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In white serving bowl garnished with hardboiled egg and spoonful closeup.

Cajun Macaroni Salad

A spicy Cajun twist on classic macaroni salad, this Creole pasta salad is perfect for summer BBQ's and potlucks.
Course Side Dish
Cuisine Cajun
Keyword cajun macaroni salad, cold pasta salad, macaroni salad
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes
Servings 10 servings
Calories 440kcal
Author Kelly Wildenhaus


  • 1 pound elbow macaroni
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • ½ sweet onion, minced like Vidalia
  • 4 ribs celery, small dice
  • 2 hard boiled eggs, small dice
  • 2 teaspoons Cajun seasoning preferably no salt blend
  • 1 teaspoon smoked paprika
  • 1 teaspoon freshly, cracked black pepper
  • ½ teaspoon cayenne pepper, OPTIONAL if you want a little more heat!
  • cups good quality mayonnaise I like Duke's Mayo for this, it's a Southern thing!
  • 3 tablespoons Creole mustard can use any whole grain mustard, or yellow mustard
  • 3 tablespoons red wine vinegar
  • ½ lemon, juiced
  • 1 teaspoon hot sauce preferably Louisiana-style like Crystal or Tabasco
  • Kosher salt and freshly, cracked black pepper
  • Chopped fresh parsley, sliced hard boiled egg, for garnish. Totally optional but it looks pretty!


  • Bring a pot of water to boil and season generously with salt. Cook macaroni according to package instructions. Drain, rinse with cold water, repeat and transfer to large bowl. Toss with olive oil and set aside.
  • Meanwhile, combine remaining ingredients in another bowl. Use a whisk to combine all remaining ingredients except celery, onion and egg. Add 2 teaspoons salt and 2 tablespoons of water to start, up to ¼ cup water. When combined, stir in celery, onion and egg. The sauce should be on the thinner side, not too thick.
  • Taste sauce for seasoning and adjust salt, pepper and hot sauce to taste. Add to cooked elbows and toss to combine. Serve immediately with fresh parsley and/or hard boiled egg slices, or refrigerate until serving, adding a little water to loosen up and make shiny again if needed.


  • I eyeball the amount of water, it really is a judgement call.  Start with just 2 tablespoons, that may be enough.  If too thick, add a little more.
  • I cannot stress enough to watch the salt!!  I use a NO SALT blend and can adjust to taste.  If you use a blend with salt, do not add additional salt!!  I'm trying to do a pre-emptive strike here before my comments are loaded with "too much salt" ?


Calories: 440kcal | Carbohydrates: 37g | Protein: 8g | Fat: 29g | Saturated Fat: 5g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 16g | Monounsaturated Fat: 7g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 51mg | Sodium: 304mg | Potassium: 217mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 3g | Vitamin A: 489IU | Vitamin C: 5mg | Calcium: 34mg | Iron: 1mg