Bacon aioli has become an increasingly popular condiment in recent years, adored for its rich, smoky bacon flavor. But what exactly is bacon aioli, and why does it deserve a spot on your table or in your fridge?
What is Bacon Aioli Made Of?
Aioli is a creamy emulsion sauce made from olive oil, egg yolks, lemon juice or vinegar, and garlic. It originates from the Provence region of France.
Bacon aioli is a variety of aioli that is infused with crispy cooked bacon, adding a smoky, salty flavor. The basic ingredients are:
- Mayonnaise or Aioli
- Crispy cooked bacon
- Minced garlic
- Lemon juice
- Bacon fat or olive oil
- Salt and pepper
To make bacon aioli, cook the bacon until very crispy. Allow it to cool and crumble or chop it up into small bits. In a bowl, combine the cooled bacon pieces, mayonnaise or aioli, minced garlic, lemon juice, and bacon fat or olive oil. Season with salt and pepper. For a smoother texture, the mixture can be blended until creamy.
The bacon fat enhances the flavor and gives the aioli a beautiful smoky aroma. Lemon brightens up the condiment, while the garlic provides a lovely background flavor.
How to Make Homemade Bacon Aioli?
Making homemade bacon aioli allows you to control the ingredients and tweak flavors to your taste.
- 8 slices bacon, cooked crisp and chopped
- 1 cup mayonnaise
- 2 tbsp lemon juice
- 1 garlic clove, minced
- 2 tbsp olive oil or bacon fat
- Salt and pepper to taste
- In a skillet over medium heat, cook bacon until very crisp. Drain on paper towels and let cool completely. Chop into small pieces.
- In a bowl, combine the mayonnaise, lemon juice, garlic, and olive oil or bacon fat. Season with salt and pepper.
- Fold in the chopped bacon until well combined.
- For a smoother aioli, blend the mixture with an immersion blender until creamy.
- Transfer to an airtight container and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes before using to allow flavors to meld.
- Store leftover aioli covered in the refrigerator for up to 1 week.
Feel free to experiment with additions like hot sauce, herbs, or spices to customize the flavor.
Creative Ways to Use Bacon Aioli in Your Cooking
A dollop of bacon aioli can upgrade almost any dish. Here are some delicious ways to incorporate it into cooking:
- As a sandwich spread or dipping sauce for fries and chips
- In scrambled eggs or omelets
- Spread on a burger or hot dog
- As a topping for baked potatoes
- In macaroni and cheese
- In a bacon fat vinaigrette for salad
- Swirled into soups like potato, tomato or chowder
- As a drizzle over steamed vegetables like green beans, broccoli, or cauliflower
- In deviled egg filling
- Baked into an aioli bread
- As a flavorsome dip for grilled shrimp or vegetables
- As a substitute for tartar sauce with fried fish
Where to Find Bacon Aioli and Popular Brands?
While homemade allows ultimate flavor control, store-bought bacon aioli offers convenience. Look for it near other condiments like mayonnaise and mustard in major grocery stores. Some popular brands include:
- Alouette – This aioli is made with olive oil, bacon, and roasted garlic. It has a creamy texture with nice smoky notes.
- Stonewall Kitchen – Their bacon aioli contains applewood smoked bacon, whole egg mayonnaise, garlic, lemon juice, and Cayenne. It has a kick of heat.
- Trader Joe’s – Their thick and creamy bacon aioli gets rave reviews for its bacon flavor. It contains sunflower oil, bacon, eggs, vinegar, and garlic.
- Whole Foods Market – Their 365-brand bacon aioli is made with olive oil, cage-free eggs, bacon, lemon juice, garlic, salt, and pepper. It has a fresh, homemade taste.
- Williams-Sonoma – This aioli is made with olive oil, bacon, lemon juice, garlic, and spices. It has a bold, smoky bacon flavor.
Gourmet brands found at specialty food stores like Sur La Table and Dean & Deluca also offer quality bacon aioli options to try.
Bacon Aioli vs. Traditional Aioli: The Taste and Texture Difference
Bacon aioli has some distinct differences from plain traditional aioli:
- Flavor – The smoky, salty bacon flavor sets it apart from regular aioli. Bacon aioli typically has a more robust, savory taste.
- Color – Bacon aioli is beige to light brown from the bacon bits, while plain aioli is bright white.
- Texture – The crispy bacon bits add pleasant crunchy bits of texture. Plain aioli has a uniform creamy, thick texture.
- Uses – Bacon aioli is more versatile for pairing with proteins and hearty foods. Plain aioli works better in lighter dishes.
- Fat content – Bacon fat significantly increases the fat percentage versus olive oil-based plain aioli.
Both are excellent condiments, so it depends on your flavor preferences and how you plan to use them. Bacon aioli makes an amazing burger or sandwich spread, while traditional aioli is heavenly paired with grilled fish or vegetables.
Bacon aioli is a revelation for any bacon lover. Infusing crispy, savory bacon flavor into creamy, garlicky aioli creates a versatile, delicious spread and seasoning. It can transform everything from sandwiches and fries to omelets and salads. With store-bought options or the ability to make it easily at home, bacon aioli is worth trying for any occasion. So dip a fry or slather it on a burger, and savor the magical marriage of bacon and aioli in one amazing condiment.
What Is Aioli Sauce Made Of?
Aioli sauce is made of olive oil, egg yolks, lemon juice or vinegar, and garlic. It originates from the Provence region of France.
How Is Aioli Different From Mayo?
Aioli contains olive oil while mayo is made with vegetable oil. Aioli also has a stronger garlic flavor. Mayo uses egg yolks while aioli primarily uses whole eggs.
What Means Aioli Sauce?
Aioli means garlic and oil in Catalan. It's a creamy emulsion sauce made from crushed garlic, egg yolks, olive oil, and lemon juice or vinegar.
Is Aioli Basically Mayo?
No, aioli and mayo are different. Aioli contains olive oil, and more garlic, and often uses whole eggs instead of just egg yolks. Mayo uses vegetable oil and has a milder flavor.
Is Aioli Healthier Than Mayo?
Yes, aioli is often considered healthier than mayo. Aioli is made with olive oil while mayo uses vegetable oils. Olive oil is higher in healthy fats. Aioli also contains garlic, which has benefits.
What Do Americans Call Aioli?
In the US, aioli is sometimes used interchangeably with mayonnaise or referred to as garlic mayonnaise. Traditional aioli is less common in America compared to Europe.