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Pasta salad with chicken

This keeps really well for a few days, so I have never made just a single batch. We usually have it as a main dish, with the leftovers for lunches.

All of the following photos are of a double batch.

Go to the recipe.

Cook and drain the pasta.

pasta salad 1

Chop the onions, dice the cucumber and celery, and halve the grapes.

pasta salad 2

Mix all the salad ingredients together in a bowl.

pasta salad 3

Pour all the dressing ingredients together.

pasta salad 4

Whisk the dressing ingredients well.

pasta salad 5

Fold the dressing into the salad and mix well.

pasta salad 6

Clean up your mess.

pasta salad 7

Serve on a bed of shredded lettuce, garnished with cashews and tomatoes.

pasta salad 8

Pasta Salad with Chicken
Prep time: 
Total time: 
 
Great for a light summer meal. Best if you let it rest for a few hours in the refrigerator before serving.
Ingredients
Salad
  • 6 oz dry corkscrew pasta, cooked, rinsed, and cooled (Or any sturdy kind with lots of nooks for dressing to adhere to.)
  • 2 cups cooled cubed cooked chicken (Or, if alliteration isn't a concern of yours, turkey. Can also leave this out, just use more pasta.)
  • 1/2 cup chopped onion
  • 1 cup diced cucumber
  • 1/2 cup diced celery
  • 1 cup grapes (halved)
  • olives (Sliced, if you like. I don't, so no olives in any salad I make.)
Garnish
  • cashews (chopped)
  • lettuce (chopped or sliced)
  • cherry tomatoes (halved)
Dressing best way
  • 1/3 cup olive oil
  • 1/3 cup apple cider vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 1/2 cup mayonnaise
  • 1 tablespoon prepared mustard (Whatever kind you prefer, but cheap yellow mustard makes it taste a bit bitter; I use deli or brown mustard; many like Dijon here.)
  • 2 tablespoons grated Parmesan or Romano cheese
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • 1-1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon crushed garlic or 1/4 teaspoon powdered garlic
  • splash hot pepper sauce
Dressing easier-but-still-good way
  • 1/2 cup bottled Italian salad dressing (Because it's half the dressing, the kind you use will significantly influence the flavor.)
  • 1/2 cup mayonnaise
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 1 tablespoon prepared mustard (Whatever kind you prefer, but cheap yellow mustard makes it taste a bit bitter; I use deli or brown mustard; many like Dijon here.)
  • 1/2 tsp lemon pepper
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • splash hot pepper sauce
Instructions
Salad
  1. Mix all the salad ingredients in a bowl.
Dressing
  1. Blend the dressing ingredients well.
Assembly
  1. Fold the dressing into the salad, using only as much as you like. Keep in mind, the chicken and pasta will soak up a lot of dressing, so if you use too little, the salad will end up dry after sitting for a while. There will be dressing left to add to the salad later if necessary.
  2. Let it rest in the refrigerator for a few hours.
  3. Before serving, add more dressing if desired.
  4. Serve on a bed of lettuce.
  5. Top with cashews, tomato, and egg.

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