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3 Healthy DIY Condiment Alternatives

Lentine Alexis
by Lentine Alexis
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3 Healthy DIY Condiment Alternatives

If you’re striving to work more fresh ingredients into your meals, reaching for an old bottle of ketchup in the fridge can feel like a big buzzkill. Most pre-packaged condiments contain ingredients that help them stay shelf-stable for months (or even years) and that’s the opposite of fresh.

Instead of succumbing to the curse of the condiment shelf, spend a few extra minutes whipping up your own homemade condiments instead. Perfect for anything on the barbeque, sandwiches, thinned out for salad dressings or even used as a veggie dip, these toppings pack nutrition and taste.


Use anywhere ketchup would normally go — and leave the weird preservatives behind!


  •   2 garlic cloves
  •   1/2 cup roasted red peppers from a jar (about 2), chopped
  •   1/2 cup unsalted, roasted almonds
  •   2 tablespoons red wine vinegar, plus more to taste
  •   1/4 cup olive oil
  •   Salt and pepper, to taste


Purée garlic, red peppers, almonds and vinegar in a food processor until smooth. With motor running, add oil and process until smooth; season with salt, pepper and more vinegar, if desired.

Serves: 16 | Serving Size: 1 tablespoon


Looking for a fresh alternative to sandwich spreads, this fresh pistou brightens a burger or that platter of baby carrots just fine.


  • 1 garlic clove, peeled
  • 3/4 cup Asiago cheese, finely grated
  • 1/3 cup unsalted natural pistachios
  • 4 cups (packed) baby arugula
  • 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice, more to taste
  • 2 teaspoons lemon peel, finely grated
  • 1/4 cup olive oil


Finely chop garlic in a processor. Add cheese and nuts. Process until nuts are finely chopped. Add arugula, 1 tablespoon lemon juice and peel. Blend to coarse paste. Drizzle in oil. Season with salt and pepper and more lemon juice, if desired. Transfer to bowl. Cover and chill up to 3 days.

Serves: 20 | Serving Size: 1 tablespoon


You might not even miss mayo after you give this creamy cashew aioli a try. Use it as a dip, a spread or a barbeque companion this summer.


  • 3/4 cup raw cashews
  • 1/2 cup water (substitute unsweetened plain almond milk for creamier sauce)
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 1/4 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1–2 teaspoons maple syrup or agave nectar (substitute organic cane sugar or stevia to taste)
  • Optional: 2–3 chipotle peppers in adobo sauce, plus 1 teaspoon adobo sauce (more or less to taste)
  • Optional: 1–2 tablespoons avocado, grapeseed, canola or other neutral oil (for creaminess)
  • Optional: Pinch of smoked paprika


Place raw cashews in a bowl and cover with boiling water. Let rest for 1 hour (uncovered). Then drain thoroughly.

Add soaked, drained cashews to a high-speed blender with 1/2 cup water (or almond milk), lemon juice, sea salt, maple syrup and pepper. (Add adobo sauce and chilies here, if using.)

Blend on high until creamy and smooth, adding more water or almond milk as needed to encourage blending. Scrape down sides as needed.

Taste and adjust seasonings as needed, adding more salt to taste, lemon for acidity, maple syrup for sweetness or adobo sauce for heat. Adding the optional oil adds extra creaminess. Smoked paprika is also optional and adds a sweet smokiness to the sauce.

Serve immediately or refrigerate. Leftovers will keep covered in the refrigerator up to five days.

Serves: 8 | Serving Size: 2 tablespoons

About the Author

Lentine Alexis
Lentine Alexis
Lentine is a curious, classically trained chef and former pro athlete. She uses her bicycle, raw life and travel experiences and organic ingredients to inspire athletes and everyone to explore, connect and expand their human experiences through food. She previously worked as a Chef/Recipe Developer/Content Creator and Culinary Director at Skratch Labs – a sports nutrition company dedicated to making real food alternatives to modern “energy foods.” Today, she writes, cooks, speaks and shares ideas for nourishing sport and life with whole, simple, delicious foods.


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