What’s the best way to get into the habit of eating salad more often? Slathering your crunchy veggies with some creamy vegan cashew mayo.
This egg-free homemade dressing or dip is perfect for meal prepping, encouraging picky eaters to try more vegetables and it doesn’t take more than 5 minutes to make.
Our easy cashew mayo is a healthy vegan condiment base that can be enjoyed in so many ways and spiced up to your liking! Wait, did I just say healthy mayo?
Granted, traditional mayonnaise isn’t exactly what you would call a healthy condiment. Made with eggs and heaps of oil, both of which we don’t want to consume on a whole food plant-based diet, it’s really high in calories and saturated fats.
Luckily, we perfected our easy and healthy food swaps over the years so we can still enjoy flavorful and exciting meals with delicious sauces and condiments — no fear of missing out!
We took this creamy dip and removed the questionable ingredients while keeping those that are responsible for the flavor. Win-win!
Did you know that eggs are the most common cause of food poisoning in the United States (79000 cases and 30 deaths, according to the FDA)?
As vegans, we also have ethical concerns around the consumption of animal products and if there’s a way to create delicious and good-for-you food that didn’t cause any harm — why wouldn’t we just do that?
Now, even though vegetable oil is completely plant-based, it’s not exactly a health food. A large part of the Western population is struggling with being overweight and the chronic diseases that come with it, so adding pure fat (120 calories per tablespoon) to our meals is probably not the best idea.
What’s in Vegan Mayo?
There are a couple of ways to make vegan mayo. Often based on vegetable oil, such as sunflower, avocado, olive or any neutral oil, it calls for just a few other staple ingredients.
Soy milk in particular works well to thicken up vegan mayonnaise, as other plant-based milk alternatives aren’t as rich. Besides some salt and vinegar for the traditional mayo flavor, you can spice up your vegan condiment by adding a pinch of nutritional yeast, sugar and mustard.
Some vegan mayo recipes use either tofu or cashews as a base while only adding a bit or even no oil at all — which is the case for our whole food vegan mayo.
For a soy-free version, cashews are your go-to option. They are easy to find, neutral in flavor and turn into creamy goodness in a heartbeat.
Why This Is the Best Egg-Free Mayo
Going from traditional mayo to this cashew-based version might just become your favorite plant-based swap — it’s the kind of condiment that makes anything taste fantastic and even loves you back.
Once you taste our cashew mayo, you won’t believe it’s vegan!
How to Make Cashew Mayo
If you want to make your own cashew mayo, start by soaking one cup of raw cashews for at least a couple of hours — better overnight. In case a sudden mayo craving is hitting you, there’s also a quick method!
Bring some water to a boil and pour it over the cashews. Let it sit for 15-20 minutes until the nuts plump up to roughly twice their size, then drain the soaking liquid.
Even if you have a high-speed blender, we still recommend soaking the cashews because this just makes for a creamier mayo.
Like most of our recipes, this is super low-key kitchen skill level: simply add all ingredients for the mayonnaise into a blender jar and blend until smooth. That’s it!
Adjust to taste with some more nutritional yeast, mustard, salt or even garlic powder. No oil, dairy or eggs needed! But feel free to add a pinch of sweetener if it makes the cashew mayo that much better to you.
Here are the exact ingredients we use for our favorite vegan mayo — each one is chosen carefully to replicate the taste and texture as good as possible:
- Cashews — their slightly nutty and sweet taste is perfect to create the healthy, creamy mayo base which can be spiced to your liking.
- Lemon Juice — for the tangy flavor; you can use a bit of distilled white vinegar instead if you like.
- Nutritional Yeast — most of our dairy-free condiments need at least a pinch of that flavorful goodness!
- Dijon Mustard — haven’t tried any other mustard and most food bloggers agree with us on this.
Just throw all of those with a pinch of salt and some water into a blender and that’s it!
Create Low-Fat Vegan Mayo
Since most mayo recipes call for a good amount of oil, swapping this main ingredient for a wholesome source of fat (aka cashews) already adds a ton more bulk and essential nutrients to your vegan mayo.
This genius move cuts the calories in half already! But sure, we can take this a little further if you like. Stretch that nut-base by adding fluffy aquafaba (aka chickpea liquid) to it which cuts back on the fat even more!
Or how about using tofu in place of the cashews to boost the protein content while reducing the fat even further?
If you’re thinking “well that doesn’t have much to do with real mayo anymore!” — perhaps you’re right. But if you end up with a tasty, creamy dip, does that even matter?
How to Store & How Long Does It Last?
Cashew mayo is the perfect versatile condiment to make at home for the upcoming week. You can make a larger batch and store it in a sealable container or glass jar in the fridge for 7-10 days.
Keep in mind that it will thicken over time and you might want to thin it out again, depending on your preferred use.
We haven’t tried freezing and thawing it — there’s the possibility that the mayo could separate but when you use it to make some kind of sauce and blend it again, this should be no problem.
What to Serve With Cashew Mayo
This healthy and easy cashew mayonnaise can be used in any and all recipes calling for mayo. We love to whip up a vegan potato salad with it or thin the cashew mayo out to make a creamy salad dressing over any leafy greens.
You can spread it on some sourdough bread, make vegan sandwiches, chickpea tuna salads, turn it into different sauces or simply use it as a dip.Vegan Potato Salad with Mayo →
More Easy & Healthy Vegan Condiments
Adding the right condiments can make or break any meal! Here are more whole food plant-based sauces, spreads and dips that take any veggies or baked goods to the next level.
Did you try our vegan mayo recipe and how did you like it? Feel free to share in the comments below, rate the recipe or Pin it for later. You can also tag us on Instagram if you made it — we’d love to see your creations!
- 1 cup cashews, soaked & drained (150 g)
- 1.5 tbsp lemon juice
- 2 tsp nutritional yeast
- 1 tsp Dijon mustard
- 1.5 tsp salt
- 1 cup water (240 ml)
- Drain your soaked cashews and place them into a high-speed blender jar together with the rest of the ingredients.
- Blend everything until smooth, adjusting the amount of added water to reach your desired consistency.
- Taste test your cashew mayo, adding more salt, lemon juice or nutritional yeast if wanted.
- Serve as a dip or dressing and store any leftovers in a food container for up to a week in the fridge — be aware that the vegan mayo will become a bit thicker over time.
- It's best to soak the cashews overnight but if you have a good blender, a few hours are enough.
- You can add a sprinkle of vegan sweetener if it makes cashew mayo taste much better to you!
- Add a spritz of apple cider vinegar for tanginess or some dill pickle liquid if you’re up for it. Onion or garlic powder may also be your jam!
- Adobo sauce or chipotle pepper blended into the cashew mayo creates easy and delicious aioli.
- You can replace the cashews with 12 oz of plain tofu for a nut-free and higher protein vegan mayo!
Nutrition Information:Yield: 18
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 45Total Fat: 4gSaturated Fat: 1gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 3gCholesterol: 0mgSodium: 251mgCarbohydrates: 3gFiber: 0gSugar: 0gProtein: 1g
Nutrition information is a rough estimate calculated automatically, their accuracy is not guaranteed. Just focus on whole plant-based foods and eat until satiety!