What's the secret to a delicious potato salad without mayonnaise? The DRESSING!
I've lightened up the classic potato salad recipe by using a simple vinaigrette made with olive oil, sherry vinegar, Dijon and fresh herbs. The results is a lovely tangy flavorful side dish without all of the calories, fat and heaviness of those traditional versions.
It's the perfect side or potato appetizer to serve when entertaining a crowd!
I have never been a huge fan of potato salad. It was always the mayonaisse that turned me off.
If you aren't a huge fan of mayonaisse, you must try my mayo free spinach dip!
So this version of mayo-free potato salad is light, bright and so delicious! It's basically a German potato salad (which is also traditionally made without mayo)!
I also left out the boiled eggs and bacon so it's lower in saturated fats and is much easier on the tummy!
💓Why I Love Potato Salads
Potato salads great because it can be served as an appetizer or a side dish, made in advance and served warm OR cold. It's really the ultimate summer potluck party food.
Plus, it can easily be made in bulk or the day before and served at room temperature, hot OR cold!
If you are looking for another easy side dish to serve at this summer's BBQ or picnic, try my Grilled Sweet n' Spicy Pineapple Spears or my Grilled Greek Lambchops.
👌What Makes This Potato Salad "The Best"
- It uses baby Yukon Gold potatoes- they are lower in starch than other varieties of potatoes. This means that they'll hold their shape better when cooked and won't turn into mush when mixed with the dressing.
- The fresh herbs- Parsley, chives, and fresh dill all work well in this recipe. If you're not a fan of one of these herbs, feel free to swap it out for another that you like better. (See below.)
- It is tangy and slightly sweet- The addition of sherry vinegar and sugar adds a sweet and tangy bite that makes it so addicting.
- Yukon Gold baby potatoes- Mini waxy potatoes are best for this recipe. See notes on types of potatoes below.
- Extra virgin olive oil- The only oil I recommend for this recipe. Make it a good one! Or you can use my herb oil for even more flavor!
- Sherry vinegar- Sherry vinegar adds a sweet flavor but you can use champagne or white vinegar.
- Tarragon, parsley, chives- Fresh herbs only!
- Dijon mustard- Dijon has a richer, spicier flavor compared to prepared mustard.
- Celery seeds- This is in place of chopped celery. If you want to add both, you can.
- Sugar- Adds a touch of sweetness to the salad and balances the dressing nicely.
🥔How To Make Potato Salad Without Mayo
Step 1: Add halved potatoes to a pot of COLD water along with 1 tablespoon of salt and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to a simmer and cook potatoes until they are fork tender.
Step 2: In the meantime, add all of the ingredients to a large bowl and whisk together. Set aside.
Step 3: Strain your potatoes. After letting the steam evaporate for a couple minutes, add your potatoes to the marinade and toss gently in the dressing.
Step 4: Salt TO TASTE! Potatoes crave salt so it’s important that you properly season them at the end.
Step 5: Serve warm or cold.
📃 NOTE: You can print exact quantities with detailed instructions below!
👍Best Potatoes To Use
No, not every potato is the same! Some are a bit starchier than others. Some have tougher skin. And although you CAN use any potato to make potato salad, specific potatoes will turn out better than others.
Here is some more info on choosing the type of potato for your potato salad.
The best potatoes are:
- Waxy potatoes- These are BEST to use for potato salad. Yukon golds, fingerling, new potatoes or red potatoes.
Starchy potatoes- Russets or Idaho potatoes will be starchier and swell up with water causing a mushy, unpleasant texture.
🔪To Peel or Not To Peel?
If you use a waxier potato like I mentioned above, you will NOT need to peel your potatoes. The skin is much thinner and more palatable. Plus, it adds a pop of color and helps to keep your potatos in tact.
If you use a starchier potato, you might want to peel them although this is entirely based on personal preference. Know that the skin will be tougher if not peeled.
✅Potato Salad Variations
If you're looking for a little bit of variety, there are plenty of ways to change up this potato salad recipe. Here are a few ideas:
✔️Add some crumbled bacon or diced ham for a heartier salad.
✔️Swap out the sherry vinegar for apple cider vinegar, white wine or red wine vinegar.
✔️Try using different herbs, such as thyme, tarragon or oregano.
✔️Add in some chopped hard-boiled eggs for extra protein.
✔️Stir in some shredded cheese, such as parmesan or Swiss.
✔️Throw in some veggies, like celery, shredded carrots, or green onions.
✔️For more sweetness, add in some diced apples or raisins.
✔️Add nuts for an added crunch.
- Getting the texture of your potatoes perfect is KEY. Overcook your potatoes or they will be mushy. Undercook them and they will be too hard to enjoy. Fork tender is the key term which means they're ready when a fork easily slides into the largest potato.
- Adding the dressing to your potatoes when they are warm will help the potatoes soak it up better.
- Seasoning your water makes a huge difference in the end result. Season LIBERALLY.
- Add more salt in the end if you feel it needs. We all use different salts and have different preferences so salt to your liking.
- Freshly cracked black pepper also makes a big difference.
- Fresh herbs is a MUST. Do not substitute dried herbs.
🥂Need to sharpen your hostess skills? Check out my BEST tips for entertaining friends!
What To Serve This With?
Potato salad is best paired alongside of a burger, hot dog, chicken, ribs, really ANY protein! Make sure to add a veggie like corn or a light salad to complete the meal. Serve with these chocolate pineapple pops!
How Long Does Potato Salad Last Without Mayo?
It will last for up to 5 days if stored properly in an airtight container in the fridge.
Other Side Dish Recipes:
Grilled BBQ Pineapple With Cinnamon Glaze
Mini Cheesy Baked Potatoes Appetizer
📽 If you love entertaining at home, subscribe to my YouTube channel!!
Potato Salad Without Mayo
- 2 pounds baby potatoes (halved (no wider than 2 in.))
- ¼ cup extra virgin olive oil
- 3 tablespoons sherry vinegar
- 1 tablespoon fresh tarragon (chopped)
- 1 tablespoon fresh parsley (chopped)
- ½ tablespoon fresh chives (chopped)
- 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
- 1 teaspoon ground celery seeds
- 2 teaspoons granulated sugar
- Salt and freshly ground black pepper
- Add halved potatoes to a pot of COLD water along with 1 tablespoon of salt and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to a simmer and cook potatoes until they are fork tender (about 15 minutes). *Make sure not to overcook your potatoes. You want them to have a little bite to them or they will be mushy and fall apart in the salad.
- In the meantime, add all of the ingredients to a large bowl and whisk together. Set aside.
- Strain your potatoes. After letting the steam evaporate for a couple minutes, add your potatoes to the marinade and toss gently in the dressing. Doing so while the potatoes are still hot will allow them to soak up the dressing.
- Salt TO TASTE! Potatoes crave salt so it’s important that you properly season them at the end. Add a little at a time and taste as you go until you’re satisfied.
- Serve warm or cold.
Tried the recipe? I'd love to hear your thoughts below!