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Classic Macaroni Salad Recipe

Macaroni Salad is a creamy, cheesy pasta salad. Learn how to make classic vegetable macaroni salad in a few simple steps.
Prep Time15 mins
Cook Time15 mins
Total Time30 mins
Course: Salad
Cuisine: American
Servings: 4
Calories: 786kcal
Author: Hina Gujral


  • Salad Mixing Bowl


Ingredients For Salad:

  • 400 gram elbow macaroni
  • 1 Cup fine chopped red onion
  • 1 Cup fine chopped red bell pepper
  • 1 Cup fine chopped yellow bell pepper
  • 1 Cup fine chopped cucumber
  • 1 Cup green peas, boiled or steamed (fresh or frozen)
  • 1 Cup fine chopped capsicum
  • ¼ Cup fine chopped parsley or basil
  • Salt to taste

Ingredients For Dressing:

  • 1 Cup plain mayonnaise 
  • 1 Cup grated parmesan cheese
  • ¼ Cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon white vinegar or wine vinegar
  • Juice of half a lemon
  • 2 garlic cloves, crushed or grated
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • Salt and pepper to taste


Prep Work For Salad:

  • Cook macaroni according to package directions in the salted water. Once cooked al-dente, transfer to a strainer, rinse with cold water and set aside to cool down completely.
  • Chop all the vegetables, herbs and transfer to a salad mixing bowl.

Prepare Dressing:

  • Whisk mayo, cheese, garlic, oregano and vinegar in a bowl until combined nicely.
  • Add the olive oil and whisk the dressing once again to mix nicely. Taste and season with salt and pepper accordingly.

Assemble Salad:

  • Combine vegetables, herbs and boiled pasta in a salad bowl. Toss gently.
  • Pour prepared dressing over the salad and toss gently to coat pasta with the dressing.
  • Taste and add more salt/pepper if required. Keep the salad in the fridge until ready to serve.
  • Serve vegetable macaroni salad chilled.



  • The dressing should be of pouring consistency. Hence, if required add more olive oil to get the liquid consistency.
  • Do not combine vegetables with warm macaroni. The vegetables will get steamed and lose their crunch. 
  • The salad dressing can be prepared in advance and stored in the fridge for 2 - 3 days. 
  • Let the salad chill in the refrigerator for 1 - 2 hours before serving. Mix gently once again before serving. 


Calories: 786kcal | Carbohydrates: 93g | Protein: 25g | Fat: 35g | Saturated Fat: 8g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 10g | Monounsaturated Fat: 15g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 31mg | Sodium: 814mg | Potassium: 631mg | Fiber: 6g | Sugar: 10g | Vitamin A: 1983IU | Vitamin C: 155mg | Calcium: 342mg | Iron: 3mg