to dilute the overpowering saltiness, while getting that extra creamy consistency that mayo should have. So I give this recipe 5 stars and two thumbs up because it tastes better than any store bought mayo (including the vegan varieties like Veganaise) out there!

    1. Thanks so much! So happy to hear this mayo made the cut! Himalayan salt often has more of an assertive saltiness than traditional table salt at the same ratio. Glad you were able to adjust and that you love it so much!

  5. What can I say? Perfection. I don’t know how to thank you enough for sharing this AMAZING recipe! I was craving and missing mayo and came across this recipe. Decided to give it a go without much expectations and it blew my mind. I am currently obsessed with this mayo. Doing a double batch as we speak, because it does not last very long in the fridge! At the moment I love to use it as a dipping sauce for my falafels. It’s so creamy, so delicious! 🙂

    1. I don’t think there’s much you can do about that! You can always make a smaller batch if you don’t think you’ll use it all 🙂

  6. Loved this! I used it in your chickpea salad sandwiches, and it was so great! I used the cashew version.

  7. Honestly, the first oil-free vegan mayonnaise recipe that I’ve found that uses simple ingredients that I already have on hand! I’ll be making this tomorrow to make my “N’egg Salad” recipe, then bake up up loaf of bread, slice and toast and slice again for some “dipping sticks” to nosh on while I continue to get my boat’s galley up and running for Thanksgiving!

    Far too often, I find recipes that start with something like “Add 2½ bottles of 40-weight”, and here’s one with not a single drop of anything other than what’s already in the cashews? SCORE! (The tofu’s reserved for the N’egg Salad, so cashews it is! They’re in my pantry…buried…somewhere…) And hey! This will be the first time using my new blender! Time to find out if it’s up to the task!

    Thank you, Caitlin! Most definitely saving this!

  8. You are really awesome , I follow most of your recipes .. Thank You so much for your efforts and Creative ideas 🙂 .

    Madhu.

  9. Hi, I am curious what blender did you use to make this vegan mayo with the quantity of the ingredients specified? Mine just doesn’t blend smooth enough, well it take some effort to get there. So want to know what you used. Thanks.

  10. I’m not seeing a measure for sugar for the tofu version. Could you please tell me how much? I made the tofu version last night and, aside from lacking that hint of sweetness, it is fantastic! Many thanks!!

    1. Hi Dicey – it’s listed in the recipe ingredient list – 1/4 teaspoon of sugar for the tofu version 🙂

    1. Silken tofu will easily get to that sort of creamy texture with very little effort, firm tofu would might not be as creamy and would probably also require a little extra water. We haven’t tried it, but if a little inconsistency in the texture doesn’t bother you than it might be worth a shot!

    1. For the cashew version you can either (1) carefully pour hot water over them and let sit for 30 minutes, or (2) microwave them in water for 3 minutes and let sit until soft. Hope that helps!

    2. you said that each ingredient serves a purpose. the problem for me is i seriously dislike vinegar and am very sensitive to it’s taste. will leaving it out of the recipe hurt it?

      1. This is true! Since it sounds like you absolutely need to swap it out, I would just replace it with more lemon juice (same amount).

  11. I haven’t tried this yet. I was going to sub white distilled vinegar for apple cider vinegar because I don’t have any on hand. I was also wondering how much of a difference it would make if I didn’t cube the Tofu before tossing it in the food processor?

    1. Swapping the vinegar should be fine since the amount is so small. The cubing of the tofu is to help drain and dry it to help get the right consistency.

  12. Great recipe and simple instructions! Yesterday I made tofu mayo and now it’s my new favorite. This natural home-made product is definitely better than the ones full of chemical. So thank you for this post!

    1. Never tried it, actually. I feel like it might separate a bit when thawed – you could try refrigerating most of it and testing a little bit in the freezer to see how that works.

  13. I have made this recipe at least 5 times and I just love it! I always change up recipes, and with this one I use both cashews (around 10 of them) and tofu (Trader Joe’s sprouted small container tofu). Also instead of white vinegar, I use apple cider vinegar and I just eyeball the rest of the ingredients. It’s a great oil free and healthy alternative to vegan mayo!