Liam's Awesome Potato Salad

by LiamBean

I love potato salad. It goes well with other summertime meals such as burgers, corn on the cob, grilled fish or chicken or a wide variety of other outdoor fare.

My recipe isn't that different than others, but I have a few tricks that add burst of flavor to this otherwise somewhat bland dish. Unlike most recipes I don't use paprika. I use another pepper for color as you'll soon see. I also use nutmeg. I know this sounds odd; most uses of nutmeg come around winter in spiced drinks, but it really makes potato taste more like potato.


You'll need the following utensils to make this potato salad.

  • 3 or 4 quart sauce pan
  • 1 quart sauce pan
  • Colander
  • 2 medium sized bowls, stainless steel or glass
  • mixing spoon, I prefer wood
  • vegetable peeler
  • butcher knife


The following ingredients are required. If optional or variations on quantity can be used they will be mentioned on the same line with the ingredient.

This recipe makes four hearty servings.

  • 2 Pounds potato
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/2 Cup sour cream
  • 1/2 Cup mayonnaise
  • 1/4 Cup of Dijon or whole brown mustard (you want the purest mustard here)
  • 3 stalks celery
  • 1 medium red bell pepper. For color variation you can also use a yellow pepper.
  • 1 small onion (about the size of a lemon or 1/2 regular onion)
  • nutmeg (whole or pre-ground [see directions for differences])


  1. Peel the potatoes.
  2. Fill one of the bowls with cool water.
  3. Slice the potatoes into 1/2" discs then cut the discs lengthwise and then into thirds. You should end up with pieces about 3/4" inch. As you work with the potatoes move them directly into the bowl with water. This will prevent them from oxidizing.
  4. On the stove place your larger saucepan filled 3/4 to the top with water. Add the prepared potatoes and bring to a boil.
  5. Using a fork, at ten minutes* fish out the largest potato bit and see if you can break it with a fork. If not check in another two minutes and try again.
  6. Once the potato is soft enough to break with a fork (and no softer) dump the potatoes and water into a colander. Rinse immediately with cool water to stop the cooking. Place the now cooked potatoes into the bowl that once contained cool water and pop the bowl and potatoes in the freezer for rapid cooling.
  7. Place your two eggs into the small saucepan with cool water. Cook at medium heat (or flame) for fifteen minutes this will bring them to a boil and cook them through.
  8. Set aside another bowl for the vegetables you are going to add.
  9. Prepare three stalks of celery by cutting off both dried ends. Rinse the celery completely to remove any dirt.
  10. Slice the celery, lengthwise, about halfway down the stalk in three places. These should be roughly equal spaces apart. Chop the celery into 1/4" bits and place into the waiting bowl. Do this with all three stalks until completely gone.
  11. Cut the end off your red bell-pepper and remove the seeds and membrane. Cut the pepper lengthwise until you have 1/4" wide strips. Now cut those strips into 1/4" cubes and add to the waiting bowl.
  12. Dice your onion into 1/4" cubes and add to the waiting bowl.
  13. Toss the vegetables to mix them.
  14. Add 1/2 cup of sour cream, 1/2 cup mayonnaise and 1/4 Cup mustard. Mix the vegetables and wet ingredients.
  15. Check the potatoes. They should now be close to room temperature. If they are add them to the vegetable/diary mix above.
  16. All of this takes about fifteen minutes so check your eggs. If done remove the pan with eggs to the sink and run cool water into the pan until the eggs cool off. Peal immediately. Peeling the eggs into the pan will make the job easier and the water bath will prevent the shell from sticking to the egg.
  17. Using a fork and another small bowl mash the eggs until you have small bits of egg. Add the egg to the vegetable/dairy/potato bowl. You are almost done.
  18. Add 1/2 teaspoon of nutmeg. If using fresh (this is all I use) grate 1/4" teaspoon of the whole nutmeg into the vegetable/diary/potato mixture with a grater or microplane. With a spoon mix until just blended.
  19. Note that 1/2 teaspoon of pre-ground or 1/4 teaspoon of fresh nutmeg will bring out the flavor of the potatoes. If you want to add nutmeg taste add a bit more.
  20. Of course, taste the mixture. You want want nutmeg flavor and cant' taste it add a bit more. If you don't want the nutmeg flavor, but the potatoes "pop" you have just the right amount.
  21. Add salt and pepper to taste.
  22. Remove to the refrigerator for complete cooling.


Nutmeg is a perfect spice for potatoes. In most cases it simply makes the potato taste more like potato. But adding a bit more will give them an aromatic spicy flavor.

Whole ground nutmeg has more of the oil that imparts the nutmeg flavor to foods. This is why you use less of the "fresh" than the pre-ground.

Red bell pepper adds a nice flavor and color touch. The same is true of the celery. Both are also nice and crunchy. A great counter-point to the cooked potato. By the way; one medium red bell pepper has more vitamin C than an orange.

The eggs add a touch of color too and some much needed protein.

Of course the small onion is a perfect complement to the potato.

I use half mayonnaise and half sour-cream to prevent either item's flavor from overpowering the potato flavors.

I don't use paprika because it interferes with the flavor of the nutmeg. I use red bell-pepper for color and flavor.

Updated: 06/20/2013, LiamBean
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LiamBean on 11/29/2014

Great idea. I often use yogurt as a substitute for sour cream.

dustytoes on 11/29/2014

I like the idea of that sour cream, mayo, and mustard combo - but I would use plain yogurt for the sour cream. Also, I did not know the nutmeg secret either! This recipe sounds delicious.

Guest on 06/23/2013

Broccoli. That's an idea. Or even sweetcorn, perhaps. I just had some store-bought potato salad with my lunch which has parsley and chives in it. That was good, but not really the taste I was looking for.

LiamBean on 06/22/2013

You might try some water chestnuts, broccoli stems, or maybe even jicama. I've never used Jicama though. I have used frozen peas which added to the flavor profile in a positive way.

Guest on 06/22/2013

I wanted to learn how to make potato salad this season. Guess I just found my recipe. That sound delicious! Nutmeg is an interesting addition. However, as I don't like celery, what would you suggest as an alternative?

jptanabe on 06/21/2013

Wow, nutmeg for potatoes - I'm intrigued!

kimbesa on 06/21/2013

I never would have thought of nutmeg to go with potato salad! This sounds good. I like to use the waxy red potatoes.

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