I am wondering if anybody knows if Miracle whip adds more moisture to your pasta salad vs Mayo. Mine always seems to be swimming in liquid a day later. Also I was thinking that boiling the pasta a little over and not rinsing like someone said and letting it cool slowly on it own would allow time for the moisture to evaporate, solving the problem too.

  • You could always just use Mayo. Turns out the tangy zip of Miracle Whip is mustard. Commented Aug 1, 2023 at 19:41
  • Mayonnaise is correct.
    – user89518
    Commented Aug 1, 2023 at 21:17
  • 4
    If your salad goes soggy or watery a day later, a common trick is to mix and store the salad without dressing, and only add it shortly before consumption.
    – IMil
    Commented Aug 2, 2023 at 0:20

4 Answers 4


I've used miracle whip in many pasta and potato salads and I've never had a problem with water in it, maybe there's something other than the miracle whip at play.

Look at your other ingredients and whether they shed water. Cucumbers and celery are essentially water with a bit of cellulose to keep it in place, they will add water to your salad.

One thing you said was 'boiling your pasta over', which I am interpreting as deliberately overcooking your pasta. This is the opposite of what you want to do. When you cook pasta you are rehydrating it, if you overcook pasta it will soak up more water then it can hold once it cools, then it will come out later. If you cook it so it's firm, maybe just the teeniest bit underdone it will still be 'thirsty' when you make the salad, and will absorb some of the water shed from other ingredients.

Similar to pasta, overcooking potatoes will also result in extra water, you'll also get mushy potatoes in your salad. Cook them until they are firm, but break up with a fork.

  • Good call on the vegetables. Note that it takes a while for the pasta to absorb water (at least a few hours refrigerated), so you'll need to keep the salad texture somewhat "dry" when you're initially mixing it if you're taking this approach.
    – Sneftel
    Commented Aug 1, 2023 at 8:46
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    I loved the description of the thirsty pasta. Well said!
    – Jolenealaska
    Commented Aug 1, 2023 at 10:27
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    "essentially water with a bit of cellulose to keep it in place" LOL! :)
    – Marti
    Commented Aug 1, 2023 at 22:21
  • 1
    I suspect that a trick for coleslaw will work with other Dressed salads: massage the vegetables with salt. Let them sit for 15 mins or so, then rinse and drain. The vegetables will give up moisture after being exposed to salt, so you can drain it away before it’s affected by the dressing
    – Joe
    Commented Aug 3, 2023 at 18:51

Yes, Miracle Whip is much higher in water than real mayonnaise. (It uses more water and less oil, sweetened with corn syrup and thickened with modified corn starch, to make it cheaper to manufacture.)

Letting the pasta dry out a bit will cut down the moisture slightly, but won’t make much of an impact compared to the water in the Miracle Whip. Not rinsing the pasta will have very little impact on the moisture, and may make the salad more difficult to mix properly.

  • 4
    It is not just much higher in water, from a quick look at wiki Miracle Whip's first ingredient IS water. The only water there is in mayonnaise comes from the vinegar, and there isn't much of it.
    – Shautieh
    Commented Aug 1, 2023 at 17:21
  • I believe Miracle Whip does use modified corn starch everywhere (the jar I have in my fridge just says, “modified starch”, but I assume it’s corn starch), but I don’t think it’s sweetened with corn syrup outside the US. Here in Europe, at least, it contains sugar and apple vinegar, but no corn syrup. It also contains other thickening agents than the corn starch (guar gum and locust bean gum). Commented Aug 2, 2023 at 0:17
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    @njuffa fair enough, I wouldn't call that a mayonnaise anymore (even soybean oil...) but if it's what you find in the USA I understand both products will behave similarly.
    – Shautieh
    Commented Aug 2, 2023 at 9:25

Because I prefer the flavor Miracle Whip adds to my dishes, I have used it for more than 40 years. It has never turned my potato salad watery. As a matter of fact, I always make the salad the night before and make extra sauce because the sauce is absorbed by the potatoes overnight and I add more so that it is nice and moist for the meal. I don't just dump the MW in the potatoes; I add a bit of sugar,S&P, mustard, and pickle juice to it to achieve our family recipe.


Yes, we have noticed egg salad, potato salad, ham salad etc all get watery after a day. If we are not taking the dishes to a party or dinner we just mix enough salad with miracle whip for our use at that time. I really wish they would go back to their original recipe!!!

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