This easy potato salad recipe with bacon and plenty of fresh herbs is super-flavorful. It holds up well on a buffet or at a BBQ/picnic since it’s mayo-free.
You can play around with the herbs in this recipe. They're great as-is, but if you've got a garden or fridge full of fresh summery herbs, just grab a handful and chop away.
Potato salad happiness
Potato salad makes me happy. That sounds basic, maybe. I don’t care. (Man, it’s good to be 41.)
My OG potato salad was a mayonnaisey number from Steck’s Delicatessen in Bridgewater, NJ. I’d sometimes go with my dad to buy a couple of pounds of it before family parties. At Gratzer parties we didn’t just throw a bunch of burgers and dogs onto the grill. You had to declare in advance, publicly, to a man with a note pad and pen, what you wanted. We had some big eaters in the family back then, so it wasn’t uncommon to hear an unabashed, “Two cheeseburgers and three hot dogs, with buns.” You had to declare your buns, too.
Still, everyone seemed to have room for potato salad.
The best potato salad recipe
These days I tend to make my own potato salad, and it almost always looks a lot like this one. Really good, gold-fleshed, bite-sized potatoes cut in half and boiled in salty water until tender. Maybe some crumbled bacon. A simple Champagne vinaigrette. Minced shallot. And a ton of herbs. A potato salad like this is super-flavorful but also feels kinda breezy and hot-French-ladyish to toss together. It holds up well on a buffet or at a BBQ/picnic since it’s mayo-free. What else do you need, my friend?
- 1 1/2 pounds potatoes
- 6 ounces bacon
- 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
- 1 tablespoon Champagne vinegar
- 2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
- 1/4 teaspoon sugar
- 1/4 teaspoon fine sea salt
- A few good grinds black pepper
- 1/4 cup chopped flat-leaf parsley
- 2 tablespoons chopped fresh dill fronds
- 2 tablespoons chopped fresh tarragon leaves
- 1 large shallot, minced
- Flaky sea salt
- Cut potatoes into 1-inch pieces. Place in a medium pot with two tablespoons fine sea salt and cold water to cover by two inches. Bring to a boil, then cook until as tender as you like, 10-15 minutes after boiling.
- While potatoes boil, cook bacon until crispy, drain on paper towels and finely chop or crumble.
- In a small bowl, whisk together oil, vinegar, mustard, sugar, fine sea salt and pepper.
- When potatoes are done, drain and place into a large mixing bowl. Add dressing and toss to coat. Stir in bacon, herbs, and shallot. Place in a serving bowl and sprinkle with flaky salt if you like. Serve warm or at room temperature.
The potatoes in the photo are these guys, which I found at Whole Foods.