Some Like It Cold: Easy Pasta Salad Recipes

Some Like It Cold: Easy Pasta Salad Recipes

You have your mayonnaise-based macaroni salad, potato salad and coleslaw but what ever happened to spin-offs on cold pasta side dishes? Pasta salads of all flavors and sizes make their way to the table for family dinner or luncheons during the hot summer months. It’s time to expand those pasta-lovin’ horizons and explore the wonderful, eclectic world of cold pasta sides. And we have the incredible recipes you need.

 

Check out these related articles for more delicious sides: Punchy Portabella FriesCrazy Crab And Avocado SaladLemon And Garlic Brussels SproutsPenne And Arugula SaladLemon-Basil Chicken Salad With Spring Peas And Slivered Almonds

 

Let’s start with some dishes that can be served hot or cold -- otherwise known as the ultimate leftovers:

 

1. Penne Pasta with Lemon And Basil

 

Fresh lemon and basil give this dish an excellent light, summertime flavor. It’s perfectly refreshing. Enjoy this dish with some chicken or steak kabobs, or filets hot off the grill for a nice icy/hot contrast. If you want to enjoy this dish for tomorrow’s dinner side as well, try adding in some strips of leftover, cooked chicken or veggies for an added flavor twist. 

 

2. Pasta with Chickpeas, Spinach, Sun-Dried Tomatoes And Walnuts

 

This incredible recipe is a Recipe 4 Living contest winner. The combination of tasty Mediterranean spices and ingredients like chickpeas and sun-dried tomatoes with walnuts is surprising and delicious. Tangy balsamic vinegar and garlic are accentuated perfectly with the more subdued flavors of walnut and chickpea. Fresh spinach and tomatoes add some color and texture to a cold pasta dish that your family will surly love. 

 

And now for a little taste of chilled perfection:

 

1. Salami ‘N Pasta Salad

 

Kickin’ it old school with this traditional Italian pasta salad makes for an excellent addition to any meal. It is fresh and light with an oil and vinegar seasoning that goes so well with any grilled meal. This is not only a great treat for the summer heat, but it is also an awesome side dish to really any meal calling for a starchy side like a fish or chicken dish. 

 

2. Pesto Chicken BLT Pasta Salad

 

Take things up a notch form your oil and vinegar dressing and try out a pesto sauce. This pesto dressed pasta salad is an excellent combination of flavor. Basil, chicken and bacon bits star in this side dish. The bacon provides is a nice smoky undertone while the fresh tomatoes and lemon juice keep this dish light and refreshing. 

 

3. Salmon Pasta Salad

 

Dive into this fresh Alaskan salmon and pasta side dish and be amazed. The fresh lemon dressing sets this seafood pasta salad apart from all the other heavy mayonnaise-based dishes. You really have to taste this recipe to believe how light and easy it is, along with being so simple to throw together! Your guests and your family will never guess what a treat you have planned for their dinner side or lunch idea. 

 

4. Apricot Pasta Salad

 

It may sound crazy but fresh apricots and cold pasta really make for an excellent flavor combination, especially with the signature Apricot-Basil Dressing. If apricots aren’t your favorite piece of produce, you can substitute fresh peaches or any other stocky fruit of your choice. Try adding in some fresh raspberries at the end for some color and an subtle boost of sweet flavor. 

 

 

 

 

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