What’s a good burger without some kind of sauce. Enter BURGER SAUCE!
If you have been to In-N-Out, P. Terry’s (our household favorite), or maybe even McDonald’s or Burger King, you should have an idea of what burger sauce is. If not, it’s that red-orange-colored sweet and tangy sauce they put on hamburgers that is absolutely amazing!!
I honestly don’t know what goes into your typical hamburger sauce from restaurants. It reminds me of a ketchup and mayo hybrid with some other add-ins depending on where you are. But I do know it’s usually magical and the perfect touch on a burger.
So, of course, I had to recreate a healthy version of it and, as it turns out, it is so easy to make! If you have made my burger salad with the special sauce dressing, this is pretty much it, except tweaked slightly to make a huge batch, because it’s that good! It’s maybe one of my favorite sauces and that is saying a lot coming from me!
We’ve been putting it on all kinds of burgers (beef, chicken, veggie…), using it as a dip for air fryer sweet potato fries, and I even mixed it with tuna the other day for a spiced up tuna salad. You really can’t go wrong!
This hamburger sauce is also paleo and Whole30 compliant! Make sure to use a compliant mayo (homemade is best) and complaint pickles (I love the brand Grillo’s Pickles).
How to make burger sauce
Just 7 ingredients to whip up the best burger sauce recipe! It’s both sweet and tangy, creamy with a little crunch, and the perfect topping for any kind of burger! And will quickly become your new favorite sauce for just about anything!
Here is what you need:
- mayo (I prefer homemade – details on how to make it below)
- tomato paste
- pickle chips + pickle juice
- dijon mustard
- lemon juice
- garlic powder
- salt and pepper
First, start off by making your mayo if making homemade. Then simply just add the rest of the ingredients to the jar you made your mayo in or a large jar and mix well to combine!
That’s it! It’s as simple as mixing it all up and spreading it on everything! Even though it’s a “burger sauce”, you will want to dip anything and everything into it.
It makes a lot, but if you have a few people in your household, it should be easy to eat. It should last for 2-3 weeks in a tightly sealed glass jar (I usually go by the date on my eggs from making the mayo). The best thing is, the flavor gets better and better as it sits!
How to make homemade mayo
Homemade mayo is so easy to make and you only need a handful of ingredients, most of them being pantry staples. You do need an immersion blender for this recipe, but you can find them pretty reasonably and will definitely get a lot of use of it.
Here are the ingredients for homemade mayo:
- 1 large egg
- 3/4 cup avocado oil (or any kind of light tasting oil – light olive oil will work, but extra virgin olive oil will not work)
- 1 teaspoon dijon mustard
- 1 teaspoon lemon juice
- 1/2 teaspoon apple cider vinegar
- pinch of salt
To make homemade mayo, simply add all your ingredients in the order listed to a wide-mouth jar. I like to use a jar that I will be storing the mayo in and love these weck jars. Make sure you add in the ingredients as listed, with the egg on the bottom. That way it will blend first and create the emulsion.
After you add all the ingredients into the jar, place the immersion blender in the jar with the blade on top of the egg yolk. Then, turn it on. You will see it start to make an emulsion and the egg will start to blend with the oil after 5-10 seconds.
After about 30-45 seconds, slowly raise the immersion blender so you get all the oil and you have homemade mayo! This recipe will make about 1 cup of mayo.
It should be thick and creamy. If needed, throw it in the fridge for a couple of hours to let it thicken.
Homemade mayo vs store-bought mayo
As you can see, making homemade mayo is pretty easy – you only need a few basic pantry staples and it takes less than one minute. That being said, not everyone wants to make it. I have made this special sauce with both homemade and store-bought mayo and I prefer homemade. It is a lot creamier and the flavor is slightly different, giving the burger sauce a better flavor.
That being said, you can use store-bought mayo if you like, it might just alter the flavor a little. Opt for a classic kind without any additional flavorings.
How to use burger sauce
Whether you want to call it burger sauce, fry sauce, or special sauce, you can’t really go wrong with how you want to use it! Here are a few suggestions to use this burger sauce recipe:
- on burgers – ground beef, turkey, chicken, or even veggies burgers!
- French fry dipping sauce
- as a dressing – I love making a burger salad and using this as the dressing, but any kind of salad would work
- on sandwiches – use it instead of your typical plain mayo
- as a dip – use it for veggies, roasted potatoes, chips, or even chicken tenders/nuggets
More healthy sauce recipes
- homemade tzatziki sauce
- red enchilada sauce
- whole30 buffalo sauce
- 6 whole30 sauces that aren’t mayo
- homemade spicy chipotle mayo
- greek yogurt blue cheese dressing
- 1 cup homemade mayo*
- 3/4 heaping cup finely diced pickle chips (120 grams)
- 1/4 cup tomato paste
- 1 1/2 tablespoons dijon mustard
- 1 1/2 tablespoons pickle juice (from the jar of pickles)
- 1 1/2 teaspoons lemon juice
- 1 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1 teaspoon paprika
- salt and pepper, to taste
- Make homemade mayo (optional). If needed, make your mayo (see directions above in blog post).
- Make burger sauce. Add the mayo, pickles, tomato paste, mustard, pickle juice, garlic powder, paprika, salt, and pepper to a large glass jar (I add the rest of the ingredients to the jar I make the mayo in) and stir to combine. Adjust according to taste.
- Enjoy! Burger sauce will keep for 2-3 weeks in a tightly sealed glass jar (and the flavor gets better as it sits!).
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