A Super Simple Comeback Sauce Recipe

Comeback sauce, a tangy and creamy dip, is a beloved staple in Southern cuisine with roots tracing back to Jackson, Mississippi. Although its precise origin is a matter of debate, the sauce is thought to have emerged in the 1930s or 1940s, with the Mayflower Cafe and the Rotisserie Restaurant claiming credit as its creator.

The moniker “comeback sauce” stems from the familiar Mississippi farewell, “Y’all come back,” inviting diners to return for more of this delightful sauce. Initially introduced as a salad dressing, its versatility swiftly propelled it to stardom as a condiment perfectly paired with various dishes, mainly fried seafood and chicken.

Fried Okra with Comeback Sauce
Fried Okra with Comeback Sauce

This sauce is a versatile and flavorful condiment similar to a remoulade or a spicier version of Thousand Island dressing. Typically crafted with a base of mayonnaise and ketchup, it incorporates Worcestershire sauce, hot sauce, garlic, mustard, lemon juice, vinegar, paprika, and various herbs and spices. The exact ingredients and proportions can vary widely, influenced by personal taste and regional adaptations.

Used widely as a dip for fried fare like chicken tenders, fries, and onion rings, comeback sauce doubles as a salad dressing, sandwich spread, or a delectable companion for seafood, burgers, and more.

Portobello Mushroom Fries with Comeback Sauce
Portobello Mushroom Fries with Comeback Sauce

Comeback sauce remains a treasured and iconic condiment from its modest inception as a house dressing to its present status as a cherished gem in Southern gastronomy. Its tangy, zesty, and adaptable nature has garnered enduring admiration, reflecting its irresistible flavor and the welcoming essence of Southern hospitality.

Comeback Sauce Recipe

Gator Bites with Comeback Sauce
Gator Bites with Comeback Sauce

This Comeback Sauce recipe was used for years at a beloved Southern restaurant in Miami Springs.


  • 8 cup mayonnaise
  • 1/2 cup ketchup
  • 1/2 cup chili powder
  • Salt and pepper to taste


  1. In a mixing bowl, combine the mayonnaise, ketchup, chili powder
  2. Mix all the ingredients thoroughly until well combined.
  3. Taste the sauce and add salt and pepper according to your preference. Add more chili powder for spiciness
  4. Cover the sauce and refrigerate it for at least 30 minutes to allow the flavors to meld together.
  5. Once chilled, give it a final stir before serving.

This Comeback Sauce Recipe comes courtesy of chefs David and Michelle.

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