Our very best Old Fashioned Potato Salad recipe is made with simple and classic ingredients. It’s the perfect side dish for potlucks, picnics, backyard BBQ’s and game day menus.
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Old Fashioned Potato Salad Recipe
I honestly can’t imagine summertime gatherings without a good homemade potato salad side dish. While everyone has their own take on it, this classic recipe proves you just don’t need fancy ingredients or complicated directions to make the best tasting potato salad. It’s loaded with tender cooked potatoes, relish, eggs and a perfectly seasoned creamy, dreamy dressing.
This easy old fashioned potato salad recipe is always a crowd pleaser, not only because it tastes absolutely amazing but also because it’s the perfect companion to just about any main dish. You can serve it with anything from Hot Dogs and Hamburgers to Pulled Pork or Ham and Cheese Sliders, you just can’t go wrong!
Why We Love this Recipe
- Easy recipe for classic southern potato salad with simple ingredients.
- It’s a fantastic make ahead recipe because the flavors are even better the next day.
- Always a family favorite and the perfect side dish for summer cookouts, Fourth of July or any other holiday.
- Large pot
- Sharp kitchen knife
- Large mixing bowl
- Medium mixing bowl
- Large kitchen spoon
Potato Salad Ingredients
- Yukon Gold potatoes or Russet potatoes, peeled
- White vinegar or apple cider vinegar
- Yellow mustard
- Sweet pickle relish (for finely diced sweet pickles)
- Celery – chopped
- Onions – chopped
- Hard boiled eggs – chopped
- Salt, black pepper, and paprika
How to Make Old-Fashioned Potato Salad
Hard boil your eggs, chop them up and set them aside.
Step One: Prepare the Potatoes
- Clean potatoes with water and cut into 1-inch cubes.
- Place in a large pot with a teaspoon salt and cold water so that water covers all potatoes by 1 inch. Add a 1½ teaspoon of salt to the water. Heat on high and bring to a boil.
- Reduce heat. Cook 15 minutes or until potatoes are fork tender.
Step Two: Make the Dressing
- While potatoes are cooking, make the creamy mayonnaise dressing ingredients. In a medium-sized mixing bowl combine the mayonnaise, mustard, vinegar, paprika, relish, pinch of salt, and pepper. Stir until combined and smooth. Set aside.
Step Three: Combine the Salad Ingredients and Serve
- Drain and let the warm potatoes cool so they hold their shape longer.
- In large bowl, add the tender potatoes, celery, and diced onion to the mayonnaise mixture. Using a large spoon, fold in the chopped eggs.
- Transfer the potato mixture to a salad bowl and sprinkle paprika on top.
- Cover and refrigerate a couple hours.
Potato Salad Add-ins and Variations
- Celery: If you’re not a fan of the crunch from the chopped celery, you can use celery seed or celery salt instead to give it the flavor without the crunchy texture
- Seasonings: Have fun and change up the flavor of the dressing by using different seasonings. A little bit of garlic powder, onion powder, fresh dill or even cayenne pepper are an excellent choice.
- Potatoes: The best classic potato salad recipes center around the type of potatoes you use. There are many choices of potatoes to choose from at the grocery store, but waxy potatoes like Yukon gold potatoes, red potatoes or new potatoes are the best option because they cook tender but hold their shape while mixing with the rest of the ingredients. You can also use starchy potatoes like russet or other white potatoes, but they will be a good bit softer.
- Dressing: Mayo or Miracle Whip makes the creamy texture for the dressing. But if you want a bit of a tangy dressing, you can mix together one cup mayonnaise and one cup sour cream or Greek yogurt in a separate bowl before adding it to the potatoes.
- Mustard: If you prefer, you can substitute the yellow mustard with Dijon mustard or dry mustard powder.
- Onions: We use yellow or white onion. But you can use diced red onions or even a chopped green onion.
- Relish: The original recipe uses sweet relish, but bread and butter pickles or dill pickles relish works great too. We even like to add a little pickle juice to the dressing to give it even more relish flavor.
- Amish potato salad: A fun take on this traditional potato salad is to make it Amish potato style by making the dressing sweeter. Add about 2 tablespoons white sugar to the dressing.
- Other add-ins: Add some crispy cooked bacon and extra apple cider vinegar to give it a German potato salad flair. You can also add some grated cheddar cheese to make it loaded potato salad.
How Long Can Potato Salad Sit Out?
Because homemade potato salad contains mayonnaise, it should not be left out for more than a couple of hours at the very most. If it needs to sit out longer than that, you can place the salad bowl in a larger bowl with ice in the bottom to keep it cool.
How Long Will Potato Salad Last in the Refrigerator?
A lot of people wonder how long is potato salad good for. If you have leftovers, keep them in an airtight container for up to 4-5 days.
What Are the Best Potatoes for Potato Salad?
Yukon Gold potatoes or Russet potatoes are the best potatoes to use in this recipe. They are hearty and will get soft when cooked, but won’t fall apart.
How Do I Keep My Potato Salad from Being Runny?
Make sure you don’t overcook the potatoes. You want them to be tender but still able to hold their shape as your mixing in the rest of the ingredients.
Another tip to keep your potato salad from being to loose it to make sure you drain the potatoes really well.
More Potato Recipes
Old Fashioned Potato Salad
- 5 lbs. Yukon Gold potatoes or Russet potatoes peeled
- 2 cups mayonnaise
- 1 Tablespoon white or cider vinegar
- 2 Tablespoons yellow mustard
- 2 teaspoons salt divided
- ¼ teaspoon pepper
- ½ teaspoon paprika
- 4 Tbsp sweet pickle relish
- 1 cup chopped celery about 2 stalks
- ½ cup chopped onion about 1 medium onion
- 5 hard boiled eggs chopped
- Clean potatoes with water and cut into 1-inch pieces. Place in a large pot and will with cold water so that water covers all potatoes by 1 inch. Add a 1½ teaspoon of salt to the water. Heat on high and bring to a boil.
- Reduce heat. Cook 15 minutes or until potatoes are fork tender.
- While potatoes are cooking, make the dressing. In a medium-sized mixing bowl combine the mayonnaise, mustard, vinegar, paprika, relish, ½ teaspoon salt, and pepper. Stir until combined and smooth. Set aside.
- Drain and let the potatoes cool so they hold their shape longer.
- In large mixing bowl, add potatoes, celery, and onion to the mayonnaise mixture. Fold in the chopped eggs. Sprinkle paprika on top.
- Cover and refrigerate at least 4 hours.
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