Classic Italian Pasta Salad
This easy pasta salad is perfect for dinner or for a family get together. All the flavors of pizza, meat, tomatoes, olives, peppers, cheese, and onions- its sensational!
This zesty and flavorful Italian Pasta Salad is the perfect side dish to bring alongside your next meal. It’s delicious!
If you’re looking for a light and flavorful dish to eat for lunch or as a side with other foods, try this Italian Pasta Salad. It’s easy to prepare and has such a bold, delicious taste to it.
When you want to make something simple that everyone can enjoy, there is nothing like having a recipe for pasta salad that you can prepare with ease. With this Italian Pasta Salad, you’re combining rotini pasta with several other ingredients, including green bell pepper, summer sausage, and Italian dressing, to create something that is undeniably delicious enough to keep you coming back for more.
Salad with Pasta
Who doesn’t love the taste of quick summer salad? While this Italian Pasta Salad is perfect for entertaining guests when having grills and other family gatherings, it’s the kind of meal you can eat as often as you’d like, whenever you want to have it, whether it’s summer or not. So, if you’re looking for a simple, stress-free recipe, gather the ingredients and put this easy salad together in no time.
Why You’ll Love This Italian Pasta Salad Recipe
It tastes amazing. It has such a zesty taste with a unique texture from the different ingredients added to it.
It’s not difficult to make. You won’t have to spend a lot of your time trying to put this meal together.
You can keep it stored in the fridge and access it when you need it. It’s the perfect salad to eat as an appetizer or for lunch or dinner, whenever you’re in the mood to have it.
Do I have to use rotini pasta?
No, you don’t have to use rotini pasta in this salad. While it’s a great option, you can use any other type of pasta you prefer, including garden pasta, rotelle, elbow macaroni noodles, or anything else that you feel would be the perfect fit for this easy salad.
What type of Italian dressing do I need to use in this salad?
The specific type of Italian dressing used isn’t too important. You can use any brand that you’d normally purchase and use on a traditional salad. Of course, it’s also possible to prepare a homemade version of the Italian dressing. If you have a homemade recipe that you like to prepare, use it for this recipe.
One thing I do want to mention too- do not butter your pasta after its cooked, it doesn’t work well for pasta salad. Just simply rinsing the pasta in cold water is enough to prevent your noodles from sticking together & there is plenty of oil in the salad dressing.
Can I use a different type of cheese?
While mozzarella cheese goes great with the different ingredients in this salad, such as the red onion, black olives, and grape tomatoes, you can leave it out or replace it with a different type of cheese. Cubed pieces of sharp cheddar cheese would also work well in this recipe.
What if I don’t want to use summer sausage or other meats?
If you don’t want to use summer sausage, you can replace it with salami or some other type of meat, such as diced pepperoni. its up to you! You can also choose to leave the meat out of this salad recipe if you prefer.
Recipe Notes & Tips
Make sure that you’re undercooking the pasta by around 30 seconds because it will soften a bit when you’ve added your dressing to it. If you overcook the pasta, it’s going to become mushy when the ingredients get added to it, and you don’t want that to happen.
If you want the pasta salad to look as good as it tastes, be sure to cut the ingredients into the same sizes.
Be sure to customize this pasta salad to your liking to get your family to eat it. For example, if they don’t like red onions, you don’t have to use them in this recipe. You can add and replace different ingredients while substituting some with other things.
How to Store the Italian Pasta Salad
If you’re planning to store the leftovers, pour your salad into a spacious airtight container with a lid and place it in the fridge for up to five days to keep it cold and fresh. Although it’s possible to put the pasta salad in the freezer, it may not taste as good when thawed because freezing the salad could impact the overall texture of the pasta. For that reason, it’s best to eat it after you’ve prepared it and within the five-day span when it’s fresh and good to eat.
For the best results you want to allow the pasta salad some time to marinade so the veggies and pasta absorb more flavor. Just 1-2 hours of refrigerating before serving does the trick!
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Classic Italian Pasta Salad
- 1 pound rotini pasta
- 10 ounces summer sausage or salami, cut into small cubes
- 4oz sliced pepperoni
- 1 pint grape tomatoes, halved
- 1 (3.8 ounce)can black olives, sliced
- 1/2 cup red onion, diced small
- 1 cup cucumber, diced
- 1/2 green bell pepper, diced
- 1/2 red bell pepper, diced
- 1/2 yellow bell pepper, diced
- 8 ounces mozzarella pearls
- 1/3 cup freshly grated parmesan cheese
- 3 tablespoons fresh parsley, chopped
- 1 cup Italian dressing
- Salt and pepper to taste
Prep Time:20 minutes
- Cook the pasta according to package directions.
- You can cook it for 30 seconds less than the directions say for best results.
- Drain and run under cold water to stop the cooking and cool quickly.
- Have all the vegetables, meat and cheese cut and add to the cooled pasta.
- Toss to combine.
- Pour the dressing over the pasta and gently stir.
- Taste and season with salt and pepper if needed.
- Keep refrigerated till ready to serve.