This egg salad made without mayo isn’t your grandma’s egg salad. Instead, it’s crammed full of gently caramelized onions and olive oil and even garlic, and it’s so surprisingly lovely you just may find that you won’t miss the traditional mayonnaise. According to the author, it works hot or cold, in a sandwich or on top of salad greens, and we found this to be perfectly true. It perhaps even works best snuck straight from the skillet by the spoonful. (Uh, not that we do that…)–David Leite

A slice of bread topped with egg salad without mayo n a white plate.

Egg Salad without Mayo FAQs

How long should I cook my boiled eggs?

Timing hard-boiled eggs can be a challenge, but we can help. We actually suggest steaming the eggs instead of boiling them, and we have a handy-dandy chart so you (and us!) will never need suffer the travesty of overcooked yolks again. Check out all of the tips right here in How to Steam Hard Boiled Eggs.

How long will egg salad keep?

Egg salad can be stored in a sealed container, in the refrigerator, for up to 5 days.

A slice of bread topped with egg salad without mayo n a white plate.

Egg Salad Without Mayo

4.87 / 23 votes
This egg salad without mayo is most definitely not your grandma’s recipe. But it’s so surprisingly lovely we think you won’t miss the traditional version at all.
David Leite
Servings4 to 8 servings
Calories284 kcal
Prep Time10 minutes
Cook Time35 minutes
Total Time45 minutes


  • 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil, plus more as needed
  • 6 garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • 1 large white onion, diced
  • 8 large eggs, hard-boiled and peeled
  • Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • Sliced bread, endive spears, crackers, or lettuce leaves, for serving


  • In a large skillet set over medium heat, heat the oil until it's shimmering. Add the garlic and onions, stir to coat with the oil, and then cover. Cook, stirring now and then, until the garlic and onion are very soft, about 30 minutes. It may be necessary to reduce the heat slightly to keep them from scorching and to add a touch of olive oil if anything starts sticking to the skillet.
  • Remove the skillet from the heat. Use the back of a fork to mash the warm garlic and onion until the mixture is a soft, jam-like consistency. Push the onions and garlic to the side and use the back of the same fork to mash the eggs into a soft spread. Incorporate the mushy garlic-onion paste into the eggs and stir until fully incorporated. Season generously with salt and pepper to taste.
  • Serve the egg salad on toasted bread as a sandwich or with endive, crackers, or lettuce leaves as an hors d'oeuvre.

Adapted From

Straight Up Tasty

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Serving: 1 portionCalories: 284 kcalCarbohydrates: 6 gProtein: 13 gFat: 23 gSaturated Fat: 5 gPolyunsaturated Fat: 3 gMonounsaturated Fat: 14 gTrans Fat: 1 gCholesterol: 372 mgSodium: 145 mgPotassium: 211 mgFiber: 1 gSugar: 2 gVitamin A: 541 IUVitamin C: 4 mgCalcium: 73 mgIron: 2 mg

Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.

Tried this recipe?Mention @leitesculinaria or tag #leitesculinaria!
Recipe © 2015 Adam Richman. Photo © 2015 Evan Sung. All rights reserved.

Recipe Testers’ Reviews

The onion, garlic jam, and olive oil produced an egg salad so luscious that I didn’t even miss the mayonnaise. And I love mayonnaise. This made the perfect dollop for bite-sized leaves of Bibb lettuce. As I was cooking for one, I scaled down the recipe and used 2 hard-boiled eggs, 1 large clove of garlic, 1/4 of an onion, chopped, and 1 tablespoon olive oil. My onions and garlic were soft after 15 minutes and were the perfect consistency for me.

I did find that I wanted to put the eggs in the pan to wipe up all the garlicky olive oil. So I did. It was good on the lettuce, though I have to admit, it was even better eaten straight out of the pan right off the spoon.

This is a delicious take on egg salad. I was pleasantly surprised at how moist it turned out without any mayonnaise in the recipe. I served it as an appetizer with Triscuit crackers, and it was a big hit. The garlic and onion “jam” would also work well mixed with just the yolks for deviled eggs. I mashed the garlic and onions with a potato masher as they cooked.

Such an easy, delicious, and unique egg salad recipe. The onion and garlic jam provided an interesting flavor that made you forget that there were very few other ingredients in the salad. I used high-quality eggs from our farm share, and I’d recommend using super-fresh quality eggs for a rich flavor. It was missing some of the creaminess that I love in a classic egg salad. Still, with good ingredients, this egg salad is delicious.

This is probably not your grandma’s mayo egg salad. The onion and garlic jam makes it seem so much more sophisticated and flavorful without a ton of effort. I served this as suggested with romaine hearts for lunch, and I nearly had the entire bowl! I had to add another 2 to 3 teaspoons oil while cooking the onion and garlic mixture because it started to stick to the pan.

I loved this egg salad recipe. Super easy, no mayo involved, very new and interesting taste, and a great low-calorie option (well, for egg salad, that is). We ate it spread on romaine leaves as an appetizer, and everybody loved it.

The next day, I ate the leftovers over thinly sliced chicken breast, which was delightful as well. Definitely a keeper. I tried mashing everything with a spoon, a spatula, and a fork. The fork worked best by far.

This was not my grandmother’s egg salad; nonetheless, it was delicious. When I read the recipe, I couldn’t imagine that I would like it, but the first taste had me convinced otherwise. I made a half recipe and found that it worked perfectly. I used a Vidalia onion, as that was what I had on hand. Its sweetness proved to be delicious in this recipe. The taste reminded me of the egg and onion salad that they sell at my local bagel store.

Mushrooms would be a great addition to this. Also, I usually throw out a couple of the yolks in the interest of lowering my cholesterol intake. I didn’t do it this time, but I think that the final product would remain delicious for anyone who prefers more egg whites than yolks.

We ate it as egg salad sandwiches on whole-grain bread, but I would imagine it would be fabulous on a freshly baked bagel or even some crackers. It would be great with a salad and would even be nice with a slice of beautifully ripened tomato or some avocado. It’s egg salad. Everyone can figure out what to do with it. The important thing is that you will not miss the mayo. And the recipe simply involves a bit of chopping, peeling eggs, and mashing the salad together. Use plenty of salt and freshly ground black pepper.

Very easy to make and very enjoyable, especially when you are very hungry and need something quick. (I like to keep the egg salad prepared in the refrigerator.) The onion was easy to mash with garlic after it was thoroughly cooked. I served it as a side salad with meat and on toast with a slice of tomato.

The aroma as the onion and garlic slowly cooked and the taste of the finished egg salad were fantastic. I had trouble smashing the cooked onions and garlic, so after everything was cooked, I gave it a whir in my food processor. This egg salad is slightly dry compared to one with mayonnaise. That’s okay, though, because the flavor is really good. If you don’t have hard-boiled eggs on hand, it will take another 10 to 15 minutes. Start the eggs before going on to the onions and garlic so that you aren’t waiting around. I used pita bread and made sandwiches.

About David Leite

David Leite has received three James Beard Awards for his writing as well as for Leite’s Culinaria. His work has appeared in The New York Times, Martha Stewart Living, Saveur, Bon Appétit, Gourmet, Food & Wine, Yankee, Los Angeles Times, Chicago Tribune, The Washington Post, and more.

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Recipe Rating


  1. 5 stars
    Yum, it’s delicious. Made the recipe and am enjoying it on my homemade sourdough lite rye bread

  2. 5 stars
    This is EGGCELLENT! It really is. I served it on buttered grainy bread and, oh my. It may not be a looker, but it more than makes up for that in taste. I can’t imagine ever making only a 1/2 batch.

    1. It looks fantastic, Jenny. We’re delighted that you love it as much as we do and so appreciate you taking the time to let us know.

  3. 5 stars
    This was delicious! I made several changes because of what I had at home. So onion became a shallot and added pickled jalapeños for flavor and crunch. I overcooked the garlic and shallot but it worked just fine without become a “jam.” I think next time I’ll add a little mustard as well.

    1. I love the addition of pickled jalapeno, Madeline! I’m so pleased that you enjoyed this. Thanks for taking the time to comment.