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Lemon Aioli

Makes about 3 1/3 cups Servings


  • 10 garlic cloves, peeled, center germ removed
  • 1/4 cup fresh lemon juice
  • 2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
  • 2 cups light fruity olive oil

Recipe Preparation

  • Mash garlic and salt in mortar with pestle until paste forms. Whisk egg yolks, 6 tablespoons water, lemon juice, and mustard in medium metal bowl. Whisk in garlic mixture. Set bowl over saucepan of barely simmering water (do not allow bottom of bowl to touch water) and whisk constantly until mixture thickens and instant-read thermometer inserted into mixture registers 140°F for 3 minutes, about 10 minutes total. Remove bowl from over water. Cool mixture to room temperature, whisking occasionally, about 15 minutes. Gradually whisk oil into yolk mixture in very thin slow stream; continue whisking until aioli is thick. Season to taste with pepper and more salt, if desired. DO AHEAD Can be prepared 2 days ahead. Cover and refrigerate.

Recipe by Georgeanne Brennan Susan Herrman LoomisReviews Section

Lemon Aioli

Cookbook cover image courtesy of Random House

Traditionally, an aioli should be made with lots of garlic and extra virgin olive oil. If you find the flavor too strong, you can use half olive oil and half vegetable oil (and a little less garlic if you must).

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How to Make This Quick & Easy Aioli

My easy aioli recipe is made with—wait for it—mayonnaise! To make it, you simply soak minced garlic in lemon juice for 10 minutes, strain it out, and stir the garlicky lemon juice into the mayonnaise. Essentially, you’re using mayonnaise as the creamy base, and adding the most characteristic aioli flavors to it.

I learned this trick from my tahini sauce. This way, you get nice garlic flavor without any actual garlic floating around in your mayo. Minced garlic would only distract from the creaminess and could make your sauce too garlicky with time.

Watch How to Make Aioli

Does Lemon-Dill Aioli Sauce use raw eggs?

The straight answer is, yes, it does. If you have a concern about salmonella when using raw eggs, pasteurized egg yolks may be substituted.

We like to use Safe Eggs which are purchased locally at Albertsons . Check your local grocery store for these eggs.

You can be assured these eggs have been pasteurized by the company stamp of a on each egg which identifies them as pasteurized.

A creamy aioli sauce with a distinctive dill flavor.

Recipe Summary

  • 8 cups warm water
  • 2/3 cup plus 1 teaspoon kosher salt, divided, plus more
  • 1 tablespoon light brown sugar
  • 1 tablespoon lemon zest plus 3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice (from 2 lemons), divided
  • 1 1/2 pounds boneless, skinless turkey pieces (such as breasts, thighs, and drumsticks), cut into 1-inch pieces
  • 1/2 pound boneless, skinless chicken thighs, cut into 1-inch pieces
  • 1 1/4 cups chopped yellow onion
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh garlic
  • 2 tablespoons chopped jalapeño
  • 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon finely chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
  • 1 tablespoon finely chopped fresh oregano
  • 2 teaspoons finely chopped fresh rosemary
  • 1 cup mayonnaise
  • 6 ounces English cheddar cheese, grated (about 1 1/2 cups)
  • 6 (1/4-inch-thick) tomato slices
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 6 hamburger or brioche buns, split
  • 2 tablespoons bottled barbecue sauce
  • 1 1/2 cups shredded iceberg lettuce

Whisk together 8 cups warm water, 2/3 cup salt, brown sugar, and 1 tablespoon lemon juice in a large bowl or pot until salt and sugar dissolve. Add turkey and chicken. Cover and chill 1 hour and 30 minutes. Place a colander in sink drain meat in colander, rinse with fresh water, and set meat aside.

While meat chills, process onion, garlic, and jalapeño in a food processor until very finely chopped, about 10 seconds. Heat oil in a medium skillet over medium. Add onion mixture and a pinch of salt cook, stirring often, until softened, 5 to 7 minutes. Stir in parsley, oregano, and rosemary cook, stirring constantly, 1 minute. Remove from heat transfer sofrito to a small bowl. Chill, uncovered, 20 minutes.

Stir together mayonnaise, 1 teaspoon salt, lemon zest, and remaining 2 tablespoons lemon juice until smooth. Cover and refrigerate until ready to use.

Preheat grill to high (450°F to 500°F). Working in 4 batches, place brined meat in a food processor pulse until mixture forms a coarse paste, about 7 (2-second) pulses. Transfer to a medium bowl. Add sofrito mix with hands until thoroughly combined. Shape into 6 tightly packed 7-ounce patties. Grill, uncovered, flipping often, until a thermometer registers 155°F, 10 to 13 minutes. Top each patty with about 1/4 cup cheese. Grill, covered, until cheese melts, about 2 minutes.

Season tomatoes with salt and pepper. Spread each bun with 1 teaspoon aioli and 1 teaspoon barbecue sauce. Top each bottom bun half with 1 patty, 1/4 cup lettuce, and 1 tomato slice. Cover burgers with top bun halves.

Ways to use lemon aioli

We usually make lemon aioli as a dip for fries…but there are so many more uses for this versatile sauce! Here are a few ideas:

  • Dip for fries: Try it with Baked Fries, Homemade Fries, Pomme Frites, Greek Fries, or Perfect Seasoned Fries.
  • Raw vegetables: Dip raw veggies, like carrots, celery, radishes, broccoli, and so forth.
  • Roasted vegetables: Use it as a dip for Roasted Broccoli, Roasted Mushrooms or Roasted Fennel.
  • Burger sauce: Slather on a bun for this Portobello Burger, Veggie Burger or Chickpea Burger.
  • Shrimp: Use as a dip for GrilledShrimp or Boiled Shrimp.


For the aioli:

Whisk together the mayonnaise, crushed garlic, lemon juice, lemon zest and salt and pepper to taste in a medium bowl until combined. Fold in the herbs. Cover and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes before serving.

For the fried shrimp:

Pour the milk into a large bowl. Add the shrimp and let sit for 10 minutes.

Preheat the oven to 325 F. Heat a deep-fryer or a deep pot filled halfway with oil to 365 F.

Whisk together the semolina, flour, cornstarch, paprika, salt and pepper in a large bowl.

Working in batches, remove the shrimp from the milk, letting the excess milk drip off, and add to the semolina-flour mixture. Dredge the shrimp so that they are evenly coated. Using a fine mesh sieve, remove the shrimp and let the excess flour shake off.

Carefully lower the shrimp into the oil and fry until they are golden-brown and just cooked through, about 3 minutes.

Remove the shrimp with a slotted spoon to a plate lined with paper towels. Season with salt. Transfer to a baking sheet and keep warm in the oven until ready to serve. Continue with the remaining shrimp.

While the shrimp cooks, heat the olive oil in a small sauté pan over high heat until it begins to shimmer. Add the parsley and reduce the heat to medium. Let the herbs fry until they begin to crisp (do not burn). Carefully remove with a slotted spoon to a paper towel lined plate and season with salt.

Transfer the fried shrimp to a platter, garnish with freshly fried parsley leaves and serve with aioli. Enjoy immediately.

Paleo Lemon Aioli Sauce

I originally made this aioli sauce because we wanted something that would go well with seafood and veggies. And boy does it! And it’s so easy you will go back to it again and again for a light and refreshing topping for all kinds of dishes.

So consider this a little teaser. Tomorrow I’ll reveal all. In the meantime, think crab. Crispy and pan fried with a little spice. Oh yeah, now were talkin’. [av_sidebar widget_area=’Lockerdome’ av_uid=’av-1vq5n2′]

Stay tuned for more…tomorrow’s recipe is perfect as a tasty appetizer or even for a main course meal. And because it’s the holidays, it’s a healthy and flavor-packed dish you can enjoy with your non-paleo friends.

Try this sauce out. It takes all of 2 minutes to make. Put in in the fridge for awhile and it will thicken a bit. Then spoon it over whatever you want.

Tips for making easy homemade lemon aioli

  • Use a blend of oils. A mix of neutral vegetable oil blended with some fine extra-virgin oil makes an aioli with a nicely balanced flavor. I love extra-virgin olive oil on everything from pasta to dessert, but find that aioli made with 100 percent EVOO can come on a little strong.
  • Buy good quality neutral oils that are cold-pressed and not highly processed, like avocado oil, grapeseed or organic canola oil.
  • Drizzle the oil into the blender in a slow, steady stream — this is the magic step to making an emulsion that doesn’t break.
  • Use super fresh eggs. Hint: Want to know the “secret” to finding the freshest supermarket eggs? Check the three digit code on packaged eggs (not the sell-by date) — it counts up from January 1 (001) to December 31 (365). So a package of eggs packed on May 15 would be stamped �.”
  • Don’t be shy about tasting and seasoning your aioli. The ingredient list is short, and tweaking your aioli with salt and lemon juice will make all the difference.
  • If your aioli turns out too thick, whisk in a few drops of cold water to make it creamier.
  • Aioli will keep fresh 3 – 5 days stored in the refrigerator.

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