Potato Salad is one of those down home dishes that your mom, your grandmother or your great grandmother probably made. It's been a popular salad at barbecues and picnics for generations. Potato Salad can be made in advance, it travels well and it goes with everything making it the ideal choice for a summer potluck.
Traditional Potato Salad
Potato Salad is typically served cold and made with a mayonnaise or mayonnaise-like dressing. Depending where you grew up the mandatory ingredients in potato salad will vary. Some recipes include radishes, pickles, onion, celery or cucumber.
The only constant ingredients are potatoes, salt and pepper. To my surprise some salads don't even include hard-boiled eggs.
The mayonnaise dressing might include vinegar or pickle juice, regular mustard or Dijon mustard, and possibly sour cream or yogurt. Seasoning can include fresh dill or paprika.
My husband and I each think we remember the ingredients of our own family recipes.
Writing this recipe caused me to think of what ingredients were mandatory for me. Eggs and celery were a must and my husband insisted on radishes. The dressing had to include Miracle Whip and the fresh chives and chive blossoms were an addition straight from my garden.
My Grandmother’s Potato Salad
I have fond memories of my grandmothers’ potato salad. She brought it to every summer picnic and church outing. She spread out her old-fashioned quilt made of black and pink squares, each tied with a short piece of pink wool. Her salad always came in a big, pink plastic container and included potatoes as well as hard-boiled eggs.
What I remember most clearly is the paprika she sprinkled on top. If we were with her in the kitchen when she added the paprika she would always say, “it's just for colour”.
Store Bought vs Homemade Potato Salad
My mom made potato salad too but I don’t remember it that well. I have more memories of store bought potato salad often accompanied by a bucket of fried chicken.
Like many recipes it's easy enough to make from scratch but it takes more than a few minutes. I'm sure there are delicious store bought potato salads and I'm sure some of them are gluten free. I simply accept cooking as part of a healthy diet and do the best I can.
My salad has its' roots in Manitoba where my husband and I both grew up.
Get The Tools
A few tools make life in the kitchen easier so keep collecting the ones you want.
- A small, infrequently used egg slicer is perfect when you need it and it might last a lifetime.
- The most basic kitchen tool is a good quality knife. My first real knife was a Victorinox 10-inch Chef's knife and I'm still using it 30 years later.
- Chef's knives are available in an 8-inch, 10-inch or 12-inch blade length and I recommend you go as big as you're comfortable with. You will quickly get used to the size so don’t be intimidated.
Now if you're making potato salad, get chopping! In the comments below let me know what ingredients are a must in your potato salad.
New here? Join our community and get your FREE resource, the tips I wish I knew when I started cooking gluten free.
Yes, I need 29 Tips For Cooking with Gluten Free Flour.
Still haven't mastered gluten free cooking? Check out our online Cooking Classes.
More Summer Salads and BBQ Recipes
Canadian Potato Salad
- 3 eggs
- 2 lbs red potatoes
- 4-5 radishes, halved and sliced thin
- 2 stalks of celery, finely chopped
- ½ small white onion, finely chopped
- fresh chives, finely chopped (or 3 green onions, green part only)
- 1 cup Miracle Whip or mayonnaise
- 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
- 1 teaspoon salt
- ½ teaspoon pepper
- paprika and/or chive blossoms
- Put eggs in a pot, cover with water and add vinegar. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Cover and turn heat off, leave for 10-12 minutes. Drain and run cold water over eggs until cool enough to handle. Peel and cool.
- Cut using an egg slicer putting them through the slicer in two directions directly into a large bowl. Set aside.
- Scrub and remove blemishes. Cut potatoes into similar size pieces for even cooking. Place in large pot and fill with cold water to cover. Bring to a boil over high heat. Reduce heat and simmer 15-20 minutes until cooked but not too soft. Drain and set aside to cool.
- Combine mayonnaise, Dijon mustard, salt and pepper. Set aside. Reserve some chopped chives for garnish.
- In the bowl with the eggs, add potatoes, radishes, celery, onion and remaining chives.
- Pour dressing on top and gently fold in.
- Taste and adjust seasoning if needed. Chill for several hours to meld flavours.
- Serve in a glass bowl. Sprinkle with paprika and garnish with chopped chives and some blossoms if available.