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How to Make The Best Potato Salad Ever [+Video]

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How to Make The Best Potato Salad Ever is done by combining both mayonnaise and mustard with a touch of vinegar but the real secret is in the potatoes…

Always Make Potato Salad the Day Before

Before you read anything, and I’ll remind you a million more times, start this potato salad THE DAY BEFORE you intend to eat it. 

A glass serving bowl of potato salad. There are potato chunks, chopped eggs, and fresh dill in the salad and it is sprinkled with paprika and fresh parsley leaves. The bowl is sitting on a table next to a red checked napkin. A wooden spoon is also laying on the table.

 

The best potato salad in the entire United States of America has arrived. Forget your mom and grandma’s potato salad recipe when you need to bring a bbq side dish. I’ve tested for years now and this is it!

And you KNOW ME. I know you do. You know how I get all obsessed over finding the best recipe and make a billion of them until I find it. My potato salad recipe is the most delicious recipe and I’ve made a heck of a lot of salad recipes over the years. 

Almost too many. 

Like to the point that I almost gave up because that’s a lot of taters and mayo.

 

The Secret to Potato Salad

I roll my eyes a little bit each time I read that you should toss your cooked, warm russet potatoes with vinegar before you do anything else. Nuh uh. 

Not true. 

The real secret to the best potato salad recipe is to  STOP using Russet Potatoes

And always make it the day before you want to eat it. 

 

A glass serving bowl of potato salad. There are chunks of potato, chopped eggs, chopped pickles stirred together is a light dressing. The salad is topped with sprinkled paprika and fresh parsley. The bowl of salad is sitting next to a red checked napkin and a wooden spoon.

 

What Kind of Potatoes are Best for Potato Salad

Let’s start out with the potatoes; the most important part. 

Yukon Gold Potatoes are the best potatoes for salad. I was a die-hard Russet fan as I’d been taught for years that you should always use those big ol’ potatoes. But as I got more and more frustrated with why are my potatoes falling apart, why is my salad watery and flavorless?

I suddenly had brilliant inspiration. 

Yukon Gold Potato Soup was a game-changer. 

Maybe that’s the secret to potato salad

And it is. 

 

A glass bowl of potato salad. The chunks of potato, pickles, and eggs are mixed together in a perfect dressing. The salad is sprinkled with paprika and fresh parsley.

 

Best Potato Salad Recipe 

Figuring out the best potato to use was huge, but do you really have to boil the potatoes whole, quickly toss hot potatoes in vinegar and salt and then dump gobs of only mayonnaise or only mustard?

This is going to be a longer post, but I beg you to scroll through and read every line because there’s a reason we are making it this way. 

Here’s What you Need for Potato Salad

  • Yukon Gold Potatoes
  • Mayonnaise
  • Mustard
  • Dijon Mustard
  • Celery Salt
  • Salt 
  • Fresh Dill- Dried is not the same, but in a pinch use half the amount.
  • Hard Boiled Eggs – Make sure you read how to make perfect hard boiled eggs so that you don’t get frustrated and ruin the eggs. 
  • Smoked Paprika– yes, it’s got way more flavor. Amazon it if you have to.  
  • Green Onions- No regular onions or celery, but you can add those if you must.
  • Sweet Relish- 
  • Pickles- We go to the cold organic section and buy Claussen.

 

 

A glass serving bowl filled with potato salad. There are chunks of potato, chopped pickles, chopped eggs and dill in the salad. Paprika and fresh parsley is sprinkled on top.

 

How to Make Potato Salad  

  1. Boil the potatoes until tender then cool in a colander for a few minutes until you can hold a potato. Peel and chop into bite sized pieces, and the final few mince as it will help bind everything. 
  2. While the potatoes are cooking whisk together all of the mayonnaise ingredients. Use both regular yellow mustard and dijon for the best flavor. 
  3. Add minced pickle and relish as both provide a different flavor. 
  4. Toss the potatoes in the mayo dressing. Place in a bowl and cover with plastic in the fridge until room temp or cool. 
  5. Add the eggs and stir again. Cover and refrigerate overnight to allow flavors to develop. 

FAQ 

  • Is it better to boil potatoes whole or cut up?

It is absolutely best to boil your potatoes whole so that the skin protects them from all of that water and getting soggy. 

After they cook, allow the potatoes to cool in a colander for a few minutes then use a paring knife to peel the potatoes. 

 

 

  • Should I cut potatoes before boiling for potato salad?

If you can keep them them whole do so, but if you need to hurry just half or quarter the potatoes. 

 

  • Do you cover potatoes while boiling?

Never cover the pot while the potatoes are boiling. 

 

  • How long do you boil whole potatoes?

Depending on the size of the yukon gold potatoes and if you’ve cut them at all will determine cooking time. 

Plan on 15-30 minutes. 

 

  • How do you know when boiled potatoes are done?

Use a fork to pierce the potatoes and if it slides in easily the potatoes are done. 

Oh Sweet Basil Pro Tip on How to Peel Hot Potatoes

I hold the potato in one hand and the knife in the other and pinch the edge of the peel with your thumb using the knife hand then just lift and pull the skin back. This allows you to maintain as much flesh as possible.

 

A glass serving bowl of potato salad. The chunks of potato, pickles, and eggs are topped with sprinkled paprika and fresh parsley.

Can I cook my potatoes ahead of time?

You can boil and peel the potatoes 2 days in advance. Cover in a bowl tightly with plastic wrap in the fridge. I will mention, it’s better to dress with the potatoes aren’t cold as the dressing slides off of the potatoes, but if you must I totally understand. 

Can You Make Potato Salad The Day Before?

Yes, in fact, making your potato salad the day before will allow all the flavors to blend together to create a more flavorful potato salad.  PLEASE ALWAYS MAKE IT A DAY AHEAD.

How Long Will Potato Salad Keep?

Potato salad will keep for 3-5 days in the refrigerator. Potato salad should be covered well before storing because of the mayonnaise.

How Long Can Potato Salad Sit Out?

Potato salad should not sit our for more than 1-2 hours. Please set it over a bowl of ice if you need to serve it at a BBQ for more than 2 hours.

Can You Substitute White Vinegar For Apple Cider Vinegar?

Yes, white vinegar is a good substitute for apple cider vinegar in recipes.

How Much Per Person?

Here’s a good guide for how much potato salad per person

 

More BBQ Side Dishes

Grilling Recipes for BBQ

 
A glass serving bowl of potato salad. There are potato chunks, chopped eggs, and fresh dill in the salad and it is sprinkled with paprika and fresh parsley leaves. The bowl is sitting on a table next to a red checked napkin. A wooden spoon is also laying on the table.

The Best Potato Salad

3.93 from 27 votes
Prep Time: 40 minutes
Total Time: 40 minutes
Servings: 10
How to Make The Best Potato Salad Ever is done by combining both mayonnaise and mustard with a touch of vinegar but the real secret is in the potatoes.

Ingredients

  • 5 Pounds Potatoes yukon gold
  • 2 Cups Mayonnaise
  • 2 1/2 teaspoons Mustard
  • 1 Tablespoon Mustard Dijon
  • 1 Tablespoon Vinegar apple cider
  • 1 Tablespoon Dill fresh, chopped
  • 1/4-1/2 teaspoon Celery Salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon Smoked Paprika
  • 3/4 Cup Relish sweet
  • 2 Pickles  Sweet Kosher Dill Baby, chopped
  • 2 Green Onions chopped
  • 10 Eggs hard-boiled, chopped
  • 1/2 teaspoon Salt or more, to taste

Instructions

  • Start this recipe the day before you intend to eat it, or at least the morning of.
  • Fill a large pot with water. Give the potatoes a rough chop, skins on and place in the water and bring to a boil. Cook until soft when poked with a fork. 
  • Meanwhile, stir together the mayonnaise, mustards, vinegar, dill, celery salt, paprika, relish, pickles and green onions. 
  • Remove the potatoes and drain, allowing them to cool for a few minutes. 
  • Use a paring knife to remove skins, chopping the potatoes a little smaller and place 3/4 of the potatoes in the dressing. Mince the remaining potatoes and add to the dressing as it will make more texture in the salad. 
  • Add the eggs and gently fold to coat.  
  • Season with more salt if needed.
  • Sprinkle with more paprika, cover in plastic wrap and place in the fridge for the day or up to overnight. I prefer overnight. 
  • Stir and serve!

Notes

You can boil the potatoes and peel them two days ahead and wrap tightly in plastic wrap, store in the fridge. 
This will keep for 3-5 days in the refrigerator.
Nutrition Facts
The Best Potato Salad
Amount Per Serving (1 g)
Calories 397 Calories from Fat 342
% Daily Value*
Fat 38g58%
Saturated Fat 7g44%
Cholesterol 182mg61%
Sodium 867mg38%
Potassium 128mg4%
Carbohydrates 7g2%
Fiber 1g4%
Sugar 2g2%
Protein 7g14%
Vitamin A 370IU7%
Vitamin C 2mg2%
Calcium 39mg4%
Iron 1mg6%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

A glass serving bowl of potato salad. There are potato chunks, chopped eggs, and fresh dill in the salad and it is sprinkled with paprika and fresh parsley leaves. The bowl is sitting on a table next to a red checked napkin. A wooden spoon is also laying on the table.

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