When making pasta salad, these are the 50 best recipes when thinking about what to serve with pasta salad! They are mouthwatering, full of flavor, and a perfect dish to serve with your main course!
Pasta salad is a delicious side dish to serve throughout the Summer. It is one of the best side dishes to your favorite main dish at a barbecue.
The great thing about pasta salad is that it is incredibly versatile! It is a great way to use up the veggies that are in your refrigerator too! Serve a creamy pasta salad or make one with olive oil and vinegar for a lightened up version!
How To Make Pasta Salad
This easy pasta salad recipe is perfect for Summer cookouts and is full of fresh ingredients.
- Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil and add the pasta. Cook based on the package instructions.
- While the pasta is cooked to al dente, wash and chop all the vegetables. Place them in a large bowl. Cut the cheese into small pieces and add it to the large mixing bowl.
- When the pasta is done cooking, drain it and run cold water over the pasta. Add the cooled pasta to the large bowl.
- Pour the dressing over the pasta and mix everything together. Serve or refrigerate the pasta salad for at least 2 hours.
Pasta Salad Variations
- Change the dressing! A Caesar dressing, a ranch dressing, a lemon juice and olive oil dressing, or a Greek dressing, or your favorite creamy dressing are all great options to add different flavors to your pasta salad.
- Change the vegetables! A great option to use all your veggies is to add them to a pasta salad. Use bell peppers, red onion, juicy cherry tomatoes, or cucumbers.
- Change the cheese! Parmesan cheese, cheddar cheese, fresh mozzarella cheese, or goat cheese are all great additions to pasta salad.
- Add protein! Chop up grilled chicken, add a can of chick peas or cannellini beans, or add chopped hardboiled egg to that pasta salad.
- Add fresh herbs! Fresh basil, fresh parsley, fresh chives, or fresh tarragon are all a good idea to add to the pasta salad. Feel free to sprinkle some garlic powder in the dressing too!
FAQs About Pasta Salad
Yes! You can use your favorite gluten free pasta. Chickpea pasta or lentil pasta would also be delicious in pasta salad.
Yes! You can make pasta salad up to 3 days ahead of time. Make sure to keep it refrigerated until you are ready to serve it. If you are adding things like lettuce or cucumbers, you might want to add those the day you are going to serve the pasta salad.
That is because the dressing has time to sink into the pasta salad and all the flavors can meld together. Pasta salad is usually better to make ahead of time for that reason.
Pasta Salad Recipes
Here are some of my favorite recipes!
- Bowtie Pasta Salad with Italian Dressing
- Italian Antipasto Pasta Salad
- Greek Pasta Salad with Penne Pasta
- Linguine Pasta Salad
- Fresh Vegetables and Fresh Herb Classic Pasta Salad
- Halloween Pasta Salad
- Orzo Pesto Pasta Salad
- Chicken and Bacon Caesar Pasta Salad
What To Serve With Pasta Salad
Your favorite Summer dishes are all delicious with pasta salad! Here are some ideas!
- Hot dogs and hamburgers. Pasta salad is a great side dish to serve with hot dogs or a chicken burger with feta and spinach.
- Chicken. BBQ chicken fried chicken, or simple grilled chicken are great with pasta salad!
- Sandwiches. Finger sandwiches, cold cut sandwiches, meatball subs, or a variety of wraps.
- Other salads. Your favorite potato salad or a creamy macaroni salad would be delicious with a pasta salad! I love Instant Pot German Potato Salad all Sumer long!