Fry Sauce

This post first appeared over at Real Housemoms where I’m a contributor.

Have you ever heard of Mayo Ketchup? I hadn’t either until a trip to Puerto Rico a few years back. They serve all of their fries with Fry Sauce or mayo ketchup. Hubby fell in love and now, we make this delicious sauce it all the time.

close up of fry sauce in a white bowl with chive topping


But here in the United States, it is just called fry sauce or special sauce. Nearly every chain has their own variation of some combination of ketchup, mayo and seasonings.

What is Fry Sauce?

Turns out all the special sauce consists of is mayonnaise, ketchup and garlic powder. Real special. Well, turns out, most craveable fast food restaurants have the same mayo-ketchup base, but with a few extra ingredients.

Whopper sauce, In-n-Out Burger and Cali Burger all add minced dill pickles and a little bit of sweet and tangy with sugar and vinegar to their mix.

overhead bowl of fry sauce with homemade french fries on a wood cutting board

How to Make It

Use simple ingredients to whip this verstile sauce, the perfect accessory to a plate of French fries.

  • Mayonnaise– this is the base of the sauce. Some folks that are adverse to mayonnaise can use a plain Greek yogurt, but make sure that it is Greek because it is thicker because it has been drained and thus more the same consistency as mayo.
  • Ketchup– The other prime ingredient in the sauce, there isn’t much you can swap it out with, but if you want to try to make your own to control the sugar levels.
  • Dill Pickles– or relish, wither way, try to drain out the pickle brine.
  • Yellow Mustard– or get fancy with Dijon mustard!
  • Fine Sea Salt- Please use sea salt for a cleaner salt flavor, not table salt that could potentially give a metallic aftertaste.
  • Ground black pepper– Or white pepper if you want a milder taste.
  • Sugar- Sugar helps balance all the acidic flavors. Natural sweeteners can be used.
  • Apple Cider Vinegar- The signature tang comes from vinegar. Apple cider is my favorite, but white wine or plain vinegar can also be used.
  • Top with sliced scallions (green onions) or chives. I like that extra fresh crunch and also color.
glass bowl of ingredients for fry sauce
Yes, these are all in a bowl, but I put them in the food processor next.

Toss all of the ingredients in a small food processor (also my most used of kitchen appliances, I suggest everyone have one!) and give it a few blitzes until it smooths out. You can also hand mix it in a small bowl, but it will have more texture. For best results, cover and refrigerate it for at least an hour to let the flavors marry.

fry sauce in a glass bowl with a whisk

Other options include adding a dash of onion powder, garlic powder, Worcestershire sauce, cayenne pepper, jalapenos, bacon or a little bit of pickle juice or lemon juice.

close up of a whisk with thick and creamy fry sauce on it

What to Use it On

Clearly, just use the homemade fry sauce for dipping homemade french fries, but I also used it on my Copycat In-N-Out Burger Animal Style Fries. If you’ve never had them, you don’t even know what you are missing.

Use fry sauce for  onions rings and Onion Strings, tater tots, chicken nuggets, sweet potato fries, potato wedges or slather it onto a burger, hot dog or chicken sandwich. Also great for dipping chicken wings!

french fries dipping into a bowl of fry sauce

Make Ahead and Storage

Make this classic fry sauce ahead of time and place in the refrigerator for up a week in an airtight container. I do not recommend freezing anything mayo based.

fry sauce recipe for pinterest

More dipping sauce recipes:

mustard aioli sauce with tater tots

Mustard Aioli Sauce

4.47 from 47 votes
This zesty Mustard Aioli comes together in less than 5 minutes and is the perfect dipping sauce and sandwich topper for any meal or BBQ.
See The Recipe!
white bowl of bacon jalapeno fry sauce with fries

Bacon Jalapeno Fry Sauce

4.75 from 8 votes
Bacon Jalapeno Fry Sauce is the best spicy dipping sauce for French Fries, hamburgers, hot dogs, onion rings and even deli sandwiches!
See The Recipe!
chipotle ranch dressing pouring on to a salad

Chipotle Ranch Dressing

4.53 from 48 votes
Add some zing to your homemade ranch with this Chipotle Ranch Dressing recipe! Made with only 4 simple ingredients.
See The Recipe!
close up of mayo ketchup in a white serving bowl
bowl of fry sauce with chives

Fry Sauce

4.30 from 31 votes
Fry Sauce is the best dipping sauce for French Fries, hamburgers, deli sandwiches or onion rings. Easy to make and it stays fresh in the fridge for days!
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Total Time: 5 minutes
Servings: 8



  • Place the mayo, ketchup, pickles, vinegar, mustard, pepper, sugar and salt to a small food processor or bowl. Blitz or whisk until well combined.
  • Serve immediately or cover and refrigerate.
  • If you've tried this recipe, come back and let us know how it was in the comments or ratings sections.



Other options include adding a dash of onion powder, garlic powder, Worcestershire sauce, cayenne pepper, jalapenos or bacon.


Calories: 114 kcal, Carbohydrates: 4 g, Fat: 10 g, Saturated Fat: 1 g, Cholesterol: 5 mg, Sodium: 264 mg, Potassium: 47 mg, Sugar: 3 g, Vitamin A: 95 IU, Vitamin C: 0.6 mg, Calcium: 4 mg, Iron: 0.1 mg
Author: Jessica Formicola
Calories: 114
Course: Condiment
Cuisine: American
Keyword: fry sauce recipe, special sauce, zesty sauce
Did you make this recipe?I’d love to see your recipes – snap a picture and mention @savoryexperiments or tag #savoryexperiments!
Jessica Formicola in her ktichen

About the Author

Jessica Formicola

Jessica the mom, wife and food lover behind Savory Experiments. She is obsessed with butter, salt and bacon and spends all her time in the kitchen and behind a camera. Jessica is a contributor to PopKitchen by Parade, Better Homes & Gardens, The Daily Meal Food + Travel and more!

Read More About Jessica

Join The Discussion

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Recipe Rating

Questions and Reviews

  1. 5 stars
    I LOVE this stuff! I already made something similar, but it was just mayo, ketchup, and mustard. I love all the flavors here. I put it on burgers, and it’s fantastic.

  2. 5 stars
    I drowned my smash burger in this sauce and it was awesome! I had some extra and drizzled it all over my salad the next day! haha Thanks for sharing this!

  3. 5 stars
    This is unbelievable and we’ve been using it with so many things! Fries, chicken strips, breaded shrimp… it’s just so good!

  4. 5 stars
    I love dipping fries in mayonnaise so this sauce is a great easy variation without buying another bottle – perfect.

  5. Hi, I would like to try this recipe, but we do not reside in the USA, so I would like to know if the yellow mustard would be the powder or the one you get in the restaurants to put over your fries? Kind regards

  6. 5 stars
    The ingredients sound a little weird, but surprisingly enough it’s delicious. I ate this on a hamburger. I haven’t tried this with BBQ sauce because I enjoyed the ketchup so much. Don’t think hubby would care for it… he’s not a big fan of Maya. Very quick and simple.

  7. 5 stars
    Your Fry Sauce was excellent and so very easy to make!!!!! We dipped our fries and put it on our cheeseburgers. Next time we have it will need to double the recipe! Thanks for sharing it with us.❤

    1. Hi Patty, the recipe is there- right above the comments section between “Don’t forget to Pin the fry sauce” and “See more recipes like this”.