Mashed Potato Salad Recipe

It’s that time of year! Family Reunions, summer picnics, and cookouts. And one of the staples? Potato salad! Some make mashed potato salad and others the classic potato salad. Have you ever went to a family reunion and found several bowls of potato salad on the table? And I bet they were most likely made from different members of the family.

Everyone has their own version of this summer stable and my mom was no different. But I have to say that my mom made the best potato salad, and she didn’t follow a recipe. She just made it her way.  Of course, I am prejudice. I’m sure you have someone in your family that you will swear makes the best potato salad. And that’s the way it should be.

Now I have to say I make a pretty mean version of mashed potato salad. When my second daughter got married, she requested that I make this salad for her wedding reception. The ironic part is that her husband doesn’t like potato salad. In fact, he doesn’t like coleslaw either. That is just UnAmerican in my opinion 🙂 Both those dishes were made frequently in my family for many family gatherings.

I have made the process just a little easier. Of course, I am all for easy. Who wants to spend hours in the kitchen? Not I.  I love to cook and make good food that my family and friends enjoy, but that doesn’t mean I want to spend numerous hours in the kitchen to achieve this.

There is no need when you can make things easier and still produce good food!


I use red potatoes. I have used white but it seems that the red potatoes make a tastier salad.

My mom used to boil the potatoes whole and with the skin on. I, however, peel and cut the potatoes in quarters before cooking them. This makes it so much easier. Who wants to slip the skins off of hot potatoes?

I remember burning my hands helping my mom to peel those hotties and it didn’t matter how much you rinsed them in cold water they were still hot.

I guess we could have waited until they cooled down but it always seemed that we were running behind in time to get the salad made. While the potatoes are cooking, the eggs should be boiling as well.

Depending on how much salad you want to make, but I follow a basic measurement. For every pound of potatoes, I use 1 boiled egg. If you like more eggs in your salad by all means use more. This is just a guideline I use. Sometimes I use more. I also roughly mash the hot potatoes with a potato masher before adding the rest of the ingredients.


I bring my eggs to room temperature. I also bring the water to a boil before adding the eggs to the pan. I discovered that it makes for easier peeling of the eggs. Once the water comes to a boil I boil the eggs for 10 minutes. I prefer my eggs hard-boiled.

Pickles or Relish

I used to buy sweet pickles and chop them. But then I discovered sweet relish. It was already chopped and did the job just as well as the pickles and so much easier. No sticky fingers.

Some prefer dill instead of sweet. After all, everyone has different tastes. Either one can be used. I remember one time I picked up a jar of dill relish by mistake. I discovered this as I was making the potato salad. I decided to use it instead of running back to the store.

My family could tell the difference. The question was “what did you do, the salad tastes different?” Needless to say, they preferred the sweet to the dill. So now when I go to the store I make sure I am grabbing the right jar 🙂

Mashed Potato Salad or Diced Potato Salad

My mom diced her potatoes for her salad but I prefer my potatoes mashed.  I peel and cut up the potatoes for cooking.  Once they are fork-tender I drained them and mash them with a potato masher. Then I proceed with the rest of the ingredients and add the dressing last.

The Dressing

My mom always used Miracle Whip and a dab of mustard. I have had to change this around so that I can enjoy this salad as well. I found out in recent years that I am unable to eat mustard. (it makes me ill). I found that Miracle whip has mustard flour as one of its ingredients 🙁 I discovered that Hellman’s Real Mayonnaise doesn’t so I have swapped the Hellman’s real mayonnaise for the Miracle whip and I omit the mustard completely.

Now I know, that many people like the tangy taste that mustard provides in potato salad. I really miss this taste but what can a person do? They adapt! I will provide both versions.

My Mom’s Dressing Version

  • 1 cup miracle whip (to 5 pounds of potatoes)
  • 1-2 tablespoons yellow mustard
  • 1/8 to 1/4 c sugar
  • 1-2 tablespoons milk
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • Mix all dressing ingredients until smooth.

My Dressing Version

  • 1 cup Hellman’s Real mayonnaise (to 5 pounds of potatoes)
  • 1 teaspoon apple cider vinegar
  • 1/8 to 1/4 c sugar
  • 1-2 tablespoons milk
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • Mix all dressing ingredients until smooth.

Let’s Put It All Together Shall We?

  • 5 pounds red potatoes, cooked, peeled, diced, or mashed roughly
  • 5 hard-boiled eggs, chopped
  • 3-4 heaping tablespoons pickle relish, dill, or sweet
  • 1 small onion, finely chopped
  • 2-3 celery stalks, finely chopped
  • Dressing, either version above
  • salt and pepper to taste

mashed potato salad


No matter what version of dressing you use they are both yummy. When I make this salad, my daughter likes to eat it while it is still warm. Not my husband. He wants it cold. Different strokes for different folks, I say.

It takes all kinds of people with different tastes to make the world go around. It would be a pretty boring world if we were all the same. Stepford wives anyone?

Please leave a comment below and let me know how you make potato salad. As always I love hearing from you!

Have a Wonderful Day!

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