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A Lighter Side for Labor Day: Greek-Yogurt Potato Salad

Photo by 4kodiak / Getty Images
Photo by 4kodiak / Getty Images

While burgers and ’dogs may take center stage at your cookout this holiday weekend, we think the side dishes are the real stars of the show—they are, after all, what’s most likely to fill your kiddo’s plate. Our go-to contribution for these alfresco festivities? Potato salad! Here’s why:

  • It’s easy and affordable to make a lot of it.
  • You can customize it to your taste: Olives! Pickles! Celery! Capers! Dill! Bacon! Sausage! Eggs! Goat Cheese! Sweet Potatoes! Warm! Cold! Chunky! Smashed!
  • Kids (of all ages) love it.
  • You can use yogurt or heart-healthy olive oil in place of mayo for a healthier dish.

Love the idea of lightening things up? Try this Greek-yogurt take on the creamy classic:



Serves: 6–8

Time: 25 minutes prep/4 hours chilling

  • 2 pounds potatoes*
  • 2 teaspoons salt, divided
  • 1 cup Greek yogurt (nonfat or low-fat)
  • 1–2 tablespoons mayo (light or regular)
  • 1–2 tablespoons mustard (yellow, brown, or Dijon)
  • 2 tablespoons pickle juice
  • ¼ teaspoon black pepper
  • 2 large stalks of celery, chopped (about 1 cup)
  • 4 dill pickles, chopped (for a sweeter salad, replace with 2–3 tablespoons sweet pickle relish)
  • ½ cup onion, finely diced
  • 4 hard-boiled eggs, chopped

* A great potato salad is all about the potatoes, so pick the right ones: Waxy varieties like Red, New, or Fingerling work best, but all-purpose Yukon Golds will also keep their shape and have a nice tender (but firm) mouthfeel. Avoid starchy russet potatoes, as they are likely to crumble and become mushy.


1. Cut the potatoes into large bite-size chunks and place in a large pot. Add cold water to the pot until the potatoes are submerged by an inch or two. Stir in a teaspoon of salt.

2. Place the pot on the stove and bring the water to a boil over medium-high heat, then reduce heat to a gentle simmer. Cook until the potatoes are just tender all the way through when pierced with a fork—you should start checking after 5 minutes, but it may take up to 8–12 minutes depending on the size of your potato chunks.

3. Drain the potatoes, rinse them under cool water, and set aside.

4. Mix the yogurt, mayo, mustard, pickle juice, a teaspoon of salt, and the pepper in a large bowl.

5. Add the potatoes, celery, pickles, and onion to the bowl, and toss to combine. Then add the eggs and fold together gently. Cover and refrigerate for at least four hours to chill and let the flavors blend—potato salad is often even better the next day!

8 More Tasty Potato Salads for Labor Day & Beyond

  1. Blow your tot’s mind with this purple potato salad by Tyler Florence—just cut back on the cayenne if your kiddo isn’t a fan of hot spice.
  2.  With diced avocado, bacon, and sour cream, this California-ized version from Taste of Home is like a cobb-taco-tater salad all in one.  
  3.  Chunky red potatoes, green peas, and fresh herbs quickly come together in this simple, fresh Food Network dish.
  4.  Southwest flavors rule in this roasted sweet potato salad with black beans and chile dressing from The New York Times.
  5.  Crispy roasted potatoes, garlic mayo, and a mix of herbs makes this Food Network Spanish-inspired recipe a winner.
  6.  Feeling fancy? Try this decadent lobster and potato salad, based on an Ina Garten recipe and engagingly described by Deb Perelman of the Smitten Kitchen blog.
  7.  The Smitten Kitchen’s Perelman claims this dilled potato and pickled cucumber salad with radishes is her favorite version.
  8.  A mustardy, bacon-studded vinaigrette defines German potato salad, like this tangy take from the FoodieCrush blog. It’s served warm, so save this one for your smaller parties.
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