Salad cream is a creamy, pale yellow condiment based on an emulsion of about 25–50 percent oil in water, emulsified by egg yolk and acidulated by spirit vinegar. It may include other ingredients such as sugar, mustard, salt, thickener, spices, flavouring and colouring. The first ready-made commercial product was introduced in the United Kingdom in the 1920s, where it is used as a salad dressing and a sandwich spread. Due to the higher cost of ingredients during periods of rationing in the United Kingdom a flavour similar to mayonnaise was achieved in the creation of salad cream.
In the United Kingdom, it has been produced by companies including H. J. Heinz Company and Crosse & Blackwell. Heinz Salad Cream was the first brand developed exclusively for the United Kingdom market. When first created in the Harlesden (London) kitchens of Heinz in 1914 the preparation was done by hand. The jars were packed in straw-lined barrels—12 dozen in each. The work schedule was 180 dozen jars a day, with a halfpenny a dozen bonus if the workforce could beat the target.
Salad cream was not readily available in the United States until the 21st century (though Miracle Whip provided a similar, if thicker alternative); however, with the large population of British expatriates, especially in the Northeast, it is becoming more common. Major retail supermarket chains sell salad cream as a regular item. Many supermarkets sell national and store brands of salad dressing which resemble salad cream.