How To Make Caprese Bowtie Pasta Salad
To make this fresh pasta salad, youll need:
- Salt and pepper
Gather all your ingredients and follow the steps below for a delicious side salad or lunch!
Once your pasta is cooked, drained and cooled, add it to a medium mixing bowl with the tomatoes, olives, basil, onion and mozzarella balls. Mix everything together.
Drizzle on the Italian dressing and stir again.
Then, add salt and pepper to taste. THATS IT!
Greek Pasta Salad Variations
Instead of lemon juice, you can use red wine or balsamic vinegar in the dressing.
Add spinach or kale for a bit more green in your pasta salad.
Try using roasted red peppers for an extra smokey flavor.
Chickpeas will make your Greek pasta salad even heartier.
Orzo is a tasty pasta choice instead of the classic fusilli, bow tie, or penne pasta.
For a creamy Greek pasta salad, use Greek yogurt to make the dressing.
Add pine nuts for a bit of crunch.
You can add meat like salami, chopped sausage, or mini lamb meatballs for a mouthwatering salad you can enjoy as a main meal.
Tips For Making Pasta Salad
- Always salt your pasta water! This helps to flavor the whole dish and is an important step.
- Choose the right pasta: When making pasta salad I always look for a pasta that has lots of nooks and crannies to hold in the dressing. Bow tie, penne and fussili are all great choices!
- Cook pasta just until al-dente: Over cooking your pasta even by just a minute will lead to a soggy pasta salad. The noodles soften as they sit in the dressing.
- Let it soak up dressing: For at least 2 hours or overnight for best results. I always find pasta salad is better the next day. Just keep in mind you may have to add more dressing.
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Serve Bow Tie Pasta Salad As A Side Or Main Dish
Its no secret that I love an deliciously simple pasta salad. They keep well, which means we can enjoy it all week.
You can also add a little fiesta to your fiesta with this Mexican Pasta Salad. Youll want to pin it for Cinco De Mayo! See, I told you there was something for everyone around here!
In fact, Ive got an entire post dedicated to rounding up all the reader-fave easy pasta salad recipes around here. Dont miss it youll want to pin and save it for later!
This pasta salad recipe also feeds a crowd! It serves 10-12 side portions. Its great for summer entertaining.
Pretty little bow tie pasta noodles all dressed in a lemon vinaigrette pasta salad dressing, and tossed with feta, basil and cherry tomatoesdoes it get any better? Its the ultimate summer side dish but can also be enjoyed as an entree.
In fact, thats the best way to have leftovers for lunch!
Even kids will enjoy this irresistible recipe. Adalyn cant resist the cherry tomatoes and who can say no to adorable bow tie pasta? Its light, fresh and flavorful!
Pasta Salad Dressing is so easy to make! This pasta salad dressing uses just four ingredients: lemon juice, olive oil, mustard and minced garlic. That keeps this dressing light, unlike so many pasta salad recipes.
It gets even better as it soaks into the noodles when refrigerated. It makes the bowtie pasta so tender and flavorful.
Give This Italian Bow Tie Pasta Salad A Try
This Italian bow tie pasta salad is quick, easy, and packed full of flavor. Thats a triple threat if you ask me. Its so flavorful and light, its perfect for any occasion. Its filled with flavor but wont weigh you down like other creamy pasta salads will, making it an exceptionally great recipe for hot summer days. And because its so fast, you can whip it up at a moments notice. Give this recipe a try, and I know youll love it as much as I do!
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What Goes Into Bow Tie Pasta Salad
This Bow Tie Pasta Salad is packed with fresh and flavorful ingredients. Heres what youll need:
- Pasta just pick your favorite pasta shape. I like bigger pieces of pasta, so I opt for bowtie or penne, but other smaller pasta shapes will work too.
- Cherry Tomatoes you can use raw cherry tomatoes or roast them
- Red Bell Pepper or any type of pepper you prefer
- Red Onion
- Black Olives
- Cheese a good quality sharp or medium cheddar or Monterey jack are my favorites. Mozzarella works great too! Dice the cheese into small cubes so it incorporates well into the pasta salad.
- Shaved Parmesan Cheese
- Green Onion optional for garnish.
Tips For The Best Greek Pasta Salad
You can make gluten-free Greek pasta salad using your favorite gluten-free pasta instead of regular pasta.
Don’t forget to rinse the pasta under cold water after you’ve cooked it. This is key for stopping the cooking process and making sure you don’t wind up with soggy pasta.
Cook the pasta in water seasoned with salt. This won’t make the pasta salty. It will enhance the flavor.
Use fresh or dried oregano.
Greek pasta salad can be served warm, at room temperature, or cold.
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Bow Tie Pasta Salad Ingredients
- Bow Tie Pasta Noodles You can use the noodle of your choice, but I like using bow tie for the prettiest pasta salad. It holds the cheese and mustard grain and looks beautiful!
- Feta A slightly salty Greek cheese from Sheeps or Goats milk is often tolerated by those who are dairy free.
- Basil Fresh basil adds so much flavor and color to this pasta salad. Slice thin. You can use a sprig to garnish on top as well.
- Cherry Tomatoes Use red or a blend of yellow, orange and red to add even more color.
- Lemon Vinaigrette A blend of lemon juice, olive oil, whole grain mustard, and minced garlic coats the noodles to perfection.
- Salt and Pepper Season to taste. I like to use thick flakes of black peppercorns from a grinder for the best flavor.
Italian Dressing Pasta Salad Is My New Mvp
Bow tie pasta salad is a CHAMP recipe for the, ahem, unique moment we find ourselves in. We love it because:
- It can be made in about 20 minutes.
- Its ideal for making ahead of time. Make it in the morning, during nap time, or even the night before!
- You can swap out ingredients based on what you have on hand.
- Its great for using up odds and ends in your produce drawer.
- It can be made meatless or loaded with meat and cheese! Its totally up to you!
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Bow Tie Pasta Salad Recipe
First, preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. Meanwhile, boil the pasta in salted water per package instructions. Drain and set aside
Add broccoli, bell peppers and onions to a sheet tray. Drizzle with 1 tablespoon olive oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Toss to coat. Roast for 15 mins.
Combine all the Italian dressing ingredients in a small bowl or measuring cup and whisk to combine. Season the dressing with salt and pepper to taste.
Add the cooked pasta, roasted vegetables, tomatoes, and olives to a large bowl. Drizzle in about 1/2 the dressing adding more as needed.
Bow Tie Pasta Salad With Homemade Italian Dressing
I love a good pasta salad. Its just so delicious and filling. My love for it started when Hubby was in the hospital because of heart attack. I ate at the hospitals cafeteria for lunch every single day and I came across a bow tie salad that was just so good. Hubby was in the hospital for 13 days so I had it everyday except for a few days that they didnt have it.
I actually remembered asking a Filipina working there at the cafeteria how they made the pasta. She told me about it, but I forgot all the details.
Then I came across this pasta salad recipe online.
This salad recipe actually called for Rotini noodles. But since Id been wanting to make that bow tie salad, I decided to use bow tie pasta instead. Arent bow tie pasta the cutest?
I also tweaked the recipe to my liking. I didnt add black olives because Im not a fan of olives black olives are one of the hubbys faves but he had no complaints about the salad because he never read the recipe. I also didnt add banana peppers because I couldnt find them at the supermarket.
This pasta salad was made with homemade Italian dressing and it was exciting for me to make. Italian is my favorite dressing of all and this was the first time that I actually made the homemade one. I used to just always buy a bottle of it at the supermarket.
You can find the recipe that I followed here.
How about you? Do you like pasta salad?
Happy Foodie Friday, friends!
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Tips On How To Make Pasta Salad:
- Pasta salad is actually best made ahead of time. It should be mixed together at least 1 hour in advance, but it will last for up to 5 days in the fridge. Its perfect for a whole week of lunches!
- To cool the pasta quickly and keep it from sticking together, dunk the colander of hot pasta in an ice bath for a few seconds before transferring to a bowl.
- Dont forget to season your pasta salad! Start by salting your pasta water, then add salt and pepper to taste once its mixed up. Fresh herbs like parsley, basil, or cilantro are also great additions.
To Rinse Or Not To Rinse
Most people cringe at the thought of rinsing freshly cooked pasta, and rightfully so. However, when making a cold pasta salad, rinsing the pasta is not as frowned upon! Rinsing your pasta stops the cooking process and rinses some of the starch out to give the pasta salad more of a bite and prevents the pasta from clumping together.
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How To Make This Recipe
The zesty Italian pasta salad comes together easily. All you have to do is cook the pasta, whisk together the dressing, and chop up some vegetables.
Which Dressing To Use For Pasta Salad
Ironically, this pasta salad features ingredients you would often find on an Italian platter called an antipasto platter. Mozzarella cheese, grape tomatoes, and olives are all perfectly complemented by the tangy flavor of Italian dressing.
For this Italian Bowtie Pasta Salad, in particular, Olive Garden Signature Italian Dressing works beautifully as it is well-seasoned, rich, creamy and loaded with great Parmesan flavor. This dressing is sold in most grocery chains, but if you’d prefer another Italian dressing to this one, any one will do.
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Zesty And Delicious Pasta Salad
I think we all know that the star of any summer potluck or cookout buffet is the salad section, right?
Forget sad green salads. Im talking about rich, filling salads that may not be the healthiest but are definitely the most delicious. This cant just be a Midwestern thing, right?
This year, the pasta salad Im taking to every cookout is going to be this zesty Italian pasta salad. Its loaded up with veggies, salami, and cheese, then tossed with Italian dressing and a dash of hot sauce.
Easy Bow Tie Pasta Salad With Italian Dressing
I grew up eating lots of summer pasta salad. And my dad still makes it on the regular. So, Im declaring this Dads pasta salad. Sorry Mom. Yours is good too!
Now, Ill admit that Im usually the one bringing desserts to a party. BUT it is nice to have options. And this Easy Pasta Salad is the perfect addition to any potluck, BBQ, or summer party. Its loaded with bowtie pasta, fresh veggies, salty black olives, and cheese, then finished off with Italian dressing.
But remember, the magic of cold pasta salad is that you can totally customize it to suit your own tastes. Feel free to play around with add-ins to make this your own!
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Italian Bow Tie Pasta Salad
This Italian Bow Tie Pasta Salad with crunchy fresh vegetables and tangy dressing packs big flavor! It’s a make-ahead no mayonnaise salad and perfect for a summer bbq, potluck or your next family gathering. This easy to make salad is the best-loved recipe and a go-to family favorite!
If you love this salad, be sure and try this Teriyaki Noodles Recipe – it’s great warm or cold!
To Make This Italian Bowtie Pasta Salad You Will Need:
- cherry tomatoes I personally like these so much better than grape tomatoes, but feel free to use those too)
- yellow and orange bell peppers
- small broccoli crown
- olive oil
- red wine vinegar
First things first bring a large pot of water to a boil. Once at a rolling boil, add in a good heaping tablespoon and give it a stir before adding in 12 ounces of bowtie pasta. Follow the instructions on the package cooking the pasta until al dente. Then pour the cooked pasta into a colander thats set into you sink and drain the pasta. Rinse with cold water to stop the cooking and cool down the bowties, toss every once and again with a spatula to drain properly.
Now Make the Dressing.
In a glass jar or container with a tight-fitting lid, grate in a clove of garlic. Measure and add in 1 teaspoon of Italian Seasoning, 1/2 teaspoon of red pepper flakes and I add about 1/2 to 3/4 teaspoon kosher salt and 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper. However, taste and season to your preference.
Next, pour in 1/4 cup of red wine vinegar and 6 tablespoons of good quality olive oil. Secure the lid tightly and shake until combined.
While the pasta is cooking and then draining, dice 1/4 of a pound of Genoa salami into small pieces. Then dice the peppers, section the broccoli into small bite-size florets and slice the cherry tomatoes in half.
Add all those colorful veggies into the bowl of cooked and cooled bowtie pasta, giving it a quick toss.
Then cover tightly and refrigerate until ready to serve.
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How To Make Italian Salad Dressing
To make the best homemade Italian dressing, youll need: garlic, Italian seasoning, red wine vinegar, olive oil, dijon mustard, granulated sugar, lemon juice, fresh parsley, parmesan, salt, and freshly cracked black pepper.
Combine all of the Italian dressing ingredients in a small bowl or measuring cup and whisk to combine until emulsified. Season the dressing with salt and pepper to taste before adding to the Bow Tie Pasta Salad.
Favorite Bowtie Pasta Salad Ingredients
While some of the basic ingredients may change, the star of this pasta salad is the bow tie shaped pasta! Not only does it hold up well to the creamy mayo dressing but the shape complements round peas, diced pieces of ham and cheese. Like most pasta salad recipes, you can add or remove ingredients based on what you have on hand this recipe is very versatile.
- Base: Bow Tie pasta .
- Meat & Cheese: cheddar cheese & ham are my favorite choices. You can make bowtie pasta salad with feta and skip the ham and make it with chicken or pepperoni.
- Veggies: I love pasta salad with peas! Add white onion , bell pepper .
These are just the basics! Get creative with what you have on hand and make your own custom summer bow tie pasta salad with items like sliced black olives, celery and even sun-dried tomatoes!
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Whats In Italian Pasta Salad
The best part of this pasta salad recipe is all of the mix-ins. My Italian pasta salad recipe includes:
- Bowtie pasta: You can really use any shaped pasta you like, but I particularly like bowtie pasta in pasta salad. I think its cute and fun!
- Italian salami: I generally use a mild salami for this, but you could use a spicy salami or even pepperoni or sopressata if you prefer.
- Cherry tomatoes: No summer pasta salad is complete without cherry tomatoes for me!
- Red onion: Red onion adds some great texture and a nice bite to the salad.
- Roasted red peppers: I like the contrast in textures that the roasted red pepper brings against the other vegetables, but you could use fresh bell pepper if you dont have roasted red peppers on hand.
- Cucumber: I like to use an English cucumber so I dont have to peel it. Leaving the peel on makes for a prettier pasta salad!
- Colby jack cheese: You could also use cheddar cheese, cubed mozzarella or mozzarella balls.
- Parmesan cheese: Some finely shredded parmesan cheese adds a great nutty flavor and saltiness to the salad.
- Italian dressing: I like using a bottle of Italian dressing in this pasta salad. Sure, you could make your own, but this tastes great with the bottled stuff and it makes it so simple to throw together!
- A dash of hot sauce: Adding a small dash of hot sauce adds a bit of extra zest to the salad. You can always leave this out, but I think it really makes a difference! Dont have hot sauce on hand? Add a pinch of red pepper flakes!