Southern Potato Salad Recipe

Savor the South: Southern Potato Salad Recipe

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There’s something special about Southern cuisine that captures the essence of comfort and tradition. One beloved dish that embodies this spirit is Southern Potato Salad. Creamy, tangy, and full of flavor, this classic side dish is a staple at picnics, barbecues, and family gatherings across the South. With its simple yet satisfying ingredients, this Southern Potato Salad recipe is sure to become a favorite in your household. Join me as we explore the rich history and irresistible flavors of this beloved Southern delicacy.

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  • 3 lbs of russet potatoes
  • 1 cup of mayonnaise, adjusted to taste
  • ¼ portion of Dijon mustard
  • 2 teaspoons of apple cider vinegar
  • 2 teaspoons of sugar
  • ½ cup of sweet pickles
  • 1 stalk of celery, chopped
  • 1 medium-sized onion, finely chopped
  • 4 large eggs, hard-boiled and chopped


  1. Prepare the Potatoes: Start by washing and scrubbing the russet potatoes to remove any dirt. Peel the potatoes if desired, then cut them into bite-sized chunks.
  2. Boil the Potatoes: Place the potato chunks in a large pot and cover them with cold water. Add a pinch of salt to the water to season the potatoes. Bring the water to a boil over medium-high heat, then reduce the heat to medium-low and simmer the potatoes for 10-15 minutes, or until they are fork-tender.
  3. Make the Dressing: While the potatoes are cooking, prepare the dressing for the potato salad. In a mixing bowl, combine the mayonnaise, Dijon mustard, apple cider vinegar, and sugar. Stir until the ingredients are well incorporated and the dressing is smooth.
  4. Prepare the Mix-ins: Drain the cooked potatoes and transfer them to a large mixing bowl. Allow them to cool slightly before adding the remaining ingredients. Chop the sweet pickles, celery, onion, and hard-boiled eggs, then add them to the bowl with the potatoes.
  5. Combine and Chill: Pour the prepared dressing over the potato mixture, gently stirring to coat everything evenly. Taste and adjust the seasoning as needed, adding more salt, pepper, or sugar to suit your preferences. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and refrigerate the potato salad for at least 1 hour before serving, allowing the flavors to meld together.
  6. Serve: Once chilled, give the potato salad a final stir and transfer it to a serving dish. Garnish with additional chopped parsley or paprika if desired, then serve alongside your favorite main dishes.

Cook Notes and Variations:

  • Potato Variation: While russet potatoes are the traditional choice for Southern Potato Salad, you can also use red potatoes or Yukon Gold potatoes for a different texture and flavor.
  • Additional Mix-ins: Get creative with your mix-ins by adding ingredients such as crispy bacon, diced bell peppers, or chopped green onions for extra flavor and color.
  • Dressing Variation: For a tangier dressing, you can increase the amount of apple cider vinegar or add a splash of pickle juice. Likewise, if you prefer a sweeter dressing, you can adjust the amount of sugar to taste.

Keto and Low Carb Versions:

  • Keto-Friendly: To make a keto-friendly version of Southern Potato Salad, substitute the russet potatoes with cauliflower florets. Steam or boil the cauliflower until tender, then proceed with the recipe as directed, omitting the sugar or using a low-carb sweetener.
  • Low Carb Option: If you’re watching your carb intake, reduce the amount of potatoes used in the recipe and increase the proportion of low-carb vegetables such as celery and onions. You can also use a combination of mayonnaise and Greek yogurt for the dressing to lower the overall carb content.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs):

Q: Can I make Southern Potato Salad ahead of time? A: Yes, Southern Potato Salad can be made ahead of time and stored in the refrigerator for up to 2-3 days. However, for best results, I recommend adding the chopped eggs just before serving to prevent them from becoming rubbery.

Q: Can I use store-bought mayonnaise for this recipe? A: Yes, store-bought mayonnaise works well in this recipe. However, if you prefer homemade mayonnaise, feel free to use that instead for a fresher flavor.

Q: Can I omit the pickles from the recipe? A: While sweet pickles add a unique flavor and texture to Southern Potato Salad, you can omit them if you prefer. Alternatively, you can use dill pickles or pickle relish for a different flavor profile.

Q: How can I make this recipe vegetarian-friendly? A: To make this recipe vegetarian-friendly, simply omit the eggs and use a plant-based mayonnaise. You can also add extra vegetables such as bell peppers, cucumber, or cherry tomatoes for added color and flavor.

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In conclusion, Southern Potato Salad is a beloved classic that brings the flavors of the South to your table. With its creamy dressing, tender potatoes, and flavorful mix-ins, this dish is sure to be a hit at any gathering. Whether you’re enjoying it at a backyard barbecue, a picnic in the park, or a family dinner at home, Southern Potato Salad is a versatile and delicious side dish that’s perfect for any occasion. So, gather your ingredients, whip up a batch of this Southern favorite, and savor the taste of tradition with every bite.

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