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Lemon Dill Aioli

Vegetarian

This creamy aioli packs a garlicky punch and is infused with fragrant lemon and fresh dill. It’s a great addition to a sandwich or burger and a delicious dip for fries. Naturally gluten-free and vegetarian with a prep time of only five minutes.

Close-up shot of lemon dill aioli in white bowl w/ spoon shot from above.

Let me begin with a little education about aioli, because there is some confusion surrounding it. You may have heard that it is just a fancy mayonnaise, but that is incorrect.

Aioli is a sauce made from garlic, salt, and extra-virgin olive oil using the process of emulsification, whereas mayonnaise is typically an emulsion of canola oil and egg yolks with the addition of lemon juice/vinegar and other flavor-enhancing ingredients such as mustard powder. As you can see aioli obviously wins because GARLIC!!!

Originating in the Mediterranean region it is traditionally prepared using only a mortar and pestle. For simplicities sake, my recipe is prepared largely using a food processor or a blender, although it does require grinding the garlic and salt into a paste with a mortar and pestle.

Another key difference between a traditionally prepared aioli and my version is the addition of egg yolks. The lecithin in the egg yolks acts as an emulsifier aiding the process. Their use results in a creamier sauce.

The creamier the better when it comes to aioli! And believe me when I tell you this sauce is silky smooth AND flavor-packed to boot. It’s subtle lemon and dill notes pair beautifully with the fragrant punch of garlic.

Small bowl of lemon dill aioli with a spoon atop a demin towel with pile of sweet potato fries.

So what do you need to make this aioli?

  • Garlic: One of the key ingredients of aioli.
  • Kosher salt
  • Egg yolks: You will need the egg yolks from two large eggs. Eggs should be room temperature.
  • Fresh dill: The recipe calls for two tablespoons, but feel free to adjust to taste.
  • Lemon juice: Fresh lemon juice is advised, but bottled will work.
  • Black pepper
  • Extra-Virgin Olive Oil: To stay true to aioli EVOO is a must, so I do not recommend substituting it.
Ingredients for aioli on distressed wood surface.

How do you make lemon dill aioli? (+tips)

Begin by using a mortar and pestle to grind together the garlic and salt, creating a paste.

Wooden mortar and pestle with crushed garlic and salt with sprigs of dill in background.

Transfer to the bowl of a food processor fitted with a steel blade or to a blender.

Add the egg yolks, dill, lemon juice, and black pepper; pulse until combined.

Continue blending while slowly drizzling in the extra-virgin olive oil one teaspoon at a time. Adding the oil slowly is ESSENTIAL for the emulsification process. Simply put, emulsification, is the process of combining (by force) two liquids that don’t want to mix (such as oil and water). If this step is not performed properly the sauce will not come together and you’ll have to begin again, so be patient!! It is not possible to add the oil too slowly, so take your time.

Continue blending until all the oil has been incorporated and desired consistency is produced. Add additional salt and pepper to taste. Serve immediately or refrigerate for later.

Aioli in food processor shot from above.

How to store

Refrigerate in an airtight container for up to three days.

Small white bowl filled with aioli with small spoon atop dark demin towel on distressed wood surface.
Close up of lemon dill aioli topped with sprig of fresh dill shot from above.

How to use this sauce

  • As a dip for fries. It pairs especially well sweet potato fries.
  • On a burger or a sandwich like this bacon, egg, and cheese sandwich.
  • With raw, roasted, or grilled veggies.
  • Over fish such as salmon.
  • On toast.
  • As a replacement for mayo in a tuna or chicken salad.

If you make this lemon dill aioli I’d love your feedback. Please leave a comment and/or a rating below as I greatly value your opinion. Or snap a pic and tag me on Instagram @taoofspiceblog. Love, light and happy cooking ya’ll ♥

Close-up shot of lemon dill aioli in white bowl w/ spoon shot from above.

Lemon Dill Aioli

Yield: ~ 2/3 cup
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Total Time: 5 minutes

This creamy aioli packs a garlicky punch and is infused with fragrant lemon and fresh dill. It's a great addition to a sandwich or burger and a delicious dip for fries. Naturally gluten-free and vegetarian with a prep time of only five minutes.

Ingredients

  • 4 cloves garlic
  • 1/8 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 2 large egg yolks, room temperature 
  • 2 tablespoons fresh dill 
  • 2 teaspoons lemon juice 
  • 1/8 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil 

Instructions

  1. With a mortar and pestle crush the garlic together with the salt. Transfer to bowl of food processor fitted with a steel blade or blender.
  2. Add the egg yolks, dill, lemon juice, and black pepper. Pulse until combined.
  3. Continue blending while slowly adding extra-virgin olive oil one teaspoon at a time.
  4. Blend until all the oil has been incorporated and desired consistency is produced. Serve immediately or refrigerate for later.

Storage: Refrigerate in an airtight container for up to three days.

Notes

  • It is incredibly important that you do not add the oil too quickly. If you do it will not emulsify.
Nutrition Information:
Yield: 10 Serving Size: ~ 1 tablespoon
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 117Total Fat: 12gSaturated Fat: 2gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 10gCholesterol: 56mgSodium: 41mgCarbohydrates: 1gFiber: 0gSugar: 0gProtein: 2g

The nutritional information provided is computer generated. It is only an estimate and intended for informational purposes only. Nutrition details may vary depending on various factors such as origin, freshness of ingredients, etc

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