I really like macaroni salad in the summer, but I hate the store-bought kind as it tastes old and is usually too soupy. It is so easy to make your own that I do not know why people bother to buy the nasty stuff in the stores. There are so many variations on making macaroni salad that I will give you the version I like to make, but then in the 'tips' I will tell you some of the add-ins you can use to make it truly yours. Some people add black olives (which I hate, but which you may love!), grated or cubed cheese, pimento, frozen peas that have been thawed, or even tuna in order to make this more of a main course instead of a side dish.
Really, the sky's the limit when it comes to any kind of pasta salad as there are literally hundreds, if not thousands of ways to make these. However, this one is really good, sticks with a more traditional approach, and will get you raves of 'more' from your family.
Also, this is a basic guide as I tend to 'dump in a little of this and that' as that is how I cook! Please feel free to add or take away the things you don't like in this salad to fit your own tastes.
This is a large recipe as I am used to cooking for a crowd so don't be afraid to half this if you don't need such portions! If you are going to a cook out, then make the entire amount. Any leftover you can bring home for your family to finish off, but I doubt you have any leftover.
Lori's Macaroni Salad
16 ounces of elbow macaroni*
1 cup diced onion (I like mine almost minced)
1 cup diced celery (again, I like mine cut small)
1/2 cup grated carrots
1/2 of a green pepper, diced small
1/4 cup of pickle relish*
1- 1 1/2 cups Miracle Whip*
1-2 Tbls. of organic sugar or sugar*
1 teaspoon yellow prepared mustard
Real Sea Salt and pepper, to taste
4-6 boiled eggs, peeled
Cook macaroni according to directions on box. Drain; rinse with cold water to stop cooking; drain again; set aside.
Chop all your vegetables, then combine with 1 cup of the Miracle Whip.* If too dry, add some more. You don't want it soupy, but you also don't want it to dry out. Pasta has a way of soaking up liquids.
Combine macaroni with vegetable mixture and blend well.
If using 6 eggs, chop up 4 eggs and combine in salad, then slice remaining eggs and lay in a pattern on top of salad.
Sprinkle with paprika.
Cover and store in fridge for several hours so the flavors combine.
Serve and enjoy!
*Elbow macaroni is my preference; do not be afraid to use shells, rotini, or your choice of pasta.
*Instead of pickle relish you can chop up Gherkin pickles or use a spicy pickle of your choice.
*Instead of Miracle Whip, make your own favorite homemade mayonnaise, then add some mustard,
lemon juice, and sugar to make it tangy and delicious.
*You can use Rapadura or Succanat instead of processed sugar.
*Add ins: Cubed cheese, grated cheese, toasted canned peppers, black or green olives, frozen peas, diced green onions, diced red onions, 1-2 cans of tuna, well-drained, pimentos, capers, spicy pickles, chopped, Gherkin pickles, chopped, red peppers, diced, capers, a sprinkling of dill weed, snipped fresh chives, diced ham, shrimp, diced radishes...and the list goes on with your creativity.