Classic Creamy Macaroni Salad – Super creamy and delicious Classic American Macaroni Salad is the perfect side dish for cookouts and picnics! Made with fresh peppers, onions, celery and pickle in a sweet creamy sauce.
Macaroni salad is by far one of my favorite side dishes to serve big crowds. My recipe is super easy to make and is always a crowd pleaser! This salad is also great to bring to potlucks, baby showers, work parties, barbecues and more!
Loaded with finely chopped red bell peppers, green bell peppers, dill pickle, red onion and celery, this salad delivers a punch of flavor. But, my favorite thing about this salad is the sweet creamy dressing it’s tossed in. It’s absolutely mouthwatering delicious!
Pair macaroni salad with your favorite grilled meats- like bbq chicken, steaks, burgers, hot dogs and more! I will link some of my favorite grilling recipes to pair with this salad for you below. I served mine with my grilled chicken satay skewers and it was a really tasty combination!
Be sure to set aside about two hours of time to make the salad from start to finish. This salad will serve about six people, so if you are cooking for a crowd be sure to double the recipe!
Looking for more side dishes like my Classic American Macaroni Salad? I’ll link a few of my favorite classic American side dishes for you below!
How to store Macaroni Salad?
Store macaroni salad in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 3 days. In my opinion, this salad tastes best the next day as it allows even more to for the flavors of the sauce and veggies to develop into the macaroni. So, don’t be afraid to make this pasta salad a day ahead of time!
Ingredients you need to make Creamy Macaroni Salad:
- Elbow Macaroni
- Red Bell Pepper
- Green Bell Pepper
- Red Onion
- Dill Pickle
- Garlic Powder
Tools to have on hand:
How to make the most delicious Classic Creamy Macaroni Salad:
Boil macaroni according to package instructions. When done, drain pasta and transfer to a large mixing bowl.
Pour vinegar over the hot macaroni along with chopped peppers, onions, celery and pickle. Toss to combine and then allow pasta to cool completely.
While the pasta is cooling, in a small bowl mix mayonnaise, mustard, sugar, salt, pepper, paprika, milk and garlic powder.
When the pasta is completely cooled pour dressing over and mix to fully combine. Cover pasta salad and place in the fridge for at least an hour before serving. Enjoy!
If you enjoyed this recipe, here are a few more recipes I think you’ll love:
- Hawaiian Macaroni Salad – Creamy and delicious Hawaiian macaroni salad is an excellent side dish to serve with grilled huli huli chicken, pork and more!
- American Potato Salad – Classic American Potato Salad is the perfect side dish for your upcoming summer BBQ’s! Made with hard boiled eggs, this classic potato salad is creamy and delicious!
- BLT Pasta Salad – The perfect summer pasta salad loaded with bacon, corn, tomato, hard boiled egg, tomatoes, and kale in a delicious ranch dressing.
- Classic Egg Salad – Protein packed, simple and healthy egg salad recipe. Serve egg salad on its own, on crackers or as an egg salad sandwich.
- BBQ Bacon Baked Beans – Savory baked beans made with bacon, onion and peppers in a savory sauce with a dash of maple syrup. A classic barbecue side dish to serve with grilled meats, potato salad, coleslaw and more.
Here are some of my favorite grilling recipes to serve with macaroni salad:
- Filipino BBQ Pork Skewers – Delicious grilled pork skewers in a homemade sticky, sweet, and spicy Filipino style BBQ marinade.
- Grilled Spicy BBQ Chicken Thighs – Juicy grilled chicken thighs basted in a spicy homemade barbecue sauce.
- How To Grill A Whole Chicken On The Barbecue – Cooking a whole chicken on the grill gives the chicken a rotisserie like flavor that is unbeatable. At first, it came seem a little intimidating cooking a whole chicken. But, don’t worry, it’s pretty dang easy!
- Steakhouse Burger – Made with a juicy quarter pound ground beef patty, sharp cheddar cheese, grilled onions and mushrooms with mayonnaise and mustard.
- Avocado Turkey Burger – Anything but dry turkey burger layered with melted pepper jack cheese, lettuce, avocado, red onion, tomato and burger sauce between two toasty buns.
Creamy Macaroni Salad
- 1 1/2 cups Elbow Macaroni – Uncooked
- 1/2 cup Red Bell Pepper finely chopped
- 1/2 cup Green Bell Pepper finely chopped
- 1/2 cup Celery finely chopped
- 1/2 cup Red Onion finely chopped
- 3 tbsp Dill Pickle finely chopped
- 3 tbsp Vinegar
- 3/4 cup Mayonnaise
- 1 tbsp Mustard
- 1 tbsp Milk
- 3 tbsp Sugar
- 1/4 tsp Salt
- 1/4 tsp Pepper
- 1/4 tsp Paprika
- 1/4 Garlic Powder
- Boil macaroni according to package instructions. When done, drain pasta and transfer to a large mixing bowl.
- Pour vinegar over the hot macaroni along with chopped peppers, onions, celery and pickle. Toss to combine and then allow pasta to cool completely.
- While the pasta is cooling, in a small bowl mix mayonnaise, mustard, sugar, salt, pepper, paprika, milk and garlic powder.
- When the pasta is completely cooled pour dressing over and mix to fully combine. Cover pasta salad and place in the fridge for at least an hour before serving.