How to substitute sour cream for mayonnaise

Updated February 21, 2017

Many recipes, such as those for potato salad, pasta salad, dips and dressings, can use sour cream in place of mayonnaise. This can be a useful substitution if you do not have mayonnaise on hand or if you are trying to reduce your fat intake. You might even find that you prefer sour cream instead of mayonnaise in some recipes. When substituting sour cream for mayonnaise, be aware that the result might have a different flavour because of the sour cream.

Replace the mayonnaise a recipe calls for with an equal amount of sour cream, by volume. For example, if a recipe calls for 1 cup of mayonnaise, use 1 cup of sour cream instead.

Mix thoroughly to combine the sour cream with the other ingredients. The result might be a little heavier than it would have been with mayonnaise.

Cook at a lower temperature, if the recipe requires heating, to help prevent curdling the sour cream.


Mixing some sour cream into store-bought mayonnaise produces a result that is similar to homemade mayonnaise in taste and consistency, according to "Joy of Cooking." Try making a recipe with half mayonnaise and half sour cream if you have both ingredients available. Replace mayonnaise with reduced-fat or nonfat sour cream to reduce the fat content in the recipe even more than the substitution of plain sour cream for mayonnaise. Plain yoghurt is another ingredient that can be used in place of mayonnaise or sour cream in recipes. To make it taste more like mayonnaise, mix in a tablespoon of mustard per cup of yoghurt and add salt and pepper to taste.

Things You'll Need

  • Sour cream
  • Measuring cup
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