Perfect Pasta Salad Recipes

Pasta salad is a perfect dish for versatility; it's easily portable and can be served either hot or cold. Try one of these 25 healthy pasta salad recipes.

Warm Pasta Salad with Shrimp Recipe

Photo: John Autry

Warm Pasta Salad with Shrimp

Pantry-friendly ingredients make this pasta salad easy on your budget. Toss warm pasta with the tangy dressing so it will absorb more flavor. If you prefer to serve this salad chilled, make it up to a day ahead, toss, and refrigerate until you're ready to serve.

View Recipe: Warm Pasta Salad with Shrimp

Gemelli Salad with Green Beans, Pistachios, and Lemon-Thyme Vinaigrette Recipe

Photo: Johnny Autry

Gemelli Salad with Green Beans, Pistachios, and Lemon-Thyme Vinaigrette

Haricots verts are thin, tender green beans. If you can't find them, use trimmed regular green beans, but add them to the pasta after 8 minutes of cooking since they'll take longer to cook. You can make the salad ahead, but dress it just before serving so the beans don't turn drab.

View Recipe: Gemelli Salad with Green Beans, Pistachios, and Lemon-Thyme Vinaigrette

Peanut Chicken Soba Salad Recipe

Photo: Randy Mayor

Peanut Chicken Soba Salad

You'll only need about 15 minutes to cook the chicken and noodles for this flavorful Asian salad. If short on time, substitute rotisserie chicken or leftover cooked chicken, and purchase preshredded carrots from your supermarket's produce section.

View Recipe: Peanut Chicken Soba Salad

Orzo Salad with Spicy Buttermilk Dressing Recipe

Photo: Johnny Autry

Orzo Salad with Spicy Buttermilk Dressing

Pasta salad gets a southwestern twist with the addition of corn, black beans, chili powder, and fresh cilantro. Make ahead for lunch, dinner, or even a picnic.

View Recipe: Orzo Salad with Spicy Buttermilk Dressing

Roasted Asparagus and Tomato Penne Salad with Goat Cheese Recipe

Photo: John Autry

Roasted Asparagus and Tomato Penne Salad with Goat Cheese

Herbes de Provence lends a hit of floral flavor to the dressing of this penne salad. Serve this dish immediately or cover and chill for 2 hours for a cold pasta salad.

View Recipe: Roasted Asparagus and Tomato Penne Salad with Goat Cheese

Rotini, Summer Squash, and Prosciutto Salad with Rosemary Dressing Recipe

Photo: Lee Harrelson

Rotini, Summer Squash, and Prosciutto Salad with Rosemary Dressing

Using white balsamic vinegar helps maintains the salad dressing's pure golden color. Tip: Add the yellow squash and zucchini to the pasta during the last minute of cooking.

View Recipe: Rotini, Summer Squash, and Prosciutto Salad with Rosemary Dressing

Orzo Salad with Radish and Fennel Recipe

Photo: Francesco Tonelli

Orzo Salad with Radish and Fennel

Lemony dressing and fresh mint add vibrant flavor to this pasta salad. Serve chilled or at room temperature, and garnish with pretty mint leaves, if desired.

View Recipe: Orzo Salad with Radish and Fennel

Roasted Chicken and Bow Tie Pasta Salad Recipe

Photo: Becky Luigart-Stayner

Roasted Chicken and Bow Tie Pasta Salad

The flavor and contrasting textures―crunchy celery, onion, and walnut, chewy pasta, tender chicken, and juicy grapes―make an easy salad that can be made ahead and travels well, either for a dinner on the go or a workday lunch. Leftover chicken, or deli ham or turkey can take the place of the store-bought rotisserie bird if you prefer.

View Recipe: Roasted Chicken and Bow Tie Pasta Salad

Chicken and Farfalle Salad with Walnut Pesto Recipe

Photo: Lee Harrelson

Chicken and Farfalle Salad with Walnut Pesto

To make sure the walnut pesto ingredients are evenly minced, stop the food processor halfway through processing, and scrape down the sides.

Kalamata olives are great to have on hand to add zesty saltiness to salads, sandwiches, and spreads.

View Recipe: Chicken and Farfalle Salad with Walnut Pesto

Cavatappi with Bacon and Summer Vegetables Recipe

Photo: Becky Luigart-Stayner

Cavatappi with Bacon and Summer Vegetables

A light, flavorful pasta toss, accented with crumbled bacon, is a quick and easy dinner solution for any night of the week. Use whatever veggies you have on hand to add to the colorful dish. Serve with a mixed greens salad.

View Recipe: Cavatappi with Bacon and Summer Vegetables

Top-Rated Vegetable Recipe: Lemony Orzo-Veggie Salad with Chicken

Photo: John Autry

Lemony Orzo-Veggie Salad with Chicken

Fresh and light describe the flavors of this salad. With pops of green onions, herbs and cucumber, and bright red bell pepper, this dish will be a delight for both the eyes and the palate.

View Recipe: Lemony Orzo-Veggie Salad with Chicken

Macaroni Salad with Summer Tomatoes Recipe

Photo: Randy Mayor

Macaroni Salad with Summer Tomatoes

White balsamic vinegar helps this side dish maintain its fresh appeal. Serve with grilled chicken. Or, for a meatless entrée, add mozzarella, feta, or goat cheese.

View Recipe: Macaroni Salad with Summer Tomatoes

Rotini Salad with Kalamata Olive Dressing Recipe

Photo: Lee Harrelson

Rotini Salad with Kalamata Olive Dressing

Bring this crowd-pleasing vinegar- and olive-based salad to your next picnic, barbecue, or get-together.

View Recipe: Rotini Salad with Kalamata Olive Dressing

Cavatappi Pasta Salad with Walnut-Sage Pesto Recipe

Photo: Becky Luigart-Stayner

Cavatappi Pasta Salad with Walnut-Sage Pesto

Pasta salad isn't just for summer. Butternut squash and a walnut-sage pesto give this dish a hit of fall flavor. The pesto sauce darkens upon standing, so try to serve the salad shortly after tossing the ingredients.

View Recipe: Cavatappi Pasta Salad with Walnut-Sage Pesto

Chicken-Penne Salad with Green Beans Recipe

Photo: Randy Mayor

Chicken-Penne Salad with Green Beans

You can have this entire meal ready in just about 35 minutes. To quickly prepare the beans in this recipe, trim just the stem ends, leaving the tapered blossom ends intact. Line up 5 or 6 beans at a time and cut them roughly the same length as the pasta.

View Recipe: Chicken-Penne Salad with Green Beans

Soba Noodles with Chicken and Vegetables

Soba Noodles with Chicken and Vegetables

This slightly spicy, easy recipe is perfect for a quick dinner. If you are a Sriracha fanatic or already have Asian sauces and spices on hand, this recipe is perfect for you. Serve with fruit salad – think kiwi, pineapple and mango.

View Recipe:  Soba Noodles with Chicken and Vegetables  

Peppery Monterey Jack Pasta Salad

Peppery Monterey Jack Pasta Salad

This protein-packed salad is filled with sharp, flavorful tastes like tart banana peppers and smoky salami. The protein and carbs make this an ideal post-workout meal.

View Recipe:  Peppery Monterey Jack Pasta Salad

Prosciutto and Melon Pasta Salad

Prosciutto and Melon Pasta Salad

The sweet melon and smoky prosciutto intertwine in this hearty dish to delight the taste buds. It’s substantial enough to be the main course or as the side dish to a lighter entrée.

View Recipe:  Prosciutto and Melon Pasta Salad

Spinach-Pasta Salad

Spinach-Pasta Salad

This superfast and simple spinach dish is low-maintenance and easy. Top with wild-caught salmon or grilled chicken breast for a healthy dinner.

View Recipe:  Spinach-Pasta Salad

Spicy Pasta-Cucumber Salad

Spicy Pasta-Cucumber Salad

Fresh cucumbers and a sweet-and-spicy sauce coat tender linguine for a gourmet fare that won’t cost you a fortune.

View Recipe:  Spicy Pasta-Cucumber Salad  

Udon Noodle Salad with Broccolini and Spicy Tofu

Udon Noodle Salad with Broccolini and Spicy Tofu

If you can handle the heat, add this to your meal plan. With so many distinctive flavors – sharp radish, crisp broccolini, and nutty cashew – this dish is truly something to savor.

View Recipe:  Udon Noodle Salad with Broccolini and Spicy Tofu  

Confetti Couscous

Confetti Couscous

You’ll have a party in your bowl with this brightly colored, low-cal, international dish. Serve this salad chilled or at room temperature. You can prepare the recipe up to a day ahead, but stir in the basil just before serving.

View Recipe:  Confetti Couscous 

Tuna-Fennel Pasta Salad

Photo: John Autry

Tuna-Fennel Pasta Salad

Sure, premium oil-packed tuna is a splurge, but the texture and rich flavor are worth it. This recipe is so simple and tasty, there’s no reason not to try it.

View Recipe: Tuna-Fennel Pasta Salad

Vegetable Pasta Salad with Goat Cheese

Photo: Iain Bagwell

Vegetable Pasta Salad with Goat Cheese

Ready in just over 20 minutes, this delicious pasta salad is the perfect add-on to a soup main dish or in smaller portions with a meat-based entrée.

View Recipe: Vegetable Pasta Salad with Goat Cheese

Black Pepper Pasta Salad with Prosciutto, Asparagus, and Romano

Photo: Romulo Yanes

Black Pepper Pasta Salad with Prosciutto, Asparagus, and Romano

This mayonnaise-based pasta salad veers from the traditional with salty Italian ham, nutty asparagus, and a generous grinding of pepper.

View Recipe: Black Pepper Pasta Salad with Prosciutto, Asparagus, and Romano

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