Aioli Is The Garlicky Substitute For Mayo In Your Savory Recipes

Tangy, slightly salty, and overall creamy, mayo is the building block for a plethora of recipes. It's a great source for fat, making dishes a little richer than they originally are. The condiment is incredible for flavor, as well, but aioli can be the delectable substitute for mayonnaise in savory dishes.

Now, don't get us wrong – mayo and aioli are absolutely not the same thing. Yet, they share similar foundations. Both birthed from various Mediterranean cuisines, classic mayonnaise has a base of egg yolks and oil, with mustard, salt, lemon juice, and white wine vinegar rounding out the creamy condiment. Many aioli recipes also begin with egg yolks, although it's not always a requirement. Still, the condiment contains olive oil, salt, and garlic cloves, with lemon juice often making an appearance to brighten things up.

The two emulsions have a distinct thick, creamy feel, although aioli's flavor is made much more pungent thanks to the garlic. If you do use modern interpretations of aioli that rely on egg yolks, lemon juice, or even mayo itself, the condiment can become a quick stand-in for mayonnaise. It's like mayo 2.0, with an earthy taste that elevates all your savory dishes. Aioli can be the mayo swap for a more flavorful club sandwich, a condiment that easily elevates coleslaw, or simply something that brings more flavor to your onion dip.

Use aioli for a garlicky touch in these dishes

When made with the same building blocks as mayonnaise, aioli still brings a creamy touch to food, but with an elevated flavor from the crushed garlic and peppery olive oil. The feel of the recipe remains the same, but dishes like creamy curried chicken salad become a little more intense thanks to the garlic. Aioli is the perfect swap for this dish, with the garlic punctuating the sweet, savory curry with a deeper taste.

A slather of aioli can even elevate an ultimate grilled cheese sandwich, particularly if it's made with roasted garlic. Caramelizing the allium before emulsifying it turns the sauce into a slightly sweet, deeply nutty condiment that brings out the earthiness of the Gruyère in the grilled cheese sandwich. That combination alone is more than enough flavor, but it can always be dressed up with tomatoes, bacon, or sauteed mushrooms.

Aioli is particularly great when trying to amp up your appetizers for entertaining. It's an easy swap that brings layers of flavor to starters that typically require mayonnaise. Use aioli in place of mayo when making easy deviled eggs for an appetizer with a delicious pungency that impresses guests. It can also act as an enhancer in elote-style corn dip, balancing the sweet corn with a sharp, earthy taste.