Salad, Side Dishes

Southern Potato Salad

Are you looking for a crowd pleasing side dish to bring to your next cookout?  This classic southern potato salad recipe is what you need to make.  Really, who doesn’t love a creamy zesty potato salad? 😋🥔

What are the three components to an unforgettable potato salad?  The veggies, the dressing, and the add ins.  If you are a minimalist, and only want potatoes as your vegetable, let it shine.  Choose between russet, red, or baby potatoes.  You can also cook them with the skins on and remove them later, or peel them first.  The main goal is not to overcook your potatoes.  Other vegetables you may want to consider are onions and celery.  I used only red onions in this recipe because my girls aren’t huge fans of celery.

white bowl of southern potato salad with two black spoons and gray fabric

As in most potato salads, the dressing is the deciding factor if it will be a hit with your crew.  First, start with a cream base.  Real mayonnaise is the most popular, but sour cream, Greek yogurt, and crème fraîche can be good substitutes.  You’ll also want to add some vinegar to your dressing to bring in the acid.  If you are a pickle lover, add some pickle juice too.  Mustard is another staple ingredient.  Choose between Dijon, whole grain, yellow, dry ground mustard, or a combination.  This will give your dressing a wonderful color and improve the flavor.  The spices you use can also customize your dressing.  For this recipe, I decided to keep it simple and only used celery salt and white pepper.  When your dressing is all combined, taste it, and adjust any of the ingredients, so it’s perfect.

person holding a spoonful of southern potato salad

What add ins are popular in potato salad?  Well, that depends on what kind of salad you are after.  German potato salad has crumbled bacon, Southern potato salad has sweet relish or diced pickles, and Texas-style potato salad has pickled onions.  Chopped, boiled eggs are a popular add in because they add creaminess and a nice texture to the salad.  Diced green or red peppers can add more color and vitamins.  Plus, fresh herbs like chives, dill, or parsley are tasty and make pretty garnishes.

After taking the time to make this old fashioned southern potato salad, sit back and enjoy a cold Roy Rogers.

When it’s time for your next cookout, don’t forget to make these other mouthwatering recipes.

serving dish of baked beans on a chalkboard with fresh parsley and garlic blue bowl of vinegar coleslaw with a spoon small jar of refrigerator dill pickles with a fork

Sweet & Smoky Baked Beans: this mouthwatering Southern classic is a fantastic side dish with so many summer recipes.

Colorful Vinegar Coleslaw: a crunchy, tangy salad that can be made in 25 minutes.

Refrigerator Dill Pickles: no canning required for these delicious dills.  They’ll disappear quickly!

black spoon in a bowl of southern potato salad

Southern Potato Salad

  • Author: Brooke
  • Prep Time: 55 minutes
  • Cook Time: 25 minutes
  • Total Time: 1 hour 20 minutes
  • Yield: 7 cups


Southern potato salad is an easy summer recipe that is great for a crowd.  Classic, old fashioned ingredients like mustard, mayonnaise, eggs, and pickles are combined to make a creamy, low carb side dish that will be an instant hit at your next potluck, cookout, or backyard dinner.


For the Salad

  • 4 pounds russet potatoes, peeled and cubed
  • 1 tablespoon salt
  • 3 boiled eggs, peeled and chopped
  • 1/3 cup red onion, diced
  • 1/2 cup dill pickles, finely chopped

For the Dressing

  • 1 cup mayo
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons white wine vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
  • 1 tablespoon yellow mustard
  • 1/2 teaspoon celery salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon white pepper

For the Garnish

  • sprinkle paprika
  • 1 teaspoon flatleaf parsley, chopped


  1. Peel, rinse, and cube the potatoes.  Place in a large pot with salted water, cover, and bring to a boil.  Reduce heat and simmer until the potatoes are fork tender, then drain.
  2. While the potatoes are cooking, boil some water in a smaller pot to cook the eggs.  Carefully lower the eggs into the boiling water and boil for 9 minutes.  Drain and submerge the eggs in an ice bath to stop the cooking.  Allow to cool for about 10 minutes, then peel and rinse off any eggshells. Finely chop them on a cutting board.
  3. Cut up the red onion and dill pickles.  Set aside.
  4. To make the dressing, whisk together the mayo, vinegar, mustards, and spices in a medium bowl.
  5. In a large mixing bowl, gently stir together the potatoes, eggs, pickles and onions, then fold in the dressing with a large spoon.  Transfer to a pretty serving bowl, then cover tightly and refrigerate until cool.
  6. When ready to serve, sprinkle paprika over the top of the serving bowl then sprinkle fresh parsley.


  • I used Duke’s mayo, which has a lemony taste.  If you are using another kind of mayo, I suggest adding some freshly squeezed lemon juice to the dressing.

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