Cupcake Project Substitution Lab, Test 1: Using Mayonnaise as an Egg Substitute

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Mayonnaise Instead of Eggs

Test 1: Using Mayonnaise as an Egg Substitute

Introduction / Purpose

Mayonnaise is mostly egg yolk and oil; so, despite the initial “yuck” factor, mayo is sometimes suggested as a substitution for eggs in baking. The most famous example of baking with mayonnaise is the chocolate mayo cake – proclaimed to be extra-moist. I wanted to know how mayonnaise would work as a substitution for eggs in desserts other than chocolate cake. Would I be able to taste the mayo? How would it affect the consistency of the dessert? Is mayonnaise a viable alternative to eggs? I decided to run some tests in my substitution lab (a.k.a. my kitchen). My hypothesis was that the substitution would be successful, but taste would be compromised.


To perform my tests, I used full-fat organic mayonnaise. (View on Amazon) [paid link]


I used a substitution amount found on Allrecipes: 3 tablespoons of mayonnaise in place of 1 egg. I used two tried and true recipes, Ultimate Vanilla Cupcakes and Toll House Chocolate Chip Cookies. Both recipes contain two eggs and I replaced the two eggs in each recipe with 1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons of mayonnaise.


Eggs vs Mayo in Cupcakes

Mayo instead of eggs in cookies

Results and Discussion

The mayo had a huge impact on the Ultimate Vanilla Cupcakes. The cupcakes didn’t dome, they weren’t quite as light, and the taste wasn’t Ultimate. The cupcakes did NOT, however, taste like mayo – they were still quite good. I frosted them with vanilla bean buttercream frosting, served them to several unsuspecting test subjects, and no one talked about an odd flavor.

The mayonnaise worked extremely well in Toll House Cookies. The cookies were just as tasty – if not better – than the original Toll House recipe. The cookie dough didn’t stick together as well as Toll House dough typically does, and I didn’t think the cookie dough tasted as good (as many people eat cookie dough, this is important to consider). However, once baked, there was no hint of mayo and the cookies were fantastic!

Important: Do not try to use mayo in your frosting. I tried that as a separate experiment and the taste and smell were gag-inducing.


Based on the results of this study, I would use mayo without hesitation when making chocolate chip cookies and I would be comfortable making the same substitution with other types of cookies. I would use mayo in a pinch in cakes that don’t call for mayo. I would expect the cake to be enjoyable (aren’t all cakes?!) but sub-par.

Did you enjoy Cupcake Project Substitution Lab? Let me know in the comments. I’m considering making it a regular feature and would love your input and suggestions for future tests.