Summertime means family gatherings, barbecues, picnics and at least around here, any of the above combined with a trip to the lake. At almost any of these events you’re sure to find a version of the ubiquitous pasta salad. It’s a perennial favorite, loved by young and old alike. Often taken for granted, but a sure crowd pleaser nonetheless.
This particular version was crafted by the lovely and ever-talented Mrs. Seat of her Pants (with a tiny bit of help from yours truly) for the first barbecue in our new home. It was an instant hit with our family and raves about her cooking were topped only by the Oooh’s and Ahhhh’s in regards to the pork that had been smoking quietly all day. (6 lbs eaten at one party… It’s a record for me.)
So it’s with wishes of a wonderful summer with family and friends that I present our family’s favorite macaroni salad recipe. I hope that whether you try this dish or not, your summer is filled with leisure, food, fun and times with loved ones that will be remembered for a lifetime.
Macaroni Salad with Cheddar and Pepper Bacon
- 1 lb macaroni noodles, cooked according to package directions and drained
- 1 large onion, diced
- 5 eggs, hard boiled, peeled and cut in bite sized pieces
- 1 small can sliced black olives, drained
- 2 cups sharp cheddar cheese, cubed
- 5 strips thick cut pepper bacon, cooked until crispy and rough chopped
- 1/2 cup light mayonnaise
- 1 cup ranch dressing
- 3 tbsp spicy brown mustard
- 1 tbsp smoked sweet paprika
- Salt and pepper to taste
Saute onions in a large skillet until browned. Remove from heat and allow to cool.
Add all ingredients to a large bowl and toss to combine. Place in refrigerator and allow flavors to marry for at least 3 hours or overnight for best flavor.
Serve and enjoy!
What I would have done Differently had I thought of it at the time:
Absolutely nothing. My wife made this dish and it was absolutely amazing. In fact, it managed to be on the table three times before it was finally devoured. It’s a family favorite and will remain so for years to come.
Do you have a family favorite recipe for barbecues or picnics? I’d love to hear about it. If you’ve got another recipe for macaroni salad, I’m sure we’d all love to hear about that, too. Just drop a comment.
Links to other recipes like this:
- Bowtie Pasta Salad with Caramelized Bacon, Cherry Tomatoes, and Gorgonzola Cheese, from Busy Nothings
- Shrimp and Macaroni Salad, from Kalyn’s Kitchen
- Mayo Free Salad Ideas: Quick and Easy Kimchi Macaroni Salad Recipe
, from Hugging the Coast