Steakhouse Style Ranch Potato Salad Recipe
This savory steakhouse potato salad recipe is the one you grab when you need it FAST! Its become the favorite potato salad of all my friends, and I am asked to make it just about every time we have a gathering.
Warm potatoes are tossed together in a large bowl with all of the supporting ingredients, then chilled until ready to serve. I like to reserve half a hardboiled egg to slice and fan across the top as garnish but offer plenty of optional extras alongside in case folks want theirs loaded.
The best potato salad begins with the best potatoes for the job, in this case russets. Here I have cooked potatoes until fork tender and then dressed with my favorite creamy ranch dressing of choice.
A tablespoon of both Dijon mustard as well as sour cream help to bridge the zest of the ranch with all of the less discernable supporting ingredients. The recipe makes enough to serve eight people as the perfect side to the perfect steak!
The Rest Of The Ingredients
Now we have perfectly cooked and seasoned potatoes and a creamy dressing, its time to add some extra ingredients.
Potato salad is a personal process, and there are lots of opinions out there as to what makes it perfect or the best. The recipe below is our version it includes everything we love, but remember that its your potato salad, so add what you like!
Celery and Pickles The celery adds a lovely crunch and our house isnt stable without dill pickles in the refrigerator so adding them is a no-brainer for us. If you dont like pickles in potato salad leave them out .
Red Onion I love the sweetness and crunch of red onion in this. To make sure that the onion doesnt overpower the salad with raw onion flavor, I deflame the onions. Its a simple process, simply add cool water to chopped onion and set aside for 10 minutes. The time in the water takes the raw edge off the onion.
Hard-Boiled Eggs Maybe its how we were brought up or what were used to but, potato salad without eggs is missing something. Hard-boiled eggs add texture and extra creaminess.
Fresh Herbs The most common herbs are parsley and chives, but dill, cilantro, and tarragon all work well. In our recipe below, we use both dill and parsley. Experiment for yourself to see what you love. Add a tablespoon at a time then taste. Also, remember dill and tarragon are a little stronger than other herbs so add accordingly.
How Long Can I Store Potato Salad In The Fridge
USDA recommends that if the potato salad was held in excess of 41°F for over two hours, then discard. To keep potato salad cold while serving for an extended period of time, you can fill a large bowl with ice then place the Potato Salad bowl in the ice.
Potato salad should be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator. When properly stored, it should easily last 3-4 days in the fridge if properly stored. If you made it and stored it for 2 days before serving make sure to discard after 2 days.
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Potato Salad Recipe Variations:
There are so many ways to customize this potato salad recipe, so feel free to experiment and see what you love most! For example, you could
- Add bacon: I will always be down for a potato salad with bacon stirred in.
- Add fresh herbs: Feel free to also mix any fresh herbs you might love chives, dill, parsley, basil, thyme, etc. into this potato salad.
- Add extra pickles: If you really love pickles, feel free to add in extra pickle juice and/or any other pickles you love!
- Omit the pickle relish: If you dont love pickles, just omit them entirely.
- Omit the mayo: If mayos not your fave, feel free to use full-fat plain Greek yogurt instead.
- Use different potatoes: Everyone has a different opinion about the best potatoes for potato salad! I say use whichever you love Yukon Golds, Russets, red potatoes all will work here. 🙂
- Use baked potatoes: Happen to have leftover baked potatoes on hand? Chop them up and add them in to make this a baked potato salad!
- Use different vinegar: If you dont love apple cider vinegar, feel free to swap in white vinegar or red wine vinegar instead.
- Use different mustard: If you dont love Dijon mustard, feel free to swap in regular yellow mustard or your favorite spicy mustard instead.
- Make it vegan: Just swap in your favorite vegan mayo to make this a vegan potato salad recipe.
Use The Right Potatoes
Its a pretty lousy feeling when you finish a potato salad, only to realize it bears a strikingly close resemblance to mashed potatoes. To keep your salad from falling apart into mush, its important to use the best potatoes for potato salad. Skip the russet potatoes and use a waxy variety instead, like Yukon gold, red potatoes or fingerlings.
Learn more about the right potato for every job.
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Dress Your Potatoes While They Are Warm
This might be the most important tip of all, and one that may be new to you, but dressing potatoes while theyre still warm is the key to flavor. When the spuds are warm, ingredients can penetrate the flesh.
Keep in mind, you should only add vinaigrette-based dressings while warm. If you add a mayo-based dressing, the hot potatoes will melt the dressing and the salad with be oily.
To add flavor to the potatoes while theyre still warm, toss them with apple cider vinegar and spread them out on a baking sheet to cool for at least 30 minutes before adding the creamy sauces and remaining ingredients.
This step guarantees great flavor, a buttery-soft texture and allows any excess water to evaporate, which ensures that the creamy dressings will cling to the spuds.
The Best Types Of Potatoes For Potato Salad
Lets start with the potatoes. What type should you use? Not Russets. Potatoes are divided into three general categories based on their texture: starchy, all-purpose and waxy.
Russet potatoes are starchy, which means theyll likely fall apart during cooking or when youre combining ingredients.
All-purpose potatoes, like white and Yukon Gold, are less starchy than Russets and will work. But the absolute best potatoes for potato salad are the low-starch, waxy varieties, because they hold their shape during cooking.
For the best results, use New potatoes, Red Bliss or Fingerling.
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How To Cook The Potatoes
We simmer potatoes whole in salted water when making potato salad. Here are our top tips for doing it:
Salt the cooking water. Its important to add a generous amount of salt to the cooking water. By salting the water, the flavor of the potatoes comes out. They wont taste salty, only like excellent potatoes.
Simmer, dont boil. When it comes to cooking potatoes for potato salad, theres no need to boil. When you do they violently bash against each other. Instead, bring the water with potatoes to a boil then reduce the heat to a gentle simmer. The potatoes cook just as quickly.
Potatoes are cooked when you can push a fork through the center. When they are done, drain the potatoes and add them to an ice bath, which stops them from cooking. After 2 to 3 minutes they are cool enough to handle.
While I love using skin-on potatoes for mashed potatoes, I like to remove the peel from the potatoes for this. Since I use small potatoes, peeling them before cooking would be a frustrating task.
Instead, I cook my potatoes with the peel on, let them cool, and then peel. Since the potatoes are cooked, the peel comes off easily .
Should I Cut The Potatoes Before Boiling
For more of a nutritional value its best to boil them whole to retain as much nutrients inside as possible. Boiling potatoes whole can also give you more uniformity and control of the consistency youre achieving without over cooking your potatoes. And cooking the potatoes whole will also make transferring from the boiling water a breeze since you dont have to use a colander to drain anything.
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How To Make A Potato And Green Bean Salad With Feta Vinaigrette
We love a big bowl of classic potato salad, but get just as excited with this simple salad of sliced potatoes, green beans, olives and a dressing made with feta cheese and sherry vinegar. For another mayo-free potato salad, take a look at our easy herb potato salad or try our easy green bean salad with crispy shallots!
We cook the potatoes whole then let them cool slightly and slice. For the green beans, we start with fresh and cook until crisp tender. Then to make the dressing, we whisk vinegar, olive oil, mustard and the lemon juice until creamy. Add the feta cheese, stir well then season with salt and pepper.
The real trick is to wait about 15 minutes before serving. In just 15 minutes the potatoes have a chance to soak up flavor from the dressing. The wait is worth it. This is perfect served as a side, but we usually enjoy it with some protein on top. Try baked chicken breast or some roasted shrimp.
Recipe updated, originally posted June 2013. Since posting this in 2013, we have tweaked the recipe to be more clear. Adam and Joanne
How Long To Boil Potatoes For Potato Salad
Cook your potatoes until theyre just right, not over or under cooked. Start checking your potatoes after theyve been boiling for five minutes by piercing the potatoes with a fork. If the prongs enter cleanly with a little resistance, the potatoes are finished cooking. This can take anywhere from five to eight minutes, depending on the size of your potato pieces. Wait any longer and the potatoes will fall apart.
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Should Potatoes Be Peeled
The pros for leaving the skin on your potatoes are manifold theyll give texture, an earthy flavour and added fibre to your salad, as well as saving you effort. But it all depends on your potato choice new potatoes are great for eating unpeeled as their skin is smooth and subtle, but larger, floury potatoes have heavier skin that sometimes requires scrubbing, so these are best peeled.
Likewise, the skin of sweet potatoes is thick and chewy in parts. Whatever your preference, remember that leaving the skin on any kind of potato wont do you any harm.
Verdict? Unpeeled to give the salad another dimension.
Additional Tips For Making Potato Salad:
The secret to this simple potato salad is that you must mix all the ingredients while the potatoes are still hot. It results in a delicious and creamy potato salad, with chunks and a tiny bit of a mashed potato feel.
The celery is optional but it does add a nice crunch. The onions are your other bit of crunch. Adjust proportions to your taste.
Salt and pepper your potato salad generously. You can always add more later, but potato salad does seem to soak up those basic seasonings.
If you prefer a bit of mustard flavor in your potato salad , simply squirt in a teaspoon or two of yellow mustard and stir well.
You can prep your eggs the day before by hard-boiling them and peeling them. I do this regularly. Then, I store them in a sealed container in the fridge until Im ready to make the potato salad the next day. Its so much easier to quickly chop up the eggs if they are already cooked, peeled and cooled.
When you are making a big batch of potato salad , I like to peel and dice my potatoes the night before. Be sure to use a sharp paring knife. This paring knife is my favorite, and at under $8, a bargain! Once they are diced, put them in a large pot and cover with salted water. Doing so will keep your potatoes from browning and again, save you time when you are ready to make the salad.
Whether you are making homemade potato salad for 50 people or for 10, you are sure to please with this delicious five ingredient homemade potato salad.
To serve 10 people :
To serve 25 people:
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What Potatoes Are Best
The very best potato salad recipe begins and ends with what type of potatoes you use. We love waxy potatoes like Yukon Gold or red potatoes, because they hold their shape as they cook and keep their firm texture in the salad while chopping and tossing with the dressing. However, if you dont have any of those kinds on hand, you can use Russets. Weve used them in this recipe many times and they work fine. Theyre just a bit softer and flakier than red potatoes or Yukon Gold, but taste just as delicious.
Do You Get Enough Vitamins And Minerals From Potato Salad
The classic potato salad with potatoes, celery, and mayonnaise is not as nutritious as this vegan potato salad recipe. White potatoes do not have the beta-carotene of sweet potatoes, and the limited ingredients in the classic salad make for a lackluster nutritional profile. This vegan potato salad recipe aims to be both nutritious and delicious.
Of course, no dish will fulfill all of the vitamins and minerals you need, which is why taking supplements to fill any gaps in nutrition is recommended.
While potatoes of any color are rich in potassium and iodine, you might want to supplement with minerals to help maintain the healthy blood pressure that potassium supports. Combining potassium with magnesium can magnify the health benefits of these nutrients and support not only arterial health, but also the health of your heart, bones and muscles.
About the Author: Sara Tercero is the chef behind the popular food blog BetterFoodGuru and the author of the cookbook Plant-Based Diet in 30 Days. Her specialties are veganized Indian-inspired curries, giant rainbow salads, and healthier Mediterranean and Mexican-inspired dishes. It is Sara’s mission to prove that plants are delicious and to help others cook and eat their way to health and happiness.
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How To Make Potato Salad
There’s more than one formula for a great potato salad. There are creamy potato salads, vinegar-based potato salads, warm potato salads, cold potato salads, and a world of add-ins to flavor up the mix. And then there are the potatoes: Russets, reds, Yukon Golds. We’ll take you through the different styles of potato salads, show you how to cook the potatoes, and suggest top recipes to try.
Try this recipe for Best Classic Potato Salad from Nicole Mcmom, and watch the video above to get all her tips for how she makes her favorite potato salad.
Easy Potato Salad Variations
While classic potato salad sticks with the tried and true cast of characters, Ive also seen potato salad recipes with red onions, bell peppers, artichokes, 4 oz. jar of Kalamata olives, peas, avocados, dill, celery seed, even curry powder.
Every homemade potato salad recipe boasting these ingredients claims to be the best potato salad so it comes down to personal preference. If you keep the basic technique and ratios Ive outlined in the recipe, you can have fun experimenting with all sorts of add-ins. Please let me know what other ingredients and topping you love!
Gluten Free Potato Salad: the ranch seasoning mix and all other ingredients except mayonnaise are gluten free. Mayonnaise sometimes contains gluten so you will need to check the packaging.
Dairy Free Potato Salad: If you are looking for dairy free, you can swap out the sour cream for additional mayonnaise. Mayonnaise is dairy free but not vegan as it is made with egg yolks, vinegar and seasonings.
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Potato Salad Safety Tips
Potato salad and picnics are a natural pairing, but picnic weather is often warm weather so here are some tips to keep everyone safe.
- Once the salad is finished being prepared, chill in the refrigerator for several hours 4 or more is best.
- Pre-chill the cooler you’ll be transporting the potato salad in with cold water or ice before adding the finished salad.
- Bring a larger bowl and make a nest of ice to place the bowl of potato salad in.
- Keep salad covered until service and remove once the buffet line has gone through you can always place it out later for seconds!.
- Keep the potato salad out of direct sunlight.
- Wondering if you can freeze any leftover potato salad? Sorry… the answer is no. Mayonnaise doesnt freeze well. Same with celery and eggs and the potatoes will get an off-color.
What Our Readers Are Saying
If you dont believe that our recipe helps you achieve the best homemade potato salad, take a look at what our readers are saying about the recipe! More reviews are in the comments section below.
Ive made this so many times!! Always so yummy and a big hit with even the pickiest eaters!! Pam
Best potato salad ever!! Melinda
Excellent. Tastes delicious! Its so much better than the potato salad purchased at the store. LouAnn
I LOVED this potato salad! Paula
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How To Make This Steakhouse Potato Salad Recipe
Because this is one of those on-the-spot salads, the method is designed to allow you to do everything in just about 45 minutes , you neednt worry about prepping anything ahead of time. The exception to this is the hard-boiled eggs which I like to prep at least an hour and up to 24 hours in advance.