Savory stuff

Macaroni Salad – sometimes your food does look like it did on Pinterest

Macaroni Salad. I could never see, smell or taste it ever again and would be just fine.

But my husband LOVES it. And since I love him, I make it for him. It’s actually pretty damn good, even though I really dislike mayonnaise (I’ve come a long way to only use the word dislike…just being in the same room as it was enough to make me ill as a child).

My sister-in-law, who is not only fabulous but is also an amazing chef, made it for our rehearsal dinner, especially for Dray. Honestly, I only tried it because she made it and assumed it had to be better than when I make it. It was great, so the next time I made it, I actually tried a bit of mine, too.

I found the same basic recipe for Mac Salad in several different places on Pinterest, but this one was my go-to as a starting point. I always tweak it, either out of necessity or boredom. I mean, it’s not exactly exciting food, as yummy as it tastes.

The biggest pain is always shelling the eggs, but I let them cool in ice water and salt and that helps a little bit.

At least half of them come out perfectly. The other ones…well, they’re being chopped up and eaten anyway.

In case you don’t want to open up a new link, here’s the breakdown with my tweaks included:

  • 2 cups elbows (it’s about half the box if you are cooking the whole thing and using the other half to add to chicken soup like I do), cooked, rinsed and cooled.

  • 1-1/2 cups real mayonnaise

  • 2-3 stalks celery, finely chopped (how much crunch do you like?)

  • 1-1/2 TBSPs dijon or spicy mustard

  • 1 TBSP onion powder

  • salt, pepper and paprika to taste

  • 1 boiling onion (raw) or 3 large or 4 small green onions/scallions, finely chopped

  • 4-5 hard-boiled eggs, peeled and roughly chopped

  • more Paprika

While the cooked elbows are cooling, I mix all of the other ingredients together in the bowl I want the pasta to stay in, (except the eggs and paprika).

Once that is smooth, I add the pasta and mix it until thoroughly combined. Then I sprinkle enough paprika to cover the top pretty well, and mix again. At that point I gently mix in the eggs and sprinkle some more paprika over the top just to make it look pretty.


But honestly, if you don’t have the EXACT item, don’t let that stop you from making it. If you have yellow mustard and a Spanish onion, you’re probably still going to be fine. If you don’t have pasta, eggs or mayonnaise, maybe wait until after you’ve hit up the grocery store.

What are your favorite tweaks? Did you try to make it? If so, how did it taste?

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