Grilled Potato Salad Recipe

This potato salad recipe is what happens when potato salad meets the grill. Grilled potato wedges are tossed with a vinaigrette finished with barely a hint of toasted sesame oil.

Grilled Potato Salad

Not to be a contrarian, but the standard deli-issued potato salad isn't really my thing. Potatoes as the center-point of a salad? Sounds great, I like the general concept. But all the mayo and mush you get with many American potato salads I can do without. I thought a grilled potato salad might be a fun alternative. My game plan: throw as many of the salad ingredient as possible on the grill, whip up a simple vinaigrette, toss and enjoy.

Potato Salad Recipe

The first decision I had to make was how to cut the potatoes - slices vs. wedges battled it out in my brain. Coin-shaped slices would cook more quickly. Wedges, well who doesn't love a potato wedge? And I knew they'd hold up better. I went the wedge route. Aside from the dressing and lettuce, I arranged everything else on a medium-hot grill - pattypan squash, green onions, halved lemons, and the potato wedges.

Potato Salad Recipe

I tossed the potato salad components with a rice vinegar finished with barely a hint of toasted sesame oil this time around, but I couldn't help but think about all the different ways you could approach this. For those of you who enjoy the hedgehog potatoes (from SNC) as much as I do - I'm itching to try a creamy version where I'd toss these potato with the same yogurt mint dipping sauce I use in that recipe. Or, I bet a harissa vinaigrette would lend nice color and flavor and go well with the grilled potatoes. Or, or, or - I think its tough to go wrong here...If you have a unique twist on potato salad, give it a shout in the comments.

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Grilled Potato Salad Recipe

When I went to grill the potatoes and squash I set each piece on the grill, I suspect you could also use one of those grill baskets with success as well. I also though about finishing this version with chopped jalapeno, cilantro and toasted sesame seeds - you can make it as simple or embellished as you like, depending on your individual tastes. I used a red-leafed lettuce here.

10 medium-sized new potatoes, unpeeled and quartered
3-4 small yellow summer pattypan squash, cut in half
1 bunch of green onions or spring onions
a big splash of olive oil
2 lemons, cut in half

1/4 cup rice vinegar
1/4 cup olive oil
clove of garlic, mashed and chopped
a couple drops of toasted sesame oil

1/2 a head of lettuce, washed and cut into bite-sized pieces

Toss the potato wedges, squash, and green onions with a bit of olive oil and a pinch of salt. Place them on a medium-hot grill. Place the lemons on the grill as well, cut side down. Grill for 10-20 minutes or until golden and cooked through - moving around the grill if needed and flipping to get color on all sides. The squash will likely cook faster than the potatoes, remove pieces and place on a platter when they are done grilling.

While everything is grilling, whisk together the rice vinegar, olive oil, garlic, sesame oil, and a couple pinches of salt. When the onions come off the grill, let them cool for a couple minutes and then cut into 1/2-inch segments. Set aside.

Toss the lettuce with a splash of the dressing, and turn it out onto a large platter. Now toss the vegetables (but not the lemons) with a big splash of the dressing and arrange it on top of the lettuce sprinkled with the reserved grilled green onion segments. Garnish with the lemon (which I like to squeeze over my salad just before eating for an added layer of extra mellow tang that goes great with the potatoes.

Serves 6 (or so) as a side.

If you make this recipe, I'd love to see it - tag it #101cookbooks on Instagram!

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This looks beautiful. I have always hated the potato salads you can get from the deli as well. They just don't have enough flavor for one . But I have to admit, that when I worked at a small cafe, the owner taught me how to make a "real" potato salad (with a majo dressing). It was 100 times better and full of flavor. I could eat her version anytime. :-) This one looks like a winner too.

Kimi @ The Nourishing Gourmet

Here's another variation - this is actually my take on a traditional North indian way with the tiny marble-sized new potatoes we get in early spring. Boil them in their jackets in salted water, then drain and toss them in hot oil (mustard oil adds a special bite) tempered with a red chili pepper, a couple of cloves of garlic. Let the potatoes brown a bit and then toss in lots of finely chopped fenugreek and dill leaves. Get it off the stove and into a serving dish before the leaves lose their fresh colour. You might want to add a pinch of sugar to counter the bitterness of the fenugreek leaves. Try it - it's great.


you know i never thought of doing it grill style, but i made it this smorning as a tester for the 4th of july weekend, my aunt loves the creamy version with mayo.. but she'll only use merical whip. i forced her to try this recipe and she loved it, although instead of the vinaigrette, i simply used olive oil and herbs. and on a major plus side.. you toke more then half the calories out of the dish!!! thank you for the creative dish!


Although this looks delicious, I'm not ready to give up altogether on mayo-based potato salads. I've made two that I adore - one with homemade mayo and tarragon fresh from my garden with new potatoes, the other with left over baked potatoes and cilantro - we were on a boating trip and had to eat what we had ad this hit the spot with everyone!

Michele Morris

Inspired. This is something my fiance' would absolutely love.


I totally agree about the mayo-y potato salad. It's much too heavy and hides all the potato flavor! I've been playing around with potato salads recently too. I made something similar but with roasted potatoes. I used a lemony vinaigrette, but I think the rice vinegar and toasted sesame oil sounds scrumptious. That'll be what I use the next time :)


What is this..Let's all hate traditional potato salad week? not me..I love potato salad. We have a tiny little potato here in the UK called Jersey Royals, and they make the most sublime salad with spring onions and a good tasty Mayo, livened up with a taste of french mustard. Must admit this one looks good though.

Jenny Mac

I Love this - My Hubby is very anti mayo so this is a great new version...Plus anything on the grill is a winner Cheers Cathy

Cathy C

Ah, grilling season is upon us! I was playing around with a salad much like this over the weekend -- I actually threw some herbs onto the grill too (for the record, I don't recommend that, other than garlic). Ours is a smoker/grill (one side is for smoking, the other for cooking). I did a version of the salad in each style, but the smoke was way too overwhelming. The grilled turned out really well though.

Becky And The Beanstock

I have a similar version I like to call "stones in the woods:" whole, boiled new potatoes resting on a bed of greens.

Aaron Kagan

My mother makes a gorgeous warm potato salad with unpeeled red new potatoes, crispy bacon, grilled green onion (scallions), and a garlicky homemade caesar dressing. Not good for vegetarians or vegans, but mighty delicious. There's something about it being warm....


What a wonderful idea. I thought I would have to swear off potato salad forever when I started eating healthy. I made this and I love it even more than my mothers mayonnaise smothered version. Thank you so much for sharing this recipe. Keep 'em coming. If you are interested in another great substitution, try swapping cauliflower for mashed potatoes


what a gorgeous salad! :D i'm croatian, and our potato salads are really simple: potatoes, red onion, a simple vinaigrette of olive oil and red wine vinegar. the potatoes are boiled unpeeled, which really does make a difference. do try it! :) i've enjoyed reading about other people's potato salads in the comments! thanks, everyone


I'm from the deep South, the capital of mayo potato salads and I just can't stand the things. I have nothing against mayo, per se, it's just that those particular potato salads have such a boring texture and zero flavor. I've been enjoying a grilled potato and red onion salad recipe that I gleaned from a magazine a while back. The recipe (so stinking easy) is posted at


This looks yummy, will have to try next time we're BBqing! When i make potato salad i toss the sliced cooked potatoes in a lemon-garlic dressing while still hot and leave to cool to warm in the dressing, which soaks into the potatoes. then i add a big handful of shredded mint just before serving, it's really fresh and tasty, great for mayo haters ;)

Jules Pickles

It's true what you say about standard deli-issued potato (and pasta) salad. If I can't tell what I'm eating, I really don't want to be eating it. I'm grossed out by mayo anyway. This potato salad looks wonderful. Thanks for the recipe!


Yum! The standard issue potato salad does nothing for me either, my favourite is roasted potatoes, cooled (make sure you get the right kinda potatoes, so they go crispy on the outside) throw in some quartered hard boiled eggs, some grilled or blanched asparagus pieces, mix up a whole grain mustard vinigarette and throw it over just before serving. I always make extra, cause my boyfriend loves the leftovers the next day, but it never seems to make it to the leftover stage. Liz from chilly Auckland NZ, definately not bbqing weather down here at the moment.


Yum-oh! this looks really great - my kind of salad!! Love the process shot of the vegies on the grill too - so beautiful to value the Journey is as important as the finished product.

Kyle @ Yumoh!

Wow--this looks splendid. I especially like the addition of the lemons. I might even get my potato salad hating family to give this a try. And, yeah, the standard picnic fare with all the mayo has never done anything much for me. Thanks!

Magpie Ima

I agree, the standard potato salads have too much mayo. This looks more delicious than the standard potato salad, and with more flavour.


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