If you have yet to be introduced to the glorious thing that is Japanese mayonnaise then go and find a bottle of Kewpie immediately. And none of that Kewpie for America stuff either. I’m talking the real Japanese version (you might have to order it online). Or, if you don’t want to go through all that trouble you can make my homemade version of Kewpie Japanese mayonnaise which is a pretty good facsimile if I do say so myself.
Japanese Mayonnaise is noticeably different than the standard French mayonnaise we all know and love (or hate, it can be pretty polarizing). If you have tried Japanese mayonnaise before, you might have noticed that it tastes far richer and has a silkier mouthfeel than standard mayo. There are a few reasons for this.
When making homemade Kewpie style Japanese mayonnaise I suggest using a stick blender as it makes quick work of the whole process. You can of course use a whisk but that is quite the workout and takes about 10x longer than a stick or immersion blender does.
What Is ‘Kewpie’ Mayonnaise?
Kewpie is the brand name of the most popular Japanese mayonnaise. It was originally introduced in 1925 by the Nakajima Enterprises corporation. It is the most famous style of Japanese mayonnaise, and while it is sold in America, the American version is not the authentic Japanese recipe.
Difference Between Japanese Mayonnaise And Traditional Mayonnaise
The main difference between Japanese mayonnaise and traditional mayonnaise is the former uses only the egg yolk while the latter uses the whole egg. Another difference is the Japanese version uses apple cider or rice wine vinegar which imparts a light sweetness to the mayo.
Finally, real Japanese mayonnaise uses MSG, or, monosodium glutamate. I know this has a bit of a reputation in America because people mistakenly think it causes headaches, but I highly suggest when you make this mayo at home you don’t skip this ingredient.
How To Make Kewpie Style Japanese Mayonnaise
The ingredients for this recipe are my own recreation of what the authentic version tastes like, but I will admit it is not 100% the same. I would say I have it about 95% close enough. Feel free to use my version as a base and play around with ratios if you want.
4 Egg Yolks
330 ml Vegetable Oil – (1 1/3 cups) or other neutral oil like sunflower or rapeseed.
3 tbsp Apple Cider Vinegar – if you don’t have ACV you can use white wine vinegar plus a tbsp of regular white sugar.
1 tsp Salt – start with half a tsp and then adjust to taste at the end after you emulsify.
1/2 tsp MSG
1/2 tsp White Pepper
1 tbsp Sugar – optional, only use if you aren’t using ACV or rice wine vinegar.
All you need to do is add all the ingredients to a bowl. You can whisk it vigorously until you have a rich, creamy emulsion, or just use a stick blender to make quick work of the process. I always use a stick blender since it makes a fantastic Japanese mayonnaise in about 30 seconds.
After you have a proper emulsion you can taste and adjust seasonings. If you feel it needs more salt go ahead and add it until you are satisfied with the result.
Where Do You Use Japanese Mayonnaise?
In Japan this mayonnaise is used in both traditional and foreign recipes. You might notice it drizzled over pizza or chicken wings as well as the traditional things like okonomiyaki or takoyaki!
- Fried Chicken
- Okonomiyaki – these are cabbage pancakes from Osaka
- Takoyaki – these are fried dough balls of minced octopus commonly eaten as a street food
- Japanese Potato Salad
- Mixed with sriracha for a spicy mayo used in things like spicy tuna rolls or spicy tuna onigiri.
- 1 Bowl
- 1 Whisk or Immersion Blender | the blender is recommended for the convenience but you can absolutely just use a whisk and put in the effort.
- 4 Egg Yolks
- 330 ml Vegetable Oil (1 1/3 cups) or other neutral oil like sunflower or rapeseed.
- 3 tbsp Apple Cider Vinegar if you don't have ACV you can use white wine vinegar plus a tbsp of regular white sugar.
- 1 tsp Salt start with half a tsp and then adjust to taste at the end after you emulsify.
- 1/2 tsp MSG
- 1/2 tsp White Pepper
- 1 tbsp Sugar optional, only use if you aren't using ACV or rice wine vinegar.
- Add all the ingredients to the bowl and whisk rapidly or use an immersion blender until emulsified.
- Store in an airtight container. Mayonnaise is good up to one week in the refrigerator.
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XMarch 3, 2023 at 2:45 pm
Thank you for this – I’ve been looking for a good Kewpie copycat recipe for a long time now!