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A vintage recipe that deserves some fresh attention, Ham Salad is a genius way to turn leftover ham into fabulous lunches, snacks, and picnic-ready eats. It’s also one tasty party appetizer, and makes a very good Ham Salad Sandwich.
Is there a considerable amount of leftover ham sort of staring at you when you open the refrigerator? Maybe you’re not even that fond of ham, but everyone insists on it for Easter dinner, so….there it is, glaring at you when you reach for something else to eat.
Or maybe you just love ham and you can’t get enough of it. Either way, this is the Ham Salad recipe to bookmark!
Ham Salad goes way, way back and has been made by moms and grandmothers in almost every family. It’s spreadable, edible, and it’s the easiest thing in the world to make.
Fill a ramekin with homemade Ham Salad and scatter a few crackers on a plate at your next casual get-together. People will automatically know what to do, and love you for it. Before you know it, everything will be gobbled up and you’ll be wishing you bought a larger baked ham, after all!
Got a whole lotta leftover ham? Don’t panic– Ham Salad to the rescue! Click and slide the number next to “servings” on the recipe card below to adjust the ingredients to match how many you’re feeding—the recipe does the math for you, it’s that easy.
How to make Ham Salad:
This how-to is for the visual learners who might be reading. For specific amounts and units, as well as an option to change the quantity of the recipe, please have a look at the recipe at the bottom of the page.
In the olden days, ham was run through a meat grinder with a handheld crank to get it soft and spreadable. Today, you can get the same results with a food processor.
This recipe calls for a little finely chopped celery and onion for crunch, as well as pickle relish for a hint of spicy sweetness.
Chop the ham into small pieces, then use a food processor to finely mince the ham, using the pulse function. The ham should resemble bacon bits when ready, like this:
Transfer the ham to a mixing bowl. Then, all you have to do is add the vegetables and relish to the ham, give everything a good stir, and blend in the dijon mustard and the mayonnaise.
Other Fun and delicious Ham Salad ideas:
- Ham Salad with Eggs: What better way to use up those Easter eggs? Pulse a couple hard-boiled eggs in with the ham—you will love it.
- Ham Salad with Cheese: Ham and Swiss cheese come together in this classic variation. Add 1 cup of chopped Swiss cheese to the food processor and pulse together with the ham. Serve the ham salad in lettuce wraps or slathered a French baguette.
- Ham Salad with Pickle Relish: Sweet or savory, a little pickle relish goes a long way. If you don’t have relish, us a garlic dill pickle spear and pulse it in with the ham.
- Spicy Ham Salad: Added ¼ teaspoon jerk seasoning and a couple shakes of hot pepper sauce to spice Ham Salad up a bit. Or add a small dollop of preserved horseradish to the mixture…
- Healthy Ham Salad: Some cooks like to substitute plain Greek yogurt in place of mayonnaise for a healthy version of this delicious salad. Have you tried it? If so, how’d it go? Leave a comment, please!
Ham Salad calories:
One third of a cup of Ham Salad is approximately 170 calories, with 12g fat. Of course, specific Ham Salad nutrition varies depending on how it’s made. It tends to be low in carbs, but higher in fat.
If you’re wondering how many calories there are in something like a Ham Salad sandwich, here is a rough estimate: made with two slices of whole wheat bread, ⅓ cup of ham salad, tomatoes, and one leaf of iceberg lettuce contains approximately 323 calories.
Depending on the bread you use, that can change. Ham Salad on brown bread, for example, might be lower in calories. It’s best to look at the nutritional information of the bread you plan to use, just to be sure.
How to Serve Ham Salad:
Use a flatbread and make Ham Salad pinwheels, or a Ham Salad wrap with some baby greens and extra mustard.
Make a pass-worthy appetizer. Grab everybody’s favorite Ritz butter crackers (or crispy, crunchy Triscuits!) and add a schmear of Ham Salad. Garnish with chives.
Picnic sandwiches. Slice a crusty French baguette down the middle and fill it up with Ham Salad. Cut into sandwich-sized pieces. Easy to feed a crowd, and even easier to eat.
Low-carb brown, seeded bread makes excellent open-faced Ham Salad sammies, too.
Pack Ham Salad in a ramekin and serve with celery sticks, carrots, and cucumber slices for a healthy snack.
Anyway you slice it, spread it, or dip it, Ham Salad makes one of the best old-fashioned treats and it definitely worth a visit.
- 3 cups ham chopped
- 1 tablespoon celery finely chopped
- 1 tablespoon onion finely chopped
- 1 tablespoon pickle relish dill or sweet
- 1 cup mayonnaise
- 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
- Bread or crackers, for serving
- To a food processor fit with the blade attachment, add ham. Pulse until finely chopped (similar texture to bacon bits).
- In a large bowl, add processed ham, celery, onion, and relish. Stir to combine.
- Stir in mayonnaise and dijon mustard until combined. Serve on bread or with crackers.
Meggan Hill is a classically-trained chef and professional writer. Her meticulously-tested recipes and detailed tutorials bring confidence and success to home cooks everywhere. Meggan has been featured on NPR, HuffPost, FoxNews, LA Times, and more.