Spanish Alioli Garlic Mayonnaise Sauce

Spanish garlic mayo recipe

The Spruce

Prep: 10 mins
Cook: 0 mins
Total: 10 mins
Servings: 12 servings
Yield: 1 1/2 cups
Nutrition Facts (per serving)
28 Calories
2g Fat
1g Carbs
1g Protein
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Nutrition Facts
Servings: 12
Amount per serving
Calories 28
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 2g 3%
Saturated Fat 1g 3%
Cholesterol 46mg 15%
Sodium 65mg 3%
Total Carbohydrate 1g 0%
Dietary Fiber 0g 0%
Total Sugars 0g
Protein 1g
Vitamin C 1mg 5%
Calcium 8mg 1%
Iron 0mg 1%
Potassium 19mg 0%
*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.
(Nutrition information is calculated using an ingredient database and should be considered an estimate.)

Alioli (similar to French aioli originating from Provence) is one of the most common Spanish sauces. It originated in Catalonia, in the northeast of the country on the border of France, where it's made with nothing but olive oil, crushed garlic, and salt and is called allioli. Throughout the rest of Spain it's made with egg as well, and it's a popular sauce for a variety of traditional foods.

The name alioli comes from the Catalan words for the two main ingredients all (garlic), i (and), and oli (oil). It is quick, simple, and very flavorful, so it is easy to understand why it is so popular in Spain. This recipe uses two egg yolks, which makes it bind easier. The eggless Catalan recipe is harder to emulsify. 

Serve this alioli with meats, fish, or vegetables; spread it on sandwiches or bread; or use it as a dipping sauce for French fries.

The Spanish also use it as an ingredient in main course recipes and serve it alongside patatas bravas, croquetas de jamon, and fish soup.


Steps to Make It

  1. Gather the ingredients.

    Ingredients for Spanish garlic mayo
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  2. Peel and mince the garlic.

    Chopped garlic
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  3. Using the flat side of a large knife, crush the garlic.

    Crush garlic
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  4. Place the crushed garlic into a small mortar and pestle, add the salt, and smash into a paste. (An alternative to save time is to use a good garlic press that peels and mashes the garlic in one step. Either way, you can use a mortar and pestle to mash the garlic into a paste.)

    Mortar and pestle with garlic
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  5. Crack the eggs and separate the yolks into a small mixing bowl.

    Yolks in a bowl
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  6. Transfer the garlic paste to the bowl and whisk to blend.

    Whisking eggs
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  7. With a hand mixer on low speed, slowly pour in the olive oil in a very thin, steady stream until a creamy sauce begins to form.

    Beat eggs
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  8. Add the touch of lemon juice slowly at the end, while keeping the mixer on to ensure that the sauce stays smooth.

    Lemon juice added
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  9. Serve with fish, as a condiment for your favorite sandwich, or as a dipping sauce for French fries. Enjoy.

    Spanish garlic mayo
    The Spruce

Raw Egg Warning

Consuming raw and lightly-cooked eggs poses a risk of food-borne illness.


  • The traditional version of this sauce did not have egg yolks, but the yolks make it easier to blend. Feel free to omit the eggs, but be ready to work, as getting just oil and garlic to achieve a thick texture takes a lot of whipping.
  • The alioli will keep for two to three days when stored covered in the refrigerator. The garlic flavor will become more pronounced, so if you plan on making the sauce ahead of time, you may want to add fewer garlic cloves.

Recipe Variations

  • Spicy alioli: After the sauce is made, season it with cayenne pepper for a spicier taste.
  • Saffron alioli: Infuse the lemon juice with threads of saffron before adding to the garlic mayo. This will give you a mellow but flavorful version.
  • Truffle alioli: Add a drop or two of truffle oil to the finished alioli.

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