French potato salad is a tangy, bright, and fresh side dish. It actually gets better with time as the Champagne dijon vinaigrette continues to marinate along with the tender boiling potatoes and fresh herbs. This recipe is simple, simply divine. Bring this to any potluck or fancy up dinner at home with this french potato salad and enjoy the praise that will come your way.
This no-mayo potato salad recipe was inspired by Ina Garten's Barefoot Contessa recipe. It has small boiling potatoes, fresh herbs, Champagne vinegar, and the classic fresh tangy comfort it has. The main difference is that this is a vegan version of her potato salad. This recipe does not include the chicken broth that is in her recipe from the Food Network but has all the flavor - it won't be missed trust me.
- Why Make French Potato Salad?
- This No Mayo Potato Salad is Perfect for...
- Ingredients for French Potato Salad
- Best Potatoes for French Potato Salad
- How to Make French Potato Salad
- Make the Champagne Dijon Vinaigrette
- Add Herbs & Toss Together
- How to Store French Potato Salad
- Substitutes & Variations
- What to Serve with French Potato Salad:
- French Potato Salad (no mayo)
Why Make French Potato Salad?
- Vinegar-based potato salad, no mayonnaise here!
- Small boiling potatoes are used, no peeling potatoes!
- Fresh herbs elevate; flavor burst and keeps it fresh.
- Great for most diets; it is gluten-free, grain-free, vegan, vegetarian, and no dairy.
- Stunning presentation, no "gloppy" mayo, or boring white palate thanks to two kinds of potatoes and a burst of green from the herbs.
This No Mayo Potato Salad is Perfect for...
- Picnics, barbecues, and potlucks - it can sit out and will not spoil
- Weeknight meals - it is fast and easy to assemble
- Meal planning - tastes best when it is made ahead of time
- Goes great with any grilled or smoked meats like Grilled Chicken Breasts, Grilled Tri-Tip Steak, or Smoked Pulled Pork.
Ingredients for French Potato Salad
The important part of this recipe is to use fresh quality ingredients. The earthiness from the fresh herbs and the zesty brightness from the vinegar-based dressing is simply the best ever. This easy recipe calls for the following ingredients.
- Small Boiling Potatoes - red, Yukon gold, white, or a combination is fine, these thin-skinned potatoes need no peeling
- White Wine - use your favorite vintage, just need a few splashes
- Champagne Vinegar - the key ingredient in the dressing
- Olive Oil -extra virgin is best
- Dijon Mustard -bold flavor & emulsifier in the dressing
- Fresh Herbs - Dill & Flat Leaf Parsley are best
- Green Onions - adds a kick of flavor & holds up well in the dish
- Salt & Pepper - the only seasonings you need for this potato salad
See the recipe card for the amounts & full instructions.
Best Potatoes for French Potato Salad
Small boiling potatoes are used for this. No need to peel any potatoes. I recommend using a couple of different kinds of potatoes for color variety. In this potato salad recipe, I use these dynamic duo packs by the Little Potato Company that I get from my local store.
How to Make French Potato Salad
Boil the whole small potatoes under fork tender. In a large pot with simmering water, it should take about 12-15 minutes for these potatoes to be soft. You do not want to overcook them or you will have mushy potato salad.
Once complete, drain the potatoes and let them cool just until you can handle them. You want them to still be quite warm when you slice them in half. If they are larger potatoes, they may need to be quartered. They should be bite-sized.
The halved potatoes go into a large serving bowl and while still warm, drizzle the white wine over the potatoes. This will allow the potatoes to drink in the white wine - pour a glass for yourself also at this time so the potatoes are not drinking alone! 🙂
Make the Champagne Dijon Vinaigrette
Mix together the champagne Dijon vinaigrette ingredients. The spicy flavor from the Dijon mustard really makes this potato salad dressing over the top. When combined, pour over the potatoes and mix to combine evenly.
Add Herbs & Toss Together
Chop the herbs and the green onions. Add to the potatoes and toss gently. The result is a deliciously warm, tangy, fresh, and comforting bowl of potato salad goodness. It is great immediately.
I do admit it does get better as it sits and soaks in more of the dressing. I am always disappointed when there are no leftovers because this is more delicious the next day.
How to Store French Potato Salad
As I mentioned, this potato salad actually gets better as it marinates and sits. Therefore, it is a great make-ahead side dish and perfect for lunches and meal planning. This is the best potatoes salad without mayo - helping also to store longer than other recipes with mayo.
To store this potato salad, place it in an air-tight container. It can be refrigerated for up to 5 days. Enjoy best at room temperature but it is fabulous cold right out of the fridge too.
Substitutes & Variations
This simple recipe is classic & traditional. I would not try and change it up too much. However, if you are in a pinch for an ingredient you may be missing, here are some ideas for alternate items & variations you can use.
- Tiny Boiling Potatoes - you can use larger red potatoes and cut them into quarters or bite-sized pieces after boiling.
- Champagne Vinegar - this may not be in your pantry but you can use apple cider vinegar instead.
- Dijon Mustard - use spicy or mild brown mustard instead.
- Dill & Parsley - these are the best choices for the flavor profile but you can also use a pinch of dried dill vs fresh dill. Also substitute it for other herbs like fresh basil, chervil, or chives.
This recipe is already vegan, gluten-free, grain-free, dairy-free, & vegetarian - no adjustments necessary.
Though both are recipes made without mayo, they are quite different. French potato salad has fresh herbs & a vinaigrette dressing. German potato salad is traditionally served warm in a bacon dressing.
Mushy potatoes or ones that fall apart when making potato salad are a result of overcooking them. If yours are mushy they may have been cooked too long. Also, DO NOT cut them before boiling them since cut potatoes will absorb water also resulting in a soggy texture. Always cut the potatoes after cooking.
What to Serve with French Potato Salad:
French Potato Salad (no mayo)
- 4 pounds small boiling potatoes two colors recommended
- 2 TB white wine
- 3 TB Champagne vinegar
- ½ C olive oil
- 1 TB dijon mustard
- 2 TB fresh dill minced
- 2 TB fresh flat-leaf parsley minced
- ¼ C green onions/scallions minced (white & green parts)
- salt & pepper
- Boil the potatoes in a large pot of boiling salted water, ensure there is about 2″ of water over the top of the potatoes. Cook about 20 minutes, until fork-tender. (do not overcook or they will be mushy)
- Drain immediately and let cook just until they are no longer too hot to touch.
- Once cool but still warm, cut each in half or in quarters if medium-sized.
- In a large serving bowl, add the potato halves. Sprinkle the warm potatoes with the white wine. Toss gently with a spoon so that all get some wine soaked into the warm potatoes.
- Let sit for about 15 min to ensure the potatoes cool more and all the white wine is absorbed.
- Combine the vinegar, olive oil, and dijon in a small bowl. Add a pinch of salt and pepper and whisk to combine the dressing ingredients.
- Pour the vinaigrette over the potatoes and stir gently. Top with fresh herbs and green onions. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Serve at room temperature.
- French potato salad can store in the refrigerator for up to 5 days in an air-tight container.
|Amount per serving|
|% Daily Value*|
|Total Fat 13g||17%|
|Saturated Fat 1.9g||9%|
|Total Carbohydrate 37g||13%|
|Dietary Fiber 4.1g||15%|
|Total Sugars 2.4g|
|Vitamin D 0mcg||0%|
|*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calorie a day is used for general nutrition advice.|
Laura Lee says
This looks so good and so easy. I love the fact that I don't have to peel the potatoes. Any time I don't have to peel something it's an extra WIN in my book!
Yes, a bonus for sure. This is an easy recipe that is so delicious - a total WIN!
These look amazing! I'm definitely going to try them out 🙂
This looks so good! I love potatoes so I'm going to have to try this recipe.
Melissa Parcel says
This looks delicious! I've never seen potatoes like that I'll have to look for them locally.
Nice variation on potato salad! I look forward to trying the tanginess of this one!
I’ve never heard of this before but just may try it! Thanks for sharing!
I love french potato salad! This looks like a keeper, especially with the fresh dill! YUM 😃
Ramae Hamrin says
I want to try this! I've never come across champagne vinegar before. I love potato salad, and I love the simplicity of this recipe! Thanks for posting 😊
This looks amazing! We are always looking for new recipes to try.
Rebecca Carbone says
My friend and s strict halal. What can I replace the alcohol with?
Hi - you can leave out the white wine. It is simply a flavor enhancer. The vinaigrette adds enough moisture to dress the salad well. I hope that helps and yo and your friend enjoy it.
Lisa Manderino says
What a great side dish! Would go perfect with any summer grill recipe!
Jennifer Morrison says
I love French Potato Salad! I have never made it,but used to get it in a little patisserie. I can't wait to try this recipe.
Karla Petersen says
I doubled this and made it for our neighborhood block party a couple of weeks ago. It was the first bowl to empty on the long table. 🙂 Fabulous!
Oh Karla, that is wonderful to hear. Thank you for letting me know and glad they all loved it. I love block parties, glad you have a wonderful set of neighbors to share this with.
This looks great! One to add to my list 🙂
Jen at My Average Life says
This looks ah-mazing! I can’t wait to try it.
Stacey Billingsley says
This looks so good! I love just about anything with vinegarette. Thanks for a great idea for a side dish to bring to gatherings!
Melissa Jones says
Great photos of your work!!
Thank you, I am starting to just get the hang of this food photography thing. I still have a lot to learn & practice but I am enjoying it more than I initially thought I would.
I’m not a huge fan of mayonnaise so this recipe looks like a potato salad I can enjoy! I can’t wait to try it.
This recipe looks amazing! I love potato salad and being vegan now, this is perfect. I’m excited to try the recipe.
Cindy, so glad you found a good vegan option. This one is delicious for everyone to enjoy and I cannot wait to hear what you think.
I LOVE potato salad! My grocery store has this amazing twice baked potato salad, and it's a regular feature in my fridge!
T.M. Brown says
I love that this does not use mayo because we have a son with an egg allergy. Definitely going to keep this recipe on hand!
I am glad you found something that would be wonderful for your son. I hope you all like it.
Dawnmarie @ EnjoyingtheDays says
Healthier alternatives to everyday dishes can be good to find. Also, frankly, some people are just not crazy about mayonnaise.
I am an "anti-mayo gal" for sure. I am always looking for options to classics without it and this is one of my favorite no-mayo recipes.
I usually avoid potato salad because they are heavy in mayo. This looks like a great alternative that I will be making soon.
Paula @ Mummy Vs Work says
These look amazing, we don't get such dinky potatoes that I have seen here but I am going to give it a try!
How can it get much better than champagne vinaigrette with baby potatoes? This recipe is inspired, yum, yum.
Very refreshing salad, ideal for a summer day picknick on the beach.
Also, I dislike mayonaise in potato salad and I've replaced it years ago with sour cream and chopped chives. It's also fresh like yours, only a bit more "goo-ey"