How to counteract too much vinegar in the potato salad?

In this article, we will answer the question “How to counteract too much vinegar in the potato salad?”, and how to fix common potato salad problems?

How to counteract too much vinegar in the potato salad?

  1. Mix sugar into the potato salad, starting with only 1 teaspoon at a time. 
  1. Stir in 1/2 teaspoon finely grated lemon zest per 2 cups of potato salad. You can also use lime or orange zest.
  1. Cut a large peeled potato into quarters. Keep them in the salad and refrigerate the salad after plastic wrapping it for about 8 hours. Remove the uncooked potatoes before serving the salad.
  1. Stir in 1 tablespoon of finely minced anchovies per cup of prepared potato salad to mask the acidity of the vinegar.
  1. Make another portion of the potato salad, without the vinegar. Mix this portion with the potato salad that needs to be fixed. Mix well and adjust the other spices.

How to fix common potato salad problems?

Problem: Bland potatoes

Solution: Season the water with salt, herbs, and spices before boiling. This infuses a variety of flavors into the potatoes. Depending upon your taste, you can flavor your potatoes with parsley, garlic, or even vinegar.

Problem: A dull dressing.

Solution: Tossing your potatoes in the vinaigrette dressing while they are still hot is the key to a balanced and cohesive flavor. If the dressing is mayo or cream cheese-based, let the potatoes cool before you toss them, or else you will end up with a disintegrated mayo.

Problem: Soggy potato texture.

Solution: Your best bet is to use waxy potatoes such as the small baby red potatoes, fingerlings, or baby new potatoes for making potato salad. 

These types of potatoes keep intact while you toss them in the dressing. If the problem is persistent, you can try steaming your potatoes instead of boiling them. 

Steaming the potatoes will not provide the same desirable results as boiling but it is better than soggy or broken potato chunks in your salad.

Problem: Overly heavy dressing.

Solution: Add texture to your dressing by adding fresh herbs or some chopped green scallions. Moreover,  you can squeeze a lemon or add pickle juice, buttermilk, and additional vinegar into your dressing. Try a new lighter dressing such as the bacon-mustard vinaigrette for your potato salad. 

Problem: Deadly mayonnaise.

Solution: Heat breaks the mayo. To extend the shelf-life of the mayo-based salad, you must keep it refrigerated or keep it away from direct sunlight. Therefore, a potato salad made with a mayo-based dressing won’t last for more than 4 hours on the counter.

How to make the best potato salad?


  • 2 ½ pounds red-skin potatoes, cut in half and into ½-inch chunks
  • 2 tbsp white wine vinegar
  • ½ tsp salt
  • ½ tsp pepper
  • ½ tsp sugar
  • ½ cup mayonnaise
  • ½ cup sour cream
  • 3-4 hard-boiled eggs, diced
  • ½ cup celery, diced (including some of the inner leaves for flavor)
  • 3 green onions, thinly sliced (white and green parts)
  • ¼ cup sweet pickles, diced


  1. Fill a large pot with water and generously season it with salt. Then bring the water to a rolling boil.
  1. Add the cut potatoes to the boiling water. Let the potatoes boil for about 15-20 minutes or until fork-tender. Strain the potatoes from the boiling water and set them aside.
  1. Whisk white wine vinegar, salt, pepper, and sugar in a bowl. Then stir the boiled potatoes into the mixture using a spatula. Make sure that the potatoes are evenly coated into this vinegar mixture.
  1. Mix mayonnaise and sour cream until well-combined. Fold the mixture into the potato mixture using a spatula.
  1. Add the rest of the ingredients into the bowl and refrigerate the salad for up to 6 hours.

Recipe notes 

  1. Do not cut the potatoes any smaller than ½-1 inch thick chunks. Make sure all the potato chunks are consistent in size. This ensures the potatoes cook evenly and do not absorb excess water.
  1. Generously seasoning the salt before boiling the potatoes in it is the most important step to impart a mild flavor to the potatoes.
  1. Coat the potatoes in the vinegar seasoning mixture while they are still warm. Then wait until the potatoes are cool before mixing in the mayonnaise mixture.
  1. Let the potato salad rest for at least 30 minutes before devouring. This gives the potatoes sufficient time to absorb all the flavors.

Nutrition facts 

Serving size 8 g 
Calories 346 kcal
Carbs 33 g 
Protein 7 g 
Fat 20 g 
Saturated fat 5 g 
Cholesterol 111 mg 
Sodium 429 mg 
Potassium 963 mg 
Fiber 3 g 
Sugar 5 g 
Vitamin A 420 IU
Vitamin C 17.8 mg 
Calcium 64 mg 
Iron 1.8 mg 

Other FAQs about Vinegar that you may be interested in.

How to neutralize vinegar without baking soda?

Can you be allergic to vinegar? 

Can you be allergic to apple cider vinegar?


In this article, we answered the question “How to counteract too much vinegar in the potato salad?”, and how to fix common potato salad problems?


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