Julia Child's American-Style Potato Salad

“This is one of my favorite potato salads! I make this for parties all the time & get asked for the recipe. I have quite a few friends that claim to not like potato salad or anything with mayonnaise but they gobble this up.”
1hr 55mins
6 cups

Ingredients Nutrition


  1. Slice potatoes lengthwise in 1/2 or in quarters if very large; cut crosswise into 1/2 round or 1/4 round slices, about 1/2" thick. Put in a saucepan with just enough water to cover & 1 1/2 t of salt per quart of water. Heat to a simmer & cook for 5 - 6 min until just cooked through. (It is essential that they be cooked through!). Remove from heat & drain, reserving 1 c of the cooking liquid for later use.
  2. Transfer potatoes to a large bowl; stir together the cider vinegar with 1/3 c of the potato water or chicken stock & drizzle over potatoes, turning them gently to distribute it evenly. Let sit 10 min to absorb the liquid.
  3. Add the onion, celery, bacon, pickle, hard-boiled eggs & chives; season to taste. Top with 2/3 c of mayonnaise (or a mix of mayonnaise & sour cream) & gently fold everything together. Taste & add more salt, pepper or mayonnaise as needed.
  4. Cover & refrigerate for at least an hour; if it is refrigerated longer, bring back to room temperature before serving.
  5. To serve, line a bowl or platter with lettuce & mound salad on top. Taste again & adjust seasoning if needed. Decorate at the last moment.

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