Potato Salad Two Ways

Potato Salad with Fava Beans

I never was a potato salad person. I’m not sure why. I think it’s partly because when someone else makes potato salad, you’re not exactly sure what’s in it, and it’s just this mass of white lumpy stuff. Plus, people tend to add raw onions to potato salad, which ruins it for me instantaneously.

I went to Whole Foods to look at all the pretty produce to get inspired and they had these teeny tiny new potatoes that were begging me to buy them. They were about the size of walnuts, red and yellow, and completely adorable. Yes, I totally buy food based on how adorable it is sometimes. Don’t tell anyone.

All of a sudden I knew I had to make potato salad, even though I’d never made it myself. So I asked my contacts on twitter how they liked their potato salad. I think I got 40 to 50 replies, and no consensus at all. Some people like creamy, other prefer a vinaigrette. Onions and celery ruin it for a good number of people, others can’t eat it without. The only generalization I could come up with is that people are only guaranteed to like the potato salad they make themselves, and that even one offensive ingredient can ruin the whole thing.

That’s comforting for party planning, isn’t it?

I decided to make two very simple potato salads (simple but totally tasty), one with a creamy dressing and one with a vinaigrette. That way you can each take the base recipe you prefer and then add all the pickles/celery/hot sauce/red pepper/tomatoes/onions/sweet potatoes/celery seed/relish you want!

Fresh Fava Beans

Right next to the potatoes was a huge pile of (not so adorable) fava beans. I knew they’d make a great addition to one of the salads. They’re wonderfully green and nutty, but also fleeting! Grab them fast, because they’ll be gone before you know it. If you can’t find them, use shelled fresh edamame or shelled peas.

Fava beans do require a bit of prep work, so be forewarned. You need to shuck them, then blanch them, then remove them from their seed casings. It’s not hard work, but it does require you to set some time aside.

Potato Salad with Fava Beans

Potato Salad with Fava Beans
Serves 2-4

1 1/2 to 2 lbs New potatoes, halved
1 1/2 Lbs Fresh Fava Beans, or 3/4 cup Edamame or Peas

1/2 Cup Vegenaise Mayonnaise*
2 tsp Dijon Mustard
2 Tbs Fresh Herbs (I used parsley and marjoram)
1/4 tsp Salt
1/4 tsp Fresh Black Pepper

*This brand is highly recommended. It’s the closest to non-vegan mayo I’ve found, by far.

Whisk together the ingredients for the dressing. Refrigerate it until ready to use.

Shuck the fava beans by “unzipping” them and breaking open the pods. Blanch the whitish-green beans in boiling salted water for 2-3 minutes. Remove and rinse under cool water to stop the cooking. Use your nail to break open the seed cases and squeeze out the bright green bean. Set aside.

Boil the potatoes in well-salted water until tender but not falling apart. You can also cook them in a pressure cooker on the second ring for 4 minutes, using the natural-release method.

Let the potatoes cool, but not all the way. When the potatoes are still hot/warm, but cool enough to handle, mix them with the dressing and fava beans. Let sit for several minutes before serving to allow the flavors to blend, or refrigerate until ready to serve. I think it tastes the best at room temperature or slightly warm, so serving them shortly after preparing is best.

Potato Salad with Herbed Dijon Vinaigrette

Potato Salad with Herbed Dijon Vinaigrette
Serves 2-4

1 1/2 to 2 lbs New potatoes, halved

1/4 Cup Extra Virgin Olive Oil
1 tsp White Wine Vinegar
1/2 tsp Fresh Black Pepper
2 tsp Dijon Mustard
1/4 Packed Cup Parsley, chopped
1/8 tsp Red Pepper Flakes
1/2 tsp Paprika
1/4 tsp Sugar

Whisk together the ingredients for the dressing. A small blender like the magic bullet works well to help emulsify the dressing, but you can easily whisk it by hand. Set aside the dressing until ready to use.

Boil the potatoes in well-salted water until tender but not falling apart. You can also cook them in a pressure cooker on the second ring for 4 minutes, using the natural-release method.

Let the potatoes cool, but not all the way. When the potatoes are still hot/warm, but cool enough to handle, mix them with the dressing. Let sit for several minutes before serving to allow the flavors to blend, or refrigerate until ready to serve. I think it tastes best at room temperature or slightly warm, so serving them shortly after preparing is best.

For a little twist, you can reheat leftover vinaigrette potatoes under the broiler until crispy and heated through.

Potato Salad, two ways


  1. akahn

    Is mayonnaise dairy? I thought it was pretty much just eggs and oil.

    For some reason I was lumping in eggs with dairy!

  2. Mike

    Yum! I much prefer the creamy kind, with LOTS of celery ^_^ and a bit of pickle juice!

    I think roasting the vinaigrette one would be absolutely divine!

    Also, great photos as always.

    ps: @akahn it’s Vegan mayonnaise.which has oil, apple cider vinegar, brown rice syrup, soy protein, salt, lemon juice, and mustard. :) no dairy.

    The post originally said “dairy mayonnaise” instead of “non-vegan” in my little note about which vegan mayo I prefer. I think akahn was just wondering why I called it dairy when there isn’t dairy in it, just eggs. The non-vegan stuff, that is.

  3. Marianne

    The vinaigrette potato salad sounds excellent. I’m not a big potato salad person, because the creamy variety doesn’t do it for me (since it’s usually made with eggs). And I love that the vinaigrette one is so simple :)

  4. Andrea

    Both potato salads look wonderful, but I’m partial to the vinaigrette. I love the tangy-herby taste that compliments the sweet new potatoes without overpowering them.

  5. Millie

    Both of these potato salads look devine! These came at a perfect time, I have a family get-together on Sunday + planned to make potato salad. Now I need to decide whether I should make the creamy or the vinegarette… decisions, decisions…

  6. Valerie

    I prefer a vinagrette potato salad, but totally love my mother’s creamy – and only hers.

    Anyway, I’m going to make the yummy vinagrette recipe you’ve very kindly offered. Thanks.

  7. Jay

    I only had potato salad a couple of times and all have been creamy. I never had it has a vegan. Your recipes look delicous! I’m going to have to try them!

  8. emma

    I’ve had a similar salad to the vinaigrette one, only with olive oil and loads of lemon juice, sea salt, parsley and spring onions, awesome.

  9. Shelby

    I’ve never liked potato salad…but maybe that’s because I was little and it looked weird to me.
    That second recipe looks delectable! I love red pepper flakes and the simplicity of it makes it look so elegant.

  10. Carlota

    I jzt love your Potato Salad with Herbed Dijon Vinaigrette recipe..it’s amazing! I always was a Potato Salad Person. I’m at University here in Brazil, and when my class makes a barbacue, I’m the official potato-person. I gotta make potato salad and regular salad for 250 people..so I always make a lot of different types. They make this, so the vegetarians and vegans have something to eat with bread in the BBQ.

  11. Ksenia

    I used to eat potatos before becoming vegan, but then I began to look for information about traditional chinese medicine and the diet it recomend, ayurveda and macrobiotics, and no one of them recommend eating potatos. Since there, I replace them with sweet potatos, which flavor I also like more.

    I think I will try that recipes but with sweet potatos instead. I know that for most of potato lovers it’s going to be like a crime xD

    I don’t understand why all the vegan substitutes (like vegan mayonnaise) for non-vegan products are so expensive here, in Spain :(

  12. joan nova

    I’m not a big potato salad fan either but these certainly are enticing (of course, your photography is great and that helps…a lot!). I find the potato salad with fava beans very interesting but prefer the dijon vinaigrette dressing in the other.

  13. Jade

    I’m glad raw onion ruins potato salad for someone else as well! I much prefer the kind with vinaigrette – mayo makes it ‘claggy’, gross! Needless to say, I will definitely be making your version for potluck barbecues this summer!

    PS saying hello to you on ravelry, I’m champagnesoup :)

  14. allularpunk

    these both look great to me! and what a timely post… in the grocery store last night, my boyfriend wanted these packets of tiny new potatoes because they were cute, and ended up making potato salad with them later that night! (a creamy one, for the record.)

  15. Desdemona

    I, too, buy produce based on its adorability; who doesn’t? I especially can’t say no to the ones at WF that announce themselves as “Delightful Tiny Purple Potatoes.” I mean, you’d have to have a heart of stone.

    Anyway, having grown up with my mom’s VERY mayonnaise-laden potato salad that featured not only raw onions (I’m with you there; no thanks!) but chopped hard-boiled eggs (I know, I know!), I was never a fan, either. But both of these look great, especially the vinaigrette one; with the warm weather FINALLY arriving in Massachusetts, I see potato salad in our immediate future!

  16. Natalie

    *drooling so bad

    Mmm warm tender potatoes soaked in tangy vinaigrette or smooth and cool in a savory creamy coat.

    *dreamy sigh (haha Im using alot of asterisks)

    You ruuuule

  17. Pingback: The Hungry Cook » Blog Archive » Warm weather foods
  18. Minneapolis Cheap Eats Examiner

    You just keep on outdoing yourself! Never thought potato salad could be made appetizing. Still have some frightening memories of picnics in Minnesota and being force fed sour potato salad. Uck!

    Better yet, your version is much, much healthier than regular potato salad. Doesn’t look like a confusing lump of white either.

  19. sands

    These both look yumm, I prefer the non creamy version.
    There is another version you can make. Indian style, with yogurt dressing,, in case you are going the dairy route.
    Lovely pics.

  20. laci

    I have a similar recipe to # 1 but using sweet potatos, no beans or herbs, raisins, and a little agave nectar or maple syrup- potato salad is certianly a crowd pleaser, thanks for sharing the elegant recipes Lolo! :-)

  21. renee anne



    I have been a follower of your blog for some time, I just love your photographs!

    But for the first time last night I actually tried one of your recipes!
    I LOVED your instructions, you make it so easy to understand. I was super pleased with the outcome that I blogged about it, I hope you don’t mind!!

    Now I have to be brave and try some recipes from your back catalogue!!

    Renee x

  22. Bonnie

    These recipes looked so good they inspired me to make my own. I was going to make the Veganaise recipe but realized I didn’t have any Veganaise. I used Tahini instead and grill seasoning and oh my, soooo good. Thanks for the inspiration.

  23. Jodye

    Both of your potato salads look delicious! however, I’m feeling very partial to the Herbed Dijon Vinaigrette version. I could never seem to stomach mayonnaise based potato salads.

  24. Corey

    Someone once brought potato salad to our vegan potluck…and we didn’t realize til 30 minutes later that it was loaded with chopped eggs.

  25. Lizzy

    so this is pretty lame that i don’t know this, but hey, i’m a baker not a cooker. i know you said boil the potatoes until tender but not falling apart. can you give any sort of ballpark figure? can i walk away for 5 minutes, or will they be done before then? also, we boil them whole and THEN cut them, right? thanks! these look amazing.

  26. [email protected]

    I love both varieties, but if I had to choose one, I would make the herbed dijon vinaigrette in a heart beat. What a great rendition of it.

    And, I too, would buy food because it looked cute!

  27. Cristy-Lucie

    I work for avocados and I’m constantly criticized for putting them in everything I eat -but hear me out -using pureed avocado as a natural mayonnaise is really fun to experiment with. I like your creamy recipe so I’m gonna try it with an avo-mayo! And I love adorable food too, like those baby squash and zucchini -I can’t stand how cute those are!

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