Dijon Mustard vs Yellow Mustard – What’s The Difference?

So you want to know the difference between Dijon mustard and yellow mustard? The answer is simple – it lies in the seasoning, taste, and texture of the varieties. Dijon is thicker in texture than yellow mustard and also contains less vinegar. The flavor of Dijon mustard, however, is sourer than yellow mustard due to the seeds that are used to create it (more detailed information on this will be revealed in her course of this article). There is also an obvious difference in color – Dijon mustard has a light or pale yellow color, whereas yellow, or American, mustard has a much more vibrant yellow hue.

Does mustard make it to the top of your list of condiments and spices? Are you a die-hard ketchup fan, or perhaps you prefer mayonnaise? Would you reach for ketchup or mayo over mustard?

Each of these concerns is a matter of personal taste; our use of condiments can vary from person to person as much as our sense of style.  Condiments can be used to accomplish many different purposes in cooking, including dipping sauces, marinades, and much more in between that you may not expect.

It is important to note that not all mustard is made equal – not all varieties may cut the mustard for you (if you can pardon the pun!) There are many types of mustard, and they’re quite distinct in their flavors and textures.

In this article, we will discuss the similarities and distinctions between Dijon and yellow mustard. Although both fundamentally share the same name, they are not the same product. We’ll discuss Dijon and yellow mustards at some length and finish with a summary of the distinctions.

Continue reading to find out more about what makes Dijon mustard and yellow mustard different and how they’re the same.

What Is The Difference Between Dijon Mustard and Yellow Mustard?

Mustard is mostly regarded as a condiment. It’s a common ingredient in many staple foods, like hot dogs! All mustard shares one common trait; the basis of all mustard is mustard seeds, which are later transformed into the mustards we all know and love.

There are actually many different kinds of mustard. Yellow or American mustard, spicy mustard, and Dijon mustard are a few of the most well-known varieties.

Below are more varieties of mustard you may not have heard of:

  • French mustard
  • Spicy mustard
  • Hot mustard
  • Stone-ground mustard
  • Honey mustard

These names are but a few of the many different types on offer. Each is created according to its specific method and ingredients, which make them unique. They could have different varieties of mustard seeds and seasonings, or they could be processed completely differently from one another.

As we move through this article, we’ll begin by examining Dijon mustard and yellow mustard individually. We want to provide an excellent overview of each so you can understand them individually. Then finally, we will put together a summary of contrasts to give you an easy reference for knowing the distinctions when making the best choice of mustard for your culinary needs.

Dijon Mustard

As its name may suggest to some keen-eyed readers, Dijon mustard refers to a French type of mustard.

It’s used as an everyday condiment and has a pleasantly crumbly texture. Its most common uses are to make sauces and glazes to add excitement to sandwiches.

Dijon mustard has a light yellow color and isn’t the vibrant yellow as yellow mustard. It’s somewhat pasty and creamy and does not have a watery base because it doesn’t contain the same amount of vinegar as yellow mustard.

Dijon mustard will be made using spiced black and brown mustard seeds and then flavored with verjuice, which tastes very similar to wine made from grapes in their early stages. The taste is more on the intense side and could even have some notes of spice, but this isn’t the main flavor profile as with spicy mustard.

Dijon mustard is available in bottles or jars most commonly, and once opened, it must be kept in the fridge and should be ideally used within 6 months for the best possible flavor experience.

You could also create Dijon mustard yourself at home If you’d rather! This would give more control over the levels of spice in the profile and can better meet your specific needs.

Uses for Dijon Mustard

Dijon mustard is a very distinctive product and may not be to everyone’s liking. While it was first introduced in France, it’s now available across the globe as its unique flavor has become a keen favorite. Dijon mustard is, perhaps, more flexible than yellow mustard since it can be transformed into different dressings and sauces with ease.

Here are some of our highest rated methods that Dijon mustard could be used:

  • Sandwich filling
  • Mix into a marinade
  • Mix with vinegar or oil to make a dressing for salads
  • Dijonnaise (Dijon mustard and mayonnaise mix)
  • Turn into flavorful honey mustard
  • Create punchy and crunchy glazes for different meats or veg
  • Use it as a rub
  • Mix it with cheese dip (trust us, you have to try this!)

As you can see, there are numerous applications for Dijon mustard. It is easily amongst the top most adaptable condiments. Few condiments can be utilized effectively across items ranging from salads to meats and everything between. If you’re a die-hard ketchup fan, please now consider if your favorite has this variety!

Yellow Mustard

Yellow mustard is also often called American mustard. It’s an amazing, almost neon yellow and mostly known for its potential as a topping/addition to classic meals.

Yellow mustard in a hot dog
Yellow mustard in a hot dog.

Yellow mustard is arguably the most popular topping for hot dogs, cheeseburgers, sandwiches, corn dogs, and much more.

Incredibly, this super bright mustard contains health benefits as well as household applications that you might have never thought of!

Believe it or not, yellow/American mustard can be used for sore throats, as a decongestant, odor removal, relief from burns, and – most surprisingly – even stain removal.

Yellow mustard is made up of a mixture of yellow and white mustard seeds, which are part of the actual mustard plant. The seeds used in yellow mustard can be ground, whole, broken or bruised as the mustard is created.

The seeds will be mixed with water, vinegar, salt, lemon juice, spices, and various flavors. It may, in some cases, also include wine. However, this isn’t typical of yellow mustard. Yellow mustard is generally regarded as an ingredient.

Uses for Yellow Mustard

Although yellow mustard is primarily popular as a condiment it can be used to make other mouth-watering foodstuffs also. You will often see it added to recipes, be it to make a sauce or to add some extra flavor to a well-established dish.

Whilst it is flexible in its own way, it doesn’t have quite the same multitude of applications as Dijon mustard.

Here are some of the common uses for yellow mustard:

  • Condiment
  • In addition to potato salad
  • To add a unique flavor to macaroni salad
  • Making deviled eggs
  • To marinade with
  • It is used to make other different kinds of mustard (spicy honey, sweet, etc.)
  • Mix into soups for a unique kick of flavor
  • Egg salad addition
  • Dipping sauce

As you can see, yellow mustard does have its uses but can’t be applied in the same number of ways as Dijon. Whilst there are recipes that use yellow mustard in salad dressings, it will require a lot of other ingredients to achieve the ideal dressing as it is quite heavy and does not alone provide a flavor profile that will necessarily complement salads.

The distinctive thing about yellow mustard, other than its bright color, is the fact that it works so well in sauces, coatings, dips, and other such condiment-stye applications. As mentioned above, it’s well-known as an ingredient in potato salad, macaroni salad as well as a deviled egg mix.

When you have American yellow mustard, it’s easy to prepare all the traditional American BBQ and picnic foods that are loved by so many.

Overview of Dijon Mustard vs Yellow Mustard

When it comes down to drawing a conclusion, I believe we can all agree that yellow and Dijon mustard are quite different. Though both originate from mustard seeds and can be used for somewhat similar purposes, that’s where the similarities in these sauces end.

Dijon mustard has a very strong taste with a hint of spice that is utterly delectable. It’s creamy but also slightly sour and can be used to make many sauces, glazes, toppings, rubs, dressings, or other flavorful ingredients to make irresistible meals. Dijon mustard has a versatile range of applications, and the taste is unmistakable.

The main, distinctive differences between Dijon mustard and yellow mustard are related to flavor and color. However, they also differ primarily in the ingredients. Dijon is light yellow mustard with an elegant taste; made using wine to enhance the flavor notes and bring out the zaniness that we know as this mustard’s taste.

Yellow mustard has a distinct scent and taste. It’s made to be smooth; however, often requires shaking or stirring as the oil or vinegar within the recipe could become separated. It’s typically used in traditional American recipes, hence gaining the name ‘American mustard.’ It’s quite versatile in its own individual way, and can add a punch to classic recipes, but not in the same way plethora of ways as Dijon.

Yellow mustard is typically made from vinegar, oil, and salt, rather than wine. The flavor is more straightforward and less punchy, perhaps making it a more popular choice as a condiment. Yellow mustard is also distinguished most obviously with its neon yellow hue.

Other Questions Asked

We hope you will find this guide for distinguishing the differences between yellow mustard and Dijon mustard to be useful and instructive, and maybe you have gained some new respect for these mustards and their uses! Next time you go to grab mayonnaise or ketchup, think about the many uses of mustard also!

We encourage you to please read the question and answer section. There may be further information available there that will assist you with learning about the distinctions of these mustards or their individual uses.

Can You Make Mustard At Home?

Mustard is surprisingly easy to make at home. If you like the yellow variety, Dijon mustard, honey mustard, or spicy mustard, you can prepare any of these in the relaxing environment of your own kitchen. Making your own mustard may also be an excellent choice if you want to cut back on the heat or distinctive tang of some of these varieties by changing the amount of mustard seeds, vinegar, or wine in the recipe. Experiment and see how versatile it is for yourself!

Do All Types of Mustard Have Health Benefits?

It’s the mustard seed that provides the health benefits of mustard. It’s safe to say any kind of mustard could provide similar advantages as they all contain seeds as the main ingredient. But, we warn against getting too heavy with your helpings of your favourite mustard since some of the extra ingredients in different varieties may not be as beneficial to your health. Yellow mustard is considered the ‘clearest’ type of mustard if you are health conscious.

Can You Store Mustard At Room Temperature?

If you buy mustard at the supermarket, it’s usually advised that after breaking the seal, you keep it in the refrigerator. This will help to improve the longevity and taste of the product. Before you break the seal, you can store mustard in your food pantry just as it is on the shelves at your grocery store.

It is possible to keep it at room temperature, and this is a preference of many people, but we advise you always check the storage suggestions on the packaging and follow them for the best experience of these products.

Norah Clark

Norah Clark

Norah Clark, the founder and editor of YummyTasteFood! She's a seasoned food writer and editor with over a decade of experience in the hospitality industry as a former pastry chef, sous chef, and barista. When not writing about food, she explores new recipes or travels the world for culinary inspiration.

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