Hands down the best Vegan Macaroni Salad, made with all the classic ingredients and tossed in a simple creamy sauce. This picnic-perfect dish is sure to be a hit at every potluck!

large bowl with vegan macaroni salad, a spoon and blue towel in background

Macaroni salad is a must have at any cookout, barbecue or potluck, and today I’m going to share with you the absolute BEST vegan version. It’s incredibly creamy and flavorful, and is sure to be a hit at your next get-together!

Just like my Best Vegan Potato Salad, this Vegan Macaroni Salad is a classic summer dish that no one would guess is vegan.

It’s also ridiculously easy to make in less than 30 minutes. Chill for another 30 minutes (or longer, perfect for make ahead!) and you’re good to go.

super close up photo of vegan macaroni salad with red peppers, dill and noodles

Ingredients needed

In my perfect vegan macaroni salad, the main ingredients are:

  • Elbow noodles – Feel free to use gluten free if needed.
  • Celery
  • Red bell pepper
  • Red onion – May leave it out if you aren’t a fan.
  • Fresh dill – This is such a yummy addition, but you can leave it out if needed, or use parsley instead.
  • Sweet pickles – Or sweet pickle relish.
  • Easy creamy dressing – Vegan mayo, sweet pickle juice, apple cider vinegar, sugar, mustard and garlic powder.
bowl with noodles, red peppers, onion, dill, pickles and celery

How to make vegan macaroni salad

First, cook the noodles. Drain and rinse with cold water, then add to a large bowl. Drizzle with a little olive oil and stir gently, so the noodles don’t stick together.

Finely chop all the vegetables and add to the bowl with the noodles. Make the simple dressing in a medium bowl by whisking the ingredients together, then pour into the bowl with the noodles and vegetables.

glass bowl with noodles and other veggies about to be mixed up

Toss until everything is well coated. Cover and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes so the flavors can mingle together. Stir once more before serving.

noodles in creamy sauce being stirred together in a bowl

How long will macaroni salad keep?

Macaroni salad will keep for 4-5 days in the refrigerator, in a covered container. It’s the perfect make ahead potluck dish!

Serving suggestions for vegan macaroni salad

Looking to have a backyard cookout with all vegan options? Try any of the following recipes:

showing half a large bowl filled with macaroni salad on wood backboard

More potluck perfect vegan salads

white bowl filled with macaroni salad and blue towel background

The Best Vegan Macaroni Salad

Hands down the best Vegan Macaroni Salad, made with all the classic ingredients and tossed in a simple creamy sauce. This picnic-perfect dish is sure to be a hit at every potluck!
4.93 stars (14 ratings)

Ingredients 

  • 8 ounces macaroni noodles
  • 2 ribs celery, minced
  • 1/2 medium red bell pepper, minced
  • 1/4 small red onion, minced
  • 1/4 cup chopped sweet pickles, (or sweet pickle relish)
  • 1/4 cup minced fresh dill

Creamy Dressing

  • 1 cup vegan mayo
  • 2 tablespoons sweet pickle juice
  • 1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon granulated sugar
  • 2 teaspoons mustard, (yellow or dijon)
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • few shakes black pepper
  • tiny pinch garlic powder

Instructions

  • Prepare the macaroni noodles according to package instructions, then immediately rinse well with cold water. Add the drained noodles to a large bowl and drizzle with a teaspoon of olive oil and stir, so the noodles don't all stick together.
  • Finely chop the celery, red bell pepper, red onion, dill, sweet pickles and add them to the bowl with the noodles.
  • Make the dressing: In a medium sized bowl, whisk together all dressing ingredients until well combined.
  • Pour the dressing over your macaroni salad ingredients and toss until everything is well coated.
  • Cover and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes if you can to allow the flavors to meld together. It will keep for 4-5 days in a covered container in the refrigerator. Stir before serving and enjoy!

Notes

  1. I used regular macaroni noodles, but you can make this gluten free if needed by using gluten free pasta. 
  2. Feel free to leave out any vegetables you don’t like, such as the celery, red onion or red bell pepper. 
  3. Instead of apple cider vinegar, you may use red wine vinegar. Or lemon juice if you can’t have vinegar.

Nutrition

Serving: 1of 8 servings, Calories: 302kcal, Carbohydrates: 27g, Protein: 4g, Fat: 19g, Saturated Fat: 2g, Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g, Monounsaturated Fat: 1g, Sodium: 334mg, Potassium: 118mg, Fiber: 1g, Sugar: 4g, Vitamin A: 315IU, Vitamin C: 10mg, Calcium: 15mg, Iron: 1mg

*This recipe was first published June 2019 and has been updated with an improved recipe that is easier and tastier!

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