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!
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:
- 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 oil free recipe for mayonnaise in this salad. Other vegan mayonnaise is available to purchase in the stores, but they all contain oil. 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.
- 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.
- Cover the bowl and place it in the refrigerator to completely chill before serving.
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
- Fresh or sun dried tomatoes
- Coconut bacon
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.
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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Vegan Macaroni Salad
- 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
- ⅛ teaspoon black pepper
- 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.