The Washington Post

No Mayo Ham Salad

No Mayo Ham Salad 8.000

Stacy Zarin Goldberg for The Washington Post; food styling by Bonnie S. Benwick/The Washington Post

Jun 21, 2019

This version of the throwback sandwich spread substitutes full-fat Greek yogurt for mayonnaise, adds in mustard for tang and a squeeze of lemon for bite, replicating all the best qualities of mayo.

The ideal pairing is a Saltine cracker or soft white bread, or schmear a little on a crinkle-cut potato chip, garnished with a celery leaf, for a pass-around at a summer barbecue. For a variation, you could add 2 or 3 chopped, hard-cooked eggs to the mix.

Either a food processor or a meat grinder makes an even-textured spread. It is possible, but time-intensive, to chop the meat by hand.

Make Ahead: The shallot needs to soak in an ice-water bath for 30 minutes; this will lessen its bite and keep the shallot crisp. The salad should be refrigerated for at least 4 hours before serving (so the flavors meld) and up to 3 days; it does not freeze well.

Where to Buy: Grocery store ham, sliced 3/4-inch thick, works perfectly if there are no ham dinner leftovers. Look for Brown Sugar or Maple Cured Ham for a sweeter salad, Black Forest Uncured Ham for a hammy salad, or, for a pronounced smoky flavor, Virginia Smoked Ham. Sweet pickle relish is available in the pickle section of the grocery store.


When you scale a recipe, keep in mind that cooking times and temperatures, pan sizes and seasonings may be affected, so adjust accordingly. Also, amounts listed in the directions will not reflect the changes made to ingredient amounts.

Tested size: 8 servings; makes 2 cups

  • 12 ounces cooked ham, coarsely chopped (see headnote)
  • 1 celery rib, coarsely chopped
  • 1 small shallot, minced and soaked in ice water for 30 minutes, then drained (see headnote)
  • 1/2 cup sweet-pickle relish
  • 1/4 cup plain, full-fat Greek yogurt
  • 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
  • 2 teaspoons brown mustard or Dijon mustard
  • 1/2 teaspoon celery seed
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • Kosher salt (optional)


Combine the ham and celery in a food processor. Pulse several times until the mixture is in very small, uniform pieces, about the size of lentils. Do not over-process or the mixture will get pasty.

Scrape the ham and celery into a mixing bowl and add the soaked/drained shallot, relish, yogurt, lemon juice, mustard, celery seed and pepper. Stir together until uniform and creamy. Taste and season lightly with salt, if needed. Refrigerate for at least 4 hours to let the flavors combine.

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Recipe Source

From Bring It! columnist Cathy Barrow.

Tested by Cathy Barrow.

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Nutritional Facts

Calories per serving: 80

% Daily Values*

Total Fat: 1g 2%

Saturated Fat: 0g 0%

Cholesterol: 25mg 8%

Sodium: 590mg 25%

Total Carbohydrates: 8g 3%

Dietary Fiber: 0g 0%

Sugar: 6g

Protein: 8g

*Percent Daily Value based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your daily values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.

Total Fat: Less than 65g

Saturated Fat: Less than 20g

Cholesterol: Less than 300mg

Sodium: Less than 2,400mg

Total Carbohydrates: 300g

Dietary Fiber: 25g

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