When summer rolls around, I am ready for some lighter, cooler lunches. Pasta salads are a fantastic option, and this Pizza Pasta Salad is one of my favorites. Easy to put together, filling, and very portable, this pasta salad will be going to the pool and along on hikes with us this summer! You can make it to your liking and add toppings you love on your pizza. The homemade vinaigrette dressing is just perfect to give it that pizza flavor and keep it moist. We've figured out that gluten free pasta is best if eaten the day it's made, which is great with this salad because it doesn't have to refrigerate before eating. Simply cook the pasta, add all the ingredients, pour over the vinaigrette, toss, and EAT!
Pizza Pasta Salad
1 (12 oz.) box gluten free rotini pasta (we love Barilla)
1 package pepperoni slices, halved
3/4 cup cherry tomatoes, sliced
1/2 green pepper, chopped
1/4 red onion, sliced thin
1 (6 oz.) can black olives, drained
1 (8 oz.) package mozzarella pearls
2 tablespoons chopped fresh basil
1/2 cup shredded Parmesan cheese
1/2 cup olive oil
1/4 cup red wine vinegar
1 teaspoon fresh minced garlic
1 tablespoon Italian seasoning
Salt and pepper, to taste
Cook the pasta according to package directions; drain and rinse with cold water. To the pasta, add the pepperoni, tomatoes, green pepper, red onion, black olives, mozzarella pearls, basil, and parmesan cheese. In a small bowl, whisk together the vinaigrette ingredients. Pour over the pasta salad and toss to coat all. Serve immediately.
Gather your ingredients. You will need gluten free rotini pasta, pepperoni (can be turkey or mini's, whatever you prefer), cherry tomatoes, a green pepper, a red onion, a can of black olives, mozzarella pearls or cubed fresh mozzarella, fresh basil, and fresh parmesan cheese.
Prepare your ingredients by chopping and shredding.
Cook the entire box of pasta according to package directions (we like it a little softer for pasta salads). Drain and rinse with cold water.
To the pasta, add the rest of your salad ingredients. The amounts are entirely up to you. I've just shared what we like. You can add more or less of anything, as well as adding other things such as ham, pineapple, or mushrooms. The colors of this salad are so beautiful, aren't they?
Now let's make the vinaigrette! You will need olive oil, red wine vinegar, fresh garlic, Italian seasoning, and salt and pepper.
In a glass liquid measuring cup, whisk together 1/2 cup olive oil, 1/4 cup red wine vinegar, 1 teaspoon minced garlic (about 2 cloves), 1 tablespoon Italian seasoning, and salt and pepper to taste.
Pour the vinaigrette over the pasta salad and toss to coat.
The seasonings in the vinaigrette are just perfect and will give you that pizza flavor you crave. You can add more if you desire, as well as other seasonings.
The great thing about this pasta salad is that it doesn't need to sit in the refrigerator to let the flavors infuse. I have found that gluten free pasta is best when you eat it right after cooking. It tends to get chewy and tough if refrigerated more than a day.
So after you toss everything together, dig in! It will keep all day, so you can store it in an airtight container to take to work, to the pool, or on a hike. You can put it in the refrigerator for a day, but it's best if eaten immediately! PIZZA PASTA makes summer!!!
Recipe Source: Recipe adapted from a recipe at Kalifornia Kravings