Secret Ingredient Potato Salad

I know, everyone has a recipe for potato salad.  After all, it's a summertime staple at picnics, BBQ's and weeknight meals.  Simple, minimal ingredients that we usually all have on hand, and creamy & delicious.  So what in the world can kick it up a notch?

I'm happy you asked!

It's a very simple ingredient that I'm sure you have in your pantry.  Good old white distilled vinegar.  I make a super simple potato salad and the vinegar added to the still warm potatoes infuses them perfectly with flavor.

About the ingredients
I usually use either red or Yukon potatoes only because that's what I almost always have on hand.  I find that typically russets are too dry so I avoid those.  I've used white, red or Yukon and get delicious results.

Mayo is a hot topic, isn't it?  I've come to learn that people get a bit fanatical regarding their preference of either Miracle Whip or mayo.  Use what you prefer.  Honestly, homemade is simple and tastes best to us.  We don't use Miracle Whip at all only because it's slightly sweet and just doesn't appeal to us.

Our potato salad is ultra-yellow because of the fabulous coop girls eggs.  Their yolks are an amazing yellow making anything I create with them a beautiful vibrant sunny color.

Vinegar adds just a slight zip of flavor to the finished salad.  It also, as an added benefit, lowers glucose and insulin responses that naturally happen when consuming white potatoes.  A win-win!  The key is ensuring you are adding the white vinegar while the potatoes are still warm and then letting them sit 15 minutes or so in order to allow them to soak in the deliciousness.

We actually like to eat our potato salad slightly warm but the flavors meld even better if allowed to sit for a few hours in the refrigerator once pulled together.

Secret Ingredient Potato Salad 
5 medium White, Red, or Yukon potatoes, about 2 pounds
1 1/2 Tablespoons white distilled vinegar (you can us ACV instead) (or about 1 1/2 capfuls)
1/2 small onion, diced
3 hardboiled eggs, peeled & chopped
3/4 - 1 cup mayonnaise
salt & pepper to taste

Peel the potatoes and chop in half or in quarters.  Place in pan and cover with cold water.  Bring to boil over high heat, then turn down to medium-high and boil approximately 10 minutes, or until just done when pierced with a sharp knife.  Drain.  Pour vinegar over warm potatoes and let cool.

Once potatoes are cooled, dice.  In a medium bowl combine the diced potatoes, onion & eggs.  Pour any vinegar/water remaining in the pan over the top.  Stir in mayonnaise.  If using salt & pepper, sprinkle on to taste.

Store in the refrigerator until ready to serve.


  1. Can you substitute apple cider vinegar for the white vinegar, or does it affect the taste? Thank you so much for this, I've been trying to figure out why my potato salad never tastes quite the way I want it to. I think I didn't add enough vinegar. I'll be making this this weekend for us to enjoy.

    Happy weekend!

  2. Oh yeah-what a cute lil' bowl!

  3. Thanks so much Daisy! I've never used apple cider vinegar only because I feel like it would overpower the salad with a vinegar-y flavor. If you end up trying the ACV, please let me know how it turns out!

  4. Just wanted you to know that I made the potato salad last weekend with the ACV and it was dee-lish! This one's a keeper! Thank you for sharing.

  5. My mother used pickle relish, basically the same idea! Like you, she put it on the potatoes first thing, and insisted that potatoes need to be seasoned while still warm. First the relish with a good bit of juice, then Hellman's mayo, salt and pepper. When chilled, would stir in chopped celery and sprinkle with paprika when serving. Very effective and delicious!


Thank you so much for taking the time to read and comment on this post!