This classic Macaroni Salad Recipe is a terrifically flavorful side dish that’s sure to be a crowd pleaser at any gathering all year round. It can be made ahead of time which makes it perfect for picnics or potlucks. Easily make this macaroni salad in about 30 minutes and pop in the fridge until ready to serve.

Easy Classic Macaroni Salad Recipe |

Macaroni Salad

Summer is the perfect time to break from the boring routine. Head out for a day at the park or beach and pack a picnic, or make plans to gather together for a fun evening cookout while listening to the frogs and crickets create melodies that only summertime can bring. I don’t know about you but we sure do enjoy kicking it into a lower gear during the summer. The longer days and comfortable evenings create the perfect atmosphere for enjoying time outdoors, especially entertaining outdoors. It’s the best way to takes things slower in our book!

Of course the menu can always be simple. Simple is always a good thing, don’t you think? Food does not have to be fancy to enjoy time with friends and family. That’s why I like to fall back on the basics for menus when entertaining, like this classic Macaroni Salad Recipe.

Easy Classic Macaroni Salad Recipe |

This summery classic side dish, snuggled up next to the potato salad and deviled eggs, makes a regular appearance at any picnic or cookout gathering. Deservedly so. This Macaroni Salad is full of flavor with a medley of garlic, dill, Dijon mustard, and a little bit of crunch from a smidgen of celery and red onion. Plus it is such a simple recipe that can be made a few days ahead of time (if it lasts that long), then kept refrigerated until ready to serve. Recipes that can be made ahead are great for entertaining, aren’t they? Dishes can be done and ready to serve so when your guests arrive you can enjoy at the party too. So what are you waiting for? Let’s do the Macaroni!

Macaroni Salad Ingredients

  • Elbow Macaroni Pasta
  • Mayonnaise
  • Red Wine Vinegar
  • Dijon Mustard
  • Garlic Powder
  • Dried Parsley
  • Dried Dill
  • Salt
  • Black Pepper
  • Celery
  • Red Onion

How to Make Macaroni Salad

  1. Begin by cooking the macaroni pasta according the to package instructions. Then drain it and set it aside.
  2. Next, make the dressing by thoroughly whisking together mayonnaise, red wine vinegar, Dijon mustard, garlic powder, dried parsley, dried dill, salt, pepper, celery and red onion.
  3. Stir together the dressing and cooked macaroni pasta until combined.
  4. Cover tightly and refrigerate for up to 4 days until ready to serve.

Easy Classic Macaroni Salad Recipe |

What to Serve With Macaroni Salad

More easy pasta salad recipes you will enjoy:

Easy Classic Macaroni Salad Recipe |

Classic Macaroni Salad Recipe

Yield: 8
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 15 minutes
Total Time: 25 minutes

This flavorful favorite macaroni salad is perfect for picnics and potlucks and can easily be made ahead of time.


  • 1 pound elbow macaroni pasta
  • 3/4 cup mayonnaise
  • 2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 2 tablespoon dried parsley
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried dill
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1/2 cup finely chopped celery
  • 1/3 cup finely chopped red onion


  1. Cook pasta according to package instructions. Drain. Set aside.
  2. Whisk together all other ingredients to make dressing.
  3. Pour dressing over drained macaroni and mix to combine.
  4. Refrigerate covered tightly up to 4 days until ready to serve.

Did you make this recipe?

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Originally published June 19, 2014.