This Southern-Style Ham Salad recipe will transport you to your childhood. A simple dish made with cooked ham, hard-cooked eggs, dill pickle relish and celery, Ham Salad is a fabulous dip, spread for crackers and, of course, it’s perfect for sandwiches.
While most people probably saw ham salad appear as leftovers from a ham supper, it really shouldn’t be relegated to second-’round status. Most grocery stores carry small pre-cooked ham steaks that are perfect for making ham salad whenever you want it!
Ham Salad is a staple in the Southern United States, where pork is pretty much king. But other areas of the US also have the ham salad love. Every grocery store in my area carries ham salad in the deli section in little plastic tubs. And quite honestly, if that is your only exposure to ham salad, I can see why some people don’t love it.
Just like my Southern-Style Mustard Potato Salad, the key to really great Ham Salad is hard-cooked egg. A lot of hard-cooked egg. And, of course, dill pickle relish. Many people add minced onion to their ham salad, but I don’t. I think the raw onion tends to overwhelm the ham flavor; instead I add a little bit of onion powder.
There are varying preferences for how the cooked ham is prepared for the salad; those range from ground to minced to chopped. I use a combination of all three because I love the different textures. The crunch-factor comes with the inclusion of diced celery.
Simply dressed with mayonnaise and Dijon (or your preference) mustard, this Southern-Style Ham Salad recipe is nostalgic, delicious and versatile. I love to eat mine with fresh vegetables and spread on crackers as a snack…served this way, it’s also a great addition to a party buffet.
However you decide to serve it, just do!
- 1 pound cooked ham (ground, minced or diced)
- 4 eggs, hard-cooked, peeled and chopped
- ½ cup diced celery
- ¼ cup dill pickle (relish, salad cubes or minced pickle)
- 3 teaspoons Dijon (or your preference) mustard
- ¼ teaspoon onion powder
- ¼ - ½ cup mayonnaise (depending on how creamy you want it)
- optional: pinch of cayenne pepper
- In a medium-sized bowl, combine the prepared ham, chopped egg, celery, dill pickle, mustard and onion powder.
- Stir the ingredients to combine.
- Add the mayonnaise a bit at a time, stirring to incorporate it, and adding more as desired.
- Add pinch of cayenne pepper, if desired, and stir.
- Cover and refrigerate.
- Serve cold.