This Is the Best Mayonnaise, According to Ina, Julia, and Joanna — And I Couldn’t Agree More

published Feb 23, 2022
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Credit: Photos: Getty Images; Design: Kitchn

We’ve learned a lot from our food icons over the years. For example, Ina taught us how to make a cucumber salad that’s not runny; Julia taught us how to make chicken like a fancy French chef; and Joanna taught us how to (easily) make the most delicious lemon bars. In addition to cooking tips, they’ve given us gear suggestions, organizing tips, and even grocery recommendations.

Those grocery recs are what we’re here to talk about today. Not just any groceries, though — mayo specifically.

Credit: Taylor Kocher

When it comes to mayonnaise — an all-important condiment for things like potato salad and sandwiches, and achieving golden-brown crusts on a grilled cheese — there’s somewhat of a debate of which brand reigns supreme. Even at Kitchn, we held a blind taste test and picked two winners!

Buy: Hellmann’s Real Mayonnaise, $8.78 for 3 (20-ounce) bottles

So, when I discovered that three of my favorite food icons all go back to the same jar of mayo, it really stopped me in my tracks. Turns out Julia, Ina, and Joanna all LOVE Hellmann’s mayo (or Best Foods, as it’s sold here on the West Coast), and have their favorite ways of using it too!

As told by Dorie Greenspan (another food icon!), Hellmann’s was a non-negotiable ingredient in Julia’s tuna salad. Ina conveniently has a whole page on her blog dedicated to her favorite ingredients: Libby’s canned pumpkin, Nestle chocolate chips, and, yes, Hellmann’s mayo all make the cut. Joanna even uses it as a rather unique ingredient in her chicken Parmesan. (The recipe isn’t online, but you can find it in her latest cookbook.)

I grew up with a different brand, and have since landed on Hellmann’s as my go-to mayo. I love it because it has just the right amount of salt and is thick and creamy enough to make for the ideal spread on a sandwich, without being overly heavy. It’s the only brand I’ll buy, and especially now that I know that my favorite queens of the kitchen love it too. 

What’s your favorite brand of mayo? Tell us in the comments below.