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Macaroni salad in a white serving bowl with parsley garnish.
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5 from 6 votes

Classic Macaroni Salad

Macaroni Salad with egg, sweet pickles and a creamy dressing is a tasty side dish that's perfect for summer BBQ's and potlucks. My best macaroni salad recipe is quick and easy to make with just a few simple ingredients.
Prep Time20 mins
Cook Time10 mins
Total Time30 mins
Servings: 14 servings
Calories: 261kcal


  • 1 pound ditalini pasta or elbow pasta
  • 1 red bell pepper chopped
  • 2 ribs celery finely chopped
  • 1/2 cup finely chopped red onion
  • 1/2 cup chopped sweet pickles
  • 3 hard boiled eggs chopped

Macaroni Salad Dressing

  • 1 cup mayonnaise
  • 2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper

Optional Garnishes

  • chopped fresh parsley
  • paprika


  • Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil and cook pasta according to package directions for al dente. Transfer the pasta to a colander, rinse it with cold water and drain well. Set pasta aside to cool while you prepare the rest of the salad ingredients. Stir the pasta occasionally to prevent it from sticking together.
  • In a large bowl, combine the red bell pepper, celery, onion, pickles and hard boiled eggs.
  • To make the dressing, combine the mayonnaise, apple cider vinegar, Dijon, sugar, salt and pepper in a medium bowl. Whisk until well combined and smooth.
  • When the pasta is completely cooled, add it to the bowl with the other pasta salad ingredients. Pour on the dressing and stir until everything is well combined.
  • Cover and chill macaroni salad in the refrigerator for at least 2 hours before serving. It will keep for up to 3 days when stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator.


  • Macaroni salad tastes best on the second day, so it is a perfect make ahead side dish.
  • To cool the pasta more quickly, you can spread it out in a 9x13-inch baking dish.


Serving: 1cup | Calories: 261kcal | Carbohydrates: 28g | Protein: 6g | Fat: 14g | Saturated Fat: 2g | Cholesterol: 47mg | Sodium: 242mg | Potassium: 136mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 4g | Vitamin A: 400IU | Vitamin C: 11.5mg | Calcium: 20mg | Iron: 0.6mg
Nutrition information is only an estimate.
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