Keto Potato Salad


5 from 281 votes
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Want a delicious oxymoron? This keto potato salad is your answer! Replacing potatoes with rutabaga keeps all the texture and flavors you love while keeping the carbs down! The tangy dressing is one you’ll make over and over again!

keto potato salad

Keto Potato Salad

When it comes to potato recipes given a keto makeover, my favorites to make are french fries, hash browns, and this keto potato salad. 

Growing up, potatoes were one of my staple foods. I think it’s a fair assumption to say most kids (and adults) would choose potatoes to be their vegetable of choice and one they could easily consume on a daily basis.

One of my favorite potato dishes was always a classic potato salad. I know everyone says their mom’s salad is the best but really, my mom’s one takes the prize for it. Her version involves adding gherkins (unsweetened pickles) and dill to the dressing, and when she’s being fancy, she adds a sprinkling of chopped and grilled bacon!

Now, since going keto, potatoes have been a big no-no. It’s not that they can’t be eaten on a keto diet, but if you were to eat one small potato, you’ve pretty much hit half your daily net carb count. Luckily, you can easily make a mock potato salad with a secret ingredient that tastes like actual potatoes- Rutabagas! 

Keto Potato Salad with NO cauliflower

Rutabagas have easily been my favorite potato substitute since going keto. I know people lament that cauliflower is a great alternative but no. It isn’t as versatile as the rutabaga, and it certainly can be used to make fries. Something else it can’t easily replicate potatoes in? Potato salad!

Since finding the wonders of the humble rutabaga, I’ve used it to make this keto potato salad recipe. It’s chunky, creamy, and loaded with different textures. It tastes EXACTLY like your favorite potato salad and has hints of tang and saltiness from the gherkins and bacon, respectively. 

I had some friends over for a barbecue the other day and served this salad was included on the menu and NO ONE could tell that it wasn’t actually potatoes in it- It tasted like any good potato salad!

How do you make a keto potato salad?

The Ingredients

  • Rutabagas– Also known as swedes, rutabagas make a fabulous alternative to potatoes. They have a similar flavor and texture, and the only difference is the carb count! Per 100 gram serving, rutabagas contain just 6 grams of net carbs (compared to potatoes, which are close to 19 grams!).
  • Gherkins– Pickled cucumbers with no added sugar. These add some delicious tangy flavor and balance out the mayonnaise. 
  • Mayonnaise– Skip the store bought version and make some homemade keto mayonnaise
  • Dijon mustard– The best tasting mustard. You can use American or English mustard, just be sure they have no added sugars in them. 
  • Lemon juice– Just a touch. 
  • Dill– A must for any good potato salad! 
  • Bacon OR pancetta– Optional, but highly recommended. You can never go wrong with some fried bacon or pancetta, especially if it’s in a potato salad. 

The Instructions

Start by peeling and chopping your rutabaga into 1-inch pieces. Place the diced rutabaga into a large pot and cover with tap water. Add some salt and place it over medium heat. Once it begins to boil, reduce it to low and let it cook until tender, around 10 minutes. Drain the rutabaga and place it into a large mixing bowl, letting it cool slightly. 

Now, in a separate bowl, add the remaining ingredients and mix very well. Add the dressing into the bowl of rutabagas and gently mix together, until incorporated. Cover the bowl and refrigerate for at least an hour, for the flavors to meld. 

low carb potato salad

Tips to make the best low carb potato salad

  • Keep a firm eye on the rutabaga as it is boiling. You want to remove them from the heat when they are just tender, not soft. If they become too soft, you risk them falling apart once we add the dressing. 
  • Your rutabagas don’t need to be room temperature before mixing it with the dressing. Refrigerating the salad before serving allows for the flavors to settle and the dressing to stick to the rutabagas.
  • For a higher protein potato salad, feel free to add in chopped boiled eggs. 

Storing and freezing potato salad

While potato salad is always recommended to enjoy the day of, it actually tastes even better after several days! 

  • To store: Potato salad should be stored in the refrigerator, covered. It will keep well for up to 1 week. 
  • To freeze: Place leftover potato salad in a sealable container and store it in the freezer for up to 6 months. 

mock potato salad

More keto salad and appetizer recipes to try

keto potato salad

Keto Potato Salad- NO cauliflower!

5 from 281 votes
This keto potato salad is chunky, smooth, and loaded with gherkins and crispy bacon! Made with rutabaga (NOT cauliflower!), it's like a classic potato salad minus the carbs!
Servings: 8 servings
Prep: 10 minutes
Cook: 5 minutes
Total: 15 minutes


  • 3 lbs rutabagas
  • 1 1/4 cups mayonnaise
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
  • 1/4 cup pickles chopped, unsweetened
  • 1/2 teaspoon pepper
  • 2 tablespoon fresh dill chopped
  • 1/4 cup bacon chopped finely


  • Start by peeling the rutabagas and chopping them into half inch pieces. Place them in a large pot filled with salted water and place it over medium heat. Bring it to a boil, before letting it simmer until the rutabaga has softened but is still tender. Drain them immediately.
  • In a large mixing bowl, combine the remaining ingredients and whisk until smooth. Add the still warm rutabaga and mix until fully incorporated. Cover the bowl and refrigerate for at least an hour.
  • Remove the mock potato salad from the refrigerator and transfer onto a serving dish and serve immediately.


TO STORE: Potato salad should be stored in the refrigerator, covered. It will keep well for up to 1 week. 
TO FREEZE: Place leftover potato salad in a sealable container and store it in the freezer for up to 6 months. 


Serving: 1servingCalories: 185kcalCarbohydrates: 10gProtein: 3gFat: 16gSodium: 303mgPotassium: 537mgFiber: 5gVitamin A: 44IUVitamin C: 43mgCalcium: 80mgIron: 1mgNET CARBS: 5g
Course: Appetizer
Cuisine: American
Author: Arman Liew
Tried this recipe?Give us a shout at @thebigmansworld or tag #thebigmansworld!

Disclosure: This post may contain affiliate links. I may earn a small commission for my endorsement, recommendation, testimonial, and/or link to any products or services from this website.

Arman Liew

I’m a two time cookbook author, photographer, and writer, and passionate about creating easy and healthier recipes. I believe you don’t need to be experienced in the kitchen to make good food using simple ingredients that most importantly, taste delicious.

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Recipe Rating


  1. 5 stars
    Made this and it was delicious . The salad had a faint sweetness. Rutabaga are low in carbs, high in fiber and contain protien.. they are a great substitute for potatoes

  2. 5 stars
    Thanks for the recipe!!! It is so delicious and easy to make, I also added boiled eggs to add creaminess and for some extra protein!! So good! 😋

  3. I was skeptical, but tried this because after 9 months on keto, and no potatoes in that time, I wanted to try a potato alternative that wasn’t cauliflower. This blew my mind! It was acceptable after preparing and chilling it for a couple of hours, but was almost indistinguishable from real potato salad the following afternoon!!! Giving it time to marinate made a huge difference. I will definitley add this as one of my regular recipes and intend to share!

  4. 5 stars
    Couldn’t find fresh rutabaga where I am at this time of year, so I used canned, diced rutabaga instead. I simply drained three cans, patted the pieces a bit with a paper towel, and threw them in the bowl with the other ingredients. It is SO GOOD!!! Nobody at our picnic even knew or asked if it was real potato salad!! I can’t wait to try other ways to use rutabaga!

  5. 5 stars
    I made this for Easter and it was good but didn’t fool anyone into thinking it was potato salad. The rutabagas I had were more orangey yellow so everyone could tell it was unique haha People still enjoyed it and I thought the flavors were good with the added hard boiled eggs and bacon. I also added a little diced celery. Word of caution: it tastes pretty bad after you mix it with warm rutabagas. It needs to he very cold and served the next day! Also, I had to cook my rutabagas for 25 minutes. At 10 min, they were still very hard.

  6. Your rutabagas look to white. When I cook them they’re a rich orange color. I don’t really care, but wondering why this is. (Turnips and rutabagas mixed was delicious, btw)

    1. Hi Donald! I made this recipe a few times before sharing it and some rutabaga was super yellow and some was quite white- I think it depends on which one you get 🙂

  7. My garden is booming with kohlrabi. Only 6.2g of carbs and its 3.6g of fibre makes it a whopping 2.6 net carbs per 100g serving. I will make this salad with it tonight. Thanks for all your wonderful recipes.

  8. Interesting. I thought it was going to be cauliflower. Will have to have the wife try this. Thanks for sharing!