/ Food & Drink

Mayonnaise โ€“ stop invading our sandwiches

Sandwich with lots of mayonnaise and a red 'no' sign

I like to compare a lot of things to Marmite. It’s a love it or hate it simile that I often roll out. But there’s one comparisonย that rings very true. Mayonnaise. I hate it – will you join my campaign?

I have a complete aversion to the white, gloopy mush that is mayonnaise. When you don’t like a particular type of food, like tomatoes or ham, it usually isn’t a problem โ€“ you can just avoid them.

But when it comes to buying a sarnie or burger, the dreaded mayo is difficult to avoid.

How would you like itโ€ฆ

I’m not allergic to it, nor do I have any qualms with the home-made stuff. It’s only made up of egg yolks, oil, a bit of vinegar and seasoning after all. But the white, anaemic mess that oozes its way out of jars, to me, looks like it’s been squeezed out of a teenager’s greasy face. Ugh.

I’m sure most of you are reading this with a blank and unsympathetic look on your face, but let me draw out my Marmite comparison. Imagine that every sandwich is not drowning in a liberal slosh of mayo, but is instead swimming in Marmite.

So in my imaginary Marmite world, you’ll have to tread carefully come lunchtime, otherwise when you chomp down on your supermarket sandwich, you’ll get a face full of salty brown treacle. Maybe you’re more sympathetic to my cause now?

I’m not alone in my hatred

Despite what you might think, I’m not alone. This Conversation originated from another earlier in the week. McDonald’s has pledged to put calorie counts in its restaurants, a decision that commenter Wavechange hopes will discourage them from using mayonnaise in their fillings.

‘Iโ€™m glad to know Iโ€™m not the only one who hates mayonnaise,’ Wavechange added in response to my aversion. It’s fatty, it’s gloopy, it’s greasy – it’s quite simply gross.

Naturally, that’s just my opinion, and I wouldn’t like to deny mayonnaise lovers their favourite sauce. But give me a decent choice. Why is its marriage to sandwiches and burgers so faithful?

Let’s campaign to change food chains

Thankfully, some sandwich chains have caught on. EAT, for instance, includes mayo-free sarnies on its shelves, with capitalised labels pointing them out. But they only feel like token gestures, making us mayo haters feel like charity cases.

Some choices are hard to understand why they’re left out of our reach. Why would you need to add greasy mayo to a brie, ham and cranberry sauce baguette? It already has cranberry sauce in it – why do you need two!? This means that my love for brie and cranberry is left unfulfilled.

All I’m asking for is choice. And I’m sure dieters dislike having fattening mayonnaise rammed down their throat all the time. Maybe we should take this campaign in a more militant direction.

Our manifesto could be centred around the following demand – there must be NO mayonnaise in any sandwich or burger. If you want it, you’ll have to buy a sachet. Sadly, that’s what we’ve been driven to.

Do you love or hate mayonnaise?

I love mayonnaise (66%, 206 Votes)

I hate mayonnaise (34%, 108 Votes)

Total Voters: 314

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snupy says:
28 February 2012

Funny, I’m American, and I don’t understand why every sandwich here needs margarine or worse “fake” spreads, especially when there is already a sauce. I much prefer mayo. I think it’s what you are used to.

Reposting in case earlier didn’t get noticed, with addition.

[Actually quite like stuff freshly(?) made for/in salad bar.

Has Pfeiffer Thousand Island dressing still unopened.
Is it safe to eat 18 months after purchase?]

Like both Hellmann’s mayo and Marmite.

M. says:
9 March 2012

Interesting; you actually by ready made sandwiches from supermarkets, yuk have you seen how they are made.
I only buy from delis, cafes and good old Greggs. Places where you can choose a sarnie and say now make me one without the mayo.

The other option, make your own and stick them in your bag for when you feel peckish during the day.

The only way to stop shops foisting this inspid semenlike gel onto us is to stop buying sarnies with mayo.

@Darting_Panda says:
4 April 2012

I hate the stuff. I am sick of having to settle for a Plain Ham sarnie as that’s the only one without Mayo!!! Its Vile nasty stuff!!

So long as Hellmann’s Real OR preferably according to formula
of Delia or Keith Floyd, it’s fine by me.

Mayo if applied must be done as fresh as possible every time,
those in pre-packed sandwiches sold are not off but sometimes a
bit stale (past best) hence less appetizing, have a hunch mass caterers
use inferior ‘industrial grade’ stuff…come to think of it,
very easy to make yr own (tasty) sandwiches for a fraction of price charged
in shops or supermarkets that I never buy from even if reduced to
half/one-third price when need to get rid off quick. You of course decide
what exactly does go in when you make yr own.

I am allergic to eggs and especially mayonnaise. it is nearly impossible to buy sandwiches without it. I once went into a sandwich bar in Bank St. in Edinburgh which boasted that they would make any kind of sandwich freshly for you. I asked for a ham sandwich with butter and no mayonnaise. I was told they would not do this it was “against their policy.” I then asked if I could have it with just the bread and ham, no mayonnaise. “No, that’s against our policy, we do not sell sandwiches without mayonnaise.” And this in a shop which did not keep sandwiches on the shelf but made them all freshly when ordered. Greggs bakers is as bad – they want to ram mayonnaise down my throat whether I want it or not. Most supermarkets are the same.Whatever happened to the idea of choice, like we had twenty years ago before mayonnaise with everything became compulsory?

notanegghead says:
13 May 2015

Me too! I work away from home a lot, and stay in hotels Monday to Friday. I’ve found myself in shops looking for something – anything – without eggs / mayo / coleslaw.
Once, I found myself in M&S but there was nothing on their sandwich shelves that did not have one or other. So I complained by email to their HQ about the lack of choice that I faced.
A week later I received an email with a list of their egg free products attached. Aside from the fact that I couldn’t take a raw turkey back to the office and eat it, it was inaccurate. Fourth on the list was an egg and cress sandwich.

I absolutely hate the stuff and consequently, can never buy pre packed sandwiches. I think the makers use it to make the fillings and bread all stick together. If it’s not mayonnaise it some other sort of sauce or dressing in them. Consequently, all these sandwiches are mushy and the lettuce and other salad foods in them are always limp and soft instead of crisp and fresh. Not a very attractive prospect to my mind but I guess it’s different strokes for different folks so they should’nt be stopped but alternatives and more choicce should be available.

Now, while I’m a big fan of mayo in a sarnie, it’s got to be the right kind. Tuna, egg, salad – oh yes. But the cheese and tomato sarnie I had from (I forget where, it was either Sainsbury’s or M&S) over the weekend – no, no, no! Why is it necessary to have mayo in that? *shakes head in despair*

DM says:
11 July 2012

Thanks Patrick
I thought I was alone. Why do they insist on putting that insipid goo on sandwiches and burgers?
Yes make it at home with fresh ingredients, but that mass produced wall paper paste. YUK
If you ask for a sandwich or burger without itโ€™s like you have broken one of the commandments.
Have retailers not realized that they always sell out of the sandwiches without Mayo, would that not tell them more variety and quantity is needed.

Eoin MacCormaic says:
13 August 2014

too true

Danielle says:
5 November 2012

I have a serious dairy allergy and one of them is mayo, I cannot find anything that doesn’t contain it, tescos has almost everything with dairy, I cannot find anything so I have have pasta and that has mayo in it as well and within 24 hours I start throwing up or something else.

I’m sick and tired of being ill all the time because no one listens to those with allergies.

The government and all food makers need to do something about this. It’s not fair.

Mark Chaplin says:
12 June 2014

Ok, i’ve come to the party a bit late having only just found this site, but now in June 2014, the “Mayo in everything” problem is still present.


Fortunately Greggs sell a plain ham and cheese baguette, and a plain cheese salad baguette, but most food retailers still persist on smothering perfectly good food with that Devil’s semen.

Time to ramp up the cause. Patrick, my brother from another mother, I am with you all the way!

Eoin MacCormaic says:
13 August 2014

I’m not alone! I cannot understand my this muck eaten. Lunch times fill me with dread! I can’t even order a sandwich because I know it comes from the same ugly salad bar that has a big steel tin of this gloop with its semi dried crust…puke!

I was painting a ceiling the other day in a colour called Cream White. I’m sure sandwich bars and other places have big pots of this for the colour and consistency were just the same. Had a pleasant smell too. In future I shall look out for mayo in sarnies to avoid being overcome with emulsion. No ingredients shown on a paint tin but perhaps oil and egg yolks feature.

Patrick: if your throat objects to it try putting it on your head – makes for an excellent hair conditioner if left on for about 30 mins.

PS don’t forget to shampoo it off afterwards!!!

It had not occurred to me that mayonnaise has something in common with Brylcreem, but both are oil/water emulsions and maybe the latter would be less disgusting to eat.

John Bound says:
11 September 2014

I asked for a cheese baguette without mayo but with butter at a railway station shop. They didn’t have butter so I had bread and cheese and was told that mayo is cheaper than butter, hence they don’t offer it. I still paid about ยฃ4! I guess that in addition to the basic cost, mayo is easier and cheaper to apply in automated factory lines. I’d pay more, however, to go back to butter or at least have a choice.

Had requested before that my subscriptions be stopped
….. plse do it now as to my Inbox stuff.

Like to have everything removed that I wd much appreciate
…..have not been too well lately and therefore as little distractions as
possible as to my Inbox stuff. Thanks again, Patrick.

Hungry says:
31 December 2014

I guess im not the only one incensed by mayonnaise! Why oh why do sandwich makers think it is necessary? I can understand to reduce dryness, but I would prefer an alternative (chutney,relish. pickle) than the dreaded tasteless soul of white glupe! I only find it barely acceptable in a BLT or tuna sandwich…it has NO business in a cheese & pickle sandwich at all.
I’m actually thinking of writing to Pret along with some the supermarkets!!

Patricia Davies says:
24 January 2015

I have had too many sandwiches ruined with mayonnaise that I now have to ensure that I buy mayonnaise free sandwiches. Greggs let me down yesterday because they advertised a roll as ham and egg so I bought it. Not until I bit into it did I realise it was misdescribed because it was in fact ham, egg and mayonnaise. I threw it away because the sandwich was ruined. I hate mayonnaise and even if I liked it, it does NOT go with ham and boiled egg sandwiches.
Greggs lost a customer!

metronome says:
23 March 2015

Not sure it this has been ever mentioned before, but I asked a friend of mine once, whose entire family work in a big sandwich factory and he said the reason they put mayonnaise in the sandwiches is because it sticks the filling together when making the sandwiches, it effectively acts as a sort of glue..

Yes they are all made by hand ๐Ÿ™‚