With creamy cheese, salty salami, buttery castelvetrano olives, tender white beans, sun-dried and cherry tomatoes, perfectly cooked pasta and homemade Italian dressing, Italian Pasta Salad is an easy and delicious meal for any time and absolutely perfect picnic fare. With all of these flavors and textures, you can make every bite different!
This is a riff on my Italian Chopped Salad, made heartier with the addition of pasta. It's one of my go-to salads for potlucks and picnics (along with my Seafood Pasta Salad, Egg Salad, Creamy Cucumber Salad, Corn Salad, Fregola Sarda with Radicchio and Hazelnuts and Italian Potato Salad). It's always a hit and I can make it in minutes! I always toss this pasta salad with Italian dressing made from scratch, something that I always have on hand for a quick green salad or for dipping raw vegetables for a healthy snack.
How to Make Italian Pasta Salad
Step 1: Make homemade Italian salad dressing. Meanwhile, cook pasta until al dente; drain and rinse with cold water.
Step 2: Combine all salad ingredients (pasta through cannellini beans); drizzle with desired amount of Italian dressing and gently toss to coat; refrigerate for 30 minutes or up to 2 hours to allow flavors to meld. Serve.
Italian Pasta Salad Recipe Video
Italian Pasta Salad
Homemade Italian Salad Dressing
- ¼ cup red wine vinegar
- 2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
- 1 medium clove garlic minced
- ½ teaspoon dried oregano
- ½ teaspoon dried thyme
- ⅓ cup extra virgin olive oil
- salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
Italian Pasta Salad
- 10 ounces dried rotini pasta or other short pasta
- 4 ounces provolone cheese diced small
- 4 ounces salami sliced into thin ribbons
- 8 oil packed sun-dried tomatoes coarsely chopped
- 8 ounces cherry tomatoes halved
- 1 cup castelvetrano olives pitted and coarsely chopped
- 1 ½ cups cooked cannellini beans or 1 15-ounce can drained
- To make the Italian Dressing, combine first 5 ingredients (red wine vinegar through thyme) in a blender; blend until combined. With the blender running, slowly drizzle in the olive oil. Season to taste with salt and pepper and blend to combine. Set aside.
- Meanwhile, cook pasta until al dente; drain and rinse with cold water to stop cooking process. Transfer to a large serving bowl.
- Add remaining ingredients to pasta (cheese through cannellini beans). Pour desired amount of homemade Italian Dressing over and gently toss to coat. Cover and refrigerate for 30 minutes or up to 2 hours to allow flavors to meld before serving. Serve.