If I had a dime for every time that someone in my house requested pasta, I would be a very rich woman. Heck, I would be a woman on a whirlwind trip to Europe … for the rest of the year.
Growing up, pasta salad was one of my very favorite summer dishes. I could eat it and eat it and eat it … but as an adult, I just haven’t made it as often. As a result, my kids haven’t had it too much either … but after tonight, that has to change. I knew they would love the artichoke hearts, roasted red peppers and olives in this. But when Will dove in for seconds, it was clear that this was a slam dunk
Pasta salad travels well — so it’s perfect for picnics, barbecues, school lunch, dinners, whatever.
This particular version brings in elements of Antipasti – artichoke hearts (marinated are best!), roasted red peppers, olives. You can also toss in some cubed fresh mozzarella and/or cubed salami, but it’s up to you. Choose an Italian dressing with balsamic vinegar that you love — the flavor of the dressing is an important influencer here. I used one from Trader Joe’s that I adore.
And this is also a fab recipe to make with kids. Simple, tasty, kid-friendly. Perfect!
Looking for more fun pasta salad ideas? Check out my latest post on Tablespoon, Fresh Takes on Pasta Salads.
- 1 lb. rotini pasta
- 1 12 oz. jar artichoke hearts, , drained
- 1 12 oz. jar roasted red peppers, , drained
- 1 3.8 oz. can sliced black olives, , drained
- 1 8 oz. bottle Italian dressing with balsamic vinegar
- Cook the pasta according to package directions. You want to cook it about a minute past al dente for a softer texture, since it will firm when cooled. Drain well and add to a large bowl.
- Chop the artichoke hearts and roasted red peppers.
- KID STEP: Add the artichoke hearts, red peppers and olives to the pasta and mix well.
- KID STEP: Pour the dressing in and stir to coat. Chill for at least 30 minutes -- until ready to serve.
- Store leftovers in an airtight container for up to 5 days.
Sarah Walker Caron is a cookbook author, freelance writer and founder of Sarah’s Cucina Bella. She is the author of four cookbooks including The Super Easy 5-Ingredient Cookbook and One-Pot Pasta, both from Rockridge Press. A single mother to a tween and a teen, Sarah loves nightly family dinners, juicy tomatoes plucked fresh from the vine and lazy days on the beach. She also adores reading and traveling.