43 Perfect Picnic Salads: Potato, Pasta, Slaw & More

Reinvent the summer salad with these clever twists on the noodle, spud and cabbage classics.

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Potato and Pickle Salad

Tiffani Thiessen's twist on a Texas restaurant's potato salad is colorful and tangy.

Get the Recipe: Potato and Pickle Salad

Macaroni Icebox Salad with Creamy Red Wine Vinaigrette

Not only is this macaroni salad portable and Instagram-ready, but it's also jam-packed with a colorful, flavorful mix of ingredients, including Broccolini and chopped ham.

Get the Recipe: Macaroni Icebox Salad with Creamy Red Wine Vinaigrette

Wasabi Potato Salad

A few tablespoons of nose-tingling wasabi give this Asian-inspired potato salad surprising kick.

Get the Recipe: Wasabi Potato Salad

Garden Pasta Salad

Make the most of your garden — or greenmarket — bounty with this simple pasta salad starring carrots, celery, bell peppers, tomatoes and green onions.

Get the Recipe: Garden Pasta Salad

Beet and Carrot Slaw

This is a gorgeous and refreshing summer slaw. A box grater or a food processor shredding attachment makes for a good time-saving alternative if you don't want to cut the beets and carrots by hand.

Get the Recipe: Beet and Carrot Slaw

Orecchiette with Mixed Greens and Goat Cheese

Dome-shaped orecchiette are the perfect vehicle for the chopped sun-dried tomatoes and crumbled goat cheese in Giada's Mediterranean-accented pasta.

Get the Recipe: Orecchiette with Mixed Greens and Goat Cheese

Lemon-Basil Potatoes

Giada boils potatoes in chicken stock to give the spuds added flavor before tossing them with lemon zest and chopped basil.

Get the Recipe: Lemon-Basil Potatoes

New Macaroni Salad

We've got a macaroni salad for the new millennium, with creamy yogurt and tangy feta stepping in to replace the heavy mayo-based salads of yore.

Get the Recipe: New Macaroni Salad

Potato, Tomato, Corn and Basil Salad

Take advantage of fresh produce and serve this light summer side dish.

Get the Recipe: Potato, Tomato, Corn and Basil Salad

Red Cabbage Slaw

Bright citrus notes and well-balanced flavors will make this your new go-to slaw recipe.

Get the Recipe: Red Cabbage Slaw

Baked Potato Salad

Alex roasts potatoes in the oven instead of boiling them, to ensure the skin turns crispy. She then mixes them with a chunky basil-parsley puree and tangy ingredients like red wine vinegar, mustard, capers and gherkin pickles.

Get the Recipe: Baked Potato Salad

Pasta Primavera

Giada roasts a rainbow of summer vegetables with dried herbs and then tosses them with pasta, oil and Parmesan for a simple salad that lets the fresh produce shine.

Get the Recipe: Pasta Primavera

Herbed Potato Salad

Blanched asparagus or string beans make great additions to this salad. Tuna works well, too, and turns this side salad into a no-fuss summertime meal.

Get the Recipe: Herbed Potato Salad

Tri-Colore Orzo

Turn a typical summer barbecue into a fancier affair with Giada's Tri-Colore Orzo Salad.

Get the Recipe: Tri-Colore Orzo

Cold-Fashioned Potato Salad

Alton Brown's creamy potato salad benefits from an hour (or more) in the refrigerator, which lets the flavors meld. It's a great make-ahead side dish for your summer get-together.

Get the Recipe: Cold-Fashioned Potato Salad

Kohlrabi and Chinese Sausage Slaw

The crisp freshness of raw kohlrabi contrasts well with the richness of the Chinese sausage in this sweet and spicy Southeast Asian-style slaw.

Get the Recipe: Kohlrabi and Chinese Sausage Slaw

Pasta Salad with Green Onion Dressing

Roger Mooking uses simple spices and shredded coconut to reinvent the traditional pasta salad.

Get the Recipe: Pasta Salad with Green Onion Dressing

Three Bean Salad with Jalapeno-Cilantro Vinaigrette

We love coriander and try to work it into as many different dishes as we can. In this case, the coriander adds more depth to a very light and fresh summer salad.

Get the Recipe: Three Bean Salad with Jalapeno-Cilantro Vinaigrette

Warm Fingerling Potato Salad with Bacon, Peas and Horseradish Creme Fraiche

Cook the potatoes in leftover bacon fat to amp up the flavors in this dish. The addition of peas and sugar snaps gives this salad a dose of freshness.

Get the Recipe: Warm Fingerling Potato Salad with Bacon, Peas and Horseradish Creme Fraiche

Creamy Cobb Potato Salad

Taking its cue from the legendary salad created from leftovers in a late-night Hollywood kitchen, our potato-studded version is a star of its own.

Get the Recipe: Creamy Cobb Potato Salad

Lentil Salad with Salami and Giardiniera

We recommend using green French lentils for this salad, as they are less likely to fall apart in cooking. Other lentils that would work well in this recipe are beluga or Castelluccio lentils.

Get the Recipe: Lentil Salad with Salami and Giardiniera

Asian Style Slaw

Coleslaw is a classic summer side, but make it your own by mixing in a few Asian flavors.

Get the Recipe: Asian Style Slaw

Warm Sausage and Roasted Red Potato Salad

Bobby Deen adds in spicy sausage to turn his salad into a bold, summery main dish.

Get the Recipe: Warm Sausage and Roasted Red Potato Salad

Red Cabbage and Green Apple Slaw with Buttermilk Dressing

The addition of ingredients like green apple, walnuts and whole parsley leaves gives this side dish a more elegant spin. There's nothing wrong with a basic cabbage slaw, but when you're looking to dress up the picnic table, you've found your accomplice.

Get the Recipe: Red Cabbage and Green Apple Slaw with Buttermilk Dressing

Herby Potato Salad with Warm Bacon Vinaigrette

Get Kelsey's essential recipe for a robust potato salad coated in homemade bacon vinaigrette.

Get the Recipe: Herby Potato Salad with Warm Bacon Vinaigrette

Quick Coleslaw

Need a quick and easy side dish for summer? Kelsey's coleslaw recipe fits the bill.

Get the Recipe: Quick Coleslaw

Roasted Sweet Potato Salad With Chili Dressing

Mark Bittman uses the freshest ingredients for maximum flavor in his take on potato salad.

Get the Recipe: Roasted Sweet Potato Salad with Black Beans and Chili Dressing

Orzo Salad

You can cook the pasta, blanch the broccoli and make the pesto ahead of time for Heidi Swanson's Orzo Salad. Top with a poached egg or two to make it a more substantial meal.

Get the Recipe: Orzo Salad

Classic Macaroni Salad

It's not a summer party until a bowl of macaroni salad is on the table. Try Kelsey's take on the classic for a new spin.

Get the Recipe: Classic Macaroni Salad

Quick Spicy Kimchee

Bring the heat to your barbecue with Tyler's recipe for Quick Spicy Kimchee.

Get the Recipe: Quick Spicy Kimchee

Indian Potato Salad

Mix up your summer routine by serving Bal's Indian spin on potato salad.

Get the Recipe: Indian Potato Salad

Baby Spinach with Roasted Potatoes and Sweet Dijon Vinaigrette

Mushrooms, bacon, Parmesan cheese and balsamic-roasted potatoes give this salad layers of flavor.

Get the Recipe: Baby Spinach with Balsamic Roasted Potatoes and Sweet Dijon Vinaigrette

Classic Southern Potato Salad

Kevin Gillespie serves up his spin on this classic Southern side dish.

Get the Recipe: Classic Southern Potato Salad

Smoked Potato Salad

Get the grill to do double duty by serving this smoked potato salad alongside your main dish.

Get the Recipe: Smoked Potato Salad

Roasted Peanut Slaw

Peanut butter in the dressing gives this light and tangy coleslaw just the right amount of nutty flavor. Garnish with roasted peanuts before serving.

Get the Recipe: Roasted Peanut Slaw

Mostly Not Potato Salad

Bite-sized bits of green beans, celery, cucumber and just a few potatoes get tossed with dill, toasted leeks and a mustard vinaigrette in this light summer salad.

Get the Recipe: Mostly Not Potato Salad

Tarragon Potato Salad

Add a little French flair to your barbecue with Laura Calder's tangy potato salad.

Get the Recipe: Tarragon Potato Salad

Mortadella Pasta Salad

This pasta salad is a favorite in Nigella's house. If your kids aren't fans of the green bits, she recommends serving the parsley on the side.

Get the Recipe: Mortadella Pasta Salad

Cold Pasta Salad

Quality ingredients are the key to David Rocco's simple Italian pasta salad.

Get the Recipe: Cold Pasta Salad

Sweet Potato Salad

Sweet potatoes, beets and pears get dressed up with a sherry vinaigrette for an easy late-summer side dish.

Get the Recipe: Sweet Potato Salad

Chuck's Warm Potato Salad

Chuck riffs on a classic, dressing up potato salad by using fingerling potatoes and mixing in hard-boiled eggs and green beans.

Get the Recipe: Warm Potato Salad

Black Bean Salad with Mango, Cilantro and Lime

Kelsey's black bean salad balances sweet, tangy and spicy flavors and is quite filling, thanks to the protein-packed beans. Serve them in tacos as a veggie-friendly main or alongside any meat or fresh summer salad.

Get the Recipe: Black Bean Salad with Mango, Cilantro and Lime

Orecchiette Pasta with Ricotta and Cherry Tomatoes

Serve David's Italian-style pasta salad at your next cookout.

Get the Recipe: Orecchiette con Ricotta e Pomodorini: Orecchiette Pasta with Ricotta and Cherry Tomatoes