Cold pasta salads
Cold pasta salad is a healthy and versatile dish that can be tailored for meat eaters, vegetarians and vegans alike. Cold pasta salad recipes are suitable as a starter, a main meal or as a side dish for a bbq or a family cookout.
There are loads of different cold pasta salad recipes so there will be something for everyone. With so many different cold pasta salad recipes to choose from how do you decide which ones are worth making? How do you decide which ones are the best? Below are my favourite cold pasta salad recipes, all of which are cheap and easy to make, as well as being very tasty.
Cold pasta salad recipes - Greek pasta salad
This Greek pasta salad recipe is healthy, nutritious, tasty and very easy to make. Using the traditional ingredients found in the Mediterranean it is an authentic dish that you can easily make at home. Although this is a vegetarian pasta salad recipe it is something that meat eaters would
also enjoy, especially when combined with some barbecued meat.
To make this Mediterranean dish you will need five hundred grams of penne pasta, five tablespoons of olive oil, the juice of one small lemon, one teaspoon of dried basil, one cucumber roughly chopped, two chopped tomatoes, one green pepper, one red onion, a handful of olives and some ground pepper.
Boil a large pan of water, add the pasta and then cook until it is al dente which should take around ten minutes. It is important not to over cook the pasta as it will turn starchy and become a bit sloppy. Make sure you stand over the pasta whilst it is cooking to ensure you don’t overcook it.
Once the pasta is cooked drain and allow to cool for five minutes. Once cool mix the pasta with the pepper, tomatoes, cucumber, red onion and olives and allow to stand. Whist the pasta is standing mix the oil, lemon juice, basil and pepper in a jug and mix thoroughly before pouring over the pasta and the vegetables. Toss the pasta salad in the oil and ensure everything gets a nice coating. Cover the pasta salad and then put in the refrigerator for at least forty five minutes before serving.
Cold pasta salad recipes - Spinach and feta pasta salad
In order to make this pasta salad you will need five hundred grams of farfelle pasta (the bow shaped variety), two hundred and seventy five grams of torn spinach, fifty grams of feta cheese, a handful of black olives, one red onion, five tablespoons of olive oil, two table spoons of balsamic vinegar, four cloves of crushed garlic, the juice of one small lemon and two teaspoons of black pepper.
Boil a large pan of water, add the pasta and then cook until it is al dente. Once again, keep an eye on the pasta and make sure you don’t overcook it. Place the spinach leaves in a colander and drain the pasta through the spinach leaves just so they wilt. Shake the colander and make sure the water is completely drained. Put the pasta in a bowl and mix in the feta cheese, red onion, spinach leaves and olives.
Put the olive oil in a jug and add the balsamic vinegar, the lemon juice, the crushed garlic and the black pepper and mix thoroughly. Pour the liquid over the pasta salad and toss. Make sure everything gets a coating of the mixture and then put in the fridge for at least forty five minutes before serving.
Cold pasta salad recipes - Tomato and red pepper salad
This tomato and red pepper cold pasta salad is fresh and tasty Mediterranean style pasta that makes a great side dish or a main meal.
Red pepper and tomatoes go very well with pasta and these are the staple ingredients of this dish. In order to make this pasta salad you will need five hundred grams of penne pasta, a dozen plum tomatoes finely chopped, four cloves of crushed garlic, one large red pepper seeded and chopped, five tablespoons of olive oil, black pepper to taste.
Mix all the ingredients together in a large bowl and thoroughly stir before leaving to stand at room temperature for an hour or so.
Whilst the other ingredients are standing boil a large pan of water, add the pasta and then cook until it is al dente. Once again, keep an eye on the pasta and make sure you don’t overcook it. Once the pasta is cooked, drain well and allow to cool. Add the pasta to the bowl and toss, ensuring the pasta gets a good coating. Put the pasta salad in the fridge for at least an hour before serving.
Cold pasta salad recipes - Cheesy bacon pasta salad
Cheese and bacon go very well together and go exceptional well with pasta. In order to make this cheesy bacon pasta salad you will need five hundred grams of penne of fusilli pasta, eight rashes of streaky bacon, mayonnaise, three cloves of crushed garlic, one large onion chopped, two large tomatoes chopped, a handful of black olives, one hundred and twenty grams of cheese (the choice of cheese is entirely up to you).
First off you need to cook the bacon. How you cook the bacon is entirely up to you and it doesn’t matter whether it is grilled, fried or even microwaved. If you like crispy bacon then crisp it up, if you like your bacon more floppy don’t cook it as much. With this dish you are in total control how to cook the bacon and how you want the bacon cooked. Once the bacon is cooked chop it up in to small pieces.
Boil the pasta in a large pan and cook until it is al dente. Once again, make sure you don’t over cook the pasta so stand over it during the cooking process and keep an eye on it. Once the pasta is cooked drain and immediately add the grated cheese so it melts.
In a large bowl add all the other ingredients, except for the mayonnaise and thoroughly mix together. Add the pasta and mix together, being careful not to be too hard as to damage the pasta. Next, spoon in some mayonnaise and mix up ensuring everything gets a nice coating. The amount of mayonnaise you use is entirely down to personal choice so add as much or as little as you like. Season with salt and pepper, cover and put in the fridge. The bacon and cheesy pasta should be chilled for at least two hours before serving.
Cold pasta salad recipes - Any other ideas?
There are plenty of cold pasta salad recipes and the above are just a few of my favourites. Pasta is a versatile dish and you can make cold pasta salad recipes out of almost anything you can think of. You may want to add some cold chilli con carne or some cold Bolognese sauce. You may want to add some green peppers and some bbq sauce. You really can add whatever you want so let your imagination run riot.