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Easy and Delicious Vegan Macaroni Salad (Oil Free!)

4.93 from 28 votes

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This Vegan Macaroni salad is a delicious, lightened up version of the classic dish. It will be a crowd pleaser at your next BBQ, picnic, or potluck! No one will guess that it’s vegan!

Bowl of macaroni salad with cloth napkin, red bell pepper, and celery in background

What’s a BBQ or picnic without a pasta salad? It’s a perfect accompaniment to veggie burgers, veggie kabobs, veggie dogs, and potato salad.

Classic macaroni salads call for lots of mayo. That means lots of fat. Not a dish anyone should consume too regularly.

But this dish, made with my rich and creamy vegan mayonnaise, has all the same taste, but only about a tenth of the fat. Making this a much healthier version of this popular recipe.

And oh my, this macaroni salad dressing is so creamy and delicious! Combined with the soft pasta and the crunchy vegetables, it’s fabulous! I can’t stop eating this salad!

Ingredients in this vegan macaroni salad recipe:

Closeup view of macaroni salad
  • Pasta – the most important ingredient. You can use macaroni, small shells, rotini, bow ties – whatever shape you want! Enriched white pasta, whole grain pasta, or gluten free pasta will all work.
  • Onion – you can use yellow, red, or green onions
  • Bell Pepper – I used red bell pepper, but you could use green, yellow, or orange
  • Celery – for some additional crunch
  • Carrot – for a bit of sweetness
  • Vegan Mayonnaise – I used my own recipe for mayonnaise in this salad. Other vegan mayonnaise is available to purchase in the stores. Some of these are Just Mayo, Hellmann’s, and Vegenaise.
  • Dijon Mustard – yellow mustard could be used instead
  • Apple Cider Vinegar – for a little tang
  • Sugar – I use organic sugar. You can substitute with your sweetener of choice
  • Dried dill
  • Salt and Black pepper

How to make vegan macaroni salad

  • Boil the pasta according to the package directions. After cooking, rinse the pasta in cold water, drain and transfer to a medium sized mixing bowl.
  • Dice the vegetables and add them to the bowl of pasta.
Bowl of pasta and vegetable for macaroni salad, with cloth napkin and bowl of dressing beside it, all sitting on a wooden cutting board
  • Mix together the vegan mayonnaise and the remaining ingredients to make the dressing. Add the dressing to the bowl of pasta and vegetables and mix to combine.
Bowl of ingredients for macaroni salad with dressing poured over the top, sitting on a wooden cutting board with a cloth napkin beside it
  • Cover the bowl and place it in the refrigerator to completely chill before serving.
Overhead shot of bowl of macaroni salad and cloth napkin sitting on a wooden cutting board

Tip: Make sure you don’t overcook your pasta. You want to cook it just until done, but not too soft. Nobody wants mushy macaroni salad!

What other add ins can I use?

Some of the other ingredients you might like in your macaroni salad are:

  • Green peas
  • Sweet or dill pickles
  • Cucumber
  • Zuchinni
  • Fresh or sun dried tomatoes
  • Coconut bacon
Bowl of macaroni salad with cloth napkin, red bell pepper, and celery in background, all sitting on a wooden cutting board

Can this be made in advance?

Yes! This macaroni salad should be made at least a few hours in advance so it has time to thoroughly chill.

It can be made the day before, and may taste even better than the first day, since the flavors will have time to meld.

How to store leftovers:

Store the salad in a covered container in the refrigerator for up to 4 or 5 days. The pasta salad may get a bit dry after sitting in the refrigerator. If this happens, just stir in a little water to make it creamy again.

This recipe does not freeze well.

Serving suggestions:

This vegan macaroni salad would be perfect served along with my BBQ Tofu, or my delicious black bean burgers, and my amazing potato salad!

Other salads you might like:

New to oil free eating? Be sure to check out my Oil-Free Cooking Tips for more ideas on healthy cooking.

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Two photos of vegan macaroni salad with pinterest title between them

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Bowl of macaroni salad with cloth napkin, red bell pepper, and celery in background

Vegan Macaroni Salad

Teresa Sklenicka
This Vegan Macaroni salad is a delicious, lightened up version of the classic dish. It will be a crowd pleaser at your next BBQ, picnic, or potluck! No one will guess that it's vegan!
4.93 from 28 votes
Prep Time 25 mins
Total Time 25 mins
Course Salad, Side Dish
Cuisine American
Servings 6
Calories 119 kcal

Ingredients
  

  • 8 oz macaroni pasta
  • ¼ cup onion finely diced
  • ¼ cup diced red bell pepper
  • 1 stalk celery finely diced
  • 1 medium carrot grated
  • ¾ cup Tofu Cashew Mayonnaise
  • 1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
  • 2 teaspoons sugar or sweetener of your choice
  • ½ teaspoon onion powder
  • ½ teaspoon dried dill
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon black pepper

Instructions
 

  • Boil the pasta according to the directions. Then drain and rinse in cold water.
  • While the pasta is boiling, dice the onion, red bell pepper and celery, and shred the carrot.
  • Mix together the remaining ingredients to make the dressing.
  • Place the cooked pasta in a medium sized mixing bowl. Add the diced vegetables and dressing, and stir to combine.
  • Cover the bowl and place the salad in the refrigerator to chill before serving.

Notes

Be sure not to overcook the pasta. You don’t want mushy macaroni salad.
Nutrition facts are calculated based on enriched white pasta and my Tofu Cashew Mayonnaise. Nutrition facts will vary based on your choice of pasta, mayonnaise, and other ingredients.

Nutrition

Calories: 119kcalCarbohydrates: 19.3gProtein: 5.1gFat: 2.5gSodium: 343.7mgFiber: 1.4gSugar: 3gVitamin A: 1881.5IUVitamin C: 6.57mgCalcium: 26.75mgIron: 1.28mg
Keyword Barbecue, Pasta, Salad
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!
By on June 28th, 2020

About Teresa Sklenicka

I love creating tasty, oil-free, vegan recipes that everyone will love (even non-vegans)! Here you'll find vegan versions of your favorite comfort foods, as well as some new tastes! Join me on a path to improving your health, helping the planet, and saving animals.

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