HomeHealthy FoodThe BEST Pasta Salad - Zesty and Zippy

The BEST Pasta Salad – Zesty and Zippy

The BEST Pasta Salad is an previous household recipe that is a success at events, potlucks, or as a zesty facet dish with dinner. Filled with taste and punch!

overhead photo of a bowl of pasta salad

The recipe for The BEST Pasta Salad has all the time passed by one other identify in my household: “Grandpa’s Pasta Salad“. That’s as a result of this recipe was one in all his very favorites and he all the time requested that or not it’s served at particular events. That mentioned, I can’t let you know how completely happy it makes me that this pasta salad recipe can also be my husband’s favourite recipe.

Not ONE of his favourite recipes…his VERY favourite recipe…of all time. He actually groans when he appears me making it as a result of he is aware of he’s about to be a minimum of half a serving bowl of pasta salad heavier. 😉

Ahh, the ability of The BEST Pasta Salad!

the best pasta salad in a bowl with a fork

The BEST Pasta Salad

Pasta salad is a summer season staple within the Midwest and it appears like everybody’s received their very own particular mixture of substances that makes their pasta salad the most effective. That mentioned, I humbly imagine there isn’t a higher pasta salad ingredient combo than mine. There, I mentioned it! This dish is chewy, crispy, crunchy, savory, zesty, and zippy, and we make it a minimum of as soon as per week from Memorial Day to Labor Day.

The key’s within the seasoning mix…

Components Wanted

  • Pasta: My Grandpa liked this dish made with fettuccini (attempt it someday – tremendous enjoyable!) although I normally use gluten free rotini pasta. I choose Jovial Brown Rice Rotini vs a corn/rice mix rotini pasta. For those who don’t have to eat gluten free, use common rotini pasta.
  • Tomatoes: Sometimes I exploit Roma tomatoes on this dish, however be at liberty to make use of no matter seems finest in your space on the time.
  • Cucumber: A peeled, seeded, then diced cucumber provides crunch and freshness to this pasta salad recipe. You should use a daily or English cucumber.
  • Pepperoni: We LOVE the savory, salty taste pepperoni provides to every chew of this pasta salad. I strongly imagine Applegate Naturals makes the most effective pepperoni!
  • Sliced Olives: Olives add to the savory, satisfying taste to this dish.
  • McCormick Salad Supreme: Particular secret ingredient alert!! This seasoning mix is without doubt one of the finest on the planet and actually units this pasta salad aside from another. On the time of this writing, 5/22, it’s gluten free. I add an ungodly quantity of it to this dish.
  • Zesty Italian Dressing: Zesty Italian Dressing is the opposite ingredient that actually makes this pasta salad sing. I choose Ken’s Zesty Italian, which is gluten free. For those who don’t have to eat gluten free you need to use Kraft’s model. I’ll additionally hyperlink to my home made Italian dressing under.

overhead photo of best pasta salad ingredients in a bowl

Apple Tarragon Chicken Salad

How Do You Preserve Gluten Free Pasta from Getting Laborious?

Quick reply: you’ll be able to’t. 🙁 Sorry! Cooked gluten free pasta usually does NOT preserve nicely within the fridge for greater than 2-3 hours earlier than it hardens and turns into crumbly. I discover cooked brown rice pasta holds up just a little longer and higher than a corn/rice mix pasta, however this recipe is certainly finest when made then served instantly, or you’ll be able to refrigerate it for as much as 2 hours earlier than serving. You would possibly want so as to add a contact extra dressing earlier than serving when you refrigerate it first.

Okay, okay!! Are you able to dive into this bowl of deliciousness?!

overhead photo of a bowl of best pasta salad

Methods to Make The Greatest Pasta Salad

Begin by cooking pasta in salted, boiling water till cooked by way of. Once more, I like Jovial model gluten free brown rice pasta. That mentioned, when you’re native, Hy-Vee’s Good Graces gluten free pasta is a good selection too. It’s chewy and spring like “actual” pasta!

box of jovial rotini next to a pot of water

As soon as the pasta is tender, drain then rinse underneath chilly water till the pasta is cool, then add to a big mixing bowl.

Subsequent add chopped recent cucumber and tomato, diced pepperoni, and sliced olives. 

ingredients for the best pasta salad in a mixing bowl

Lastly sprinkle on McCormick Salad Supreme Seasoning then drizzle with Ken’s Zesty Italian Dressing. I normally use as much as 1/2 cup of the seasoning (YES) and round 1/2 of the bottle of salad dressing. Use as little or as a lot of each as you want!

Now, when you can’t discover this explicit dressing, you can also make my Greatest Ever Italian French dressing and use that as a substitute. For those who can’t discover the seasoning, here’s a fabulous copycat seasoning mix.

Observe: Typically the Salad Supreme Seasoning is situated by the salad dressings on the grocery retailer, close to the croutons, and so forth. vs within the spice aisle, so look in each locations when you’re having hassle finding it.

seasoning and dressing for the best pasta salad

Merely stir to coat and mix then serve instantly or chill for as much as 2 hours. I’m telling you — BEST. PASTSA. SALAD. EVER!! I hope you’re keen on every zippy and zesty chew – get pleasure from!

fork in a bowl of the best pasta salad

Extra Summery Facet Dish Concepts


The BEST Pasta Salad is a household recipe that is a success at events, potlucks, or as a zest facet dish with dinner. Filled with taste and punch!


  • 12oz gluten free rotini pasta
  • 3 Roma tomatoes, seeded then chopped
  • 1 cucumber, peeled, seeded then chopped
  • 4oz pepperoni, chopped (Applegate Farms really useful)
  • 2.25oz can sliced olives, drained
  • 4oz jar McCormick Salad Supreme Seasoning OR 1 recipe home made seasoning (see notes)
  • 16oz bottle Ken’s Zesty Italian Dressing OR 1 recipe home made Italian French dressing (see notes)


  1. Convey a big pot of water to a boil then add rotini and cook dinner till tender. Drain then rinse underneath chilly water till pasta is chilly. Drain very nicely then add to a big mixing bowl.
  2. To the cooled pasta add tomatoes, cucumber, pepperoni, black olives, 1/3 of the bottle of Italian Dressing, and 1/4 cup Salad Supreme Seasoning then combine to mix. Style then add extra dressing and/or Salad Supreme Seasoning if desired. Serve instantly or refrigerate for as much as 2 hours.


  • As a result of this pasta salad is made with gluten free pasta, it is best eaten instantly or chilled for as much as 2 hours previous to serving. You could have to toss with further dressing earlier than serving if chilling first. 
  • Search for McCormick Salad Supreme Seasoning by the salad dressings on the grocery retailer, or within the spice aisle.
  • Click on right here for the home made Italian French dressing recipe >
  • Click on right here for Copycat Salad Supreme Seasoning recipe >

This recipe is courtesy of Iowa Lady Eats, http://iowagirleats.com.

Photo collage of best ever pasta salad

Photographs by Ashley McLaughlin



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