Potato salad recipes may call for different ingredients but they all begin with starchy, cooked potatoes. The right-size chunk of potato grabs any sauce or herbs that you add, while spuds that are too small result in mashed or grainy dishes. Proper prepping and boiling results in potatoes that are thoroughly cooked yet remain firm. There are different types of potatoes you can use but the boiling portion of the recipe is the same for all.

Things You'll Need

Place a large pot on the stove, fill it 2/3 full of cold water and add a teaspoon of salt.

Wash the potatoes under warm water. Use a scrub brush to remove dirt or debris. Pat the potatoes dry with a clean kitchen towel.

Cut the potatoes into 1-inch cubes, add the potatoes to the water and turn to high heat. Set your cooking timer to 20 minutes when the potatoes come to a boil. Turn them down to simmer on low heat.

Test a potato with a fork after the time has expired. It will break apart easily if completely cooked.

Place a colander in the sink and pour in the potatoes. Shake the colander to remove excess water. Use caution when pouring hot, boiling water. Avoid splashing or sloshing to prevent burns to your skin.


  • If you prefer, peel the potatoes before cubing them.