Classic Macaroni Salad Recipe

Classic Macaroni Salad just like you’d get from your grocer’s deli – only better! Loaded with celery, carrots, peppers, and eggs, and topped with a creamy dressing.

I’m full of pasta salad recipes. Check these out too: Classic Tuna Pasta Salad, Spinach Bacon Pasta Salad and Quick & Easy Pesto Pasta Salad.

Macaroni Salad

Classic Macaroni Salad

Raise your hand if you love a super simple classic macaroni salad! You’ll be amazed at how easy it is to make your own at home in just the time it takes for the macaroni to cook. This recipe is really as simple as boiling the macaroni, chopping a few vegetables and boiled eggs, and stirring together a super simple creamy dressing to go with it. You stir everything together and you are done! You really can’t get any easier than that.

I love to take this recipe to any kind of party/picnic/cookout/potluck during the summer because it just goes with everything. You can serve it alongside burgers, roasted hot dogs, grilled chicken, brats, ribs, heck, you could serve it alongside my easy Grilled Sausage and Vegetable Foil Packets and it would go great.

Tips and Tricks for making a Classic Macaroni Salad Recipe at Home:

  • Chop the veggies just about as small as you can if you are after a true “deli-style” macaroni salad. The deli salad has consistently small pieces of vegetable in it. I don’t mind a little variation (though my grated carrot was too big in this batch), but note that it is a key element to mimicking your favorite store-bought version of this pasta salad.
  • Sugar is not necessary for this recipe though I think it makes the flavor more classic. I used mayo in this recipe (because what else is there?!), but I know a few folks who swear by Miracle Whip. Miracle Whip is a lot sweeter than mayo, so you’ll probably want to omit the sugar if using it. That being said, if you are new to making macaroni salad, I’d try it without the sugar, as you can always stir in a tablespoon after you have the chance to taste it.
  • There’s some debate on how classic the addition of boiled eggs is, and I’m on team “you have to add the eggs.” It totally changes the texture and flavor if you ask me. If you prefer, you can omit the boiled eggs. Do you have one of these egg slicer thingies? I kind of want one.

What is the best mustard to use for pasta salad?

The type of mustard you use will change the flavor. If you like mustard, use the yellow mustard; its flavor is more pronounced. If you want the tang with a less distinct mustard flavor, use the Dijon.

How long should I cook pasta?

Only cook the pasta until it is al dente (the shortest cooking time recommended on the package). Over cooked pasta gets mushy and tends to break when stirred.



Macaroni Salad

Macaroni Salad

Classic Macaroni Salad Recipe

  • Author: Melissa Griffiths-Bless this Mess
  • Prep Time: 10 min
  • Cook Time: 12 min
  • Total Time: 22 min
  • Yield: Serves 8-10 1x


A Classic Macaroni Salad recipe, just like you’d get from your grocer’s deli, only better! Loaded with celery, carrots, peppers, and eggs and topped with a homemade creamy dressing. A great option for a neighborhood cookout!



  • 2 cups macaroni pasta (about 8 ounces)
  • 1 cup chopped boiled eggs (about 4 eggs)
  • ½ cup finely chopped red bell pepper
  • ½ cup finely grated carrot
  • ½ cup finely chopped celery
  • 1/4 cup finely chopped red onion
  • 1/3 cup mayonnaise
  • 1/3 cup sour cream
  • 1 teaspoon Dijon or yellow mustard
  • 1 tablespoon white vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon sugar (optional)
  • Salt, to taste
  • Pepper, to taste


  1. Cook the pasta according to package directions until it is cooked al dente. Drain and rinse in cold water.
  2. While the pasta cooks, in a small bowl combine the mayonnaise, sour cream, mustard, vinegar, and sugar and stir to combine.
  3. Add the pasta to a medium mixing bowl. Add the eggs, bell pepper, carrot, celery, and red onion to the pasta. Add the mayonnaise mixture.
  4. Stir everything together until it is all well-coated. Add salt and pepper to taste. Serve right away.

  • Category: Sides
  • Method: Stovetop
  • Cuisine: American
Nutrition Information: YIELD: 10 SERVING SIZE: 1 Scoop
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 193.5 Fat: 9.4g Cholesterol: 96.4mg Sodium: 620.2mg Carbohydrates: 20.3g Sugars: 3g Protein: 6.7g Vitamin A: 63.7µg Vitamin C: 6.9mg

Keywords: macaroni salad, macaroni salad recipe, how to make macaroni salad, best macaroni salad, easy macaroni salad, macaroni salad with egg

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Classic Macaroni Salad

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about me

About Melissa

I have a lot going on, and I’d much rather spend my time enjoying my messes than fretting about what I’m going to make for dinner. Over the past few years, I’ve nailed down a few strategies that helped me keep my kitchen running like a well-oiled machine, so I started Bless This Mess to help other mess-loving parents solve the nightly dinner delimma—no stress, no drama, just really great food your whole family will love. Read more...

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Is the 2 cups of pasta measured dry or cooked?

Macaroni salad is one of my favorite summer sides! This looks so good. We were team no eggs in my house growing up, but I’ve seen so many pasta salads that include them recently, I kind of want to try adding them!

Both of my hands are in the air right now and I look ridiculous but who cares? Because PASTA SALAD! I love a classic pasta salad–they’re impossible to beat at summer cookouts :). This looks delicious, Melissa!

Isn’t this just the best? I love all the different variation of pasta salad but my favorites are the ones that have mayo and sour cream! Delicious!

Bless This Mess - About Me

I’m Melissa, and I want to help you feed your family wholesome food.

As a hobby farmer and mom of five, I’m all about keeping it simple in the kitchen. I want healthy meals that feed my family well, and then I want to get back to my (messy) life. Let’s work together to find something yummy for your dinner table.