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Classic Macaroni Salad

This easy, 4-ingredient Macaroni Salad is that classic mayo-based salad, a snap to put together and feeds a crowd. It’s our family’s favorite accompaniment to quick weeknight dinners on the grill, summer BBQs and potlucks, and big summer entertaining.

Course Side Dish
Cuisine American
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Servings 12 1/2 cup servings
Calories 290 kcal
Author Liz


  • 1 lb. elbow pasta
  • 1/2-3/4 red onion small dice
  • 1 1/4 c. mayonnaise
  • 1 Tbs. white vinegar
  • 1/2 tsp. kosher salt
  • 1 Tbs. coarsely ground black pepper


  1. In a large pot, cook the elbow pasta according to package.

  2. While pasta is cooking, dice onions.

  3. When pasta is cooked to desired consistency - should be cooked throughout - drain and return pasta to hot pot. Add remaining ingredients, stirring to coat completely. Taste and adjust salt and pepper or add more mayo as needed.

  4. Transfer to a serving bowl and allow to cool until warm or room temperature before serving. (As pasta salad cools, you may want to add a little extra mayo to your preferred consistency. I rarely do, but feel free. Just add a little bit at a time, tasting as you go). Or, refrigerate until ready to serve.

  5. Serve cold or at room temperature.