Potato salad is a classic American side dish made by mashing boiled potatoes. Today I’m sharing my grandmothers recipe which has no hard boiled eggs in it, just potatoes, mayonnaise, celery, onion and spices.
If you google “potato salad” on the internet you will quickly discover that there are several ways this recipe can be made, add depending on who you ask and what part of the country they were raised in. A good majority of potato salad recipes, I have found, include eggs. And a bigger majority have bacon.
This is my mom’s (from her mom’s) classic potato salad recipe. I watched her make it a hundred times.
Our family potato salad does not contain:
- hard boiled eggs,
- or bacon
- or dill pickles
- or pickle relish … just tons of potato flavor, which is what we want, right?
Ingredients in (an eggless) Classic Potato Salad:
- Potatoes – I have always used Russet potatoes for my potato salad and I just asked my mother why my potato salad isn’t exactly like hers and it turns out it was the potatoes. She only uses little red potatoes and now they are the only potatoes I use and the recipe has been updated in 2022 to reflect that.
- Onion and Celery – raw onion for some reason just makes this potato salad that much better. Don’t ask me why since I hate raw onions. It just works.
- Mayonnaise and Sour cream – you can use all mayo if you wish, I have found the 2 combined is a nice balance and doesn’t create that mayo heavy dressing taste.
- Mustard – this adds a little unexpected zip. I use yellow mustard but if you like more zing, try a dijon mustard instead.
- ACV – here lies the KEY to this recipe. The secret is to put your finger over the bottle of vinegar and just shake it all over the HOT UNTOUCHED potatoes, a few tablespoons or so. Stir them around and let the potatoes absorb the vinegar for a few minutes. This step makes ALL the difference!
How to Make an Easy Classic Potato Salad:
- Peel and cut the potatoes into half (smaller cut potatoes will release too much starch and make the potatoes ‘gummy’). Boil them VERY GENTLY in HEAVILY SALTED WATER until they are fork tender. Here’s another Mom tip: she does NOT peel the potatoes before boiling them. Once they are cooked, she uses a fork to pierce the potato and peels the skin while they are hot. For some reason hers always comes out better, but I still peel them first.
- Place the peeled potatoes in a large bowl and sprinkle apple cider vinegar all over the potatoes.
- Slightly mash with a fork or potato masher (they will continue to break up as you stir).
- Add the diced onion, celery. The onions are another sticking point with specifically my daughter because she detests onion. I put them in raw just like my mom did. I do not find them to be too offensive and add a little crunch.
- Combine the ingredients for the salad dressing as the potatoes are cooling and stir to combine.
Recipes that go with Potato Salad
- The juiciest Burgers you’ll ever eat!
- Our #1 Grilled Chicken recipe
- Huli Huli chicken
- Healthy Grilled Salmon
A classic easy potato salad using nothing but potatoes, celery, onion in a mayo and sour cream dressing.
- 4–5 lbs. Red Potatoes, peeled and cut half (approx. 10-12)
- 1 Cup Sweet Onion, diced
- 1 Cup Celery, diced (2 or 3 stalks)
- 2 Tablespoons Apple Cider Vinegar
DRESSING: (you may or may not use it all)
- 1 ½ cups Mayonnaise
- ½ Cup Sour Cream
- 1 Tablespoon Yellow Mustard
- ¼ tsp Sea Salt
- ¼ tsp White Pepper
- Peel the potatoes and cut in large chunks depending on the size of the potato.
- Place them in a large pot of cold water covered by at least 2 inches.
- Heavily salt the water and bring to a boil. Once the water is boiling, turn the stove down to medium and simmer the potatoes for about 15 minutes or until a fork easily goes through.
- Meanwhile, dice the onion and celery and set aside.
- Drain the potatoes and let them cool about 5 minutes or until they stop steaming.
- Putting your finger over the top of the bottle, pour about 2 Tablespoons of apple cider vinegar all over the potatoes. Stir to combine. Allow to absorb for a minute or two.
- Mash very lightly with a potato masher keeping some larger chunks. Add the onions and celery and sprinkle with some salt and pepper.
- Make the dressing in a small bowl and add enough until the potatoes are fully coated.
- Cover and chill until ready to serve.
WHAT TO SERVE WITH THIS: