Grilled Potato Salad with Bacon Vinaigrette on

Potato Salad Recipes

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Bacon, Southern, and Chef-Inspired Potato Salad Recipes

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Ah, potato salad. The perfect combination of comforting carbs and decadent dressing. So many choices, so many styles! Different kinds of potatoes. Different drippy dressings. Different shapes. Wildly different flavors include the pungent pop of vinegar; creamy concoctions comprised of mayonnaise, hard-cooked egg, and sour cream; the salty, smoky kiss of bacon; and the crispy, crunchy bite of finely chopped onion and celery. All very different — and all very, very delicious.

Picnic Side Dishes

Let’s face it. Potato salad is pretty much everyone’s favorite side dish for cookouts. (Boozed-up watermelon or anything with the word shooter in it doesn’t count.) There’s just nothing like homemade potato salad. It’s the comfort food summer equivalent of mashed potatoes. In fact, some seem to be just that — chilled mashed spuds that are whipped with mayonnaise instead of butter. (And, I don’t say this is necessarily a bad thing.)

In this post, I’m sharing with you my three all-time favorite recipes for you to try this summer. One’s a bit on the gourmet side with fancy fingerlings. The second is cheffed-up with a couple different cooking techniques and a warm bacon dressing. The third recipe is the one I grew up with — a big, delicious, old-fashioned bowl of down-home comfort.

Thanks for reading! Let me know what you think if you give any of these a try.

Bon Appétit Y’all!

Virginia Willis

PS need some other picnic side dishes? Check out my Deviled Eggs and Cornmeal Skillet Cake.

Fingerling Potato Salad on

Fingerling Potato Salad

Serves 6 to 8
Prep Time5 minutes
Cook Time15 minutes
Total Time20 minutes
Course: Salad, Side Dish
Cuisine: American, French
Keyword: potato salad


  • 3 1/2 pounds fingerling or red bliss potatoes halved lengthwise
  • 1/2 cup white wine vinegar
  • 3/4 cup mayonnaise
  • 3/4 cup reduced fat sour cream
  • 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
  • 1 sweet onion finely chopped
  • 1 stalk celery finely chopped
  • 1/2 cup chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
  • Coarse kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper


  • o cook the potatoes, place them in a large pot of cold, salted water. Bring to a boil over high heat, then decrease the heat to medium-low. Simmer until the potatoes are tender, 10 to 15 minutes. Drain well in a colander. While still warm, transfer the potatoes to a rimmed baking sheet and drizzle with the vinegar. Set aside to cool to room temperature.
  • To make the dressing, combine the mayonnaise, sour cream, yogurt, and mustard in a large bowl. Season with salt and pepper.
  • To assemble the salad, add the cooled potatoes, onion, celery, and parsley to the dressing and stir to combine and coat. Taste and adjust for seasoning with salt and pepper. Serve at room temperature or chilled.

Grilled Potato Salad with Bacon Vinaigrette on

Grilled Potato Salad with Bacon Vinaigrette

Serves 6 to 8
Prep Time10 minutes
Cook Time30 minutes
Total Time40 minutes
Course: Salad, Side Dish
Cuisine: American
Keyword: potato salad


  • 3 pounds baby Yukon gold potatoes about the size of a walnut, halved
  • 6 tablespoons olive oil divided
  • 6 slices center-cut bacon cut into 1/2 inch pieces
  • 2 garlic cloves very finely chopped
  • 1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
  • 2 teaspoons firmly packed brown sugar
  • 8 scallions
  • 2 tablespoons freshly chopped herbs such as marjoram, basil, or parsley, plus more for garnish


  • Heat grill to medium-high. Line a plate with paper towels.Place potatoes in a large saucepan and cover with cold salted water by 2 inches. Cover and bring to a boil, reduce heat and simmer until easily pierced with a knife, 14 to 16 minutes. Drain and let cool. Transfer to a bowl and toss with 2 tablespoons of the olive oil.
  • Meanwhile, cook bacon in a large skillet over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until crisp, 5 to 7 minutes. Remove to prepared plate with a slotted spoon.Discard all but 1 tablespoon of the bacon drippings from skillet. Off the heat, add garlic, vinegar, and brown sugar to the drippings in the skillet, scraping up any browned bits. Whisk in remaining 4 tablespoons oil. Season with salt and pepper. Set aside.
  • Grill potatoes cut-side down until lightly charred, 2 to 3 minutes. Grill scallions, turning occasionally, until charred, 4 to 6 minutes. Chop scallions into 1-inch pieces.Place potatoes and scallions in a bowl and toss with the reserved dressing to coat. Let stand for 5 minutes. Sprinkle with bacon, and toss to coat. Taste and adjust for seasoning with salt and pepper. Garnish with herbs. Serve immediately.

Mama's Potato Salad on

Mama's Potato Salad

Serves 6 to 8
Prep Time8 minutes
Cook Time20 minutes
Total Time25 minutes
Course: Appetizer, Salad
Cuisine: American
Keyword: potato salad


  • 7 Russet potatoes, about 3 pounds
  • 1/2 cup white-wine vinegar
  • 4 large eggs
  • 1 1/4 cups reduced fat mayonnaise
  • 4 stalks celery finely chopped
  • 1 Vidalia or other sweet onion finely chopped
  • 1/4 cup sweet or dill pickle relish
  • Coarse kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper


  • Peel potatoes and cut into 1/2-inch cubes. Place in a large pot and add water to cover; season with 1 teaspoon salt. Bring to a boil over high heat. Reduce the heat and simmer until very tender, 15 to 20 minutes. Drain well. While still warm, transfer the potatoes to a baking sheet and drizzle with vinegar. Set aside to cool to room temperature.
  • Meanwhile, place eggs in a medium saucepan and add water to cover by 1 inch. Bring to a simmer over medium-high heat. Reduce heat to low and cook at the barest simmer for 10 minutes. Remove from heat, pour out the hot water and cover the eggs with ice-cold water. Let stand until cool enough to handle before peeling. Once the eggs have cooled, remove the shells by tapping each egg gently on the counter or sink all over to crackle it. Roll an egg between your hands to loosen the shell. Peel, starting at the large end, while holding the egg under cold running water; this facilitates peeling.
  • Grate the eggs through the large holes on a box grater or finely chop them.Combine mayonnaise, celery, onion, pickle relish, the remaining 1/2 teaspoon salt and pepper in a large bowl. Add the cooled potatoes and grated eggs; stir to combine. Serve at room temperature or chilled. Cover and refrigerate for up to 2 days.
Fingerling Potato Salad by Ellen Silverman modified from Bon Appétit Y’all
Grilled Potato Salad with Bacon Vinaigrette by John Kernick
Mama’s Potato Salad by Eating Well


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Virginia Willis

Georgia-born French-trained Chef Virginia Willis’ biography includes making chocolate chip cookies with Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson, foraging for berries in the Alaskan wilderness, harvesting capers in the shadow of a smoldering volcano in Sicily, and hunting for truffles in France. She is talent and chef-instructor for the digital streaming platform Food Network Kitchen. Her segments feature authentic and innovative Southern cooking. She was the celebrity chef at the Mansion at Churchill Downs for the 143rd running of the Kentucky Derby. Virginia has spoken at SXSW, cooked for the James Beard Foundation, and beguiled celebrities such as Bill Clinton, Morgan Freeman, and Jane Fonda with her cooking — but it all started in her grandmother’s country kitchen. Recently, her work has been inspired by her weight loss success story, Virginia has lost 65# and kept it off for over 2 1/2 years! “If a French-trained, Southern chef can do it, you can, too.” She is the author of Fresh Start; Secrets of the Southern Table; Lighten Up, Y’all; Bon Appétit, Y’all; Basic to Brilliant, Y’all; Okra; and Grits. Lighten Up, Y’all won a James Beard Foundation Award of Excellence in the Focus on Health Category. Lighten Up, Y’all as well as her first cookbook, Bon Appétit, Y’all, were finalists in the Best American Cookbook for the International Association of Cookbook Awards and were also named by the Georgia Center of the Book as “Books Georgians Should Read.” She is the former TV kitchen director for Martha Stewart Living, Bobby Flay, and Nathalie Dupree; has worked in Michelin-starred restaurants; and traveled the world producing food stories – from making cheese in California to escargot farming in France. She has appeared on Food Network’s Chopped, CBS This Morning, Fox Family and Friends, Martha Stewart Living, and as a judge on Throwdown with Bobby Flay. She’s been featured in the New York Times, the Washington Post, People Magazine, Eater, and Food52 and has contributed to Eating Well, GRLSQUASH, Culture, Garden & Gun, and Bon Appétit, and more. The Chicago Tribune praised her as one of “Seven Food Writers You Need to Know.” Her legion of fans loves her down-to-earth attitude, approachable spirit, and traveling exploits. Her culinary consulting company, Virginia Willis Culinary Enterprises, Inc specializes in content creation, recipe development, culinary editorial and production services, cookbook writing, media training, spokesperson and brand representation, and public speaking. Virginia is on the Monterey Bay Aquarium’s Seafood Watch Blue Ribbon Task Force, the Atlanta Community Food Bank Advisory Board, as well as the Community Farmers Market Advisory Board. She is a food and hunger advocate for No Kid Hungry and a premier member of the No Kid Hungry Atlanta Society. She a member of The James Beard Foundation, Chef’s Collaborative, Georgia Organics, and Southern Foodways Alliance.

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