The Best Vegan Potato Salad

By Jessica Hylton -

This loaded Vegan Potato Salad is a phenomenal potato side dish that you’ll want to serve with everything! It’s creamy, has amazing texture, and is topped with divine homemade coconut bacon!

Vegan potato salad with coconut bacon.

I’m just going to call it ahead of time: With one bite, you’re going to fall head-over-heels in love with this Vegan Potato Salad recipe! It has a beautiful mix of flavors and textures that all come together to create one of the best starch side dishes ever.

Now, usually potato salad is thought of as a summer potluck recipe – and it is – but you can eat it year-round, too! In fact, this creamy potato salad recipe will have a place of honor on our Thanksgiving table. Seriously! Mashed potatoes are a Thanksgiving classic, it’s true, but you won’t even miss them once you try your first forkful of these potatoes. So, consider forgoing tradition just this once! (Or you could make this the new tradition… just an idea. 🙂 )

Anyway, these tender potatoes are mixed in with tangy dijon mustard, diced red onion, paprika, and a number of other spices. As if all that wasn’t already divine, the cherry on top is the coconut bacon, which we’ll get to in a bit.

But, for now, start adding this vegan potato salad to the upcoming holiday menu plans and ready yourself for some rave reviews!

Potato salad with red onion and coconut bacon.

Why I Love This Recipe

Having a good potato salad recipe like this one on hand is essential for a couple of reasons. For one, it goes with just about every high-protein meal you can think of. For another, it takes about 20 minutes to prep.

Here are four more reasons as to why I love this recipe so much:

  • It’s Easy to Make: Basically all you have to do is cook the potatoes, and then combine them with the other ingredients. Making the coconut bacon is also super easy – just combine the ingredients and bake. Simple!
  • It’s Fairly Healthy: With vegan potato salad, you get to skip all the sour cream, the excess mayo, etc. It’s still creamy, but not excessively so.
  • It’s Perfect for All Occasions: We like to serve this vegan potato salad during the holidays, but it’s also good for summer BBQs/potlucks, weeknight dinners, etc.
  • It Has Coconut Bacon: In other words, it’s flavorful with a capital F! Friends, if you haven’t tried coconut bacon, you’re in for quite a treat. These salty, briny, and crunchy vegan bacon bits add a beautiful texture to the potato salad, and take it to a whole new level of delicious! I promise this bacon is such a keeper that you’ll be making it again and again.

Notes on Ingredients

Okay, it’s time to go grab all these ingredients, and get to making this beauty! Here’s what you’ll need to make vegan potato salad with coconut bacon:

For the Potato Salad

  • Potatoes: You can use red or yellow potatoes, whichever you prefer.
  • Onion: I like red onion in this salad for its slight spiciness.
  • Mustard: Tangy dijon mustard adds some kick to these potatoes!
  • Relish: I also like to mix in organic relish for added savory flavor.
  • Spices/Seasoning: Add in paprika, garlic powder, sea salt, and ground black pepper.
  • Mayonnaise: Vegan mayonnaise makes this potato salad perfectly creamy! We don’t add that much vegan mayo, but feel free to add the amount you desire.

For the Coconut Bacon

  • Unsweetened Coconut Flakes: These will act as your “bacon bits.”
  • Liquid Aminos: To help the coconut bacon achieve just the right amount of saltiness.
  • Liquid Smoke: To add a little smoky flavor.
  • Maple Syrup: For a little delicious, sugary sweetness!
  • Smoked Paprika: For color. (I love adding smoked paprika because it adds a depth of flavor that I’m not used to in most potato salads.)

How to Make Vegan Potato Salad

As I mentioned earlier, making vegan potato salad is a breeze. Start by boiling the potatoes, then let them cool. Add in the onions, condiments, and spices, and finally, stir it all together – that’s it for the base of the potato salad. Honestly!!

Here are all of the steps in a little more detail:

Make the Salad

Cook the Potatoes: Bring a pot of well salted water to a low boil or a gentle simmer. Add in the potatoes and cook for about 8 to 12 minutes, then drain and rinse the potatoes and transfer them to a large bowl.

Add the Rest of the Ingredients: Once the potatoes have cooled, add all the other ingredients to it. Gently fold the salad to combine everything. Taste and adjust any ingredients best on your preferred taste.

Make the Vegan Bacon

Preheat the Oven to 350°F/175°C: Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or a silicone mat.

Combine the Bacon Ingredients: Place the coconut flakes in a large bowl. Mix together the liquid aminos, liquid smoke, maple syrup, and paprika, and pour this over the coconut flakes. Toss gently to combine until all the coconut flakes are coated.

Bake: Spread out evenly onto the baking sheet. Bake for 12 minutes. Remove from the oven and let the baking sheet cool completely. Add the coconut bacon to the potato salad right before serving – either on top, mixed in as a filling, or both. Serve and enjoy!

Tips for Success

This vegan potato salad has a little of everything! Sweetness, spiciness, saltiness, savoriness… am I forgetting other -nesses?

Regardless of how you choose to describe it, I’ve got some tips that make the cooking process for these potatoes even easier:

  • How to Know When the Potatoes are Done: Boil the potatoes until they’re tender when pierced with a fork, but not too soft (if you cook them for too long, you’ll end up with mashed potatoes).
  • Slice Your Potatoes Before Boiling: They cook faster this way, and you also don’t have to worry about smushing them while trying to slice them later.
  • Can I Do More Add-Ins? Sure! If you feel like your potato salad needs something like chopped celery or corn, go for it!
  • Adjust the Spices/Ingredients to Your Preferences: You might decide the salad needs a touch more paprika, a dash more of salt, etc. You can also add vegan mayo, or use less to start with, depending on how creamy you like your potato salad to be. Feel free to experiment!
A plate of creamy potato salad with red onions.

Serving Suggestions

Okay… now that you’ve got some perfectly-seasoned potato salad, what should you serve it with?

My thoughts on the matter:

A serving dish with vegan potato salad on it.

How to Store Leftovers

Keep your leftover vegan potato salad in the fridge, in an airtight container, for 2-3 days. It makes a great light lunch, and you can add more veggies to make it more filling if you like.

Can I Freeze This?

It won’t taste quite like it did when you made it fresh, but yes, you can freeze this homemade potato salad. Save it in a tightly-sealed freezer bag or airtight container, and freeze for 1-2 months.

A spoon on a plate of potato salad, sprinkled with paprika.

Enjoy friends! If you make this Vegan Potato Salad, please snap a photo and tag #jessicainthekitchen on Instagram! We’d also love it if you would leave a comment below, and give the recipe a rating! Thanks so much!

Vegan potato salad with coconut bacon.

Loaded Vegan Potato Salad with Coconut Bacon

This loaded Vegan Potato Salad is a phenomenal potato side dish that you'll want to serve with everything! It’s creamy, has amazing texture, and is topped with divine homemade coconut bacon!
by: Jessica in the Kitchen
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 25 minutes
Total Time 45 minutes
Servings 7 servings
Course Salads, Sides
Cuisine American
Ingredients

Loaded Vegan Potato Salad

  • 2 lbs potatoes cubed
  • ½ medium red onion 74g
  • 2 tablespoons dijon mustard
  • 3 tablespoons organic relish
  • ½ teaspoon paprika
  • ½ teaspoon garlic powder
  • ½ teaspoon sea salt
  • ½ teaspoon ground black pepper
  • ¼ to ½ cup vegan mayonnaise

Coconut Bacon

  • 2 cups unsweetened coconut flakes – I use this brand
  • 2 tablespoons liquid aminos
  • 1 tablespoon liquid smoke
  • 1 tablespoon maple syrup
  • 1/4 tsp smoked paprika for colour
Instructions

Instructions

Loaded Vegan Potato Salad

  • Bring a pot of well salted water to a low boil or a gentle simmer. Add in the potatoes and cook for about 8 to 12 minutes, until potatoes are tender when pierced with a fork but not too soft (else you’ll end up with mashed potatoes). Drain and rinse the potatoes and transfer them to a large bowl.
  • Once the potatoes have cooled, add all the other ingredients to it. Gently fold to combine. Taste and adjust any ingredients best on your preferred taste.

Coconut Bacon

  • Preheat your oven to 350 ° F/175 ° C . Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or a silicone mat.
  • In a large bowl place the coconut flakes.
  • Mix together the liquid aminos, liquid smoke, maple syrup and paprika and pour over the coconut flakes. Toss gently to combine until all the coconut flakes are coated. Spread out evenly onto the baking sheet.
  • Bake for 12 minutes. Remove from the oven and let cool completely.

Putting it all together

  • Add the coconut bacon to the potato salad right before serving, either on top, to the filling, or both. Serve and enjoy!
NOTES
  • How to Know When the Potatoes are Done: Boil the potatoes until they’re tender when pierced with a fork, but not too soft (if you cook them for too long, you’ll end up with mashed potatoes).
  • Slice Your Potatoes Before Boiling: They cook faster this way, and you also don’t have to worry about smushing them while trying to slice them later.
  • Can I Do More Add-Ins? Sure! If you feel like your potato salad needs something like chopped celery or corn, go for it!
  • Adjust the Spices/Ingredients to Your Preferences: You might decide the salad needs a touch more paprika, a dash more of salt, etc. You can also add vegan mayo, or use less to start with, depending on how creamy you like your potato salad to be. Feel free to experiment!
  • Storage: Keep your leftover vegan potato salad in the fridge, in an airtight container, for 2-3 days.
 
 
 
 

Nutrition

Calories: 336kcal | Carbohydrates: 34g | Protein: 5g | Fat: 21g | Saturated Fat: 15g | Sodium: 627mg | Potassium: 701mg | Fiber: 7g | Sugar: 5g | Vitamin A: 116IU | Vitamin C: 26mg | Calcium: 29mg | Iron: 2mg
by Jessica

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Recipe Rating




13 comments

  1. This looks SO delish Jessica! I can’t wait to try it.

  2. Jean Spencer says:

    jeanspencer2225@yahoo.com

    Looks delish! Can you suggest any substitute for coconut?? I’m sure I’m not the only one who hates the texture!

    • Jessica says:

      Hi Jean,

      Thank you! The large coconut flakes don’t have a texture problem at all, especially once baked. They just taste like crispy vegan bacon bits! I hope that helps!

  3. Judy says:

    Looks delicious!!! And I love the idea of using the coconut bacon on top of it all :-and those bowls are cute. Are they also from Walmart or your own private stock?

    • Jessica says:

      Thank you!! 🙂 Love these bowls so much too! Yes, they are from Walmart too – everything in this post is! <3

  4. Shari says:

    Hey have you been able to find liquid smoke, smoked paprika and vegan mayonnaise here in Jamaica? This recipe looks really good. Wanna try it for a yummy side =)

    • Jessica says:

      Hey Shari,

      Thank you!! Yes, you can for sure! I hope you enjoy so much 🙂

  5. Melanie says:

    Hi, in the ingredients for coconut bacon you list coconut aminos but in the instructions you say tamari! Can you please clarify if we need tamari as well as coconut aminos or which one? Thanks, looks delicious btw

    • Jessica says:

      Hi Melanie,

      That was an error, sorry! 🙂 It should be liquid aminos in both places! Although, tamari works too (just isn’t always gluten free). Thank you and I hope you enjoy so much!!

  6. Katrina Fowlkes says:

    5 stars
    Jessica, this is so very yummy! I love it. The coconut bacon is a wonderful addition. The overall flavor of the potato salad is just tasty! I used half coconut aminos and half soy sauce as I did not have plain “liquid aminos”. Everything turned out great and I am so happy to have this recipe in my rotation. I am just wondering how long the coconut bacon will keep-I have plenty leftover that I did not mix in. I am guessing I would probably have to reheat it to regain the crisp after refrigeration?? Thank you for this delicious recipe!

    • Jessica says:

      HI Katrina,

      So happy to hear that! I can’t believe I don’t say this here – keep it in your freezer!! That keeps is very crisp and no need to re-crisp; it thaws within seconds to the original crisp state!

  7. Haviva P says:

    5 stars
    I’m not a potato person & unless its as sweet potato usually prefer not to eat them… …so when I say that this potato salad is out of this world delicious, trust me you should go and make it! I made it for my kids, but I ended up eating it as well and cant wait to make it again.

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