Homemade Aioli

Homemade Aioli

Aioli is typically a Mediterranean sauce made of garlic and olive oil; some regions use other emulsifiers such as egg. The name mean "garlic and oil" and this recipe is far from the mayo shortcuts many use.


  • 1 egg yolk
  • 4 garlic cloves
  • 7 oz. of olive oil
  • 1-2 tsp of lemon juice
  • A pinch of salt

Notes before you begin:

The success or failure of aioli comes in the first 10 minutes when the olive oil meets the egg and garlic. The two factors that make it work are

    A) Mixing the egg with very small drops of olive oil at the beginning. If you add too much oil immediately, the aioli is missed beyond repair. You can add more oil, beat it harder, chances are it will remain liquid and never catch on. The first drops of olive oil make the initial chemical bonds that solidify the sauce and set the foundation for everything else. You can add oil faster later. You’ll see very quickly that from start to end, the sauce never gets liquid. If it’s liquid, it’s not aioli. Now, time for the secret number
    B) Garlic has emulsifying chemical properties that directly contribute to the consistency of the sauce. Crush it all and add it to the mix from the very beginning. The amount of garlic is therefore both a matter of taste and necessity. Aioli can be quite strong if you put too much of it, and if you put too little you’re risking upsetting the bonding process. Now that you know the secret the following should be easier.


    1. Separate the white and yolk of an egg by breaking the shell half open and gently dropping the yolk back and forth; the yolk must stay whole and not break during the process.

    2. Put the yolk, salt and crushed garlic inside a small bowl
    3. Add, as outlined above, very small drops of olive oil into the bowl and stir gently with a whisk; there is no need for an electric mixer or whisking particularly fast, just enough for ingredients to blend
    4. About one minute later, add a few more drops, again in very small amounts, whisk between oil increments. Keep adding oil in tiny amounts for the first 10 minutes until you have a thick base.
    5. At the very end, add lemon juice to your taste. This will help smooth the sauce and give it a crisper, fresher color.

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