My Favorite Southern Potato Salad Recipe

by Sherri on April 18, 2014 · 35 comments · Side Dishes, Simple Recipes

This post may contain an affiliate link. Read my Disclosure Policy here

Southern Potato Salad

You know those recipes you call your mom for.  This is one of those recipes.  I grew up (in Eastern NC) on my grandmother’s Southern Potato Salad and for the longest time never had a true “recipe”.  She just tossed in ingredients and did the taste test.  Asking my mother years ago, I scribbled down what she thought it was and tucked it away and never really made it myself. I just indulged excitingly at every family get together where it happened to be.

Then several years ago, my neighbor, here in NH, brought potato salad to a neighborhood party. She made Southern Potato Salad…in NH!  What?! Happy dance! But again, she said she didn’t really measure. Just kind of threw in the ingredients, doing that taste testing again. Oy! That was about 2 years ago. I haven’t had potato salad in 2 years!

Well, last weekend, another neighbor and I were chatting and she said she was “craving” potato salad. That potato! And did I want to try to make it? Why yes! I do!

I did have to do the taste testing. But I did measure as I went. So I can now share it with her, and you and everyone else, this fabulous recipe for my favorite Southern Potato Salad.

By the way, this is NOT on my “clean eating” list. This would be one of those I call the 20%-ers.  Friday is my cheat day so you can count on it that I will be indulging extremely excitedly tonight!

Oh, I have a question. How do you like your potato salad? Warm or Cold? I like it warm.  Is that weird?

INGREDIENTS – Makes 8 servings

2 lbs of potatoes, peeled and diced

7 hard boiled eggs, chopped

1 cup of mayonnaise – (I’m a Hellman’s girl myself)

1 tsp yellow mustard

4 TBSP of sweet pickle relish

Salt and pepper to taste


1. Place eggs in a pan covered with cold water. When the water starts to boil, reduce the to low and simmer uncovered for 1 minute . Remove from heat and COVER and let stand for 20 minutes.

2. Peel and dice the potatoes into about 1 inch pieces.

3. Cover them with water and bring them to a boil for about 15 minutes or until tender. Drain in a colander.

4. Let the potatoes cool before mixing so they won’t crumble. I actually put mine in a bowl in the refrigerator for about an hour.

5. In a separate bowl, mix the other ingredients together.

6. Then add the potatoes and mix gently.


Southern Potato Salad

You may also like:

Southwest Quinoa Salad

Cranberry Almond Chicken Salad

{ 31 comments… read them below or add one }

Leanna @ Alldonemonkey April 20, 2014 at 2:46 am

I’m also from NC (Charlotte), and this looks just like what I grew up eating! I’ve never had a recipe of it either, just the taste test, so how nice to have a real recipe for it :)


Sherri April 20, 2014 at 9:05 am

That’s so funny! :-) It is so yummy! I have to admit I had a little for breakfast yesterday too.


Dale April 25, 2014 at 10:41 pm

This is the way I make Southern Potato Salad too and I’m from Georgia! I love it freshly warm and if it has been in the ref. I zap it a tiny bit in the microwave.


Sherri April 26, 2014 at 8:33 am

That’s exactly what I do!


Mindie Hilton April 29, 2014 at 8:28 am

Looks really good! Please come share your potato salad at the Anything Goes linky, if you have not already.


Kelly May 1, 2014 at 10:12 pm

My momma’s family is from NC (although we just about all live in Florida now) – and this is exactly our potato salad. I’m just has happy to leave the relish out if I don’t have any, and every once in a while I’ll get a urge to dice up some onions.

I see all these fancy ‘tater salads with tarragon dressing and olive oil and all these other ingredients – and I think “Y’all just need to put some Kraft or Duke’s in there and let it be!


Sherri May 2, 2014 at 9:38 am

I know right! No fancy for me either. I will have to add a little onion one day too! I used to only use Duke’s! Now I’m in love with Hellman’s :-)


Kim @ The Cookie Puzzle May 2, 2014 at 12:35 pm

You are killing me! I love Southern Potato Salad. I have not had it is years either, my mom used to make it all the time and it was always my favorite. What a great idea to put the potatoes in the fridge to cool. Thank you so much for sharing this recipe…my mom is also one of those mix and taste cooks…drives me crazy!


Daphne May 2, 2014 at 2:37 pm

Good Evening Sherri, I love potato salad and I love the creamy texture. When I lived in Germany I adored the potato salad as the German mayonnaise had a real creamy texture….. trouble was, I could eat far too much of it as it was so scrummy. I have never used eggs in my potato salad, I use chopped chives, or chopped spring onions…. but I agree with you, there is something lovely about eating a warm potato salad. When the summer finally arrives here in England I am going to try your recipe and include eggs and pickle.
Have a lovely weekend.
Best Wishes


Cindy @ Hun... What's for Dinner? May 3, 2014 at 8:40 pm

We practically live on potato salad during the summer months. I love the eggs and pickle relish in this one. Thanks so much for sharing with us at Simple Supper Tuesday.


katherines corner May 3, 2014 at 9:19 pm

one of my favorite things! This looks wonderful. Thank you for sharing your wonderful blog at the Thursday Favorite Things Blog Hop ♥


Stephanie May 3, 2014 at 10:36 pm

Thank you so much for linking up at Tasty Tuesday! Your recipe has been pinned to the Tasty Tuesday Pinterest board! Please join us again next week!


Ann May 5, 2014 at 8:06 am

I also add onions too.


Stephanie May 6, 2014 at 12:54 am

This recipe was featured at Tasty Tuesday! Come check it out and grab a feature button here!


Diane Balch May 6, 2014 at 3:43 pm

I’m from CT and we always ate potato salad like this… I didn’t know it was Southern. PInned.


Lynn May 12, 2014 at 2:57 pm

I have loooooved potato salad all my life. My recipe is very similar to yours, except I add chopped onion & a little chopped green pepper & salt of course.Try it sometime. Everyone loves my potato salad!


Melanie May 20, 2014 at 12:36 pm

This is exactly the recipe I was looking for! I just wanna know how much does this serve. I’m making some for a Memorial Day picnic. Please help!


Leah May 26, 2014 at 3:24 pm

I’m from Alabama and this is the basic potato salad recipe I use…..with a few alterations….I use dill pickle relish instead of sweet and I add a tbsp of sugar and a tbsp of white vinegar….it gives it that extra twang!


Brenda June 5, 2014 at 9:45 am

I need to feed about 15 people. Can you tell me how many this recipe will serve? thanks


Sherri June 5, 2014 at 10:00 am

This recipes makes about 8 servings :-) So doubling it should work for you.


gigibear June 12, 2014 at 12:35 pm

Minus the sweet relish same recipe my sister came up with when our kids were little. They didn’t like all the extras people would put in ie, onions, celery, pickles. This is super simple and tasty. Everyone is grown (late 20s – early 30s) but we still make it this way :)


Dean June 14, 2014 at 12:57 am

I’m from the midwest, born and raised. This is the exact kind of potato salad we always had. I’ll eat other kinds, but this is my all-time favorite.


Tanya June 14, 2014 at 6:20 am

This is my Mom’s recipe as well, except here in British Columbia, Canada, she dices up one or two of her own canned dill pickles and a adds in a tablespoon or 2 of the juice to give the salad an extra kick.


Katie June 23, 2014 at 11:02 am

omg. This potato salad sounds delish! I may just have to make a picnic date for the husband and I just so I can make this potato salad. I would love it if you linked this up to my Motivate Me Monday linky party on IT’S A ginger SNAP.


Sherri June 23, 2014 at 5:53 pm

It is so good! I can’t wait to have it 4th of July :-) I will head over and link up. Have a great week!


Alice Perry July 27, 2014 at 6:55 am

This is the same recipe I have always used. Only difference to yours … I use red potatoes and boil them in their jackets, then cool, peel and dice them.


Sandi August 22, 2014 at 1:21 pm

This is the same as my recipe except for two items. I actually dice dill pickles cause we are pickle crazy and I add celery for so e crunch. Thank you for sharing


Glenda Burrus October 2, 2014 at 4:13 pm

I know this is an older post but I’m sitting here salivating over this potato salad. It looks so good. I’m convinced good potato salad is determined with the mayo used and the amount of boiled eggs. Oh and I’m like you, I only like mine to be warm. Never cold!!!


Kay Huggins-Stuckey November 23, 2014 at 6:33 pm

This is the way I’ve always made mine, using Hellmans and just a touch of sugar! Incredible!


Pat December 4, 2014 at 6:20 pm

I’m from Oklahoma that is the way I have always made potato salad except I add 1/2 cup chopped sweet onion. To me it doesn’t taste right without the onion. I think I use more mustard that a tablespoon. Anyway you make it, it is always good, cold or warm.


Kathy December 20, 2014 at 10:16 pm

Sometimes, I add a little celery seed or celery to mine.


Leave a Comment

{ 4 trackbacks }