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Homestyle Macaroni Salad

2014 July 1
by Emily Hill

When my dad requests macaroni salad for his retirement party, you bet I’m going to scour the Interweb for the best homestyle macaroni salad recipe. I refuse to buy store-bought macaroni salad when we’re talking my dad’s heard-earned retirement. After doing a bit of browsing (and pinning), I settled on this macaroni salad from Favorite Family Recipes.

Wanting an excuse to taste test the recipe, I served it alongside steak for our family Father’s Day dinner.

Homestyle macaroni salad

It was a huge hit. Like, HUGE.

When I made it, I chose to leave out the carrots (kind of wish I’d left out the peas) and added diced ham, red bell pepper and tomato. Next time I think I’ll add in some diced dill pickle too. Heck, I may even throw in some diced avocado just before serving.

Homestyle macaroni salad

But I’m totally going to leave the dressing as is. It was perfect.

Printable recipe for homestyle macaroni salad below.

Homestyle Macaroni Salad
Prep time
Total time
Light yet delicious classic macaroni salad. This is my new go-to recipe for backyard barbecues and family parties. Huge hit! Adapted from Mom's Macaroni Salad on
Recipe type: Salad
Serves: 8
  • 1 (16-oz.) package elbow macaroni
  • 1½ c low-fat mayo
  • 2 T mustard
  • ¼ c low-fat sour cream
  • 2 T apple cider vinegar
  • 2 T sugar
  • 1 cup diced ham
  • 1 cup diced cheddar cheese
  • 1 red bell pepper, diced
  • 1 cup chopped celery
  • ½ tsp kosher salt (or to taste)
  • Freshly ground black pepper (to taste)
  • Optional:
  • ⅔ cup frozen peas, thawed
  • 2 carrots, grated
  • ½ cucumber, peeled and diced
  • ¼ to ½ cup chopped dill pickle
  • 1 to 2 roma tomatoes, seeded and diced
  1. Prepare macaroni al dente. Drain and rinse in cold water. Set aside.
  2. Combine mayo, mustard, sour cream, apple cider vinegar and sugar in a small mixing bowl.
  3. Combine macaroni with ham, cheese, bell pepper and celery (and any optional additions) in a large bowl. Add mayo mixture and toss until pasta is evenly coated. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
  4. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate overnight.
If macaroni salad appears a bit "dry" after being refrigerated overnight, add milk a tablespoon at a time until desired consistency.

Previous pinned & prepped features:

Caprese stuffed avocado
Cookie dough pretzel bites
Caramel snickerdoodles
Sugar cookie bars
NOEL Christmas banner
Crock pot refried beans
Taco Bell chicken quesadillas
Southern peach cobbler
Oatmeal chocolate coconut chewy cookies
Salted caramel butter bars
Hello Dolly bars
Brown sugar & balsamic-glazed pork loin
Brussels sprouts with bacon & walnuts
Glazed doughnut muffins
Crock pot chicken tacos
Brownie cookies
Peanut butter oatmeal chocolate chip cookies
Copycat Chick-fil-A nuggets
Slow cooker angel chicken
Slow cooker chicken & dumplings
No-bake peanut butter s’mores bars
Tomato basil Parmesan soup
Chocolate chip cookie n’ Oreo fudge brownie bar

Want to see what else I find “pinteresting?” Find me on Pinterest here.

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