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Any alternatives to Hellman's?

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I love mayo, any specialty brands that can top Hellman's?

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  1. Cains, in New England.

    2 Replies
      1. re: hotoynoodle

        I wouldn't say sweeter, but I would say egg-ier. We are a 2 mayo house-- we trade off Hellman's and Cains' mayo when we finish a jar. NE native that I am, I prefer Cains. The husband, a NJ native, prefers the Hellman's. I also think the Cains is more lemony, and the Hellman's is more vinegary.

    1. I haven't tried Kew Pie (sp?), the Japanese mayo, but I read recently that it contains MSG and has a nicely intense flavor as a result.

      1. Mexican mayo is pretty good. It's on the stiff side. It has been awhile since I've had Hellman's so I can't give you a side by side comparison.


        1. Have you tried making your own? If you have a blender it takes about
          one minute, one egg, half a cup of oil, some lemon or vinegar, and
          any interesting spices you feel like throwing in.

          It's quicker and easier than just about anything else you can make
          in a blender. And freshly made mayo is *so* much better than
          anything in a jar.

          5 Replies
          1. re: Jef

            Quick question about making my own (which I'm doing tomorrow for BLTs). How long will my mayo last in the fridge? A few days?

            1. re: QueenB

              I can usually get a week or so out of mine. It's so easy and quick to make.

              1. re: jpschust

                Thank you! I'm going to whip up a batch tonight.

                1. re: QueenB

                  Give home-made aioli a try too then sometime - mmmm - garlic and fresh mayo - nothing like it!

                  1. re: Seldomsated

                    Yes, I definitely will. I love garlic.

          2. I like McCormick's mexican Mayonesa which is widely available: it uses Mexican Limes so the flavor is slightly different.
            Then again, sometimes I merely cut Hellmans with lime juice myself which is also nice.

            1. haven't made homemade, but hellmans is king. full fat best, light is a decent alternative and reduced fat inedible.

              6 Replies
              1. re: jfood

                Agreed. I thought if Hellman's light is still ok, then even less fat will just be a little less tasty. Not so. I go as far down as light, and I call it quit. The fat-free or reduced was inedible as you said, sort of like comparing Fat-Free Pringles (which is a disgrace to the PG brand and this product) to reduced fat Pringles (the only thing I eat ... the original, while good, is too heavy, whereas the reduced fat still gives you the "kick" of the original in a lighter form ... the reduced fat doesn't taste like nor resemble the original or reduced fat version in texture or flavor).

                I prefer the richer taste of Hellman's. Years ago while munching on a Tuna Salad subway/hogie at Subway, I noticed that the mayonaise in the sandwich was fairly good but had a slightly lighter taste than the Hellman's I was used to. I was told by the manager that the mayo was Kraft light. I tried that brand and found it to be not too far off from the Hellman's. Granted it wasn't as rich and full bodied, but it wasn't that far off. I buy Kraft as a substitute for Hellman's when it's on sale.

                I do believe there are better mayo's than Hellman's, but they are the "premium" versions, in other words, for the common man/woman, Hellman's is the mayo of the working man.

                Whole Foods in my area uses a more expensive brand of mayo for its cole slaw sold in its deli. It was very good. I'm not sure, but I think the brand is Spectrum. The next time I'm there, I will ask them again. Whatever brand it was, the last time I checked into that mayo, I noticed that it used several different ingredients than that found in Hellman's.

                And to repeat the words of others ... if you grew up eating Miracle Whip, that's your spread of choice ... if it was Hellman's, you wouldn't touch MW. There are exceptions, but most people I have spoken too swear by, and swear at, these two brands.

                1. re: FelafelBoy

                  I love the WF brand mayonnaise - I've seen the Spectrum one, but there is also a WF Canola mayonnaise that is pretty darn good. It doesn't have any sweetner in it, which Hellman's I believe does. I do make home made sometimes, but use the WF brand for deviled eggs, impromtu salad dressings, for trout salad etc.

                  1. re: MMRuth

                    The Whole Foods Canola mayonnaise that you are referring to is from their more expensive line of products that bears the brand name of Whole Pantry. The less expensive "365" line of products is generally very good (Balsamic Vinegar, Extra Virgin Olive Oil, etc.) but unfortunately, the 365 Canola Mayonnaise contains sugar. Since I have evolved my tastes beyond those of the average 12 year old, I don't want sugar in my mayonnaise, so I avoid Hellman's, Kraft, Whole Foods' 365 brand, etc. And, since Miracle Whip is so heavily sweetened, I avoid that like the plague!

                    For those of you who don't require everything to taste like candy, I suggest that you try Whole Pantry Canola mayonnaise. Like me, you may also consider it to be a superior product, largely because of the absence of sugar.

                    1. re: Ted in Central NJ

                      Yes, the Whole Pantry one is the one I like - I never knew the distinction between the 365 brand and the Whole Pantry brand - thanks for the information.

                  2. re: FelafelBoy

                    Ate a lot of Miracle Whip as a child, wouldn't touch it now, FWIW. Always felt most Southerners thought of MW as the "trash" version of mayo.

                    1. re: uptown jimmy

                      I was also raised with Miracle Whip in the house instead of mayo. I never really loved it, but it is all anyone in my family would eat and is what was always on hand at all of my friends homes. I much prefer Hellman's, the real stuff, but I now live with my fiancee who is another who will only eat Miracle Whip. I wouldn't even classify this stuff as mayonnaise, but to each his own I suppose.

                2. Dukes in the south

                  3 Replies
                  1. re: beteez

                    LOL, I look at Hellman's as a substitute for Duke's!

                    1. re: Moonpie

                      I'm the OP. I immediately tried Duke's after moving to NC. All summer long I feated on toast w/Duke's mayo, sliced ripe tomatoes,and s&p. never went back to hellman's.

                  2. I have always been a loyal Hellman's (in the West we call it Best Foods) girl. I was so obsessed as a child that I was found on numerous occasions eating it with my finger straight out of the jar. Laugh all you want... I know I'm not alone. I'm married to a chef, so I've had all the fancy homemade stuff, but nothing but Best Foods will do with a steamed artichoke, or a turkey sandwich. Just this last week, though, I bought Best Foods made from canola oil...less transfats. Tastes just the same. Try that with your arti. That's my only alternative from Hellman's(Best Foods) that I'm willing to try. Oh! I should mention that my chef/husband is from New Orleans so I've had to choke down that "Blue Plate" stuff. Just not as good.

                    12 Replies
                    1. re: srr

                      Although Best Foods' mayo is supposed to be the West Coast alternative to Hellman's, they taste VERY different! I can always tell when I'm served Hellman's - it has a distinct flavor that Best Foods just can't compete with.

                        1. re: DanaB

                          No they are NOT. Hellmann's recipe is different than that of Best Foods. The products may be made in the same factory, but they are different. In places like New Mexico and Colorado you can buy both brands, I have a bottle of each in the fridge right now, they are different in look, texture, taste, and ingredients.

                          1. re: BigboyDan

                            Not according to the manufacturer of both Hellmann's and Best Foods: "Even though Best Foods and Hellmann's have different names, it's the same great product, quality, and great taste."

                            Are you saying that the manufacturer is lying on their website?

                            1. re: DanaB

                              I've never had Best Foods mayo (at least not that I know of), but I found this interesting. They must have changed their websites since this information was posted:


                              1. re: luv2bake

                                That is published by the California Barbeque Association, not the producer of the products.

                                The FAQs on the Hellmann's and Bestfood's websites say they are the "same great product."


                                There may have been some truth to the variation in the recipes many years ago, but they have been identical for over 20 years. I grew up on Best Foods and then lived on the east coast for 6 years and so have had firsthand experience with both products. In addition to trusting my own tastebuds, I believe what the manufacturer has to say about it.

                                1. re: DanaB

                                  Yeah, I know, but it was originally copied off the Best Foods website. It's since changed, but I don't know when. I have read the Best Foods/Hellman's sites, and they definitely say they're the same great product.

                                  I can't confirm or deny, as I've only ever eaten Hellman's! I was just posting that because I thought the change was interesting & wondered when it happened.

                                  1. re: luv2bake

                                    I apologize if Trader Joe's Real Mayonnaise has been mentioned already. I always used only Hellman's until I tried TJs. It out-Hellman's Hellman's. It's delicious in the same way, but better, at least to my palate.

                                    1. re: luv2bake

                                      I'm telling you: they taste different, and have different ingredients listed on each bottle.

                                      I got a bottle of each right here in front of me.

                                      Do as I have, blind taste each, you can tell the difference, and you can tell which IS Hellmann's and which is not.

                                      1. re: BigboyDan

                                        ingredients for the regular mayonnaise

                                        From Best Foods website -

                                        From the Hellmann's website -

                                        I love Hellmann's and have never had Best Foods, but my curiosity is driving me mad now. I must taste test!!

                                        1. re: luv2bake

                                          I wonder if that's the NEW changed formula Hellman's
                                          (see upthread)

                                          1. re: pitu

                                            That poster didn't have any authority for the claim that Hellmann's had changed, other than some anecdotal posting on some other person's blog.

                                            This topic has been driving me crazy, as you can see from the number of times I've posted on it. I think it's undisputed that the products are identical NOW. The question is whether at some point in the past they were different, and how recently that was. According to wikipedia (also not a 100% guaranteed-to-be-correct source), in 2003 the manufacurer's website apparantly said:

                                            "In 1932, Best Foods bought out the Hellmann's brand. By then both mayonnaises had such commanding market shares in their respective halves of the country that the company decided that both brands and recipes be preserved.

                                            "When Best Foods acquired the Hellmann's brand, it was decided then that the respective recipes for both mayonnaises be preserved. Today, the two products are made in the same plant. However, at least as recently as March 2003, the recipes were almost, but not entirely, identical. From the company's FAQs at the time:

                                            "The products are basically the same. Both trademarks evolved simultaneously -- Hellmann's in the East and Best Foods in the West. Taste preferences vary; some people find that Best Foods mayonnaise is slightly more tangy.[2]

                                            "Both labels contain the same list of ingredients in the same quantity order: soybean oil, water, whole eggs and egg yolks, vinegar, salt, sugar, lemon juice, calcium disodium EDTA, and natural flavors. This implies that Best Foods may contain more lemon juice, although the relative quantity order is the same as the Hellmann's recipe."


                                            Nowhere in the current FAQs on the Hellmann's/Best Foods websites does the above comment appear, which leads me to believe that at some point in the past three years they MAY have changed the recipe for Hellmann's -- and for the products to be identical, it would have to have been to make it match that of Best Foods. As Best Foods was tangier, that would mean they would have added less rather than more sugar to Hellmanns, unlike what that one website posted.

                                            It remains a mystery to me.

                                            All I do know is that in using both products over the past twenty years, I find them both delicious and interchangeable. That's the last I've got to say on the subject :-)

                        1. Most good restaurants these days either make their own mayo or soley use hellman's and add garlic, and lemon juice to make aioil's or other specialty mayo's.

                          1. Make your own , love it , then realise its easier to buy a jar of Hellman's . That's what I do .

                            1. well ICK. Hellman's has changed their formula to a more Miracle Whip like flavor.
                              (I hate Miracle Whip. Hated it as a child. Hate it more now.)

                              I wonder if Tj's is supplied by Hellman/Best Food . . .
                              anyway, seeking alternatives. Will try Trader Joe as soon as I can get there . . .

                              here's where I read about it . . .

                              6 Replies
                              1. re: pitu

                                That doesn't make any sense at all to me. Where's the verification from the Best Foods/Hellmann's page? If it's a matter of dealing with the trans fat issue, that would be one thing, but to change the flavor to something more sugary makes no sense at all.

                                1. re: DanaB

                                  on the story I linked to above, a website contacted Unilever who confirmed.
                                  But I had noticed the change before I read that, when I bought a jar . . .

                                  1. re: pitu

                                    Did you contact Unilever?

                                    See my comment above.

                                    1. re: DanaB

                                      I contacted Unilever and they wrote back affirming the change in Hellman's and saying that they would pass my concerns on. But, they stressed how much research had gone into the change, the fact that tastes differ, and I got the impression they had no thought of changing back

                                      1. re: jackiecat

                                        You got more than I did. I really couldn't care less about the two things. I use Hellman's for almost all my mayo food needs, and I haven't ever had Best Foods. But this thread got my curiosity going, and DanaB's question, "Did you contact Unilever?" was a good reminder that getting it "from the horse's mouth" is always best.

                                        Unilever has not answered me (yet), but Hellmann's did and wrote:

                                        "Hellmann's and Best Foods mayonnaise are extremely similar products with two different names."

                                        Since my "friends at Hellmann's" didn't specifically answer all my questions, I did email back and ask for a teeny bit more clarification. That was yesterday (Friday), so we'll see if I get an answer next week.

                                        It was pretty revealing, though, that they said "extremely similar products" and not "identical product(s)."

                                        I'm putting my emails to them in my "quit obsessing and get back to real life" folder. :)

                                        1. re: luv2bake

                                          I had completely forgotten about this Hellmann's thread, but I just got an email from Hellmann's thanking me for my patience (or forgetfulness! haha) In addition to thanking me for my patience, here's what they said:

                                          "Best Foods Mayonnaise Ingredients and Nutrition Facts do differ slightly from the Hellmann's Real Mayonnaise.

                                          The amounts of the last two ingredients are slightly different. For this reason the two products have always been different from each other."

                              2. DUKE'S is the best! Used to be able to it get here at the Food Lion and not any where else and now the Food Lion only sells the little jars:( Now I have to stock up the pantry with all these little jars!
                                I also like the Hellmans with "Sabor Latino" which has a hint of lemon.

                                6 Replies
                                1. re: bolivianita

                                  AGREED, AGREED, AGREED! Dukes is hand downs the best in the land. I am not sure where you live, but it is easy to find in Georgia in all sizes.

                                  1. re: strephking

                                    DUKE'S! We live in Philly but stock up on our trips to the Outer Banks...I don't think you can find Duke's north of VA. Hellman's is good, but Duke's is better...and the only brand I've found without the horrid HFCS.

                                    1. re: semmen

                                      Best Foods Mayonnaise in CA has sugar, not HFCS on their ingredient list. Does Hellman's have HFCS?

                                      1. re: semmen

                                        Actually I believe Duke's is the only major brand without either sugar or HFCS.

                                        1. re: deibu

                                          I think you're right :) I don't want sugar *or* HFCS in my mayo.

                                      2. re: strephking

                                        I live in the Baltimore suburbs and if I ever see it in a big jar I am going to stock up!

                                    2. Whole Foods' mayo is very good, better than Hellman's, in my opinion.

                                      1. No.

                                        Although I haven't tried Whole Foods' mayo, so that might beat it. Or maybe tie. :)

                                        1. Second Cain's and Kewpie

                                          1. Delouis Fils -- fresh Mayo -- made in France! Like homeade, maybe better? The Ailoli and Bernaise are tres bon aussi. Its all good:


                                            Delouis jarred is good as well if you cant get the fresh stuff:


                                            Also, look for "Spectrum" Mayo in organic markets and the organic section of supermarkets. Pretty damn good, especially the "Artisinal" Olive Oil May and the Dijon Mayo:


                                            I would never use Helmans.

                                            1 Reply
                                            1. re: bengoshi

                                              I just bought some Delouis Aoli at Cost Plus last night - it's delicious!

                                            2. I've never heard of anyone else doing this, but I'll whip in some flavorful olive oil into a cup of Best Foods/Hellmans for more flavor on a sandwich or to serve with artichokes. The commercial mayonnaises will take a lot of additional oil before they break. Adding some fresh lemon or lime is good too. Even with the additions it's easier than scratch.

                                              2 Replies
                                              1. re: Leucadian

                                                i doctor up my hellmans all the time. add citrus juices, hot sauces, ginger, herbs, etc. and use it for sauces and marinades on fish and chicken.

                                                1. re: Leucadian

                                                  I add olive oil to mine sometimes. I like it spread on salmon w/ lemon & dill.

                                                2. Re making your own: who has the guts to eat raw eggs? Not me.

                                                  2 Replies
                                                  1. re: MommaJ

                                                    I do, but I have my own chickens.

                                                    1. re: MommaJ

                                                      I eat raw eggs a lot. In mayo and also I will add one to my banana milkshake to give it a little bit of extra protein.

                                                    2. Most of the specialty brands I see use canola oil, which I think makes a lousy tasting mayo. How about some commercial brands using something other than soybean or canoloa, like olive oil? That Spectrum "olive oil" mayonnaise uses more soybean oil than olive oil.

                                                      1. First of all, it's spelled Hellmann's - and no, there are no substitutes for perfection (Best Foods has a different recipe). The same with Heinz Ketchup... and Fritos... and Coca Cola... and Underwood's Deviled Ham... and Premium Saltine crackers, and Oreo cookies... and Hidden Valley Ranch dressing... etc.

                                                        4 Replies
                                                        1. re: BigboyDan

                                                          Hell Man, Hellmann's ? ...Hell, yes!

                                                            1. re: DanaB

                                                              Nope. See above. Read the ingredient list on each jar, different.

                                                              1. re: BigboyDan

                                                                Here's a link to the nutritional content of Best Foods:


                                                                Here's a link to the nutritional content of Hellmann's:



                                                          1. Swedish mayo is pretty good, especially for those open-faced sandwiches using delicate North Sea shrimp.

                                                            1. Hellmann's is the gold standard of Mayo. I have totally surrendered to its creamy deliciousness after years of trying to make better home made mayo, and trying all the French brands while living in France.

                                                              Nothing beats Hellmann's. I do, however, whisk in some extra EVOO, lemon juice, or French mustard, occasionally.

                                                              1. Hellmann's is like name brand toliet paper....I will make a scarfice somewhere else... I have to have the real thing!I love Hellman's...which I have also eaten straight out of the jar!


                                                                1. I've never had Hellman's. I think TJ's real mayo is the best out there. I don't like sugar in my mayo. Everything in the grocery store has sugar in it.

                                                                  1. Recently, I've learned how to make homemade mayo, and now Best Foods tastes like a pale (literally) imitation of what mayo should taste like. It's fine for wetting a sandwich, but as a complement for veggies etc, the homemade has so much more flavor.


                                                                    1. I really liked the brand Mayoli, made with olive oil, but the one place I used to buy it stopped carrying it. Does anyone know if it was discontinued, or are you still finding it?

                                                                      1. Dukes. No doubt about it.

                                                                        1. I'm reminded of an interview I saw once with Julia Chlid. (I think it might have been Larry King...) She was asked if she had to name her one, absolute favorite food, what would it be? Without a moments hesitation she replied, "Sliced fresh tomatoes on white bread with Hellmann's Mayonnaise."

                                                                          I couldn't agree more....

                                                                          Uncle Ira

                                                                          1 Reply
                                                                          1. Similar to Heinz Ketchup, Hellman's really sets the standard.

                                                                            1 Reply
                                                                            1. re: TonyO

                                                                              The only thing better than HEINZ ketchup is HEINZ Organic Kethup. Really kicks it up a notch.

                                                                            2. I love mayo, and in the past couple of years I've gotten hooked on Grape Seed Oil mayo, sold at Whole Foods, Wild Oats, and many other places in the REFRIGERATED section. (I forget the brand -- same people who make Vegennaise, but I prefer the Grape Seed Oil variety.) At first I was put off by the fact that it's not as stiff and thick as Hellman's, but now I actually prefer it, and I definitely prefer it to Canola Oil mayo.

                                                                              1. WOW - tried the TJ Real Mayo next to the new Hellmans
                                                                                TJs is closer to what I remember as Hellmans
                                                                                thanks everyone who pointed that out

                                                                                next time I'm in the South, I'll get some Dukes . . .

                                                                                1 Reply
                                                                                1. re: pitu

                                                                                  The eggless stuff that is low fat/cal is really good too, for what it is.

                                                                                2. Kewpie: someone mentioned it earlier, but they hadn't tried it. I've tried it, and now it's the only stuff we buy. My husband is really picky about mayo (french), and finds Hellmann's lacking flavor. We tried some "gourmet" types: Whole Foods, Central Market, etc., and were unimpressed.

                                                                                  I don't mind the Hellmanns, but Kewpie is far tastier (the MSG - it makes everything tastier).

                                                                                  1 Reply
                                                                                  1. re: renz

                                                                                    I'm looking for sugar-free mayonnaise in Montréal. (really don't "get" sugar in mayo). I occasionally find some imported from France or Belgium without sugar. Extra points for lemon, no vinegar.

                                                                                  2. Regardless of what one of the above posters said there is nothing to compare to homemade mayo, depends on your recipe of course. That said Best Foods is a good second bet.