We all know Grandma’s potato salad is the BEST potato salad! My grandma’s potato salad recipe is no exception. It’s seriously SO GOOD! Potato salad is one of my favorite classic summer staples that pairs well with everything from burgers to grilled chicken and makes a great picnic side with sandwiches. Throw this easy, traditional side dish together for family and friends and you’re sure to get tons of requests for the recipe.

potato salad on a large white serving platter

Summer barbecue time is upon us! Summer has always been my favorite season. There’s the summer-y foods, pool parties and lazy days sitting with family and friends cooking on the grill. So much fun to be had!

I’m a burger girl through and through, but we also usually serve hot dogs, grilled chicken and ribs too. And for the side dish, what is better than a cold, creamy, flavorful potato salad? A MUST for any summer cookout!

The Best Potato Salad Recipe

My grandma’s potato salad recipe started out as a super basic potato salad with just potatoes, eggs, mayo, sweet pickles and Dijon mustard. It was simple and delicious. However, she didn’t have the recipe actually written down and she also didn’t measure any of the ingredients. She just made it to feel and taste.

After years of watching and taste-testing, my mom can easily create my grandma’s original recipe. I asked my mom to replicate the recipe as close as possible to what my grandma made and measure out the ingredients, so I could share it with all of you. As my mom has made it over the years, she’s added in the sugar and vinegar to really kick this salad up a notch. We usually don’t add the garnish of dill or paprika, but for the photos and perhaps if you were entertaining, it definitely adds a little something special to the look of the salad.

Ingredient List

The ingredients needed for the the best potato salad recipe are quite simple. There are several swaps you can make that we’ll talk about later, but in my opinion this list of ingredients makes the most tasty potato salad.

  • Yukon Gold potatoes (russet potatoes work too, but we prefer Yukon Gold)
  • hard boiled eggs
  • sweet pickles
  • mayo
  • Dijon mustard
  • sugar (just a bit, but totally necessary)
  • white vinegar (or use apple cider vinegar, if that’s what you have on hand)
  • salt and fresh ground pepper

cubed potato in a white bowl alongside a boiled egg and potato salad sauce

The Best Potatoes for Potato Salad

We like to use white potatoes, Yukon Golds, or Klondike Goldust potatoes. For this particular recipe, I would not use red potatoes, because they don’t get as mushy and will leave the dressing runny. White and yellow potatoes work well because they tend to be creamier and have the perfect touch of sweetness. They also have a thinner skin, so they’re easy to peel after boiling.

Cooking Methods

There are a variety of different ways to cook potatoes for potato salad. I just do what my mama does and it works like a charm every time. Quarter potatoes, but don’t worry about peeling them until after they’ve cooked.

Start the potatoes in cold water and bring them to a boil to ensure even cooking. This prevents the outside from cooking too fast and the inside taking more time. This is essential for the perfect texture of potato. Salt the boiling water so the potatoes get plenty of that salty flavor.

To boil my eggs, I use this technique from the Pioneer Woman and it always works great!

adding potato salad sauce to cooked potatoes in a white bowl

How Do You Make Potato Salad?

Follow just a few simple steps and you’re well on your way to the best potato salad!

  1. Quarter potatoes and boil in salted water, following the recipe instructions, below.
  2. While potatoes are cooking, combine the dressing ingredients.
  3. Once potatoes are cooked and cooled, peel the skin off and chop them into small pieces. Transfer potatoes to a large bowl and gently mix the dressing in with the potatoes. Then stir in the eggs and season with salt and pepper as needed.
  4. Refrigerate salad for at least 2 hours and overnight if possible.

stirring potato salad mixture in a white mixing bowl

Tips For The Best Potato Salad Recipe 

  • Start checking to see if potatoes are fork tender after about 15 minutes. You don’t want to overcook potatoes because they will get too mushy.
  • To keep potato salad from becoming too runny, you’ll want to choose the right potatoes to absorb the dressing. Yukon golds are my go-to.
  • I highly recommend making this potato salad ahead of time. It’s best when it has time to sit and the flavors can mix and meld together.
  • Potato salad will keep well refrigerated in an airtight container for up to one week.

Potato Salad Variations

Everyone has their favorite ingredients that make up a potato salad. Here are a few additions and variations you may want to try.

  • Use dill pickle relish instead of sweet pickles.
  • Use Miracle Whip instead of Mayo
  • Swap the Dijon mustard for regular yellow mustard. You can also increase the amount, if you like a more mustardy potato salad.
  • Add in 2 stalks of diced celery and/or a 1/2 cup diced sweet onion or red onion for a little kick.
  • Everything’s better with bacon! I think a few slices of chopped crispy bacon would be delicious in this salad.

potato salad topped with paprika and dill and served with a silver serving spoon

No matter how you serve this potato salad, it’s sure to be a huge hit! Once you try my grandma’s classic potato salad recipe, it’s sure to be a permanent item on your summer menu!

More Delicious Sides 

Best Coleslaw

Cowboy Caviar

Pesto Pasta Salad

Greek Chickpea Salad

If you try this easy potato salad recipe, let me know! Leave a comment and if your family loves them as much as mine does, be sure to give it a five star ⭐️ rating! Also, tag @kimscravings on Instagram with a picture of your creation. It’s so fun to see what you’re cooking! Be sure to subscribe to our mailing list to receive more healthy delicious recipes straight to your inbox.

potato salad on a large white serving platter
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Best Potato Salad

My grandma's potato salad recipe is seriously SO GOOD! This dish is a summer staple that pairs well with everything from burgers to grilled chicken and makes a great picnic side with sandwiches. So easy to throw together too!
Author: Kim


  • 8 medium white or Yukon gold potatoes
  • 8 hard boiled eggs
  • 3/4 cup diced sweet pickles*
  • 1 cup mayo**
  • 2 tablespoons Dijon mustard***
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • 1 teaspoon white vinegar
  • fresh chopped dill and/or paprika, optional for garnish
  • 3/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 3/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper


  • Cut the potatoes into quarters and place them in a large pot. Fill the pot with cold water until it is 1 inch over the top of the potatoes. Bring water to a boil. Cook potatoes for about 15-20 minutes and until fork tender.
  • Meanwhile, in a medium bowl mix the sweet pickles, mayo, mustard, sugar, vinegar, and salt & pepper. Stir until smooth. Then chop the eggs and dill.
  • Once the potatoes are cooked, drain the water and cool until you can handle them. Remove the loose peels and chop the potatoes into 1/2-inch pieces. It is fine if they are soft and crumbly. Transfer the potatoes to a large bowl. Gently mix in the dressing until it coats the potatoes well. Then stir in the eggs. Taste, and add more salt and pepper as needed.
  • Cover the potato salad and refrigerate for at least 2 hours or overnight. Garnish with fresh dill and paprika, if using. This potato salad tastes even better the next day, so if you have time, make in advance. Keep refrigerated in an airtight container for up to one week.


*To add a bit more sweetness to the salad, you can add a splash of sweet pickle juice too.
**If you prefer, substitute the mayo with Miracle Whip. Or, use half mayo and half Greek yogurt or sour cream.
**Regular mustard is fine to use, but I like Dijon mustard best in this because it has a milder flavor.
Photos by Sasha at Eat Love Eats.
Serving: 1serving, Calories: 207kcal, Carbohydrates: 17g, Protein: 5g, Fat: 13g, Saturated Fat: 2g, Cholesterol: 99mg, Sodium: 288mg, Potassium: 402mg, Fiber: 2g, Sugar: 3g, Vitamin A: 194IU, Vitamin C: 17mg, Calcium: 29mg, Iron: 1mg

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