This version of creamy Southern-style potato salad with bacon is the best I’ve had! It’s quick and simple to make, and the addition of bacon makes it extra tasty!
Everyone needs a great recipe for classic all-American potato salad, and this is the one. This has been my standby potato salad recipe for years.
What Makes this Potato Salad Great?
- Well seasoned potatoes: After cooking and while still hot, the potatoes are tossed with a bit of cider vinegar. This is a trick I picked up from Martha Stewart that ensures those potatoes won’t be bland! Generously salting the cooking water is the other trick.
- Old Bay seasoning: Old Bay isn’t just for seafood! It gives this potato salad the perfect flavor. If you don’t have/can’t find it, celery seed is one of the main ingredients in Old Bay and makes a good substitute.
- Bacon: And don’t waste the drippings! I love to add some to the dressing for some extra bacon-y goodness.
Which Potatoes are Best for Potato Salad?
Using the right potatoes is another key to great potato salad. There is some debate about this though. Some people swear by Russet potatoes.
Personally, I find Russets to be too starchy and prone to breaking down when cooked. I prefer my potatoes to stay a little firm and hold their shape, when it comes to potato salad.
That’s why I recommend the waxier varieties, like Yukon Gold or red potatoes. I tend to use red potatoes because it adds a bit of color. But if you prefer to peel your potatoes, this doesn’t matter anyway!
How to Make Potato Salad with Bacon
- Bring a large pot of water seasoned with a large pinch of salt to a boil, and cut potatoes into 3/4 inch pieces. I use baby potatoes and cut them in half or quarters. You want your pieces to be the same size so they cook evenly. Add the potatoes to the pot, reduce the heat to medium and cook for about 6-8 minutes, until they can be easily pierced with a fork (don’t overcook them though!). Drain and toss gently with the apple cider vinegar. Set aside.
- While the potatoes are cooking, add 3 large eggs to a pot of cold water. Bring to a boil, then remove the pot from the heat and cover it for 12-13 minutes. Place the eggs in a bowl of ice water to stop the cooking and remove the shells. Cut into pieces.
- While the potatoes and eggs are cooking, add 3 slices of chopped bacon to a cold pan and bring to medium heat. Cook until the bacon is browned and crispy then drain on paper towels. Reserve 1 tablespoon of bacon drippings for the dressing.
4. Chop up some celery, red onion, parsley and chives.
5. In a large bowl, combine the reserved bacon drippings, mayo, mustard, relish, Old Bay seasoning, salt and pepper.
6. Add the potatoes to the dressing.
7. Add the chopped vegetables and herbs and stir to combine. Adjust seasoning to taste.
Cooking the potatoes, eggs and bacon might sound like kind of a pain, but since everything cooks separately at the same time, it’s really pretty quick. In fact, usually by the time my potatoes are cooked, the other ingredients are ready to go!
What goes well with potato salad?
Pretty much everything! As sides go, creamy potato salad is extremely versatile. Some obvious options are anything meaty like this slow cooker BBQ chicken, country pork ribs, Cajun chicken thighs, or a juicy marinated steak.
Or try it alongside these easy shrimp boil packets!
Potato Salad with Bacon
- 3 lbs Yukon Gold or red potatoes* cut into 3/4 inch cubes
- 3 tablespoons cider vinegar
- 3 eggs
- 4 strips bacon chopped
- 3/4 cup mayonnaise
- 2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
- 2 tablespoons dill pickle relish or finely diced dill pickles
- 1/2 teaspoon Old Bay seasoning or celery seeds
- 1/2 teaspoon salt and pepper
- 2 celery stalks diced
- 1/2 small red onion finely chopped
- 2 tablespoons chives or green onions finely chopped
- 2 tablespoons fresh parsley chopped
- Place the potatoes in a large saucepan and cover by at least an inch with cold water, and add a large pinch of salt. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat to medium and cook potatoes until they are still firm but can be pierced easily with a fork. Drain and transfer to a bowl. Sprinkle the potatoes wth the cider vinegar and toss gently. Let cool.
- While the potatoes are cooking, place the eggs in a medium saucepan and cover by at least an inch of water. Bring to a boil and remove from the heat. Cover the pot and let it sit for 11-12 minutes. Drain and transfer the eggs to a bowl of cold water to stop the cooking. Peel and chop the eggs.
- While the potatoes and eggs are cooking, place the chopped bacon in a cold skillet and turn heat to medium. Cook until browned and crispy and drain on paper towels. Transfer 1 tablespoon of the bacon grease to a large bowl.
- To the bacon grease, add the mayonnaise, Dijon mustard, relish, Old Bay, salt, and pepper. Whisk to combine.
- To the dressing, add the potatoes, celery, onion, chives and parsley, and toss gently to combine. Fold in the eggs and bacon. Season to taste with additional salt and pepper.
- Refrigerate at least 30 minutes before serving.
Hi! I’m Ann and I blog at Our Happy Mess. I’m all about fast, fresh, and family-friendly recipes. I believe cooking from scratch can not only be doable but FUN, no matter how busy life gets!
You can find more of my recipes at Our Happy Mess.