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Delicious Antipasto Pasta Salad

An Antipasto Pasta Salad loaded with hunks of cheese, pepperoni, salami, black olives, peppers, artichoke hearts and more. Dressed in a nutty and tangy simple, balsamic vinaigrette.

I’m always in search of great salads that I can bring to teacher luncheons, potlucks or barbecues, or honestly, make on Sunday meal prepping for the week, tastes delicious all week long

If you like simple, vibrant salads you might try these; Sun-Dried Tomato Pasta Salad, Harvest Wild Rice Salad and Maple Pecan Apple Salad.

Large white bowl with tricolor pasta, cheese, salami and pepperoni with a garnish of basil.

Start with a good quality pasta, you can do tricolor or plain, though tricolor sure is pretty. You can use any type of pasta, just make sure it has some ridges or twists in it to help hold the dressing.

Cook pasta according to package directions for al dente, you don’t want it to fall apart in your salad.

white bowl of tri-color twisty pasta salad with hunks of cheese, meatt, oliaves, artichoke hearts and basil.

While the pasta cooks, grab a nice big mixing bowl and begin by chopping the bell peppers. Any color peppers you like really, I like red, orange and yellow, plus add chopped English cucumbers for the green! YUMMY!

Process Shots for Antipasto salad. 1. chopped bell peppers (orange, red and yellow) chopped cucumber. 2. chopped olives, chopped artichoke hearts. 3. chopped cheeses, pepperoni and salami. 4. rinsing tricolor pasta.

Chop the salami and pepperoni. Ideally it would be great to get the actual “sausage” and just dice, but I couldn’t find the ones I wanted, so used pre-sliced and chopped those up well.

Slice cheeses into cubes; try different cheeses, you can use just one, here I used both Asiago and Smoked Mozzarella, Provolone or regular mozzarella would have been delicious too.

Process shots for balsamic vinaigrette 5. pouring balsamic vinegar into jar. 6. adding fresh chopped basil. 7. blending with immersion blender. 8. pouring over pasta salad.

HOW TO MAKE A SIMPLE BALSAMIC VINAIGRETTE

In a hurry? Buy a good quality bottle of balsamic dressing. But this dressing is super easy to make!

In a jar or container with lid; place olive oil, balsamic vinegar, parsley, oregano, salt, pepper, garlic powder, basil and onion powder. Shake vigorously to emulsify, or use an immersion blender.

What does emulsify mean?

What in the world is emulsify or an emulsion? Webster defines it as:

A suspension of tiny droplets of one liquid in a second liquid. By making an emulsion, one can mix two liquids that ordinarily do not mix well, such as oil and water.” 

Webster Dictionary

Pour dressing over pasta, tossing occasionally, making sure the entire salad is coated in dressing. Add more or less dressing to taste, refrigerate any leftover dressing (if you have any) and use on any salad.

Cover and refrigerate until ready to eat, or may be served immediately, but EVEN BETTER the next day! Mangia!

pasta salad in large white bowl with wooden spoon

If you like this recipe, try these other fine salads.

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pasta salad in large white bowl with wooden spoon
Yield: 12-16 servings

Antipasto Pasta Salad

Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 14 minutes
Total Time: 34 minutes

An easy Italian antipasto pasta salad recipe is made with cucumbers, red and orange bell peppers, pasta, artichoke hearts, olives, meat, cheese, and homemade Balsamic dressing! The perfect dish to bring to a summer picnic, potluck or barbecue!

Ingredients

For the Salad

  • 1 lb tricolor or plain fusilli (or other textured or twisty pasta)
  • 1 red bell pepper
  • 1 yellow bell pepper
  • 1 orange bell pepper
  • ½ green bell pepper and/or English cucumber chopped
  • ¼ lb genoa salami, diced (good quality)
  • ¼ lb pepperoni sausage, diced (good quality)
  • 1 14 oz can brined or marinated artichoke hearts, quartered
  • 6 oz can sliced black olives, drained
  • ¼ lb asiago cheese, diced
  • ¼ lb smoked mozzarella, diced (try different cheeses, smoke or regular provolone)

DRESSING

  • ¾ cup olive oil
  • ½ cup balsamic vinegar
  • ¼ cup fresh parsley, or a tablespoon dried
  • 1 tsp dried oregano
  • 1 tsp dried basil
  • ½ tsp garlic powder
  • ½ tsp onion powder
  • 1-2 teaspoons of sea salt
  • ¼ teaspoon pepper

Instructions

  1. In a large pot, bring water to boil and cook pasta according to package directions, until al dente. Drain the pasta in a colander and rinse with cool water.
  2. Dice peppers, salami, pepperoni and cheeses and toss in large mixing bowl. Add olives and artichokes. Add cooked pasta and toss to mix.
  3. Mix all dressing ingredients in a jar with a covered lid, shake vigorously to emulsify.Pour over pasta salad (to taste, might use entire jar, might not). Taste and adjust salt and pepper if needed.
  4. Serve immediately or cover and refrigerate until ready to serve. Doubles or triples easily for a crowd, your dressing may not need to be doubled though.

Nutrition Information:

Yield:

16

Serving Size:

1

Amount Per Serving: Calories: 323Total Fat: 25gSaturated Fat: 6gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 17gCholesterol: 26mgSodium: 1024mgCarbohydrates: 16gFiber: 3gSugar: 3gProtein: 10g

The nutritional information is estimated and may not be entirely accurate, at times it pulls information for suggestions and options which may increase calories, etc.

Did you make this recipe?

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kathleen

ABOUT KATHLEEN

I enjoy sharing easy recipes that are wholesome and delicious. I am fed by my faith, family, friends & food! Welcome to my kitchen! Read more...

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