Mayo vs. Miracle Whip

| August 8, 2011 | 8 Comments

It’s a long-standing feud in our family – mayonnaise versus Miracle Whip salad dressing. It’s pretty much a fight to the death that no one will win. Mayo is beloved by some. Miracle Whip, beloved by others. There will be no changing of the minds, ever. The debate flares up fairly regularly – actually just about every time my mother-in-law brings her legendary potato salad to a family gathering. That gives us the opportunity to spend copious amounts of time on things like the meaning of life and – of course – mayo vs. Miracle Whip.


The mayonnaise debate is simple – savory is better. Miracle Whippers go for the sweet factor. I have to admit that I grew up on the sweet stuff and never had mayo until my dads wife made macaroni salad for us when I was 8. From that point on I had been turned to a life of mayonnaise loving. In my opinion, Miracle Whip is the scurge of condiments. I mean seriously why would you sweeten the deliciousness of mayo? It’s perfect right out of the jar or homemade even better. That’s like putting sugar on fresh fruit – so very wrong.

My husband was converted late in life as well – at least I suspect that’s the case since his mom (who is an amazing cook by the way) L-O-V-E-S Miracle Whip so much that when she makes her awesome potato salad for us she will not dress it because, well, the scurge of mayo will not litter her refrigerator. I love to joke with her and she’s a good sport about it all.

Anyway, at a family get together last night the potato salad – dressed with Miracle Whip – appeared on the dinner table and the debate found its way to center stage with a few new folks like my parents and a family friend in the mix. Meaningful exchange is key to fun and interesting events involving relatives.:)

It got me thinking, though, about why people choose one or the other. Is it cultural? Regional? Pure palate? No one seemed to be able to come up with a statistically significant hypothesis other than “because it’s good.”

So, the debate rages on. Sweet vs. savory. Miracle Whip vs. Mayo. One day, if we’re lucky, we’ll have the answers.

Tags: , ,

Category: EAT LOCAL, Food & Your Family

About the Author ()

Robin Rivers is the Project Development Director for Vancouver-based Mherge Media Group. Often can be found leaping tall buildings with the help of great friends. Predisposed to odd hats and the color orange. In love with imagination, her kids and that crazy guy who married her.

Comments (8)

Trackback URL | Comments RSS Feed

  1. Stacey K says:

    I grew up on Miracle Whip too Robin, but a child with food sensitivities helped me make the switch (the ingredient list on the Spectrum mayo is MUCH shorter than that of Miracle Whip!). Now, I can’t go back. Every time I am at my parents’ place, I think “How did I ever eat that?”. Way too sweet.

  2. Allyson says:

    My family is split on this as well. The girl-child and I are in the mayo camp and my husband in the Miracle Whip camp. The boy-child will still eat anything so he gets either depending on who is preparing the food.

    I grew up on Miracle Whip so I’m not sure why I’m in the mayo camp now other than I tend to go for savory over sweet when there’s an option.

  3. Mindy-J says:

    I grew up on Miracle Whip and we called it ‘mayo’. It wasn’t until my early 20′s that I discovered ‘Mayo’ is different from ‘Miracle Whip’. Now I enjoy both but I suppose if it came down to it I’d choose Miracle Whip.

  4. Another Robin says:

    No Miracle Whip in our shops in Oz … I thought it was a cream! But. My mum did make wartime Mayo consisting of evaporated milk, mustard, and vinegar. Very, very sweet and only nice with Iceberg lettuce. Home made or Hellmans for us!

  5. Julie says:

    Miracle Whip people seem to like sweet pickles and relish too, I am firmly a mayo type and all things vinegary and salty(like marmite) so I vote palate related to keep the peace.

  6. Shiva says:

    I had a roomate whose pasta salad recipie includes both miracle whip AND mayonaise. 2/3 of one and 1/3 of the other (but I don’t remember which is which). People would always ask him which he used and he’d always smirk and claim it’s a secret.

  7. Shawn says:

    I grew up on Miracle Whip and have always enjoyed it in burgers, coleslaw, sandwiches, etc. One day I ran out of Miracle Whip and the convenience store I went to only sold Hellmann’s Mayo. I tried it on my burger and thought, how do people eat this stuff?! After a year and a half of sitting in my fridge unused, I finally tossed it into the garbage can. Give me Miracle Whip or give me death!

  8. chas says:

    Once you try the real mayo, you don’t go back to Miracle Whip (speaking from someone who knew both, gradnma used real mayo (Kraft Mayo/Hellmans) dad and his mother preferred Miralce Whip, mom prefers both!

Leave a Reply