Easy Southern Potato Salad

Who made the potato salad? Growing up and even today, this question is asked at any family cookout or gathering. If you want bragging rights, this easy Southern Potato Salad recipe will get you a seat in the winner’s circle! This traditional southern staple is creamy, tangy, and slightly sweet with the perfect blend of textures.

southern potato salad served family style in a large serving bowl

If you know Southern side dishes, then you’ll understand the importance of a good potato salad. While it can stand on its own, it’s also the perfect complement to any main dish — whether fried or straight off the grill (think fried or barbecued chicken). It’s the one side dish you’ll always see at a cookout or holiday gathering.

Everyone has their own way of making potato salad, but a southern version typically combines chunks of tender golden potatoes with mayonnaise, mustard, dill relish, hard-boiled eggs, and a little paprika sprinkled on top. The result is a creamy, seasoned potato salad blending textures from tender potatoes, relish, and boiled eggs.

serving bowl of southern potato salad

If anyone asks, “Who made the potato salad?” you can proudly raise your hand if you bring this recipe to the cookout.

Ingredients you’ll need to make Southern Potato Salad:

Be sure to check out the full recipe and ingredient list below

overhead shot of southern potato salad ingredients
  • A few pounds of Yukon Gold potatoes will get you started. I prefer yellow potatoes, but russet or white potatoes also work. Yellow potatoes will hold their shape and not crumble too much.
  • Mayonnaise is the binder, glue, and foundation of a good, creamy potato salad, and the quality of your mayo is essential. Go with Duke’s Mayonnaise, but Hellman’s is great, too.
  • You’ll need a small amount of yellow mustard to add a bit of tanginess. It also gives the potato salad its yellowish color.
  • Dill or sweet pickle relish provides a great texture and flavor to the potato salad. If dill relish is not available, you can also chop up dill or sweet baby pickles.
  • For the seasonings, you’ll need paprika, garlic powder, black pepper, and sea salt.
  • Sugar will take that “bite” away without making the potato salad overly sweet. It’s the secret ingredient that gives this recipe balance. You can adjust the amount of sugar to your personal taste.
  • Hard-boiled eggs are a must for southern-style potato salad! They also add texture to the dish.
  • Top with fresh, chopped green onions for presentation and more flavor.

How to make Southern Potato Salad:

Prep and boil the potatoes. Remove the skin from the potatoes and cut into 1—to 2-inch cubes. Pour the chicken stock into a pot and bring to a boil. Boil the potatoes for 20 minutes, drain, and add to a large bowl. Set to the side.

cutting potatoes into chunks

Boil the eggs. While the potatoes are boiling, add water to a small pot and bring to a boil. Carefully add eggs to the water. Boil for 20 minutes and remove from the pot. Allow the eggs to cool before removing the outer shell. Cut the eggs down the center, remove the yolk, then slice the egg whites into smaller pieces. Set to the side.

adding all southern potato salad ingredients into a large bowl

Add all ingredients to a large bowl. To the bowl with the cooked potatoes, add the egg whites, mayo, yellow mustard, dill relish, chopped green onions, paprika, garlic powder, black pepper, and sea salt.

folding all southern potato salad ingredients together in a large bowl

Fold all ingredients together. Fold all ingredients together until everything is well combined. Southern potato salad can be served warm or chilled and served later.

Southern Potato Salad Tips & Tricks

  • Don’t overcook your potatoes. You want fork-tender potatoes that are not mushy or falling apart once they are removed from the boiling water. If they can’t be easily pierced with a fork, they should boil a while longer.
  • Drain the potatoes well and allow them to cool down before combining them with the other ingredients. This ensures your potatoes don’t break apart and you don’t have excess liquid in your potato salad.
  • Potato salad is the perfect make-ahead side dish. You can make this recipe several days in advance, and any leftovers can be kept in the fridge in a tightly covered container for up to 5 days.
  • While making this dish, you can set aside a few chopped green onions and a few shakes of paprika as a final touch. This will give your Southern Potato Salad a stamp of approval from friends and family.
individual serving of southern potato salad
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southern potato salad served family style in a large serving bowl

Easy Southern Potato Salad


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  • Author: Eric Jones
  • Total Time: 45 minutes
  • Yield: 4-6 1x

Description

This easy Southern Potato Salad recipe is creamy, tangy, and slightly sweet with the perfect blend of textures from the tender potatoes, dill relish, and hard-boiled eggs.


Ingredients

Units Scale
  • 3 lb Yukon Gold potatoes
  • 4 cups chicken stock
  • 4 large organic eggs
  • 1 cup mayonnaise
  • 1 tsp yellow mustard
  • 1/4 cup dill relish
  • 1/2 cup green onions, chopped
  • 1 tsp paprika
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • 1 tsp black pepper
  • 1 tsp sea salt
  • 1 tbsp sugar


Instructions

  1. Remove the skin from each potato and cut the potatoes into 1-to-2-inch cubes. Set to the side. 
  2. Pour the chicken stock into a large pot and bring to a boil. Boil the potatoes for 20 minutes. Drain and add to a large bowl. Set to the side. 
  3. Add water to a small pot and bring to a boil. Carefully add eggs to the water. Boil eggs for 20 minutes. Remove the eggs from the pot and set aside. Allow the eggs to cool, and remove the outer shell. Cut the eggs down the center, remove the yolk, and slice the egg white into smaller pieces. Set to the side.
  4. Add the chopped egg whites, mayonnaise, yellow mustard, dill relish, chopped green onions, paprika, garlic powder, black pepper, and sea salt to the large bowl with the cooked potatoes. Fold all ingredients together until well combined.
  5. Serve warm or chilled. 

Equipment

Notes

I prefer yellow potatoes, but russet or white potatoes will work as well.

For the mayonnaise, use a good quality mayo like Duke’s or Hellman’s.

Don’t overcook your potatoes. You want fork-tender potatoes that are not mushy or falling apart. If they can’t be easily pierced with a fork, they should boil a while longer.

Be sure to drain the potatoes well and allow your potatoes to cool down before combining them with the other ingredients. This ensures your potatoes don’t break apart and you don’t have excess liquid in your potato salad.

As you are making this dish, you can set aside a few chopped green onions and a few shakes of paprika as a final touch. 

  • Prep Time: 25 minutes
  • Cook Time: 20 minutes
  • Category: Comfort Food
  • Method: Stove Top
  • Cuisine: American

Nutrition

  • Calories: 420
  • Sugar: 25.3g
  • Sodium: 4261mg
  • Fat: 15.9g
  • Carbohydrates: 37.8g
  • Fiber: 14.3g
  • Protein: 17.5g
  • Cholesterol: 252mg

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