The Best Vegan Potato Salad You’ll Ever Eat

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Just as creamy as classic potato salad but so much better for you and more flavorful! This mayo-free vegan potato salad features perfectly tender potatoes coated in a creamy, tangy dressing that’s packed with fun flavors and takes just 30 minutes. Perfect side dish for BBQs, potlucks, and picnics. 
Prep 5 mins
Cook 25 mins
Total 30 mins
5 from 94 votes

This vegan potato salad is guaranteed to make you the star of your next summer BBQ or potluck.

It feels funny to write that because, well, I used to hate potato salad. The potato salad I grew up on was dowsed in gloopy mayonnaise, served out of industrial-sized plastic buckets at school events and fundraisers. Yuck.

But, here I am, two decades later, sharing a potato salad recipe that I genuinely love. It features perfectly cooked baby potatoes coated in an incredibly creamy dressing that’s tangy and packed with so many fun flavors. Plus, despite being made without mayo, it’s perfectly creamy and indulgent while still being pretty wholesome.

Table of Contents
1. Why you’ll love this recipe
2. Step by step photos
3. Tips for making this recipe
4. Frequently asked questions
5. Watch: How to make Vegan Potato Salad
6. Recipe Card

creamy vegan potato salad with dilll in a white bowl on a green backdrop

Why you’ll love this recipe

Summer perfect and easy. Potato salad is a quintessential summer recipe, and I promise that one bite of this recipe will bring the taste of summer. Bring it potlucks, barbecues, and picnics! Plus, it’s easy to make ahead of time and can be made in 30 minutes.

For more perfect-for summer non-traditional salads, be sure to try my Roasted Beet and Fennel Salad, Sweet and Spicy Smashed Cucumber Salad, Instant Pot Pearl Couscous and Lentil Salad, or Charred Corn Salad with White Beans.

As creamy as the classic but better for you. This potato salad is made with wholesome plant-based ingredients but you’d never know it because it tastes so creamy and indulgent! Instead of mayo, the dressing base consists of tahini and coconut yogurt, two of my plant-based superstar ingredients. It’s naturally gluten-free, soy-free, nut-free, and has no added oil.

If you’re looking for more ways to use up tahini, my 30-minute tahini pasta and crispy smashed potatoes with ginger-tahini dressing are fabulous!

Way more flavorful than classic potato salad. A traditional potato salad always felt lacking in flavor to me (perhaps, I couldn’t taste the flavors because all I picked up was copious amounts of mayo). So, I carefully crafted this recipe to add lots of punchy and fun flavors.

It’s tangy from two kinds of mustard as well as capers, fresh and citrusy thanks to lots of dill and lemon, sharp from red onions and chives, earthy and vegetal from celery seeds, and has a unique kick thanks to jalapeño peppers.

Versatile and easy to customize. Whereas classic potato salad has to be served chill (warm mayo = disaster), this potato salad can be served warm as soon as you make it, but it’s also delicious chilled. For customization ideas, read the Frequently Asked Questions section.

How to make vegan potato salad

First, gather your ingredients!

flatlay of ingredients for vegan potato salad with ingredients labeled

Cut small potatoes in half (larger potatoes in chunks) and cover with cold water; season with salt. Simmer just until tender – a fork pierced into the potatoes should offer the slightest bit of resistance. Drain the potatoes and rest in the colander for 5 minutes to dry out but keep warm.

baby red potatoes steaming in a colander

Meanwhile, make the dressing. Whisk together the tahini, coconut yogurt, and mustards.

ingredients for potato salad dressing

Add in the garlic, lemon zest and juice, celery seeds, caper brine, salt and pepper. Whisk the dressing until well combined.

ingredients for potato salad dressing

Add in 1 tablespoon of the chopped dill and stir to combine.

woman's hands whisking dill into potato salad dressing

Coat the warm potatoes in the dressing, gently tossing.

woman's hands tossing potatoes in dressing for vegan potato salad

To the potato salad, add the capers, red onions, jalapeños (if using), and toss gently.

adding onions and capers to potato salad

Finish with the remaining dill and chives, and season to taste with salt and pepper.

adding chives and dill to vegan potato salad

Serve warm or chill for at least one hour.

closeup photo of vegan potato salad with dilll in a large white bowl

Tips for making this recipe

Pick small, waxy potatoes

For potato salad, you want distinct pieces of potatoes, not mushy blobs stuck together So a waxy, thin-skinned potato is best, as they have the least amount of starch and keep their shape when boiled. Thin-skinned potatoes also cook more quickly, and to keep things even speedier, I use small-sized potatoes (they cook in just 8 to 12 minutes).

The most common varieties of small, waxy potatoes to use in this recipe: baby red potatoes, fingerling potatoes, and new potatoes. At some grocery stores, you might also find “peewee potatoes” (also great and very cute).

If you can only find full-sized red potatoes, cut them into chunks about the size of the halved baby potatoes (see the photos in in the “how to make vegan potato salad” section for a visual reference). And if you can only find Yukon gold potatoes, these are your next best bet. They are not as waxy, but also not as starchy as Russets (I do not recommend using those in this recipe). Again, cut them into chunks.

Cook potatoes in cold water and season with salt

Cooking potatoes in cold water helps them cook more evenly. They’re dense little guys and require more time to heat through than most other veggies (are potatoes considered veggies? thoughts?). Adding them to boiling water can lead to mushy on the outside and undercooked on the inside.

And seasoning the water with salt is essential for a rounded depth of flavor. If you wait to add salt at the end, it won’t penetrate into the interior of the potatoes.

Don’t overcook the potatoes!

Soft potatoes are great for creamy mashed potatoes, but not for potato salad. For reference, I simmered these baby red potatoes for just 8 minutes.

Tip: To test whether the potatoes are done, insert a fork into a potato. It should give just the slightest resistance. You do NOT want to wait until they fall apart when forked.

Allow the potatoes to dry

I allow the potatoes to briefly dry in a colander for 5 minutes to drain off excess water. Drier potatoes will enable the dressing to better cling to each potato, making for a delightfully saucy potato salad.

Dress the potatoes while warm

The nice thing about making a non-mayo-based potato salad, is that you can serve it warm (if you wish). I love serving it warm after making it – it feels a little more grown up and elegant. And since we’re not using any egg-based ingredients, it’s okay to dress the potatoes while warm. Dressing while the potatoes are still warm helps them absorb more of the dressing and the flavors.

That said, if you have leftovers, this potato salad is also very tasty once chilled.

Ingredient Tips

For the coconut yogurt, I recommend using the best variety you can find, as it’s a key ingredient. My favorite coconut yogurts are thick and tangy: CocoJune, Culina, and GT’s CocoYo. I have purchased all of these brands at Sprouts and Whole Foods. And this should be obvious, but you need to use a plain, unsweetened variety (no one wants raspberry-flavored potato salad!

If you can’t find a good-quality plain coconut yogurt, you can use use vegan sour cream. My preferred brands are Kite Hill Foods and Tofutti. If using sour cream, you’ll likely need to use less lemon juice and salt.

For the tahini, my preferred brands are Soom Tahini, Seed + Mill, Beirut Tahini Sesame Paste, and Baron’s (affiliate links).

I include a range for the amount of dill, as some folks are big fans of dill (hi, me) and some are not. If you hate dill, obvi don’t use it (you can use flat-leaf parsley). Like dill but not love it? Use 1/3 cup. And if you love dill, use the full 1/2 cup amount.

creamy vegan potato salad with dilll in a white bowl with garnishes on a green backdrop

Frequently Asked Questions

What should I serve potato salad with?

Serve it plain and bring it a barbecue, potluck, or picnic!

If you want to serve it alongside other summer sides or salads, try this Instant Pot Pearl Couscous and Lentil Salad or any of the salads in this roundup of three vegan salads.

For a comfort food pairing, serve alongside my Crispy Baked Mac and Cheese.

And if you have my cookbook, The Vegan Instant Pot Cookbook, this potato salad would be FABULOUS with the Baked Beans in Chapter 2

Can I make this ahead of time? How do I store it?

Sure, if you don’t care to serve it warm, you can certainly make it ahead. It will stay good in an airtight container in the fridge for 3 to 5 days.

How can I customize this potato salad?

Glad you asked! There are lots of options.

Substitute the capers for pickles (see the “notes” in the recipe card). Swap the celery seeds with finely celery leaves (or thinly sliced celery).

Not a dill fan? Add some parsley for color and freshness instead. You can also replace the chives with thinly sliced scallions. Got baby mouth? Skip the jalapeño. Or for more tangy, add a spoon or two of pickled jalapeños.

For a nutrition punch, add 1/2 cup of blanched green beans or asparagus, or thinly sliced raw radishes, red/yellow bell peppers, or finely shredded red cabbage. The potato salad is quite saucy so it should be able to coat this amount of veggies.

closeup photo of vegan potato salad with dilll on a white platter

Watch! How to Make Vegan Potato Salad

The Only Potato Salad Recipe You'll Ever Need
The Only Potato Salad Recipe You'll Ever Need

If you love this herbed vegan potato salad, please leave a rating and review with your feedback and tag me on Instagram with your remakes :)

The Best Vegan Potato Salad

5 from 94 votes
Just as creamy as classic potato salad but so much better for you and more flavorful! This mayo-free vegan potato salad features perfectly tender potatoes coated in a creamy, tangy dressing that’s packed with fun flavors and takes just 30 minutes. Perfect side dish for BBQs, potlucks, and picnics. 
Prep Time: 5 mins
Cook Time: 25 mins
Total Time: 30 mins
Course: Side Dish
Cuisine: American
Diet Vegan
Serving size: 6 to 8

Ingredients

  • 2 pounds (900g) baby red potatoes, fingerling potatoes, or new potatoes

Dressing

  • ¼ cup (56g) tahini well-stirred
  • 4 ounces (112g) unsweetened coconut yogurt*
  • 2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
  • 2 teaspoons yellow mustard
  • 2 garlic cloves, crushed with a press or finely minced
  • 1 medium lemon, zested (2-3 teaspoons zest)
  • 3 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon
  • 1 teaspoon celery seeds (optional but recommended)**
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • Freshly cracked black pepper
  • ⅓ to ½ cup (5 to 8g) fresh dill leaves, finely chopped***
  • 1 tablespoon caper brine****

Salad ingredients

  • 2 tablespoons capers, drained
  • ½ cup (50-55g) thinly sliced or shaved red onions
  • 1 jalapeño pepper, de-seeded and thinly sliced (this is optional; keep the seeds in for a spicy kick)
  • 1 to 2 tablespoons chopped chives (or thinly sliced scallions)
  • Flaky sea salt

Instructions

  • Wash and scrub the potatoes but leave the peels on. Cut baby/new/fingerling potatoes in half; cut larger potatoes into chunks.
  • Transfer the potatoes to a saucepan and cover with an inch of cold water. Season generously with kosher salt. Bring to a simmer and maintain a decent simmer for 8 to 12 minutes until just tender. If the fork pierces the potatoes with the slightest bit of resistance, the potatoes are done.
    Note: For reference, the halved baby red potatoes I used took only 8 minutes.
  • Meanwhile, make the dressing. In a large bowl, whisk together the tahini, yogurt, Dijon mustard, yellow mustard, garlic, lemon zest, lemon juice, celery seeds, caper brine (not the whole capers), 1 teaspoon kosher salt, and pepper until well combined. Add 1 tablespoon of the chopped dill and stir together.
    Note: If the dressing is too thick, whisk in a tablespoon of cold water.
  • Once the potatoes are cooked, drain them in a colander (reserve a little of the cooking liquid in case it's needed). Let the potatoes rest in the colander for 5 minutes to dry out, but don’t wait until they have cooled down.
  • Add the warm potatoes to the dressing and coat evenly and well. If needed, add a spoon of the cooking water to bring everything together (I didn't need to).
  • Add the capers, red onions, and jalapeños to the potato salad, and toss again gently. Sprinkle the remaining dill and the chives on top before serving. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
  • Serve warm, or chill for at least 1 hour.

Notes

* If you can’t find a good-quality plain coconut yogurt, you can use use vegan sour cream. My preferred brands are Kite Hill Foods and Tofutti (this one is quite thick, so you might need to add a spoon of water). If using sour cream, you’ll likely need less lemon juice and salt. 
** If you don’t have celery seeds but have celery salt, substitute 1:1 and use ½ teaspoon kosher salt instead of 1 teaspoon. Or, add 3 tablespoons finely chopped celery leaves when you add the dill to the dressing.
*** Use the lower end if you’re not a big fan of dill (I love dill, so I use the full ½ cup)
**** Don’t have capers? You can substitute them with 1 finely chopped dill pickle and 1 to 2 tablespoons of the pickle juice.

Calories: 196kcal | Carbohydrates: 32g | Protein: 6g | Fat: 6g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 2g | Monounsaturated Fat: 2g | Sodium: 540mg | Potassium: 813mg | Fiber: 4g | Sugar: 4g | Vitamin A: 118IU | Vitamin C: 33mg | Calcium: 75mg | Iron: 2mg

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129 comments on The Best Vegan Potato Salad You’ll Ever Eat

  1. Glenn Reschke

    5 stars
    I’ve made this a couple of times. It’s really good — surprisingly good in fact. And satisfying.

    1. Support @ Rainbow Plant Life

      Awesome, Glenn. Thanks for your comment and for taking the time to review!

  2. Yolanda

    5 stars
    This is the best potato salad I’ve ever had. It’s elevated with multiple flavor profiles and the tahini gives such an earthy richness to balance the tart flavors. I’m so glad to be finished with the mayo salad mess. This is excellence. Thank you!

    1. Support @ Rainbow Plant Life

      Yolanda, So glad to hear you loved this recipe!

  3. Gina D.

    My curiosity was craving this recipe since I saw it on YouTube. I like the idea of mayonnaise free dressing sinceI never been a mayo fan. I did use celery salt instead of celery seed since I had it in my cupboard. I gave it a try and…SO GOOD! The dressing is the key. Had that umami flavor that I would not expect in a potato salad.

    1. Support @ Rainbow Plant Life

      That’s so great to hear, Gina! Next time, would you mind leaving a rating alongside your review? Star ratings are big help to readers who are thinking of making the recipe. Thanks!

  4. Savannah

    5 stars
    Wow! This was absolutely amazing. So so creamy. Thanks for sharing thia recipe!

    1. Support @ Rainbow Plant Life

      Thanks for the lovely feedback, Savannah!

  5. Abhaya

    5 stars
    Outstanding recipe. My family and I really enjoyed this potato salad. Thank you for a great vegan mayo replacement, Nisha!

    1. Support @ Rainbow Plant Life

      Awesome, Abhaya. Thanks for your comment and for taking the time to review!

  6. Lea

    5 stars
    I really wasn’t a potato salad kind of girl but this one definitely changed that! I guess the heavy mayo recipes always turned me off but this one is superb. It’s creamy, slightly tangy and has a nice crunch from the onions.
    The first time trying the recipe, I halved it but I think I could have done more potatoes for the amount of dressing. Otherwise it was perfect!

    1. Support @ Rainbow Plant Life

      Lea, So glad to hear you loved this recipe!

  7. Sara

    5 stars
    Best potato salad I’ve ever had; vegan or not!

    1. Support @ Rainbow Plant Life

      Thanks for the lovely feedback, Sara!

  8. Liz

    5 stars
    This is absolutely delicious!!!! I’m not a big dill person so I held off on trying this, I’m sorry I waited so long. Truly is the best potato salad I have ever eaten. Everyone needs to try this! Thank you Nisha!!!

    1. Support @ Rainbow Plant Life

      Liz, So glad to hear you loved this recipe!

  9. Stéphanie

    5 stars
    This potato salad is AMAZING, it is now my boyfriend’s favorite recipe !
    Every recipe I’ve made from Rainbow Plant Life is a sucess. It is flavorfull, well balance and there is always a little something that brings the dish to the next level. I love what you do Nisha :)

    1. Support @ Rainbow Plant Life

      We’re thrilled you and your boyfriend love the recipe, Stéphanie :)

  10. ae.vita

    3 stars
    I loved the video on instagram and I loved the recipe itself so I totally wanted to try the salad.
    Unfortunately, we didn’t really like the potato salad. It was ok but we were simply not as excited as all the other people here who wrote a comment.
    If I try it again I wouldn’t cut the baby potatoes in half but slice them like in a traditional potato salad.
    But nevertheless thank you for your great content, inspiring videos and so many great recipes!

    1. Support @ Rainbow Plant Life

      Sorry to hear that, Ae.vita. We’re glad you are a fan of the other recipes, though!

  11. Debbie McFadden

    5 stars
    So much flavour. It really is the best!

    1. Support @ Rainbow Plant Life

      Awesome, Debbie. Thanks for your comment and for taking the time to review!

  12. Charlie

    5 stars
    Just made this for a cookout! Super easy, super zingy, a perfect paring for your vegan burgers (and meat burgers!). I was out of celery, and celery salt, and seeds…so I subbed in a little parsley and some fenugreek to get the earthy counterbalance to to citrus zing!

    1. Support @ Rainbow Plant Life

      Charlie, So glad to hear you loved this recipe!

    2. Victoria Midiri

      5 stars
      This is AMAZING! I’m pescatarian and love your recipes, I own your book. This potato sald is OUT OF CONTROL with flavor. Bravo! Thanks again.

      1. Support @ Rainbow Plant Life

        Wonderful! Thanks for the awesome review, Victoria!

  13. Madonna

    5 stars
    I made this exactly per the recipe, and it was delicious!! All of the flavors blended together perfectly, so no one ingredient overpowered another. I dont think my jalapeno was hot enough, so I might add another half if I dont eat it all before I get around to it. This recipe is definitely a keeper which I will make often. Decadent, but easy to make!❤️

    1. Support @ Rainbow Plant Life

      Awesome, Madonna. Thanks for your comment and for taking the time to review!

  14. Brooke

    5 stars
    Delicious and addictive! The tahini and coconut yogurt made for an amazingly creamy dressing. With the other ingredients added, I was concerned that the dressing may be a little too salty, but once tossed with the potatoes and salad ingredients, the balance of salt and acid was perfect! This salad had so much flavor that I kept sneaking bites between meals. I am so glad to have tried this recipe; this is one of several from her blog/YouTube channel I have tried. Nisha has a great palate and the spices & seasonings in all her recipies are ON. POINT.

    1. Support @ Rainbow Plant Life

      Aw, thank you for the lovely review Brooke! So glad to hear you loved the potato salad!

  15. Claudia

    5 stars
    I found this recipe via twitter. Although I had to struggle with the language a little bit (I am German), I instantly loved this salad. It is amazing and a very good helper on my way to vegetarian (and future vegan) life.

    1. Support @ Rainbow Plant Life

      Awesome, Claudia. Thanks for your comment and for taking the time to review!

  16. Meagan

    5 stars
    Amazing! I used pickled jalapenos instead of capers. And pickled jalapeno brine for the caper brine. It was a really great salad! Thanks for sharing! It went so well with your citrus chipotle grilled tofu and grilled corn.

    1. Support @ Rainbow Plant Life

      Awesome, Meagan. Thanks for your comment and for taking the time to review!

  17. Tara

    5 stars
    This is a delicious potato salad. We will definitely be making it again. I can’t wait to make it again and serve it to guests. Super easy.

    1. Support @ Rainbow Plant Life

      Thanks for the lovely feedback, Tara!

  18. Brittany

    5 stars
    I just finished putting this in the fridge and the initial taste test warm was amazing! I could not be more satisfied with how it turned out.

    I didn’t add anything too wild, but I did change the process a bit.

    All the dressing ingredients went into the food processor (except the dill) and I blended it till creamy. I did use pickle juice instead of the caper brine. Once it was blended I added the dill (just took a huge grip, non chopped) and pulsed it a bit more till it was smooth. This included adding whole garlic into it, as I am not one for mincing. I found the sauce came out perfect and I poured it onto the potatoes.

    From there I rinsed the processor out and added onion chunks, jalapeno, green onion and pickles. I did a few pulses till it was “chopped” and it was golden to be mixed in!

    Bottom line is this is an excellent recipe, one that I think can be done completely through the food processor if you have one. It saved me loads of time and now it’s time to work on those tofu skewers!

    Thank you for this recipe. I am an avid hater of all Mayo and Vegan. So this hit the mark!

    1. Support @ Rainbow Plant Life

      Thanks for sharing, Brittany! :) So great to hear you are a fan of the recipe!

  19. Katie

    5 stars
    I am SO happy I made this. The recipe was easy, the sauce tastes amazing, and I felt like a kitchen goddess serving this up. It is great warm, which does feel wrong for potato salad, but I certainly felt a little more mature and grown up eating this in pjs while playing video games. Great recipe!

    1. Support @ Rainbow Plant Life

      Awesome, Katie. Thanks for your comment and for taking the time to review!

  20. Whitney

    5 stars
    This potato salad is insanely good. You must make it!!!

    1. Support @ Rainbow Plant Life

      Thanks for the lovely feedback, Whitney!

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