Homemade Yellow Mustard

Homemade yellow mustard is deceptively simple to make from mustard powder, vinegar, and a couple other basic pantry staples. You just may never go back to store-bought! Here’s how to make it from scratch.

A bowl of homemade yellow mustard next to a wooden spoon filled with mustard seeds.

Adapted from Erin Coopey | The Kitchen Pantry Cookbook | Quarry Books, 2013

Homemade yellow mustard is a DIY riff on the classic American condiment. The store-bought stuff can’t touch this. And it’s remarkably easy to make from mustard powder, vinegar, and a couple of other pantry staples.–Renee Schettler


A “nonreactive” saucepan is one that doesn’t react with the food being cooked. By contrast, acidic foods are reactive and are typically problematic. Foods like tomatoes, wine, cranberries, lemon, vinegar, and pickling brine, can react with your cookware. Why does this matter? Because chemistry, baby. Acidic ingredients will react with certain metals—leaving you with a damaged pot and metal material in your food. Stainless steel cookware is typically considered nonreactive, as are glass and earthenware. Enamel-finished cast iron pots also non-reactive unless there are any chips or cracks in the enamel.


Just a word of caution before you start making this amazing condiment. Yellow, dry mustard is used in cuisines all over the world but you’ll find that American or British versions work best here. Other mustard powders may not work the same and the results might not be what you were hoping for.

Homemade Yellow Mustard

A bowl of homemade yellow mustard next to a wooden spoon filled with mustard seeds.
Homemade yellow mustard is deceptively simple to make from mustard powder, vinegar, and a couple other basic pantry staples. You just may never go back to store-bought! Here's how to make it from scratch.
Erin Coopey

Prep 1 hr 15 mins
Cook 1 hr
Total 1 hr 45 mins
48 (1-tsp) servings
11 kcal
4.83 / 23 votes
Print RecipeBuy the The Kitchen Pantry Cookbook cookbook

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  • Nonreactive saucepan


  • 1 cup cold water
  • 3/4 cup yellow dry mustard
  • 3/4 teaspoon coarse sea salt or kosher salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground tumeric
  • 1 teaspoon garlic purée or 1/8 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/8 teaspoon paprika
  • 1/2 cup white distilled vinegar


  • Place the water, dry mustard, salt, turmeric, garlic, and paprika in a small nonreactive saucepan and whisk until smooth. Cook the mixture over medium-low to low heat, stirring often, until it bubbles down to a thick paste, 30 to 45 minutes.

    TESTER TIP: You’re definitely going to want to do this in a well-ventilated kitchen. As in windows flung open and exhaust fan on high. Trust us. And that nonreactive saucepan is also essential or the mustard could take on an off color and hue.

  • Whisk the vinegar into the mustard mixture and continue to cook until it’s thickened to the desired consistency—you know, the usual prepared mustard consistency—which can take anywhere from 7 to 15 minutes.
  • Let the mustard cool to room temperature before spooning the mustard into an airtight container. Cover and refrigerate for up to 3 months. The mustard will be quite pungent the first few days or even weeks, but will mellow with time.
Print RecipeBuy the The Kitchen Pantry Cookbook cookbook

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Show Nutrition

Serving: 1teaspoonCalories: 11kcal (1%)Carbohydrates: 1gProtein: 1g (2%)Fat: 1g (2%)Saturated Fat: 1g (6%)Sodium: 37mg (2%)Potassium: 15mgFiber: 1g (4%)Sugar: 1g (1%)Vitamin A: 1IUVitamin C: 1mg (1%)Calcium: 6mg (1%)Iron: 1mg (6%)

Recipe Testers' Reviews

I’ve always wanted to make my own homemade yellow mustard. I’ve heard it beats the pants off the stuff you buy—and it’s true! I’m not sure how else to describe the flavor of this homemade yellow mustard other than complex and mustardy, but trust me, you might not go back to the stuff in the squeeze bottle.

I whisked in the vinegar and let it bubble for 18 more minutes until the mustard was pretty thick. The resulting mustard is spreadable rather than squeezable. Delicious!

You may ask yourself, WHY make my own mustard when store-bought mustard seems so inexpensive? Simple. CHEAP mustard is cheap. GOOD mustard is not. This homemade yellow mustard recipe is tasty and fun and, if you are anything like me, you love to make EVERYTHING from scratch, because it almost ALWAYS tastes better.

You could add your own touches—horseradish, pepper, whatever your heart's desire—but it's not necessary, as this has a bit of heat and, is quite good just as it is. I made mine exactly as described and, after adding the vinegar, cooked it down for another 5 minutes and ended up with some REALLY FINE ballpark-style mustard!

Originally published July 24, 2014


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  1. 5 stars
    I’m one of “those people” who can’t tolerate garlic. Mustard, being one of my favorite foods, has garlic as one of the basic ingredients so I turned to Chef Google, searching for mustard recipes I could make on my own and adapt as needed. Well, this recipe, and Leite’s whole grain mustard recipe, are my newfound faves! Easy to make? You bet! Easy to adapt to your liking? Yup! Delicious??? OH HECK YES! I’ve played with the liquid ingredients, using beer in place of water, soaking the seeds longer than intended while still having it turn out creamy and yummy, and toyed with various spices and herbs, changing the flavor profile to match what we were in the mood for. No longer will I need to buy mustard, and no longer will I need to search for another mustard recipe. Thank you, Leite’s!!

    1. Wow, Ringo’s Mom, not only can you have mustard, but you are having fun making it. It’s a win-win-win-and-win! Thanks for writing!

  2. Is there a reason why the mustard needs to be cooked down before adding the vinegar? English mustard powder might be hot, but the addition of vinegar is what dilutes the heat.

    1. I’m not an expert, Edward, but my understanding is that the initial cook is what develops the flavor. Once the vinegar is added, the flavor of the mustard is set and no more chemical reactions occur. If any readers have additional information, we’d love to hear from you.

  3. Can another acid be used, like lemon juice? I have a strong intolerance to vinegars no matter what they are made from.

    1. Pam, we’ve never tried it with lemon juice in place of the vinegar, so we can’t say if it would work. If any of our readers have tried this, we’d love to hear from you. I suspect it would work but the flavor might be different.

    1. John, you absolutely can use table salt here, but because of the difference in crystal size, you’ll want to use less table salt. Start with 1/2 teaspoon and adjust as needed.

  4. Ugh… I’ve read through these reviews… WHAT!?!!

    I followed the recipe to exactly, even a stainless steel pan. Mixed the cold mix for 4-5 minutes before introducing the heat. Cooked over a low heat
    –> BUT <–
    Not for 15 minutes. My mix was a pancake in less than 2 minutes. Low heat. Not medium or high. Dried pancake.

    Added vinegar. 45-seconds! Pancake again.

    Where are these ridiculous cooking time estimates coming from? 15-18 MINUTES! Try seconds…

    Added extra water. Turned off the heat.

    Inedible spicy Chinese mustard. Waste of materials quite difficult to obtain in the Philippines.

    Extremely disappointed.

    Suggestions anyone?

    1. Gabe, I’m so sorry to hear this didn’t work well for you. What type/brand of mustard powder were you using? We’ve tested this many many times using American and English ground yellow mustard, but if you are in the Philippines, perhaps the variety is different?

      1. Ground mustard powder. Purchased in a 500 gm bag online. No brand. It is fresh and has a good smell.

        I even bought expensive Heintz distilled vinegar as the local variety is cane vinegar and slightly cloudy.

        The only locally available packaged mustard is way overpriced and sweet. There is an anti-tart sentiment here. I need mustard for eating and I cannot stand the spicy Chinese style.

        Getting desperate. I kept the jar in the fridge, it’s been nearly a month and it is still inedible.

        1. Thanks, Gabe. I’m sorry to hear it’s still inedible. We’ve tested and retested this recipe with great success, however, we do hear about people occasionally having this issue, particularly if they are living in a foreign country. This makes me wonder if there is a different composition to the mustard powder itself, or if there is some sort of thickening agent added.

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