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You’ll want to use this incredible basil aioli on everything! It’s quick and easy to make, featuring this fresh and peppery green herb.

Basil aioli

Here’s a dip and spread you’ll want to use on just about everything: basil aioli! This rich, creamy spread is great for making when you have lots of summer basil: or anytime you’re craving fresh, beautiful flavor! This basil aioli is full of peppery, herby flavor: the perfect dip for french fries or spread for sandwiches. It’s so easy to make: you just need a handful of ingredients and 5 minutes. Let’s make aioli!

What’s aioli?

First off: what’s aioli? Aioli is a Mediterranean sauce that comes from the South of France and is eaten across France and Spain. It’s now popular all around the world! A traditional aioli is made from garlic that’s blended in a mortar and pestle with egg yolk, lemon juice or vinegar, and olive oil. It’s very similar to mayonnaise, which is made with canola oil and no garlic.

Since the 1990’s in the US, people have been calling any flavored mayonnaise “aioli.” Often the aioli you’ll find at a restaurant or in grocery stores is really mayo. Because of this, most aioli recipes use mayonnaise as a base, like this Mayo Aioli. This makes it easier, and you can skip using an egg yolk. (If you want to make it the classic way, go to this Aioli Recipe.)

Basil aioli

Ingredients in basil aioli

That said, we’ll be making this basil aioli using mayonnaise, instead of the traditional way. This makes it quick and easy to whip up. You don’t even need a blender or a food processor! Here are the ingredients for basil aioli:

  • Basil
  • Garlic
  • White wine vinegar or lemon juice
  • Yellow mustard
  • High quality mayonnaise

How to make basil aioli (whisk vs food processor)

There are two methods you can use to make this basil aioli! Here’s what to know:

  • Main method: whisked. All you need for this basil aioli is 5 minutes and a good, sharp knife. You’ll mince the garlic as fine as possible, then do the same with the basil. Then whisk it all together!
  • Alternate method: food processor. If you’d like, you can also use a food processor to make this aioli. It will come out with a brighter green color. If you’re going to that, well…you should consider making pesto aioli (see below).

Variation: pesto aioli!

Our favorite variation on basil aioli: pesto aioli! Pesto aioli adds Parmesan and has even bigger herby, Italian flavor. Here are the ingredients you’ll need for pesto aioli:

  • Garlic
  • Basil
  • Parmesan cheese
  • Lemon juice
  • High quality mayonnaise

You’ll simply whiz all of these in a food processor until a green sauce forms. Go to How to Make Pesto Aioli.

Make it vegan!

It’s easy to make this basil aioli into a vegan spread. Vegan mayonnaise is fairly easy to find at the grocery store or online. Grab a bottle of your favorite vegan mayonnaise to make a plant-based version! A brand we like is Sir Kensington’s vegan mayo, made with aquafaba (the liquid from a can of chickpeas).

How to make basil aioli

Aioli storage

Store this basil aioli in a covered container in the refrigerator. It’s best after 1 week, but you can keep it for up to 2 weeks without losing flavor. The batch below makes a small quantity, so it’s likely you’ll consume it before it goes bad.

Ways to use basil aioli

There are so many ways to use this creamy basil aioli! Here are a few of our favorite ideas:

This basil aioli recipe is…

Vegetarian and gluten-free. For vegan, plant-based, and dairy-free, use vegan mayo.

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Basil aioli

Easy Basil Aioli

  • Author: Sonja Overhiser
  • Prep Time: 5 minutes
  • Cook Time: 0 minutes
  • Total Time: 5 minutes
  • Yield: ⅓ cup 1x


You’ll want to use this incredible basil aioli on everything! It’s quick and easy to make, featuring this fresh and peppery green herb. Variation: try Pesto Aioli!


  • 12 large basil leaves or 2 tablespoons very finely chopped basil
  • 1 small garlic clove
  • ½ teaspoon white wine vinegar or lemon juice
  • ½ teaspoon yellow mustard
  • ⅓ cup high quality mayonnaise (vegan as desired)


  1. Mince the garlic as finely as possible. Then use the side of your knife blade to mash and grind it into a paste. (Alternate method: you can combine all ingredients in a food processor and blend until smooth.*)
  2. Mince the basil as finely as possible.
  3. Whisk together the garlic and basil with the white wine vinegar, yellow mustard, and mayonnaise. Keeps in the refrigerator for 2 weeks.


*If you’re planning to use a food processor, check out our Pesto Aioli: it’s similar but adds Parmesan cheese for big Italian flavor.

  • Category: Sauce
  • Method: Stirred
  • Cuisine: Mediterranean
  • Diet: Vegan

Keywords: Basil aioli, Aioli with basil

More basil recipes

Summer is all about this peppery green herb! Basil is the herb we cook with the most often in the summer. Here are our top basil recipes:

  • Best Basil Pesto The best way to use up a boatload of fresh basil? Pesto, of course! Here’s our best basil pesto recipe, made the classic Italian way. Also try: Vegan Pesto or Cashew Pesto.
  • Basil Sauce or Fresh Basil Vinaigrette You’ll want to drizzle this sauce on everything! It’s herby, garlicky and bright green: like a pesto without cheese and nuts.
  • Easy Tomato Basil Soup In under 30 minutes, you have a classic plant based soup with a rich basil flavor.
  • Caprese Salad There’s nothing better than a fantastic Caprese salad! Pair perfectly ripe, juicy tomatoes with fresh mozzarella and peppery basil.

About the authors

Sonja & Alex

Hi, we’re Alex and Sonja Overhiser, married cookbook authors, food bloggers, and recipe developers. We founded A Couple Cooks to share fresh, seasonal recipes for memorable kitchen moments! Our recipes are made by two real people and work every time.

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