My wife's chicken cake recipe calls for mayonnaise as one of the batter ingredients. In my opinion, mayonnaise is completely unsuitable for high-temperature processing (as in baking), but I was unable to come up with a substitute for it.

So, my question is, what can we put into cake batter instead of mayonnaise?


I think mayonnaise is unsuitable for baking because it is an emulsion which separates into its ingredients when heated, emulsifying agents used in a commercial mayo are not particularly healthy, and mayonnaise does not taste any good when it is broken into its components.

The components of the batter are: 6 table spoons of flour, 3 eggs, 200gram mayo, 200gram sour cream.

The components of the filling are: chopped prepared chicken meat, chopped sauteed onions, boiled eggs, etc.

  • 2
    Never heard of a chicken cake, or of any cake which contains mayonnaise. Can you post the whole recipe?
    – rumtscho
    Dec 20, 2011 at 17:24
  • 3
    Why do you think it is unsuitable? Have you tried the recipe before? I've been served 'chocolate mayonnaise cake' in the past, and it was delicious. Mayonnaise is, after all, just eggs and oil.
    – slim
    Dec 20, 2011 at 17:25
  • 4
    I can only hope you're not trying to make this: phineasandferb.wikia.com/wiki/…
    – rfusca
    Dec 20, 2011 at 17:41
  • @rumtscho, I added the ingredients list.
    – haimg
    Dec 20, 2011 at 17:59
  • 3
    In this recipe, your mayonnaise won't separate. It stops being an emulsion and becomes part of the batter. You know how butter separates when melted by itself, but a batter made with butter is smooth? The same happens here. But both the emulsifiers and the air in the mayo are active ingredients (in baking, structure is more important than constituents!) so I agree with @Sobachatina's answer. You'll make it worse if you substitute.
    – rumtscho
    Dec 20, 2011 at 18:37

2 Answers 2


Many cake batters call for mayonnaise. It makes for moister cakes. Using mayonnaise instead of its constituent ingredients adds convenience as well as extra emulsifiers. It is true that mayonnaise doesn't handle high heat on its own but it doesn't have to. It is part of a batter that will set.

If you really don't trust the recipe- the mayonnaise can be replaced with egg yolks that have oil whipped into them to form an emulsion. You can add a little vinegar for flavor. :)

  • So you're saying that the emulsifiers are active ingredients in the recipe, and are needed for batter to set properly and be moist?
    – haimg
    Dec 20, 2011 at 18:06
  • The emulsifiers wouldn't help the cake set- the eggs do that. Emulsifiers will improve the texture. This makes me want to do some experiments with cakes with lecithin added to them to see how much of a difference it would make. Dec 20, 2011 at 19:11
  • 1
    @Sobachatina it definitely makes a difference, commercial bakeries use it all the time.
    – rumtscho
    Dec 20, 2011 at 20:27

A suitable substitute for if you dont have mayo is renees ceasar salad dressing. I used about a table spoon in my white cupcake batter with a small amount of vanilla added. The final product was deffinitely more moist and tasted almost the same as regular cupcakes. The only way you could tell there was salad dressing was if you knew it was there.

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