When it comes to an old fashioned potato salad recipe you want to write home about (write home? Is that a thing still?) this recipe is the one that’s going to make you famous at barbecues. I kid you not, this is the potato salad recipe that I measure all potato salad recipes against, and I’ve yet to find one that comes even close to the incredible taste of this one.
This post may contain affiliate links. See our full disclosure policy HERE.
Grandma’s Old Fashioned Potato Salad Recipe
My Grandma who was famous for this recipe, passed away not too long ago. To help carry on her legacy in a very small way, I’ve decided to share her recipe with all of you.
It took us years of twisting her arm to get her to give us this recipe, and even then she spoke so quickly that we had to ask her questions for years after to make sure we were doing it the right way.
My grandma had been making this potato salad for decades before I was ever born. It’s creamy and tangy, with a touch of sweet ,and will make you forget about every other side dish at the barbecue.
Family members fight over this at every family get together, and there are NEVER any leftovers (and this recipe makes SO MUCH). I’m not exaggerating, this potato salad recipe is incredible.
If you don’t follow the recipe to a tee, it’s going to turn out differently than hers does, and therefore won’t be as good. I’m going to give you some basic tips below that you need to follow to make sure it turns out delicious.
Tips for making this Old Fashioned Potato Salad Recipe
- Potatoes. Boil the potatoes whole with the peel on, and then peel and chop then when they’re done boiling. See more tips on this step in the recipe below.
- Onions and Pickles. You will need to chop the onion and the pickles very finely. Don’t cheat and use relish or it will be gross. See the tips on pickles right below this section.
- Refrigerate. You need to let this recipe sit overnight at minimum to let the flavors mingle like they should.
- Dry. If the potato salad looks too dry after sitting in the fridge overnight, then add up to a 1/2 cup of mayo or miracle whip to freshen it back up. This happens sometimes because the potatoes can suck up too much of the moisture in the potato salad itself.
- Time. Give yourself plenty of time to make it and don’t skip steps. This is not a last minute recipe, and it’s worth every ounce of time you put into it.
What kind of pickles do I need to use?
Grandma was VERY particular about the pickles that go into this thing. They have to be the mini sweet pickles. I’m including a picture of brand you can find at Walmart often so you know what I’m talking about.
You will need about a jar and a half of these Vlasic Snack’mms Sweet ‘n Crunchy Minis for this old fashioned potato salad recipe. They used to be called Sweet Tiny Midgets, but recently the name was changed.
Can I use a food chopper to cut the pickles and onions?
My Mama cheated and used a food chopper to chop her onions and pickles into very fine pieces last time, and I don’t feel like it changed the taste or texture, but if Grandma knew she’d have a fit. So, to be authentic, do it by hand, but to save yourself some time you could get away with using a food chopper.
This old fashioned potato salad recipe has been passed down through generations of my family. It's hands down the best potato salad recipe I've ever tried, and you're gonna love it!
- 5 lbs of russet potatoes
- 18 eggs
- 1 1/2 10 oz jars of Sweet Tiny Midget Pickles
- 1 large yellow onion
- 20 oz (about 2/3 of a 30 oz jar) of Miracle Whip
- 1/2 cup yellow mustard
- 1/2 cup mayo
- Salt to taste
- Clean the potatoes and boil them with the peel on. Boil them until the peel begins to crack, that's how you'll know they're done.
- Drain the potatoes and set them aside to cool until you can handle them.
- Hard boil the 18 eggs, and then remove them from the water until they're cool. This step can also be done in advance if you want to save some waiting time for them to cool.
- Peel the potatoes, then chop them into bite size pieces (about 1 inch cubes). Place the chopped potato in a very large bowl.
- Once the boiled eggs have cooled enough to peel, chop them into small pieces. Add the chopped pieces to the potatoes.
- Chop the onion and the pickles into very small, minced pieces. Grandma always made us do this by hand, but you can do it with a food chopper if you're pressed for time.
- Add the pickles and the onions to the potatoes and eggs.
- Add in and mix the miracle whip, mayo, yellow mustard, and salt and then use a large spoon to mix until it's all incorporated.
- Cover the potato salad and place it in the fridge for 24 hours, or overnight if you waited til last minute.
- If the potato salad seems very dry the next day, it's because the potatoes absorbed some of the liquid. Add up to half a cup more of miracle whip or mayo (whatever you prefer) to help re-moisten it.
- Don't skip refrigerating or the flavors could be very bland. The potatoes soak up so much flavor overnight.
- Don't use relish or your potato salad will be gross.
- Be prepared for a LOT of potato salad!
Serving Size:2/3 cup
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 163Total Fat: 6gSaturated Fat: 2gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 4gCholesterol: 115mgSodium: 406mgCarbohydrates: 20gFiber: 2gSugar: 3gProtein: 6g
- Easy Refrigerator Pickles – easily make your own with this simple recipe! Perfect for beginners!
- Loaded Potato Bacon Cups – these are AWESOME sides at a BBQ and everyone loves them!
- No-Bake Kool-Aid Pie – this one is only four ingredients and SUPER easy to make!
- Old Fashioned Peach Dumplings – this recipe is made totally from scratch and is from the 19040’s!
If you love potato salad, you’re really going to love this Old Fashioned Potato Salad recipe that my grandma passed down to me! Leave a comment to let me know if you enjoyed it too!