Ken’s Basic Macaroni Salad Recipe

Ken’s Basic Macaroni Salad Recipe

macaroni salad

Here’s a simple recipe you can whip up for your next barbeque, picnic or dinner party. I don’t think I make an easier dish that is requested more often. It will set you back a whole 15 minutes; you can enhance it with virtually anything you have in your pantry, and make plenty. It goes fast!

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  • 2 lbs. of elbow macaroni or any fun shape you enjoy
  • 5 or 6 stalks of fresh green onions
  • 4 or 5 tbsp of mayonnaise
  • 1 or 2 tsp Dijon mustard
  • Sea salt and ground pepper
  • The Secret Ingredient (in this case, Tabasco sauce)


  • Boil the macaroni in your largest pot
  • Drain and rinse under cold water
  • Chop the scallions finely
  • In a large bowl mix the macaroni, mayo, mustard, scallions and plenty of salt & pepper
  • Add 4 or 5 shakes of Tabasco sauce and stir in thoroughly (tell no one!)
  • Serve immediately or chill overnight
  • It is good for several days, but will not last nearly that long
Ken Carlton is founder and editor-in-chief of Beyondish, a food review and storytelling website. He is the author or ghostwriter of eight books, including the award-winning memoir, THE HUNGER, the story behind Greenwich Village’s celebrity hotspot, The Waverly Inn. Ken wrote the "His Point of View" column for Cosmopolitan and appeared as a dating expert on OPRAH. He still muses about food, relationships and parenting at his website, Food for Marriage. A New Yorker and Parisian at heart, he has scripted conferences in Paris for CNN and Fortune magazine. Ken and his wife, a professor, split their time between Brooklyn, NY and Chicago. You can follow him on Instagram @foodformarriage



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