Fluffy Magic Garlic Sauce | Toum

Toum, or salsat toum, is a beautiful, white fluffy garlic sauce or dip common to Lebanon, Syria, and a few other neighboring countries. 

Recipes and techniques vary from region to region, but I adapted Sohla El-Waylly’s recipe from Serious Eats, so my version will be Lebanese. 

Using just four ingredients — garlic, oil, lemon juice, and salt — you’ll be able to whip this dish up in no time.

While it superficially resembles mayonnaise, it’s completely dairy-free. Packed with flavor from the copious amount of garlic, the first time we had it we couldn’t stop eating it, it was so delicious.

Not only is it tasty, but it’s also versatile. You can dip vegetables in it; you can have it on kebabs; you can have it as a spread; you can add a little bit on a salad as a topping; or you can thin it out and use it more like a dressing.

So get out your food processor and get ready to smash some garlic. It’s time to make toum!

Toum – Lebanese Whipped Garlic Sauce

The applications of the tasty potent sauce are endless.
4.05 from 22 votes
Prep Time 15 mins
Cook Time 15 mins
Course Appetizer, Condiments
Cuisine Lebanese
Servings 48
Calories 138 kcal


  • food processor


  • 1 C. garlic about 3 large heads
  • 3 C. neutral flavored oil sunflower, safflower or canola oil
  • 2 tsp. Kosher salt
  • 1/4 C. lemon juice 1-2 large lemons


  • Place a head of garlic upside down (root side up) on the countertop and use the palms of both hands to crush and separate the cloves of garlic.
  • Place the separated cloves into a heat-proof bowl and cover with boiling water for 1 minute. Drain the garlic and remove the peels.
  • Place the peeled garlic into the bowl of a food processor along with 2 tablespoons of lemon juice and salt. Blend until finely chopped, periodically scraping down the sides of the bowl.
  • With the food processor running, slowly drizzle a thin (1/8")stream of oil. It's crucial to add the oil in slowly or the toum will separate. Some food processors are equipped with an attachment that has a tiny hole just for this purpose. Stop periodically to scrap down the sides of the bowl.
  • Once all the oil is incorporated the toum should have whipped consistency and a bright white color. Transfer the sauce to a clean quart-side container and store the refrigerator. It will keep for 4-6 weeks.


This recipe was adapted from Sohla El-Waylly at Serious Eats. 


Calories: 138kcalCarbohydrates: 2gProtein: 1gFat: 15gSaturated Fat: 1gPolyunsaturated Fat: 1gMonounsaturated Fat: 12gSodium: 80mgPotassium: 21mgFiber: 1gSugar: 1gVitamin A: 1IUVitamin C: 2mgCalcium: 9mgIron: 1mg
Keyword condiment, garlic, garlic sauce, toum, whipped
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!

14 thoughts on “Fluffy Magic Garlic Sauce | Toum”

  1. I’m going to try to make this as a gift for my wife, who hasn’t been able to find a steady source of toum in our city. This will be my first attempt at an emulsion, so a little nervous!
    Is there a reason you omit the ice water in the original recipe? Is it just a question of consistency?

  2. I did according to the recipe and it does not have the consistency of foam, the garlic separates from the oil 🙁

  3. 5 stars
    Hey Meg,
    I plan to try this out too.

    I suspect emmy chose to omit it based on the comment on the original recipe that indicates that the water addition can cause issues with the emulsion result.

    “D santucci An_antelope • 5 months ago
    The trick with this is truly the extremely slow drizzling of the oil. A hairlike stream. It should be fluffy about halfway through and continue as such. The video my relative sent me warned against ANY water coming in contact with it and the quantities were similar to this recipe, sans the water. “

  4. 5 stars
    Fabulous!!!!! First batch broke because I tried to add the full 3 cups of oil along with the heat from my food processor; I froze the resulting liquid and use it for cooking. Next batch was PERFECTION!

  5. Love your videos! The ingredient list says 1/4 cup lemon juice but the directions say 2 tablespoons. Do I need the full 1/4 cup?

  6. If your toum breaks, add the white from one egg and whip it up. Make sure that it’s an egg that is safe to eat raw. I make this using my immersion blender in small batches.

  7. 5 stars
    What a great recipe for Toum! I got the same foamy sauce… you must add oil in the finest stream possible. Once I saw the beginnings of emulsion, then I slowed down the rate that I added the oil. And added another tablespoon of lemon juice with the zest of one lemon, and a shake of ground cayenne. It is out of this world delicious!

  8. I made this today using 6 small heads of garlic, no ice water. It became the proper consistency without the entire amount of oil, so I quit while I was ahead. O.M.G. Awesome.

  9. mark dumouchelle

    1 star
    was a fail for me … i make mayo all the time and love toum from living in the middle east … i think next time i will stick to mayo and add garlic

  10. 5 stars
    I’ve made this four times since watching your video. The second and third didn’t turn out right (too much lemon=watery & way too much garlic=inedible) I followed the recipe EXACTLY this time and it’s PERFECT!! My daughter said it brought back memories from her childhood when we used to buy it from a greek vendor at a local farmers market. I’m so happy right now!! Thank you!

  11. 5 stars
    Absolutely fantastic! I made a batch about 2 months ago and am going on a second batch soon as it is almost gone. Very easy to make using these very simple directions. I’ve been using it on anything and everything from sandwiches, veggie dip, and I’ve substituted it for mayo in sauces and dressings. It is extremely versatile. These instructions yielded me 2 Mason jars worth and it lasts a while in the fridge. Five 🌟!!!

  12. In the original recipe that Emmy based it off of, they use 1/4 cup or 4 Tablespoons of the lemon juice, so that is what i have been going by and it works. Just thought to share for the ladies mentioning the issue.

Leave a Comment

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

Recipe Rating


free email series

What Food Can Teach Us

Get it...here!