Southern Vegan Potato Salad

Easy Vegan Potato Salad

If you go to a cookout this summer, chances are there WILL be potato salad in the line up. Especially if you’re at a black cookout! In this post I’ll be sharing with you my version of a classic southern vegan potato salad recipe that’s just as good as what you remember growing up.

Southern Potato Salad has always had a chokehold on the culture, but the problem is it’s generally not vegan because it’s made using a number of different animal products. Let’s get into this good ol’ vegan version!

Classic Southern Vegan Potato Salad

Recipe Ingredients:

  • Yukon Gold potatoes
  • Rice Vinegar
  • Yellow Mustard
  • Vegan mayo
  • Sweet relish
  • White onion
  • Celery
  • Fresh dill
  • Smoked Paprika
  • Garlic Powder
  • Organic Cane Sugar
  • Celery Seed
  • Green Onion (optional)
Classic Southern Vegan Potato Salad

 How Do You Make Vegan Potato Salad?

 Making this Southern Vegan Potato Salad is pretty easy. You’ll want to start by prepping all of your ingredients. For this recipe, that means peeling and chopping your Yukon Gold potatoes so that they are roughly one and a half to 2 inches per piece. In addition, you can go ahead and dice up your white onion, celery, fresh dill and a green onion (if you plan to use it).

Once all of your ingredients are prepped, bring a large pot of water to a boil. When the pot of water is boiling, add your potatoes and allow them to cook until they are fork tender.

Classic Southern Vegan Potato Salad

Wondering what this means? You’ll know the potatoes are ready when you poke one of them with a fork and the potato easily slides off. It’s important not to overcook the potatoes because we don’t want our classic potato salad to be mushy!

Once the potatoes are finished cooking, drain the water using a colander and then rinse the potatoes with cold water. From there, use a spoon to transfer the potatoes to a large bowl, then pour the rice vinegar over the potatoes while they are still warm.

Classic Southern Vegan Potato Salad

Use a spoon to gently stir the rice vinegar into the potatoes then transfer the bowl to the fridge and allow the potatoes to cool for at least 30 minutes.

While the potatoes are chilling, add all the dressing ingredients to a medium-sized bowl. This includes the yellow mustard, vegan mayo, sweet relish, white onion, celery, fresh dill, smoked paprika, garlic powder, organic cane sugar, celery seed, and salt and pepper to taste. Stir everything together until the mixture is well combined and set aside.

Classic Southern Vegan Potato Salad

Once the potatoes are done chilling add the dressing mixture to the bowl with the potatoes and gently stir to combine all the ingredients together. It’s important not to be too rough because we don’t want the potatoes to end up completely mashed. Transfer the vegan potato salad to the fridge in order to set until cold. If you have time, overnight is usually best.

When you’re ready to serve this dish you can garnish with additional smoked paprika and chopped green onion for garnish and you’re done!

Classic Southern Vegan Potato Salad

Storage Instructions:

The best way to store your Southern Vegan Potato Salad is to keep it in an airtight container in the fridge. This recipe should keep for up for 4-5 days if stored properly.

If you’re wondering whether or not this recipe can be frozen, technically you can but I would not recommend it. The overall texture will change due to the added moisture, so it’s just not going to taste the same as if it were fresh. 

Vegan Potato Salad FAQ:

Classic Southern Vegan Potato Salad

What Makes Potato Salad Flavorful? Mine Tastes Bland? How do you add flavor to your homemade potato salad?

Making a flavorful potato salad is easy to do by creating a flavorful dressing to toss your potatoes with. In the recipe card below, you’ll note that I’m using seasonings such as dill, paprika, garlic and even sugar to add flavor to my vegan potato salad dressing. All of these ingredients combined help to make a flavorful vegan potato salad.

Adding flavor to this dish is all about the seasonings, in addition to the other components of the dressing that help to make this dish stand out such as the sweet relish and diced onion.

What kind of mayo makes the best potato salad?

My favorite vegan mayo to use to make this vegan potato salad recipe is the one from Follow Your Heart. It’s pretty easy to find, flavorful and reminds me of the real thing!

It’s also #PickyAssHusbandApproved! 😉 Alternatively, the vegan mayo from Hellman’s is pretty good too! I’ve even heard of some people opting to skip the mayo altogether and using a vegan sour cream instead. I haven’t tested this out personally, but if you think it sounds good be my guest!

Why do you put vinegar in potato salad?

Adding vinegar to potato salad adds to the overall flavor of the dish and helps to balance out the sweetness of the sugar and sweet relish also being used. Careful not to add too much though! Vinegar can certainly over power a dish if too much is used.

What is the best potato for this recipe?

Yukon Gold potatoes are the best when it comes to making a classic potato salad recipe. They are creamy, buttery and tender when cooked correctly. Can’t find Yukon Gold potatoes? Red skin potatoes are pretty popular too for making potato salad, so feel free to give those a try!

Can this salad be made ahead of time?

You can absolutely make this recipe ahead of time! I actually encourage you to do so to make sure it has time to set and the potatoes have a chance to become one with the dressing.

How can I add flavor to my salad without dressing?

Adding flavor to this Vegan Potato Salad without using the dressing would be pretty difficult because the creamy dressing is what makes this dish, so I would recommend using it to ensure you get the best, flavorful results!

Classic Southern Vegan Potato Salad

Expert Tips & Tricks

  • Careful not to overcook your potatoes. Mine took about 15 minutes to cook, but all stove tops are different so times could vary. After 10 minutes, may be a good time to begin checking on them. They should be al dente and slightly firm, but fork tender.
  • Allow your Southern Vegan Potato Salad time to chill. Warm potato salad isn’t so great, so when making this dish, be sure to prepare it in advance so that it has plenty of time to chill. Making it the day before you need it is always a good idea!
  • Use the right potatoes. the BEST kind of potatoes to use for potato salad are Yukon Gold potatoes by far. However, if you are in a pinch you can also use red potatoes as an alternative.

I know you’ll love this Classic Southern Vegan Potato Salad recipe! It’s creamy, savory and the perfect side dish to share with family and friends this summer. Give this recipe a try and let me know how it goes in the comments below!

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Classic Southern Vegan Potato Salad- Pinterest
Southern Vegan Potato Salad
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5 from 4 votes

Vegan Potato Salad Recipe

A vegan version of the Classic Southern Vegan Potato Salad, that's just as creamy and flavorful as the original!
Course Side Dish
Cuisine American
Keyword Salad, Yukon Gold Potatoes
Prep Time 30 minutes
Chill Time 1 hour
Total Time 1 hour 30 minutes
Servings 6 servings



  • Bring a large pot of water to a boil, then add peeled and chopped potatoes. Cook until potatoes are fork tender (falling off of the fork after piercing), for about 15 minutes.
    2 lbs yukon gold potatoes
  • Once the potatoes are finished cooking, drain the water using a colander, then rinse.
  • Use a spoon to transfer the potatoes to a large bowl.
  • Pour the rice vinegar over the potatoes while still warm. Gently stir to combine, then chill for 30 minutes.
    1½ tbsp rice vinegar
  • While the potatoes are chilling, add all of the dressing ingredients to a medium sized bowl. Stir to combine and set aside.
    2½ tbsp yellow mustard, 1 cup vegan mayo, ⅓ cup sweet relish, 1 cup white onion, 1 celery stalk, 1 tbsp fresh dill, 1 tsp smoked paprika, 1 tsp garlic powder, 2-3 tsp organic cane sugar, ½ tsp celery seed, salt, black pepper
  • Once the potatoes are done chilling, add the dressing mixture to the bowl with the potatoes and gently stir to combine the ingredients.
  • Transfer to the fridge to set until cold (preferably overnight).
  • Once ready to serve, garnish with green onion and more paprika. Enjoy!
    green onion



  1. 5 stars
    Tried this recipe out for our 4th of July picnic and it was a huge hit! We had to swap with red onion and Dijon, but even my non-veg guests were raving about it (the dill was the kicker) and it was the only salad with no leftovers afterward.

  2. 5 stars
    OMG!!! This was so good. This was my first time making VEGAN potato salad and it was definitely a hit.

  3. Sabrina Poppins

    5 stars
    This will be a new summer staple for my wife and I! I already can’t wait to make it again.

  4. 5 stars
    Absolutely amazing! We’ve been looking for a good potato salad since going vegan, and somehow this one satisfies both our Idaho and southern cravings! Well done, can’t wait to try more of your recipes.

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