Calabrian mayo is spicy and creamy. The spicy mayo is easy to whip up with only three ingredients including Calabrian chili paste.
I am all about adding flavors to mayo. I actually don't like plain mayo. I know, I'm weird (though I have met people who also don't like plain mayo, so maybe I'm not alone in this?)
But add flavor to mayo? And I have suddenly turned into a lover of mayo.
This mayo is spicy, bright, and creamy. The spicy comes from the Calabrian chili paste. The brightness comes from the lemon juice. And the creaminess comes from the mayo. You can use homemade or store-bought mayo here, it's up to you!
This could also be considered a spicy aioli or Calabrian aioli, but let's not get TOO fancy here. Unless you're having guests (or a date) over, and you want to, of course.
While this recipe uses Calabrian chili paste (and that is what we recommend), what if you don't have it or can't find it? Check out these substitutes for Calabrian chili paste.
- Calabrian chili paste - You can find Calabrian chili paste at some grocery stores and specialty stores. Trader Joe's bomba sauce is a low-cost version and you can also buy it on Amazon if you can't find it.
- Mayo - Use your favorite plain mayo here. You can also make a homemade mayo.
- Lemon - You'll need the juice from part of a lemon! Fresh lemon juice is best.
How to make Calabrian mayo
Simply add the mayo, Calabrian chili paste, and juice from ½ a small lemon to a bowl.
Stir to combine completely! Taste and check to see if you like the spice level. If you want it spicer, add more Calabrian chili paste (a little goes a long way).
Serve as desired. Check out below for a lot of ideas on how to use the Calabrian mayo!
How to use spicy mayo
Homemade Calabrian mayo can be used in so many ways. I feel like the spicy mayo just makes me excited to eat whatever the mayo is on! Here's a few ideas:
- Topping some seared chicken or fish. I love it with my air fryer thin chicken breasts. I've also eaten it with seared salmon and it's been amazing. It would also be delicious with cod.
- On a sandwich. The Calabrian mayo is delicious in place of regular mayo on a sandwich. Yum.
- As a dipping sauce. The spicy mayo is perfect with french fries or as a dipping sauce for air fryer chicken bites.
- Coating chicken or turkey. You could use this when making a whole turkey or an air fryer whole chicken as a coating between the meat and skin.
- Using in chicken/tuna salad. Love chicken or tuna salad and want a bit of spice? Use this spicy Calabrian mayo instead of regular mayo.
How to store leftover Calabrian mayo
Have leftovers? Or saving for later? Spicy Calabrian mayo can be stored in an airtight container the the fridge for a couple of weeks.
How to customize
You can customize this by making spicier (or not!) I think the recipe written has a good amount of spice, but you can add more or less.
To make spicer, add two tablespoons Calabrian chili paste. To make less spicy, just use 2 teaspoons of the chili paste and add more as needed.
You can also swap out the lemon juice for lime juice if you prefer!
And you can add seasonings and spices if you want. I love adding some parsley and smoked paprika.
Recipes using Calabrian chili paste
- ⅔ cup mayonnaise
- 4 teaspoons Calabrian chili paste
- ½ lemon small
- To a bowl, add the mayonnaise, Calabrian chili paste, and juice from half a small lemon.
- Stir until combined. Taste, and add more Calabrian chili paste if needed (depending on desired spice level).
If nutrition info is shown, values are based on an online calculator and are estimates. Please verify using your own data.