Easy Macaroni Salad with Egg

Easy Macaroni Salad with Egg

Whether you are going to or hosting a backyard barbecue or just looking to make a tasty dinner side dish, creamy macaroni salad is an excellent choice. This recipe is made with hard-boiled eggs (the not-so-secret ingredient!), chopped vegetables, and a deliciously seasoned mayonnaise dressing.

Think of it as deviled eggs meets macaroni salad in the ultimate summer side dish.

What You Need for Creamy Macaroni Salad Perfection

  • Macaroni Pasta: Elbow macaroni is the classic choice for this salad, although you could use other small pastas if you’d like. The cup of dry macaroni called for in the recipe should yield about 2 cups of cooked pasta. If you choose a different shape, adjust accordingly to yield 2 cups.
  • Hard-Boiled Eggs: Chopped hard-boiled eggs boost the richness and creaminess of this macaroni salad. Be sure to stir the yolk into the dressing well.
  • Chopped Onion and Celery: Finely chopped onion and celery add flavor to the salad, and their crunch provides a welcome contrast to the creaminess of the other ingredients.
  • Mayonnaise: For the richest, creamiest macaroni salad, be sure to use enough mayonnaise—start with 1/3 cup in this recipe and then add more as needed after mixing the ingredients and again after chilling.
  • Sugar: While sugar might seem like a surprising ingredient in a savory salad, the sweetness balances the acidity of the vinegar. Tip: Measure the sugar before the vinegar so you can use the same measuring spoon for both ingredients.
  • Vinegar: A bit of white vinegar or apple cider vinegar adds a pleasant tartness to the dressing and helps thin it slightly so it coats the macaroni well.
  • Mustard, Salt, and Pepper: Prepared yellow mustard, salt, and pepper provide a flavor boost to the dressing. And, combined with the egg yolk, the mustard gives a lovely yellow hue to the dressing. Just like with the sugar and vinegar, measure the salt before the mustard so you can use the same measuring spoon for both ingredients.

How to Avoid Mushy Pasta

Be sure not to overcook the pasta so it doesn't get mushy in the salad, and rinse it under cool running water to chill it after cooking—cooling the pasta completely will help keep it from absorbing too much of the dressing.

What to Serve with Macaroni Salad

Macaroni salad is a perfect accompaniment to barbecue chicken, pulled pork, and smoked meats. Just add baked beans and coleslaw to complete the picture. I also love it alongside sandwiches and fried chicken. It can also be a base for a light lunch when canned tuna fish or cooked chicken is added.

“This is an easy and truly classic macaroni salad—just what I remember from my childhood in North Carolina. It has just the right balance of creaminess from the mayo and egg and crispiness from the onions and celery. It was great with barbecue.” – Megan O. Steintrager

Classic Macaroni Salad Tester Photo A Note From Our Recipe Tester

Ingredients

  • 1 cup elbow macaroni

  • 2 hard-boiled eggs, chopped

  • 1/4 cup finely chopped chopped celery

  • 1/4 cup finely chopped chopped onion

  • 1/3 cup mayonnaise, plus more to taste

  • 2 teaspoons sugar

  • 2 teaspoons white or cider vinegar

  • 1/2 teaspoon salt, or to taste

  • 1/2 teaspoon prepared mustard

  • Freshly ground pepper, to taste

Steps to Make It

  1. Gather the ingredients.

    Ingredients for classic macaroni salad recipe gathered

     The Spruce Eats

  2. Cook the macaroni according to the package directions. Drain and rinse under cold running water until completely cooled.

  3. Combine all of the ingredients except for the pasta and stir well to combine.

    Eggs, celery, mayonnaise, and condiments combined in a bowl

     The Spruce Eats

  4. Add the cooled pasta. Stir gently so you do not break apart the macaroni. Coat all pieces of pasta evenly with the dressing.

    Pasta tossed with macaroni salad ingredients

     The Spruce Eats

  5. Taste and adjust the seasonings and add more mayonnaise as needed. 

  6. Cover and chill the macaroni salad for at least 2 hours before serving. Just before serving, taste and adjust the seasonings and add more mayonnaise if needed.

    Macaroni salad in a bowl

     The Spruce Eats

  7. Enjoy.

Make-Ahead Tips

  • Hard-boiled eggs can be made ahead and stored in the fridge, unpeeled, for up to one week.
  • Macaroni can be cooked 1 day ahead and stored in the refrigerator in a tightly sealed container.

How to Store

Store leftover macaroni salad in a tightly sealed container in the refrigerator for up to 4 days.

Comments

No comments yet. Why don’t you start the discussion?

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *