This deli style macaroni salad is perfect for backyard BBQs and holiday celebrations like Memorial Day, Labor Day and the Fourth of July!
Do you ever eat something at a restaurant – maybe a unique salad or a spectacular sandwich – and all you can think about afterwards is eating it again?
Maybe you go back to the restaurant soon so you can partake in it again, savoring each bite while wondering how they do it. Or maybe you try your hand at recreating it at home so you can have it again and again. And again.
I am having this same predicament with the deli style macaroni salad that they sell in our local grocery store’s deli section.
Mr. B. thinks I’m nuts. I have been purchasing pints of their macaroni salad every week when we go grocery shopping. He stands in line for turkey, I get 2 pints of macaroni salad two months and running. If they didn’t keep replenishing it I would probably have systematically eaten it all by now.
And it’s time to stop.
I took a little look at the ingredient list (not hard, since it’s printed on the label) and tried my hand at making a copycat version of it. Ladies and gentleman, I feel your pain if you’ve ever tried to recreate a recipe. Especially a restaurant’s dish where you’re guessing at the ingredients.
Even if you have an ingredient list to work off of, that doesn’t necessarily help. Celery – that part was easy. But peppers?
The genus Capsicum of the nightshade family (peppers) consists of 20-27 varieties. Each of these varieties has its own varieties (called cultivars). Ugh. I found this list of hot peppers which doesn’t include ANY of the sweet peppers, if you want to truly know how difficult my search was.
After trying a few kinds of peppers, including bell peppers and roasted red peppers, I created this deli style macaroni salad that is simple and delicious but very different from what my deli makes. I found a jar of pimento peppers that when drained were an awesome edition to the celery and mayo.
It is similar enough that I am still calling it deli style, but not calling it a copy-cat. I don’t think I’ll ever get it exactly the same without asking them for their recipe thanks to my pepper conundrum.
And Mr. B likes this macaroni salad better than what we bought in the deli. He said that one was boring in comparisson. That’s love for you. 🙂
Deli Style Macaroni Salad
- 8 ounces of macaroni noodles, cooked to package direction, drained and rinsed
- 1/2 cup diced pimento peppers (if in liquid, drain liquid first)
- 1/2 cup finely diced celery
- 1/2 cup low fat mayo
- 1/2 cup water
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
- 1/2 teaspoon white vinegar
- additional salt and pepper to taste
Combine all ingredients in a medium bowl. Mix well.
Add additional salt and pepper to taste.
Cover and refrigerate for 2 hours prior to serving.
Looking for more recipes, fit for a barbecue? Try this recipes:
- Potato and Egg Salad
- Grilled Chicken Avocado Salad
- Grilled Corn Soup
- Grilled Watermelon Chicken Panzanella Salad