This creamy and comforting Southern Potato Salad is always a welcomed side dish that can easily be adapted to your personal taste.
What I love about this dish is that it’s even better the next day, so it’s a perfect make-ahead side dish for holidays, cookouts and potlucks!
This is my mama’s recipe she passed along to me when I moved out on my own as a young woman. Over the years I’ve very slightly tweaked it to make it my own.
One thing I didn’t change was using Old Bay Seasoning. It adds something extra-special to the flavor that I love. If you’re not a fan of Old Bay (or don’t have it on-hand), simply omit it and sprinkle with paprika.
This classic potato salad is coated in a dressing prepared with mayonnaise, mustard and seasonings and is full of crunchy celery, onion, sweet pickle cubes and hard boiled eggs.
- Russet potatoes – Yukon gold can also be used.
- Yellow mustard – spicy brown mustard is delicious as well and gives it an extra kick.
- Old Bay Seasoning – a blend of celery salt, red pepper, black pepper, paprika and other seasonings. This can be omitted, but I highly recommend trying it if you’ve never seasoned your potato salad with it.
- Sweet salad pickle cubes – I like the texture of pickle cubes over relish in potato salad, but sweet (or dill) relish can be substituted.
- Onion – I use yellow onion, but sweet onion can be substituted for a milder onion flavor.
- Mayonnaise – Miracle Whip can be substituted. Increase the amounts of mayo and/or mustard for a creamier consistency, if desired.
How to Make Southern Potato Salad
- Gently boil potatoes until fork-tender (but not falling apart). Drain in a colander and allow to cool.
- Stir together mustard, mayo and seasonings in a large bowl.
- Add drained and cooled potatoes to the bowl and gently stir to coat.
- Add eggs, onion, celery and pickle cubes and gently stir again to incorporate.
Although this is best when it’s refrigerated for at least an hour, it can be served immediately.
More Potato Side Dishes You’ll Love
- 3 pounds Russet potatoes peeled and sliced into 1 to 1 ½ inch pieces
- 1 cup mayonnaise
- 3 tablespoons yellow mustard
- 1 ¾ teaspoons Old Bay Seasoning divided, reserve ¼ teaspoon for sprinkling on top when serving
- 1 teaspoon salt
- ½ teaspoon black pepper
- 4 large hard boiled eggs peeled and roughly chopped
- ½ cup chopped yellow onion
- ¾ cup chopped celery
- ¼ cup sweet salad pickle cubes
- Place potatoes in a large pot and cover with cold water. Bring to a boil over high heat, then reduce heat to medium to maintain a gentle boil. Cook until fork-tender (but not falling apart), about 12 minutes.
- Drain potatoes in a colander and allow to cool while you're preparing the other ingredients.
- Stir together mayonnaise, mustard, 1 ½ teaspoons Old Bay seasoning, salt and pepper in a large bowl.
- Transfer drained and cooled potatoes to the bowl with the mayonnaise mixture. Gently stir to coat potatoes. Add eggs, onion, celery and pickle cubes and gently stir again to incorporate.
- Season with additional salt and pepper, if desired.
- Cover and refrigerate at least 1 hour before serving.
- Sprinkle with the remaining ¼ teaspoon Old Bay seasoning when serving (or paprika if not using Old Bay).
- Store in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 4 days.
- Yields approximately 10 cups.
- Yukon gold potatoes can be substituted for Russet.
- Old Bay Seasoning can be omitted. Sprinkle with 1/4 teaspoon paprika if not using Old Bay.
- Spicy brown mustard can be substituted for yellow mustard (for a spicy kick).
- Miracle Whip can be substituted for mayonnaise.
- Dill pickle cubes can be substituted for sweet cubes (or relish).
- Sweet onion can be substituted for yellow for a milder flavor.
- Increase the amounts of mayo and/or mustard for a creamier consistency, if desired.
If provided, nutritional info is a courtesy, is not guaranteed and should only be considered as a guideline.
Originally published April 2012. Updated with new photographs, new text, recipe slightly revised and republished November 2020.