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Easy Hawaiian Style Macaroni Salad

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Hawaiian macaroni salad is the perfect side dish to any plate lunch. Tangy elbow macaroni tossed in a mayonnaise sauce and served chilled. A delicious dish that is sure to be loved.

close up of hawaiian macaroni salad

I mean every main dish needs a good side dish right? Just like every superhero needs its side kick. And this HAWAIIAN STYLE MACARONI SALAD is just that.

Hawai’i is well known for all it’s ono plate lunches. Everything from chicken katsu to loco moco, from pastele stew, to chow fun and everything in between.

Each plate will generally come with a scoop or two of sticky, white rice and a scoop of mac salad. I thought it was only fitting to share my favorite Hawaiian style macaroni salad.

Ingredients for Hawaiian macaroni salad

hawaiian macaroni salad ingredients
  • 8 ounces elbow macaroni
  • 2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
  • 1 cup mayonnaise
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 1 tablespoon granulated sugar
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 carrot, grated
  • 2 tablespoons onion, diced

Tips for a great macaroni salad

  • This is one time where slightly overcooking the noodles is a good thing. Slightly overcooking the noodles will allow it to better absorb the flavors.
  • Be sure to add the apple cider vinegar to the noodles while the noodles are still hot. This helps to absorb the flavor better.
  • You need a good mayonnaise. The mayo is a large part of the flavor. I like to use Best Foods.
  • Chill the macaroni salad at least two hours before serving to allow it to set.
side view of hawaiian macaroni salad

Should I rinse my pasta after cooking?

Pasta that will be served cold should be rinsed. This will help stop the cooking process and also keep the pasta from sticking.

Can macaroni salad be made ahead of time?

Yes. The macaroni salad needs to be chilled for at least two hours prior to serving. You can also chill overnight. So making this a day in advance would work out fine.

hand with a spoon scooping hawaiian macaroni salad

Why is my macaroni salad dry?

Undercooking the macaroni makes it difficult to absorb the moisture and flavors. This can cause it to be dry. If this happens you can add a little more mayonnaise and milk to moisten it back up.

How to store Hawaiian macaroni salad?

Place in an airtight container and store in the refrigerator.

3 bowls of hawaiian macaroni salad

How long does Hawaiian macaroni salad last?

About 3-5 days in the refrigerator.

Can you freeze macaroni salad?

I would not recommend freezing. When reheating mayonnaise can separate and create an undesirable taste and texture.

How to make Hawaiian macaroni salad?

Heat a large pot of water to a rolling boil. Add salt and a splash of oil to the water. Then cook the macaroni according to package directions. You’ll want to cook the noodles just past al dente.

Drain the noodles and rinse with water. Toss the warm noodles with apple cider vinegar and set aside.

In a large bowl add mayonnaise, milk, sugar, salt, and pepper. Whisk to combine.

Then add the mayonnaise mixture to the macaroni noodles and stir to combine.

Add in carrots and onion and stir until well combined.

Cover and place in the refrigerator for 4 hours or overnight until cooled.

Serve cold and ENJOY!

close up of hawaiian macaroni salad

Hawaiian Macaroni Salad

Yield: 6 servings
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 10 minutes
Additional Time: 4 hours
Total Time: 4 hours 20 minutes

Hawaiian macaroni salad is the perfect side dish to any plate lunch. Tangy elbow macaroni tossed in a mayonnaise sauce and served chilled. A delicious dish that is sure to be loved.

Ingredients

  • 8 ounces elbow macaroni
  • 2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
  • 1 cup mayonnaise
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 1 tablespoon granulated sugar
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 carrot, grated
  • 2 tablespoons onion, diced

Instructions

  1. Heat a large pot of water to a rolling boil. Add salt and a splash of oil to the water. Then cook the macaroni according to package directions. You'll want to cook the noodles just past al dente.
  2. Drain the noodles and rinse with water. Toss the warm noodles with apple cider vinegar and set aside.
  3. In a large bowl add mayonnaise, milk, sugar, salt, and pepper. Whisk to combine.
  4. Then add the mayonnaise mixture to the macaroni noodles and stir to combine.
  5. Add in carrots and onion and stir until well combined.
  6. Cover and place in the refrigerator for 4 hours or overnight until cooled.
  7. Serve cold and ENJOY!

Notes

*Slightly overcooking the noodles will allow it to absorb the flavors better.

*Be sure to use a good quality mayonnaise. I like to use Best Foods.

Nutrition Information:
Yield: 10 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 200Total Fat: 17gSaturated Fat: 3gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 14gCholesterol: 10mgSodium: 179mgCarbohydrates: 10gFiber: 1gSugar: 2gProtein: 2g

Nutrition information isn’t always accurate.

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hawaiian macaroni salad

By on July 5th, 2020

About Relle

Aloha, my name is Relle and welcome to my little home on the internet where I like to share all my favorite Hawaiian recipes (and local ones too).

I am a wife, mom of two, and nurse practitioner here in the beautiful state of Hawai’i. I was born and raised in Hawai’i and I am of native Hawaiian descent. In my spare time I love to cook and bake and I have compiled many of my favorite recipes here for you to enjoy.

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