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Quick and Easy Classic Macaroni Salad with Few Ingredients

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Macaroni Salad

What better to bring to a potluck or picnic than a classic Macaroni Salad? This recipe uses a surprise ingredient that makes the dressing extra special and the salad one everyone will surely enjoy. You can make it ahead, it tastes even better the day after!

Ingredients For Classic Macaroni Salad:

To make this exceptionally delicious salad, you will need:

  • Elbow macaroni
  • Celery
  • Red bell pepper
  • Red onion
  • Peas
  • Cheddar cheese
  • Mayonnaise
  • White vinegar
  • Relish
  • Salt and pepper

How To Make Easy Macaroni Salad?

  1. Cook the macaroni in a large pot of salted water until al dente (cooked but firm). Drain and run it under cold water.
  2. Make the dressing: place all dressing ingredients in a small bowl and mix until well combined.
  3. Place the cooked and drained macaroni in a large bowl. Add the chopped veggies and dressing. Toss until everything is well coated with the dressing. Taste and add more salt and pepper if needed. Cover and refrigerate at least 1 hour before serving.

Macaroni Salad

Quick and Easy Classic Macaroni Salad With Few Ingredients

5 from 1 vote
Print Pin Rate
Course: Side Dish
Cuisine: American
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 15 minutes
CHILL TIME: 1 hour
Total Time: 35 minutes
Servings: 6
Calories: 497kcal
Author: Katherine - Yummfully

Equipment

  • Large pot
  • Large bowl
  • Small bowl
  • Knife and cutting board
  • Colander

Ingredients

  • 8 oz dry elbow macaroni
  • 1 cup celery diced
  • ½ cup red bell pepper, diced
  • ½ cup peas
  • ¼ cup red onion, diced
  • 1 cup sharp cheddar cheese, cubed

Dressing:

  • 1 cup mayonnaise
  • 3 tbsp white vinegar
  • 2 tbsp sweet relish
  • 1 tsp yellow mustard
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Instructions

  • Cook the macaroni in a large pot of salted water until al dente (cooked but firm). Drain and run it under cold water.
  • Make the dressing: place all dressing ingredients in a small bowl and mix until well combined.
  • Place the cooked and drained macaroni in a large bowl. Add the chopped veggies and dressing. Toss until everything is well coated with the dressing. Taste and add more salt and pepper if needed. Cover and refrigerate at least 1 hour before serving.

Nutrition

Calories: 497kcal | Carbohydrates: 34g | Protein: 11g | Fat: 36g

Frequently Asked Questions

What Type of Pasta is Best for Macaroni Salad?

It is traditionally made with elbow macaroni, but really any small pasta will do.

How Long Does Macaroni Salad Last in The Fridge?

It can last up to 5 days if properly stored. It needs to be stored in an airtight container.

Can I Use Other Veggies?

Yes you can! I would recommend you add celery, onion, and bell pepper, and then add any other veggie you have like carrots and broccoli florets.

What Can I Use Instead of Mayonnaise?

If you want to reduce the amount of calories, I recommend you use Greek Yogurt instead of Mayo, or a half mayo, half yogurt mix.

What if My Salad is Too Dry?

As the salad sits in the fridge, the pasta absorbs some of the dressing, so you might want to make more and mix it in before serving.

Can I Add Protein to the Macaroni Salad?

Yes! I love to serve it with diced ham, cooked chicken, or bacon bits.

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