New York Kosher Deli Potato salad

Ron, I have been searching for the true recipe for the potato salad you get in the New York Deli’s. (With Little Success). Obviously the secret is in the sauce. I lived in Kew Gardens in the 60’s and it seems that all of the deli’s have the same potato salad so I don’t know if it is made individually from a common recipe or if they all get it from an outside source.
All of the recipe’s I have found just say add X amount of Mayonaise but is there a certain brand that achieves the flavor or must you make the mayo from scratch.

Here is 1 recipe that I have found BUT although the closest, it is still WAY off the mark

Deli Style Potato Salad
From: Stephen Hetzel

5 lbs. potatoes (russet preferred)
1 medium yellow onion, finely chopped
3 cups of water
1 cup white vinegar
1 1/3 cups sugar
1/4 cup salt (was ½ cup but way too salty
2 cups prepared mayonnaise

Boil potatoes with skins on until just cooked. Do not overcook - test frequently with a knife. When cooked, place in cold water bath for one hour. Peel potatoes and refrigerate for one hour. Cut potatoes into cubes (not too small) and place in large bowl, sprinkle with chopped onion. Set aside.

To prepare brine, in a saucepan, mix together:
3 cups water
1 cup white vinegar
1 1/3 cups sugar
1/4 cup salt

Bring this mixture just to the boil, and immediately pour over the potato/onion mixture in bowl. Let soak for 45 min to one hour.

Drain brine from potato/onion mixture (large strainer is best for this).
Carefully stir in:
2 cups of mayonnaise
Chill overnight.

If anyone can help me find this heavenly potato salad dish I would be very gratefull.

Ron, I have been waiting for someone “in the know” to reply to my post. It has been 4 months with no replys. If anyone knows of this recipe PLEASE reply. Thanks.

Brad - the taste you may be looking for may lie in the mayonnaise. As regular shoppers we buy, Miracle Whip, Hellmann’s, Kraft, President’s Choice, etc. as well as many generic brands that are out there.

There is a mayonnaise out there - it is excellent - but we can only get it at a restaurant supply house and I was lucky enough to find it in a grocery store when I drove through PA. It has a rich, creamy taste and is absolutely the best. The unfortunate thing is - I cannot remember the name! I am so used to just walking into the barns (that’s what we call one part of town that sells all kinds of restaurant supplies and foods - a big old warehouse) and grabbing the blue label.

Give me a few days - I will get the name for you.


Thanks Kitchen Witch. I will be looking forward to the name and if possible a site that sells that brand.

I have been searching for the elusive ny deli potato salad for many many years. I get somewhat close but not quite. I have always had the feeling that it was the mayo and not a secret ingredient. Please Kitchen Witch, let us know the brand of mayo!!!


I’ll be heading to the barns within the next 2 weeks - and I will let you know. If I could taste the one requested here - I would know if they added something or just made their own. Many places cut down on their expenses and add to dressings or use a cooked dressingl.

Have you tried this recipe with sour creme added to the mayo? I think it gives it a very creamy taste. Now me I am searching for the secret to Publix brand new york deli potato salad, anyone?

Any luck with the mayo??

Thanks InterNETTE, but sour cream added would make it dairy and then it couldn’t be eaten in a kosher deli. There is a secret ingredient either the mayo itself or something added, maybe the type of vinegar or spice.