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Hawaiian Macaroni Salad is the perfect side dish! It is a delicious macaroni pasta salad with ham, pineapple, shredded carrots, and green onions, and a tangy dressing.

When I see a dish with elbow noodles in it, I know it is going to be decadent comfort food! Try these amazing recipes for yourself, Macaroni and Cheese, Salad, and Goulash!

A wooden bowl with hawaiian macaroni salad in it.

Hawaiian Macaroni Salad Recipe

Isn’t it crazy to think that summer is halfway over! It is kind of a sad thought! I have been loving the sun and all of the fun activities that come with summer. Especially the BBQs and potlucks! I always love a good pasta salad when you go to a potluck. And this Hawaiian macaroni salad is truly incredible and unique! The ingredients are simple but come together so well. The ham and pineapple give this salad a Hawaiian feel and add such delicious flavor. This Hawaiian macaroni salad doesn’t need a lot added to it because the ham and pineapple are the stars of the show.

But let’s just talk about the one amazing thing that sets this Hawaiian macaroni salad apart from the others. The sweet and tangy pineapple dressing. It is so phenomenal and gives the salad such great flavor. It will set your macaroni salad apart from all of the rest and it is sure to be a huge hit! Serve this up at your next dinner and watch them all get taken to a bit of paradise! Try it today!

What You Need For Hawaiian Macaroni Salad

Bursting with flavor, this is a refreshing Hawaiian macaroni salad! For all ingredient measurements, follow the recipe card below.

  • Dry elbow macaroni: prepared according to package directions and rinsed in cold water
  • Pineapple chunks: 20 ounces, drained (reserve 1/2 cup liquid for dressing)
  • Ham: cubed and cooked
  • Carrot: shredded, use the finest holes of a cheese grater.
  • Green onion:Sliced thinly.

Pineapple Dressing

A zesty and delicious dressing that will help add flavor and creaminess to the Hawaiian macaroni salad. You will love the combination this adds!

  • Pineapple juice reserved: If needed you can use pineapple juice from a carton or bottle too.
  • Light mayonnaise: Can use full fat if you prefer.
  • Greek yogurt: Be sure to use plain greek yogurt and it can be low or nonfat as well.
  • Apple cider vinegar: Adds a bit of tang and sharpness that pairs well with the sweet.
  • Sugar: This takes the edge off of the apple cider vinegar and gives just a touch of sweetness.
  • Salt and pepper: Add to taste

How to Make Hawaiian Salad

This Hawaiian macaroni salad is the perfect side dish for any potluck or BBQ! It is a family favorite and always a classic, MUST have pasta salad at any get together.

  1. Combine: In a large bowl, combine macaroni, pineapple chunks, ham, carrots, and green onion in a bowl. set aside.
  2. MIx: In a small bowl whisk together the mayonnaise, greek yogurt, cider vinegar, and sugar. Pour over pasta and stir to coat. Enjoy!
Ingredients for the Hawaiian Macaroni Salad

Tips and Variations for Macaroni Salad

The sweet pineapple is the perfect match for the savory salty ham, your whole family is going to love this! Follow these tips and variations for making the best Hawaiian macaroni salad!

  • Noodles: Be sure to cook your noodles al dente, it keeps the noodles firm enough to hold up to the ingredients, but soft enough to love.
  • Rinse: Make sure to rinse the noodles in cold water when done cooking to stop them from cooking any longer. They will get mushy if you don’t.
  • Types of Noodles: Don’t worry if you do not have elbow macaroni, this salad can be made with a variety of noodles successfully. Try shell, rotini or even bowtie pasta. I would not, however, recommend spaghetti or long thin noodles for this salad.
  • Ham: If you are really in a hurry you can buy already cubed ham at the store. It is cheaper however to buy a small ham and chop it yourself. Then you can use the leftovers to mix in your eggs for breakfast or make ham fried rice.
  • Pineapple: I like to cut my chunks in half to make them a bit smaller and easeir to eat. If you can find tidbit pineapple, they are smaller than chunks.
  • Add ins: You can add more flavor and texture by adding in, bacon, celery, peas, or peppers.
  • Refrigerate: I like to make this at least 2 hours in advance and let the flavors meld together. This will keep in the fridge for 3 days, and it will get better with time!

What to serve with Hawaiian Salad

This may not be super authentic, most hawaiian macaroni salad will not contain ham or pineapple, but this is still insanely delicious. It is a great addition to any meal. You can also serve as a main dish salad, since it has the ham in it. You can pair it with a side of watermelon, a nice rice and some rolls for a light lunch. Whatever you do, make this Hawaiian macaroni salad, you and your loved ones will be so glad you did!

Scooping a bite of the macaroni salad with a fork.

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Hawaiian Macaroni Salad

4.72 from 7 votes
By: Alyssa Rivers
Hawaiian Macaroni Salad is the perfect side dish! It is a delicious macaroni pasta salad with ham, pineapple, shredded carrots, and green onions, and a tangy dressing.
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Total Time: 15 minutes
Servings: 6 Servings


  • 1/2 pound dry elbow macaroni prepared according to package directions and rinsed in cold water
  • 1 can pineapple chunks 20 ounces, drained (reserve 1/2 cup liquid for dressing)
  • 2 cups ham cubed cooked
  • 1/2 cup carrot shredded
  • 1/4 cup green onion

Pineapple Dressing:


  • In a large bowl, combine macaroni, pineapple chunks, ham, carrots, and green onion in a bowl. set aside.
  • In a small bowl whisk together the pineapple juice, mayonnaise, greek yogurt, cider vinegar, and sugar. Pour over pasta and stir to coat. Enjoy!


Updated on July 7, 2021
Originally Posted on July 16, 2015


Calories: 340kcalCarbohydrates: 49gProtein: 17gFat: 9gSaturated Fat: 3gCholesterol: 29mgSodium: 569mgPotassium: 418mgFiber: 3gSugar: 19gVitamin A: 1871IUVitamin C: 12mgCalcium: 45mgIron: 1mg

Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.

Additional Info

Course: Salad, Side Dish
Cuisine: American
Tried this recipe?Mention @alyssa_therecipecritic or tag #therecipecritic!

About Alyssa Rivers

Alyssa Rivers is the author of 'The Tried and True Cookbook', a professional food photographer and experienced recipe-developer. Having a passion for cooking, her tried and true recipes have been featured on Good Morning America, Today Food, Buzzfeed and more.

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Recipe Rating


  1. 5 stars
    Very good. I had to grate my carrots on the medium grid; the smallest was too small to work with carrots. I did not rinse the hot pasta; I just drained it and while the pasta was still hot, stirred in the dressing and let that sit overnight in refrigerator. The pasta helped it to thicken nicely. I mixed in the pre-prepped solid ingredients the next day, a few hours before serving. I also added some mandarin oranges. We enjoyed it! Thaks for the recipe.

  2. Followed recipe to a T. Have made it bout 5 times in past few months. The only change were I added smoked ham and pineapple Greek yogurt. Fantastic side dish for family n friends. 😋👍👍

  3. 3 stars
    This recipe is a fusion type of Hawaii mac salad. True mac salad has onion, mayo, macaroni, and carrots. Some people use tuna and black pepper. 👍🏼

  4. 5 stars
    This is so good that I’ve made it twice in the last two weeks. This time, however, I more than doubled the recipe, because last time it was gone within 24 hours & all I had was one serving!
    I took your suggestion & added red & green bell peppers & celery. I was out of mayonnaise so I just used all Greek yogurt & it worked out terrific! Plus, it’s a lot better for you. I also added three cans of pineapple tidbits!
    I must say, this is just so doggone good! Anyone that is hesitant to make it I strongly recommend that you do. Besides, as with any recipe, you can always add or subtract whatever tickles your fancy to make it your own.
    Thank you so much for sharing this with us!

  5. I smoked 2 cans of spam in place of the ham & added 2t red pepper flakes dusted w/paprika garnished w/ grilled marked pineapple slices. I had to make it 2x at my cookout.

  6. 5 stars
    This is the first time I’ve ever wrote a review on a blog. I really should start doing it all the time because I rely heavily on reviews.
    I had never made anything from this blog before but this recipe was fantastic!! I was looking for Filipino macaroni salad with pineapple but I found this recipe and decided to make both. This recipe is far superior to the other recipe I used. I will still be on the hunt for a good Filipino macaroni salad but I’ll definitely be making this recipe again. It was so simple to make too! Not a lot of ingredients but great flavor! I’ve never made a dressing for macaroni salad, we’ve always just used mayonnaise. This will be my go-to now. Thank you for sharing this recipe in an easy to follow format!

    Oh and I diced up a can of spam for the ham. I wouldn’t make it any other way. Worked beautifully and tastes delicious.

    1. Thank you for your review! I appreciate your honesty and review of one of my recipes. So glad that you could make it your own and loved the recipe.