Potato salad is a must-have for any barbeque, picnic, or summer al fresco dinner, and it usually takes pride of place next to the hot dogs or burgers. Whether you prefer a creamy mayonnaise or a heated, mustardy version, a scoop of potato salad is a fantastic accompaniment to grilled meats. It’s also simple to prepare ahead of time and eat outside. It’s also a dish that’s easy to improvise with your favorite sauces, bulk up with vegetables, or make indulgent with a big handful of crispy bacon and cheese for those who prefer to prepare without a recipe.
Potato Salad Nutrition Facts
Best Potatoes For Potato Salad
There are about 4,000 potato types worldwide, with over 200 available in the United States. Fortunately, there are only three types of potatoes, which makes picking the right one a little easier:
- Waxy: These potatoes contain very little starch and, as a result, keep their shape when boiling. Because they have thin skin and don’t have to be peeled, they’re easy to use for potato salad. They’re also smoother and less gritty and mealy than starchy potatoes on the interior. They stay tender but firm in potato salad and produce a less frothy salad than starchy potatoes.
- In-between: Despite having more starch than waxy potatoes, they may compete in potato salad. Because of their medium moisture and starch level, in-between types, also known as all-purpose potatoes, are a perfect option for waxy potatoes.
- Starchy: Starchy potatoes have a thicker peel and a drier, more mealy feel than regular potatoes. They don’t hold up well to boiling or mixing due to their giant cells, which absorb more water than waxy potatoes when cooked. (This is why mashed potatoes are so good with them.)
Waxy potatoes are best for potato salad. If you like your potato salad creamy, in-between, and starchy potatoes will do. For waxy potato salad, buy New, Red Bliss, Kennebec, or fingerling potatoes. In-between potato salad kinds include yellow Finn, white, and Yukon Gold. Most people should avoid Russet potatoes since they fall apart. Starchy potatoes absorb up vinaigrette well, making a creamy, velvety potato salad. Avoid overcooking when boiling. The lesson is to follow your heart.
Tips For Buying Potatoes
- Look for clean, smooth potatoes, no matter the variety.
- Squeeze them. Potatoes should be firm and not give at all when gripped.
- Small potatoes are always great for potato salad. Thanks to being pretty consistent in size, they boil quickly and evenly and boost the salad’s overall flavor.
- Avoid potatoes with wrinkles, soft ends, green spots, or bruises. This can mean they were stored in too warm an environment or are losing moisture. If you choose a big bag of potatoes and don’t get a chance to examine each one before buying, don’t sweat slight discoloration or bruising. You can just cut those spots off before cooking.
- Smell the spuds before you add them to your cart. If they smell like soil, they’re fresh and ready to use.
How To Store Potatoes At Home?
If you’re like us, you’ll quickly slap a ten-pound bag of potatoes into your cart, but you’ll rarely utilize them all before they sprout and get soft. Believe it or not, potatoes can be preserved for up to six months if properly stored. Here are a few storage suggestions to help you get the most out of your potatoes before they go wrong:
Toss Potatoes That Are Showing Signs Of Sprouting Or Losing Their Firmness
As soon as you get them home, for example. The sprouts from one poor potato in the bunch can spread to the others. (Oh, and a sprouted potato is safe to eat as long as it’s still solid and the shoots and their surrounding areas are removed before cooking.)
Don’t Wash Potatoes Until You’re Ready To Use Them
Scrubbing, peeling, or washing potatoes before cooking will add moisture and speed up the softening process. Prepare the ingredients only when you’re ready to use them.
Don’t Keep The Potatoes In The Plastic Bag You Bought Them In
We’re well aware of the situation, and it’s inconvenient. However, potatoes last longer when stored in a well-ventilated space, and the tiny holes in the bag aren’t adequate to allow them to breathe correctly. Place the potatoes in a wire basket, mesh bag, or paper bag instead. (If you’re using a paper bag, leave the top open to allow air to circulate.)
Don’t refrigerate them
This may come as a surprise to you—after all, doesn’t refrigerating vegetables constantly improve its shelf life? Because potatoes are so starchy, they don’t do well in the cold. They like a chilly, dark habitat such as a root cellar, unheated basement, or dark cabinet that is low to the ground and away from heat sources such as a stove or radiator.
Keep Them Out of Of Direct Sunlight
Remember that spuds grow in the ground and thrive in the dark, whether you’re storing them in a cellar, closet, or cupboard. Direct sunlight hastens the sprouting process; thus, minimal light exposure is required.
Store Potatoes By Themselves
Other fruits and vegetables are not allowed. Do you know how some fruits and vegetables (including bananas, apples, and avocados) brown faster in a paper bag? This is because they emit ethylene gas when they ripen. If potatoes are kept close to countertop produce, the ethylene gas might hasten their spoilage.
Is Potato Salad Good For Your Health?
Here are some health benefits of potato salad:
Potatoes include iron, phosphorus, calcium, magnesium, and zinc, all of which aid in forming and maintaining bone structure and strength. In the formation and maturation of collagen, iron and zinc are essential. Phosphorus and calcium are vital in bone building, but optimal bone mineralization requires a balance of the two minerals. Too much phosphorus and not enough calcium cause bone loss, leading to osteoporosis.
Maintaining a healthy blood pressure requires a low sodium diet, but increasing potassium consumption may be just as important. Vasodilation, or the widening of blood vessels, is aided by potassium. Fewer than 2% of American adults reach the daily 4,700-milligram requirement, according to the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES). The potato is high in potassium, calcium, and magnesium, and these have been found to lower blood pressure naturally.
The fiber, potassium, vitamin C, and vitamin B6 content of the potato and its lack of cholesterol all contribute to heart health. Fiber can be found in large quantities in potatoes, and fiber helps lower total cholesterol levels in the blood, lowering the risk of heart disease. According to research on the NHANES, a higher potassium consumption, and a lower salt intake are connected to a lower risk of all-cause death and heart disease.
Choline is a vitamin found in potatoes that is both necessary and flexible. Muscle mobility, mood, learning, and memory are all aided.
It also assists in:
- maintaining the structure of cellular membranes
- transmitting nerve impulses
- the absorption of fat
- early brain development
Potatoes are high in folate. Folate is involved in DNA synthesis and repair; hence it helps inhibit the formation of many cancer cells caused by DNA mutations. Consumption of fiber-rich fruits and vegetables, such as potatoes, is linked to a lower risk of colorectal cancer. Vitamin C and quercetin act as antioxidants, protecting cells from free radical damage.
Yellow Finn, white, and Yukon Gold potatoes are suitable in-between varieties for potato salad. Starchy potatoes, such as Russets, should be avoided by most individuals since they will fall apart instead of holding their shape. Choose potatoes based on how you’ll use them for the best outcomes. The potato has a high starch level in the Idaho, or russet, making it suitable for frying or baking, but the long white potato, with a medium starch content, can be boiled, baked, or fried.