Yellow mustard is America’s favorite mustard and is the traditional topping for a range of classic American foods including hotdogs and corndogs. Its flavor profile is mild in terms of heat but it has an aggressive vinegary tang. If you need its flavor but don’t have any on hand, try one of these yellow mustard substitutes:
Your best bet: Make your own yellow mustard
Standard yellow mustard — also called ballpark mustard — is easier to make than you might think. You need ground mustard seeds, which are sometimes sold as dry mustard or you can grind whole mustard seeds yourself.
To replicate the mild taste of yellow mustard, you will need yellow or white mustard seeds but you can use brown if you want something spicier. Your other ingredients include vinegar, oil, and sugar along with salt and some optional seasonings like garlic. You can stop there to get the flavor of yellow mustard but it won’t have the right color.
To get the true bright yellow of this mustard, you will need one other spice: turmeric. Add just enough turmeric powder to get the desired shade. If you don’t have turmeric in your spice cabinet, a drop or two of yellow food coloring can have a similar effect.
Some yellow mustard recipes include oil or even mayonnaise to get the creamy mouthfeel.
A decent second choice: Dijon mustard
Often made with white wine rather than vinegar, Dijon mustard has long been marketed as a fancier alternative to yellow mustard despite the fact that the two have similar flavor profiles. They taste a lot alike because they have several ingredients in common. Dijon mustard does tend to have a spicier kick than yellow mustard but not enough to make a big difference in most applications.
Dijon mustard can work in any dish that would benefit from yellow mustard but really shines when you use it in salad dressings.
What dijon mustard usually lacks is the brilliant color of yellow mustard. It is usually the drab grayish yellow of mustard seeds but in paste form. You can brighten its color by adding a little turmeric or a couple of drops of food coloring.
In a pinch: Honey mustard
If your recipe can handle the extra sweetness, honey mustard can be a great yellow mustard alternative. It typically consists of half honey and half yellow mustard. Similarly, you can use honey mustard in place of yellow mustard on hotdogs and hamburgers. Both of those sandwiches traditionally have a sweet element like ketchup or relish. Simply use the honey mustard to provide the sweetness. Honey mustard makes a good salad dressing or dip for vegetables and can even be used as a barbecue sauce.
Prepared English mustard is a good yellow mustard substitute for a number of reasons including the fact that it looks a lot like yellow mustard. It contains turmeric so it’s roughly the same color.
Horseradish sauce is made with horseradish along with sour cream and vinegar. Some recipes include mayonnaise and mustard as well. Horseradish is a root vegetable that belongs to the same family as the mustard plant. It is more flavorful than mustard seeds so horseradish sauce tends to have a sharper flavor and a bit more heat but it should still work well in most of the same applications that require yellow mustard. Horseradish sauce is white but can be made yellow with turmeric or food coloring.