Pesto Pasta Salad Recipe

Pesto Pasta Salad Recipe

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Elevate your salad game with Pesto Pasta Salad! This vibrant dish combines al dente pasta with fresh cherry tomatoes, creamy mozzarella balls, and vibrant basil pesto for a refreshing and flavorful salad that’s perfect for any occasion.


– 8 ounces (about 225g) fusilli pasta (or any other short pasta shape)

– 1/2 cup basil pesto (store-bought or homemade)

– 1 cup cherry tomatoes, halved

– 1/2 cup diced cucumber

– 1/4 cup diced red bell pepper

– 1/4 cup diced red onion

– 1/4 cup sliced black olives

– 1/4 cup crumbled feta cheese (optional)

– Salt and pepper, to taste

– Fresh basil leaves, for garnish (optional)


1. Cook the pasta: Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add the fusilli pasta and cook according to the package instructions until al dente. Drain the pasta and rinse it under cold water to stop the cooking process. Allow it to cool completely.

2. Prepare the pesto: If you’re using store-bought pesto, skip this step. If making homemade pesto, combine fresh basil leaves, garlic, pine nuts (or walnuts), Parmesan cheese, and olive oil in a food processor. Blend until smooth, then season with salt and pepper to taste.

3. Mix the salad ingredients: In a large mixing bowl, combine the cooked and cooled fusilli pasta with the basil pesto. Toss until the pasta is evenly coated with the pesto.

4. Add the vegetables: Add the halved cherry tomatoes, diced cucumber, diced red bell pepper, diced red onion, and sliced black olives to the bowl with the pasta. Gently toss until the vegetables are evenly distributed throughout the salad.

5. Optional: Add feta cheese: If using, sprinkle the crumbled feta cheese over the pasta salad and gently toss to combine.

6. Season to taste: Taste the pasta salad and adjust the seasoning with salt and pepper, if needed.

7. Chill and garnish: Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and refrigerate the pasta salad for at least 30 minutes to allow the flavors to meld together. Before serving, garnish with fresh basil leaves, if desired.

8. Serve and enjoy: Serve the pesto pasta salad as a side dish or a light main course for a refreshing and flavorful meal.

Feel free to customize the salad by adding other vegetables or protein options like grilled chicken or shrimp. Enjoy your delicious Pesto Pasta Salad!

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