This Southern Potato Salad recipe makes a classic side perfect for casual suppers and summer cookouts! A family potato salad recipe that’s great to make ahead and is a crowd favorite!

Southern Potato Salad Recipe - Southern Potato Salad is a classic recipe perfect for Sunday suppers, summertime lunches, picnics, reunions, and every possible celebration! This potato salad recipe is a family favorite! //

When I was a girl I loved being the taste tester when Mama made her potato salad. What a lucky job it was because her Southern Potato Salad is the best! She was asked to make it for every cookout or family reunion because everyone loved it. And my family requested it for so many suppers and family gatherings too. So I got to test it a lot.

This potato salad recipe is a simple, classic side dish that’s so easy to make and pairs so well with everything from grilled hamburgers and chicken to a a southern Sunday meal with fried chicken and pinto beans. What a special dish!

Southern Potato Salad Recipe

This potato salad recipe has been in my family for so many years. My great grandmother made it by this recipe and passed it down through the generations. Mama taught my sister and me how to make it with stories of how she got to be the taste tester with her grandmother and her mother.

Best Potatoes for Southern Potato Salad

I am sure that you have seen many types of this favorite salad. Some have firm potatoes and other ingredients that I don’t have in my recipe.

But for my recipe, you need to use starchy potatoes that get a little bit soft when you cook them. I prefer Russet or Yukon Gold potatoes, but I most often use Russets. A waxy potato won’t do for this southern favorite, so get one that will get somewhat soft.

How to Make Southern Potato Salad

To make this potato salad, you will need these ingredients.

  • Potatoes (Russets preferably)
  • Eggs
  • Onion
  • Dill Pickles
  • Yellow Mustard
  • Mayonnaise (not the sweet dressing type)
  • Salt

Start by scrubbing and peeling 3 pounds of potatoes. Cube them, add to cold water and boil until tender enough to pierce with a fork, but not until they are mushy. Drain well once they are done.

At the same time, hard boil 6 eggs and then peel them once they’re done. Chop the eggs in preparation for the salad.

While the potatoes are boiling, dice your onion and dill pickles. (While my recipe calls for onion, there is a member of my family who can’t have onions, so I always make a bowl for her without onion. She uses extra pickles instead and it’s delicious too!)

Combine the drained potatoes, chopped eggs, diced onion, diced pickles and salt with the mayonnaise and mustard until creamy. Add more mustard, mayo and even pickles to taste.

Make sure your tasting spoons are lined up and at the ready. You will want to have them for your own taste tests!

Once you’ve completed your potato salad, you can either serve right away or refrigerate to serve later.

Southern Potato Salad Recipe - Southern Potato Salad is a classic recipe perfect for Sunday suppers, summertime lunches, picnics, reunions, and every possible celebration! This potato salad recipe is a family favorite! //

Make Ahead Favorite

My family’s Southern Potato Salad recipe is one that is delicious made the day of serving, but is a great make-ahead dish as well. Just keep it tightly covered and refrigerated until ready to serve. It will keep in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.

Perfect for Get Togethers and Suppers
You’ll find this dish served at most family get-togethers in my family – from holidays like Easter to reunions to Sunday suppers! It’s a great potluck dish anytime too. Potato salad is delicious with chicken, beef, and pork and is a dish that everyone in my family loves!

Southern Potato Salad Recipe - Southern Potato Salad is a classic recipe perfect for Sunday suppers, summertime lunches, picnics, reunions, and every possible celebration! This potato salad recipe is a family favorite! //

You know what? I still line up my spoons up ready to taste when the potato salad making is in progress. It’s just a part of our family recipe I guess.

More Delicious Side Dishes and Salads

Here are a few more scrumptious sides for summer cookouts, potlucks and family suppers to try! Many are make ahead too!


Cucumber Tomato Salad

Southern Macaroni Salad

Easy Tortellini Pasta Salad

Here’s my family’s Potato Salad recipe. It’s a special favorite!

Southern Potato Salad Recipe

Southern Potato Salad – Potato salad is a classic recipe perfect for every possible summer celebration! Made with potatoes, pickles, onions, and eggs, this potato salad is an all-time favorite!
4.81 from 26 votes

Review Recipe

Print Recipe

Prep Time10 mins
Cook Time30 mins
Total Time40 mins
Servings: 12
Course Salad, Side Dish
Calories: 242kcal
Serving Size 1cup
Cuisine American
Author: Robyn Stone | Add a Pinch


  • 3 pounds boiled potatoes peeled and cubed
  • 6 boiled eggs chopped
  • 1 medium onion diced
  • 4 medium dill pickles diced
  • 1 cup mayonnaise
  • 1/2 cup yellow mustard
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt


  • Combine all ingredients together and mix until well-combined and creamy. Add more mayonnaise and mustard depending on tastes.



Store potato salad in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days. 

Nutrition Information

Serving: 1cup | Calories: 242kcal | Carbohydrates: 15g | Protein: 6g | Fat: 17g | Saturated Fat: 3g | Cholesterol: 101mg | Sodium: 330mg | Potassium: 531mg | Fiber: 3g | Sugar: 1g | Vitamin A: 150IU | Vitamin C: 13.8mg | Calcium: 56mg | Iron: 4.2mg
Have you made this recipe?Tag @addapinch on Instagram or hashtag it #addapinch

Robyn xo

Southern Potato Salad Recipe - Southern Potato Salad is a classic recipe perfect for Sunday suppers, summertime lunches, picnics, reunions, and every possible celebration! This potato salad recipe is a family favorite! //

From the Add a Pinch recipe archives. Originally published in 2011.

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Robyn Stone

..where I share sweet, savory and southern recipes, as well as home and garden tips and tidbits of travel.

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126 Comments Leave a comment or review

  1. This is it , I as a young man waited with spoons anxiously awaiting Job. The Official Test Taster, this is the exact way she made it and there’s a Deacon at my church who’s potatoe salad is a reminder. Thank you for this and I’m going to make it as a memory to my mothers this is it…

  2. I make mine with miracle whip and yellow mustard, onion and eggs. I guess it is the northern style. Been making it since I was 14. We are not pickle eaters. Every holiday but Thanksgiving I make potato salad. Parties for other people ask me to make it. My sister’s boyfriend could eat a platter of 24 deviled eggs himself. I love my friends and family.

  3. My wife always made the potato salad, since she passed away I’ve not a clue how she made it. This looks close enough, thank you.

      1. Hi Erin,
        I’m sorry but the person who did our video did not show the eggs being added but they are in the salad. You can see that they are included in the final photo. Enjoy!

  4. I make my potato salad the same way. I use sweet pickle relish though….just a personal preference.. And add in some diced pimento if I have it for color. I love a good potato salad. Oh and sometimes will add diced celery if I have it.

  5. L am the one that is requested to make potato salad for church dinners. To my salad, I always add diced green bell pepper along with the onion and sweet pickle relish but I don’t do the mustard. I garnish my dish with paprika and sometimes olives. My dish always stands out because of the green pepper.

    1. Your potato salad sounds like it’s a hit with all your church friends, Ellean! I always find it interesting to hear how potato salad recipes differ – and I enjoy all kinds! Thanks so much!

  6. It is recipe, except that I add celery and some chopped stuffed olives. My husband and I once owned a deli and we sold tons of potato salad. Love your recipes.

  7. Same recipe as mine. BUT I put mayo, mustard, and pickle juice in a container & mix until smooth then add it to the rest of the salad. Makes it so everything doesn’t break down my mixing it.

  8. My grandmother is Ukrainian and she also loads he potato salad with eggs. It really does make us!!! I like to thin my mayo out with a bit of buttermilk. I like your idea of adding mustard!

  9. Sometimes I substitute sandwich spread for the mayo. I do this with deviled eggs also. The family loves it.

  10. I do exact same thing, potatoes, onions, pickles, mayo, mustard, eggs, salt pepper, and i add some powdered hidden valley ranch dressing, and sprinkle paprika and dill on top.

  11. A southern potato salad recipe like my mom’s is something I’ve looked for forever! My husband and I love it and both our moms had their recipes in their heads and they have passed now. Didn’t want to experiment so this is the closest recipe I’ve come across! Can’t wait to try it for this Memorial Day! Thank you!

  12. Sounds like my mom’s recipe except she used sweet pickles instead of dill. Wonder what it would taste like with this? Might have to try it.

  13. I change it by using 1/2 salad dressing & 1/2 mayo and Sweet relish instead of dill… but my oh my, nothing like southern potato salad to start the summer picnic season

    1. Thank you so much Matt! I hope you enjoy the potato salad! It’s been a favorite in my family for a long time. Some of my fondest memories have been made in the kitchen with my family! 🙂

  14. This is very similar to my mother’s recipe, except she mashed the potatoes and served it warm the 1st time, then cold for leftovers.  And she used about half of the mustard called for.
    And she mixed everything but the potatoes 1st, then added them last.  I just made this with cooled potato chunks, and the minute the condiments were mixed, I knew this was my mom’s recipe in her head.  I just had a flashback of her making potato salad for holiday and special occasions, and how I miss that sweet lady.  Thanks for reminding me.

    1. This is such a sweet memory you’ve shared, Linda. I know you must miss her so much!
      This recipe has been a special one in our family for a long, long time and has been a part of so many special meals. I hope it can bring back some precious memories for you as well.
      Thank you, Linda. xo

  15. I also added 1/2 stalk of finely chopped celery. Backed off a bit on the amount of mustard, our family prefers the Vlasic Sweet Salad Pickles and I used Red potatoes… it was a true hit at our southern family reunion! Thank you!

  16. I use this same recipe with the exception that I only use about a tablespoon of mustard. The rest is on point with what I use. 

  17. Making this recipe today, only difference is I will be adding some sour cream to my mayo and some chopped celery. 

  18. When I was a teenager my best friends mother made her potato salad this way with dill pickles instead of sweet relish. This was back in the 1960’s and brings back so many wonderful memories. Any relations to Sue and Wilbur Horn??

  19. Robyn,
    This is by far the best potato salad I’ve ever eaten! I make it all during the year, but make it so often in the summer! We love it!
    Thanks for sharing this recipe! It is delicious!!!

  20. This is my absolute favorite potato salad!! It’s the only one I will make after I found your recipe several years ago.  Thanks!

  21. My husband is the cornbread dressing taster in our house before it goes in the oven. lol Love the potato salad recipe. Especially that you use dill pickles. “Don’t be putting no sweet pickles in my tater salad!” 🙂 Thanks Robin!

  22. The ‘recipe’ for our potato salad was in Mom’s head too. Very similar to this. We grew up on Miracle Whip and still don’t care for mayo so Miracle Whip and yellow mustard base. After I left home it was ‘by guess and by golly’ until I got it right. It really still is as I don’t measure anything and go by taste and how big of a dish I want to make. Mom used a bit of sweet pickle juice in hers. I use a tiny bit of sugar on the end of a spoon. DH is the designated tester here. He could eat potato salad every week I think. 😉

    1. Karol, my mother has told me that one of her grandmothers made potato salad with sweet pickles and juice, too but without mustard. She was always the tester for her grandmother’s potato salad. It’s funny that she never made that version when I was growing up.

  23. Taste just like my grandma use to make, talk about wonderful memories in every bite. Definitely will be a regular in our house!

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