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Sweet Macaroni Salad Recipe

Sweet Macaroni Salad Recipe

A sweet out-of-the-ordinary dressing makes this macaroni salad special. My aunt gave me the recipe and it has become one of my favorites. I occasionally leave out the green pepper if I know that people don't like it...and it still tastes great. -Idalee Scholz Cocoa Beach, Florida
TOTAL TIME: Prep: 20 min. + chilling YIELD:16 servings


  • 1 package (16 ounces) elbow macaroni
  • 4 medium carrots, shredded
  • 1 large green pepper, chopped
  • 1 medium red onion, chopped
  • 2 cups mayonnaise
  • 1 can (14 ounces) sweetened condensed milk
  • 1 cup cider vinegar
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon pepper


  • 1. Cook macaroni according to package directions. Drain and rinse in cold water; drain well.
  • 2. In a large bowl, combine macaroni and vegetables. Whisk together remaining ingredients until smooth and sugar is dissolved; stir into macaroni mixture. Refrigerate, covered, overnight. Yield: 16 servings.

Nutritional Facts

2/3 cup: 400 calories, 23g fat (5g saturated fat), 10mg cholesterol, 332mg sodium, 43g carbohydrate (22g sugars, 2g fiber), 6g protein.

Reviews for Sweet Macaroni Salad

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HomeCookinGal User ID: 7345982 269314
Reviewed Jul. 11, 2017

"Celery instead of green pepper."

gunslinger User ID: 544392 269307
Reviewed Jul. 11, 2017

"I am not usually a big fan of macaroni salad but this is an exception. The dressing on this is delicious. Everyone I know who has tasted it say it is the best macaroni salad they have ever eaten!"

John User ID: 1144025 268609
Reviewed Jun. 27, 2017

"This is moist and creamy at the same time. The sweet relish flavor is awsome. I rate this the best I have ever made."

angela32 User ID: 3084463 267440
Reviewed May. 29, 2017

"Excellent. I made a few substitutions for what my family prefers, but nothing drastic. It is fantastic!"

_nlfPA User ID: 1879224 229193
Reviewed Jul. 8, 2015 Edited Mar. 12, 2016

"This is a superb macaroni salad recipe. it is the one I make all the time now that I have discovered it. My family loves it."

lmilano User ID: 8060930 137518
Reviewed Oct. 28, 2014

"Made this using the large elbow macaroni noodles for a party and it was amazing, everyone loved it, they all wanted the recipe and it was so easy to make, I let it set in the refrigerator for a few hours before serving, cant wait to make this again. Definitely a party pleaser."

KristineChayes User ID: 1441542 95071
Reviewed Sep. 26, 2014

"This has been my "go to" macaroni salad since this recipe first appeared in Taste of Home, several years ago. I, too, omit the 1 cup of sugar, which makes the salad too sweet for my family's taste. I also add 1/3 cup each of diced green, red and yellow sweet peppers (rather than just green pepper) and 1/4 cup chopped parsley for added color. This recipe is always a favorite at parties, picnics and BBQ's!"

kleisy52 User ID: 802943 53993
Reviewed Aug. 9, 2014

"One of our favorites..make it all the time!!!"

tammycookblogsbooks User ID: 7112115 206005
Reviewed Jul. 31, 2014

"This is very good. I leave out the 1 cup of sugar since the sweetened condensed milk is in it. I also have never added green pepper to it. Be sure to refrigerate overnight, the sauce needs to soak in a little."

Robin42 User ID: 7874242 58178
Reviewed Jul. 2, 2014

"I make this salad all the time and always get requests to bring it to party's."

peachynonni User ID: 4215913 146824
Reviewed Jul. 24, 2013

"This salad just didn't taste right with the sweetened condensed milk in it."

popoaggie User ID: 2713833 133839
Reviewed Jul. 20, 2013

"I have made this twice for pot lucks and always come home with it all gone. when asked for the recipe I direct them to the TOH web site. It has been made my several people since."

Demelza User ID: 204747 132727
Reviewed Jul. 1, 2013

"We love it!"

mdbubba1 User ID: 1253738 53992
Reviewed Jun. 19, 2013

"We all love this. Its just like Amish Macaroni salad. I make this all the time. The only thing I change is I add sweet pickle relish. But that is just a personal preferance."

megthurb User ID: 6757635 112458
Reviewed Jul. 1, 2012

"After reading previous reviews, I left out the cup of sugar. I served this to my neighbors and didn't want it too sweet. Having tasted it, I think I should have put it in. The dressing makes a LOT! I would cut the dressing recipe in half next time. I used mini-shells instead of elbow macaroni and I think it was a good choice. The little shells are like little cups for the sauce. Overall, I think it's good."

Carrieob User ID: 6711166 206004
Reviewed May. 26, 2012

"I crave this salad when I'm pregnant (!?). I love the sweet and tanginess of it. I definitely cut back on the sugar and condensed milk--too sweet and doesn't need it. I also throw some cubes of cheese in. Always a hit at potlucks (even with non-pregnant people!)"

cody1234 User ID: 2183224 61458
Reviewed Nov. 21, 2011

"This has become a favorite. Always a hit wherever I take it."

ALCfood User ID: 2394606 206003
Reviewed Nov. 21, 2011

"Has a very strong cider vinegar taste."

Classicrock User ID: 656532 95062
Reviewed Aug. 16, 2011

"I've been making this for years, my husband and brother-in-law LOVE this salad! I substitute 2 chopped stalks of celery in place of the green pepper, and I use only about 3/4 cup of cider vinegar (1 cup of vinegar is too much). It's important to let the salad sit in the fridge overnight to let the pasta soak up the sauce. The next day it's perfect - no need to add anything else. -Lori in WI."

justmbeth User ID: 1196484 53092
Reviewed Jul. 3, 2011

"This turned out awesome! Family gave it rave reviews."

xprincess User ID: 1756019 53085
Reviewed Jun. 28, 2011

"I've been making this for years & everybody loves it! I do subsitute 1 & 1/2 pkgs of tri-color rotini for the macaroni, use a bag of pre-shredded carrots & usually use both red & green makes a bit more but the ratio of sauce to macaroni is just right after overnight refrigeration:) It's the perfect make ahead macaroni salad and lasts for days in the fridge."

kimberlygalvin User ID: 2939950 53084
Reviewed Jun. 19, 2011

"I have been making this for About 5 years, we love it."

CamelDog User ID: 6029902 94342
Reviewed Jun. 7, 2011

"My husband LOVED this macaroni salad. I recently made it for my in-laws and it was a huge hit. Even my 5 year old nephew liked it. It is sweet and tangy. I left out the green pepper and onion since we don't care for them. I used carrots from the salad bar at the grocery store and chopped them in my food chopper. It's just enough crunch to balance the texture of the macaroni. This is a favorite in my house now."

vanashaLJ User ID: 3682691 94510
Reviewed Apr. 15, 2011

"I have made this recipe several times, we love it, people who dislike macaroni salad like it... but I cut out sugar and use half cup white vingar..."

cody1234 User ID: 2183224 61456
Reviewed Jan. 27, 2011

"Have made this recipe dozens of times for potlucks and family gatherings. ALWAYS A HIT!! Sometimes use red or yellow pepper instead of green."

rox2 User ID: 5361222 68661
Reviewed Aug. 23, 2010

" "

rox2 User ID: 5361222 58176
Reviewed Aug. 22, 2010

"This is the best recipe I have ever used. Big hit with everyone. I cut sugar and vinegar in 1/2, and also added boiled eggs. I used Hellmans as the recipe didn't state weather Miracle Whip or Hellmans, but figured Hellmans would be better with the amount of sugar. I also had sauce left over but saved and added some more on the next day because the macaroni sucks up the sauce."

banana2813 User ID: 5316421 112456
Reviewed Jul. 27, 2010

"This is by far my favorite pasta salad! The only bad thing is that it has to sit overnight! As soon as I'm done making it, I want to eat it right away! One of my friends first brought this salad to a cookout and everyone there loved it. She told us she got the recipe from Taste of Home. I sat on the internet and looked until I found it and now it's a must have every summer!"

mr muffy User ID: 4934458 146822
Reviewed Feb. 28, 2010

"maybe one can tell me why it states to use 1 cup of vinegar when i did this its the vinegar tastes we have the most of..i know cut down on the"

shenhong2 User ID: 2235701 53078
Reviewed Jan. 12, 2010 Edited Mar. 11, 2015

"My husband loves Amish Macaroni salad, a salad that is sold at Giant Eagle stores in the Somerset PA area. I have been on the lookout for years for a recipe for it and was unable to find one. The first time I made this, he took one bite and said "Amish Macaroni salad!" I will make this again and again. Very good, not dry at all like most of the recipes for macaroni salad are. Although there does seem to be too much dressing. Use the extra for tossed salad or coleslaw."

stephceja User ID: 4531011 132725
Reviewed Oct. 24, 2009

"My family loved this even the kids...My husband would like to have it without the peppers next time. This is delicious"

Boadecia User ID: 712215 80151
Reviewed Aug. 17, 2009

"I have prepared this recipe many times for luncheons, pot lucks, etc and everyone loves it. I do cut the sugar to 1/2 cup and that is plenty - I think you could probably leave out the extra sugar and not miss it too much.  It's very important to make it ahead of time so that the macaroni has time to absorb the "dressing" - I make it a day ahead and refrigerate. Always get lots of requests for the recipe too. Definitely a keeper."

PucciBaby User ID: 3099441 140392
Reviewed Aug. 2, 2009

"My mom and I really like this macaroni salad, though my dad and my boyfriend hate it. I think to like this you have to like vinegary and sweet. I do cut the sugar in half because the first time i made it it felt like I was eating pure sugar. Usually this recipe makes a lot of sauce, so just pour a bit and mix it until u get the consistency that you want. Recipes can be adjusted, don't write this salad off just because you may not like it the first time.

Also, I use canned peas and carrots instead of peppers"

rberndt User ID: 3908100 132722
Reviewed Jul. 12, 2009

"I just made this for a baby shower and received a lot of compliments and several people asked for the recipe. Excellent dish and easy to make."

hahymen User ID: 3888769 137516
Reviewed Jun. 15, 2009

"I never really cared for macaroni salad till I tried this! It is the only recipe that I like and use..What's even better is the longer it sits the better it gets!!!!"

whiskeyechoalpha User ID: 1640614 68660
Reviewed Mar. 30, 2009

"cut back on the vinegar

way to sour"

lisa53202 User ID: 1079567 58175
Reviewed Mar. 9, 2009

"I felt this was too sweet, but a lot of folks here in the South really like it."

kinzua50 User ID: 1304147 140389
Reviewed Jan. 24, 2009

"I make this receipe for parties and everyone loves it. I do cut the sugar in half though."

clemmentine11 User ID: 1952197 94304
Reviewed Jul. 31, 2008

"I love this salad, but being a diabetic I need to lighten it up, but still keep the sweet taste , any suggestions?"

mrsbert User ID: 87314 133838
Reviewed May. 20, 2008

"I have made this many times--always a big hit! But I can't remember which issue it was in--can you tell me?"

sbrunson User ID: 1806258 53966
Reviewed Jan. 18, 2008

"I have made this several times, but it gets boring by the end of such a HUGE batch. Also, I think the vinegar and majo might need some rebalancing because it ends up with a lot of extra sauce and vinegar tasting."

lindachicken__Oklahoma User ID: 227696 94302
Reviewed Dec. 14, 2007 Edited Jul. 6, 2017

"I make one very similar to carrots, green pepper.....still very similar and it's great!"

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