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Cajun Macaroni Salad

This Cajun Macaroni Salad is anything but boring. Richly flavored with Creole mustard, cayenne pepper, and hot sauce, it’s a pasta salad that really has some kick.

Cajun Macaroni Salad in a serving bowl.

Cajun Macaroni Salad is a Louisiana-style side dish that is wonderfully creamy and perfect for your next cookout. Creole mustard and red wine vinegar make it perfectly tangy.

Creole Mustard

Alot of the flavor in this recipe comes from the Creole mustard. I use Zatarain’s Creole Mustard. Creole mustard really has some kick to it. It’s a spicy whole grain mustard that typically contains horseradish and spices. You can substitute brown mustard or Dijon mustard, but it won’t taste quite the same.

Dressing for macaroni salad in a bowl.

Pasta Shape

No need to use elbow pasta. You can use shells, cavatappi or even wagon wheels.

Macaroni Salad in a mixing bowl.

Cajun Macaroni Salad Recipe Tips

It’s best to refrigerate this pasta salad for at least 30 minutes before serving so the flavors have time to blend. If mixing together more than 1 hour in advance, some of the dressing will be soaked up by the pasta and you will have to add a little more mayonnaise or some milk to it to make it creamy again.

Be sure not to overcook the pasta or the texture of the pasta will get too soft and mushy when it soaks up some of the dressing.

Cajun Macaroni Salad in serving bowl with parlsey and lemon in background.

Make It Spicier

With 1 teaspoon of hot sauce (I use TABASCO or Zatarain’s Hot Sauce) and a 1/2 teaspoon of cayenne pepper, plus the creole mustard, this pasta salad has a nice kick. If it’s not spicy enough, add another pinch or two of cayenne pepper.

Cajun Macaroni Salad in serving bowl.

More Great Southern Sides

Cajun Macaroni Salad

This Cajun Macaroni Salad is anything but boring. Richly flavored with Creole mustard, cayenne pepper, and hot sauce, it's a pasta salad that really has some kick.


  • 1 pound elbow macaroni
  • 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 1/2 cups mayonnaise
  • 3 tablespoons Creole mustard
  • 3 tablespoons red wine vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 1 teaspoon smoked paprika
  • 1 teaspoon hot sauce
  • 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
  • 2 celery ribs, diced
  • 1/2 medium sweet onion, diced
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh parsley
  • 2 hard-boiled eggs, chopped


  • Cook pasta in a large pot of salted water according to package directions. Drain. Rinse with cold water and drain again. Toss with olive oil.
  • While pasta cooks, stir together mayonnaise, Creole mustard, red wine vinegar, lemon juice, smoked paprika, hot sauce, cayenne pepper, and black pepper in a large bowl.
    Add 2 tablespoons of water and mix in.
  • Stir in the cooked pasta, onion, celery, eggs, and parsley.
  • Check for seasoning and add salt to taste.
  • Refrigerate for 20 to 30 minutes before serving.


Calories: 432kcal
Course: Side Dish
Cuisine: Southern
Keyword: cajun, pasta salad

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