Instagram: Alton Brown

Can You Cook a Steak with Mayo? Alton Brown says Yes

It sounds crazy, but really, you can cook steak with mayo.

If Alton Brown says something is a good idea, then it almost certainly is. The king of kitchen hacks posted about a last-minute cooking hack on his Instagram account and honestly, it sounds like something out of his former show Cutthroat Kitchen. As in, another chef has stolen your olive oil and butter, but you have to cook a flavorful steak, so what do you do? If you're Alton Brown, you work with what you've got, which sometimes mean you cook steak with mayo. That's right; last week the host of Good Eats started to cook a steak only to realize he was out of both oil and butter, so he improvised by slathering a nice layer of mayo on the steak.


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I didn't have any oil or butter so...#mayo #steak

A post shared by Alton Brown (@altonbrown) on

It sounds crazy, but really, you can cook steak with mayo. The component ingredients make the condiment an excellent choice for an oil or butter substitute. Mayo is made from oil, egg yolk, lemon juice, vinegar, and seasonings like ground black pepper and mustard that add flavor along with the fat, so it's got everything a good slab of meat needs to get all caramelized and tasty.

How to Cook Steak with Mayo

When cooking your ribeye or what ever cut you desire, sear both sides of the steak on medium-high heat. When it comes to cooking steak the mayo sear is a great way to get even color and crispness. Cook time varies on the steak temperature you are aiming for. Rare steaks require less time than well-done!

In fact, as quite a few people jumped into the comments to say, mayo can be used instead of butter or oil in all sorts of recipes, from rib-eye steaks to the best steak tacos. Several people noted that they use mayo instead of butter to get a perfect grilled cheese sandwich and the crispiest quesadilla, while others used it in their homemade cornbread recipe. You'll also find mayonnaise in quite a few old-fashioned cake recipes.

Mayo is good for grilling, too, as the Los Angeles Times noted. Because mayonnaise is an emulsion, the oil in it sticks better to whatever you're grilling instead of running off (which can cause flare-ups on a grill). That means mayo is a great release agent because the oil sticks to the food and the food don't stick to the grill, even over high heat. You can use mayo on any kind of beef (hamburger, rib eye, flank steak), but it also works well for pork chops, chicken, and even delicate foods like fish to keep it from sticking and to keep the meat from drying out.

From the "after" picture Brown posted showing the golden-brown perfect steak cooked in a cast iron skillet, I'd say you could do far worse than to cook steak with mayo instead of butter.


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Struck upon an interesting twist on steak tonight. #steakdinner

A post shared by Alton Brown (@altonbrown) on

If you're going to grill this summer, do it right. Or the Hank Hill way. Here's what you need to get those steaks cooked medium rare.

1. Stainless Grill by Dyna-Glo

If you can fit 24 burgers on this, I'm sure you can fit just as many steaks. Perhaps a salad for our summer bodies? Perhaps not. Steak and Pineapple Fireball all summer baby.

2. Meat Thermometer

Meat thermometers are pretty important for novice grillers, but you can never be too safe. Unless you grill like a Dad in New Balances and cargo shorts, it's good to always check and make sure your steak isn't undercooked, or overcooked. Again, who is willingly eating well done steaks?

3. Lodge Cast Iron Skillet

A cast iron skillet is the perfect for dessert, bread, and anything your heart desires. This summer is full of opportunities to make some tasty dishes with the family.

4. Portable Folding Barbecue Grill

It folds! There is no excuse not to grill on trips this summer. Be sure not to overpack your truck bed, because you have to leave room for a portable charcoal grill.

5. Grill Tool Set

If you're traveling with your portable grill this summer, be sure to have all the tools you need. This grill tool set comes with a spatula, tongs, fork, and grill brush.

6. Saltgrass Steak Seasoning

Because salt and pepper just does not cut it for a good steak. 'Tis the season for a good seasoned steak.

7. Steak Knives

Don't waste anytime with tiny dull knives. You just cooked the perfect steak, and you shouldn't struggle trying to get the perfect bite. Stainless Steel Steak Knives are a must.

8. New York Strip Steaks


I feel so lucky to live in a time where I can order steak on Amazon.

9. Bacon-Wrapped Filet Mignons

I thought we hit the peak with bacon when we started wrapping bacon around jalapeños, but this has to be the best thing to wrap bacon in.

10. Game of Thrones Apron

Unfortunately, Game of Thrones is over, which means there couldn't be a more dire time to own some Game of Thrones memorabilia. Get it? Dire? Dire wolf? Grilling season is here.

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