MEDITERRANEAN PASTA SALAD

MEDITERRANEAN PASTA SALAD

MEDITERRANEAN PASTA SALAD

This Mediterranean Pasta Salad will be a hit and your next summertime gathering. It’s light, refreshing, and chock-full of fresh vegetables. Plus, it’ll be ready in 30 minutes or less!

Tossed Mediterranean Pasta Salad in a large bowl. Olive oil, basil and pine nuts on the side.

It’s just not summer, without a zesty, veggie-packed pasta salad to serve at backyard barbecues, picnics, and pot lucks. It’s a crowd favorite and goes well with just about everything.

When I have an event coming up, I usually make this Mediterranean Pasta Salad along with my Cucumber and Tomato Salad and they always disappear fast!

However, you don’t need a special occasion to make this pasta salad. It also works well for family weeknight meals, and I make a fresh batch almost every week. I love serving it with grilled corn and my Grilled Portobello Mushroom Steaks. So simple, yet so delicious!

Ingredients, Notes, and Substitutions
🌟 This is a quick overview with step-by-step photos. For the complete ingredient amounts and instructions, scroll down to the recipe card below.

All ingredients for a mediterranean pasta salad recipe spread out on a stone table top.
Pasta – Fusilli, Farfalle, or Rotini will work well for this recipe.
Red onion – you can use sliced green onion or omit the onion altogether.
Cucumber – I used an English cucumber, but you can also use 2 Persian cucumbers or a standard cucumber.
Tomatoes – cherry or grape work well. If you don’t like tomatoes, you can use sliced or diced red bell pepper.
Olives – kalamata would be my first choice but you can use any type that you have on hand. If you don’t like olives, you can add a ¼ cup of capers.
Artichoke Hearts – hearts of palm will go nicely too.
Fresh Herbs – basil, parsley, dill, or mint are all great choices. If you use mint or dill, you may want to reduce the amount by half so it doesn’t overpower the dish.
Vegan Feta – If you can’t find it, you can use shredded vegan parmesan or vegan mozzarella. You can also add cubed vegan cheese. Or you can try making your own vegan feta.
Pine nuts – these are completely optional. Slivered almonds add a nice crunch too.

How to make Mediterranean Pasta Salad
Two process photos of whisking dressing and pouring it onto the pasta and vegetables.

Prep your veggies.
Cook the pasta until al dente, according to package directions. Rinse under cold water and drain.
In a medium bowl, whisk all the dressing ingredients together and adjust flavors if needed.
Add the pasta, onion, cucumber, tomatoes, olives, artichokes, vegan feta, pine nuts, and basil in a large bowl. Pour the dressing over everything and gently toss to combine. Taste for seasoning and adjust as needed.
Overhead view of Mediterranean Pasta Salad in a small bowl and a larger bowl on the side. Blue napkin on the side.

Success Tips
The dressing is easily adjusted by taste. Add more or less of the listed ingredients as needed.
If you want to make this recipe ahead, just keep the dressing separate and toss right before serving.
Leftovers – store in an airtight container and refrigerate for 3-4 days. The dressing will dry a little bit, but you can easily refresh it by stirring in a little oil or even a few splashes of water. Taste and add more vinegar or lemon if needed.

Mediterranean Pasta Salad
This Mediterranean Pasta Salad will be a hit and your next summertime gathering. It’s light, refreshing, and chock-full of fresh vegetables. Plus, it’ll be ready in 30 minutes or less!

Ingredients

▢16 ounces dried fusilli or farfalle pasta
▢½ cup red onion , diced small or thinly sliced
▢1 large English cucumber , sliced in half moons or triangles
▢1 pint grape tomatoes , halved
▢⅔ cup kalamata olives , halved or left whole
▢14 ounces canned artichoke hearts , drained and quartered
▢½ cup chopped basil or parsley
▢½ cup vegan feta (see note for sub)
▢¼ cup pine nuts (optional)
Dressing
▢½ cup olive oil , extra virgin
▢⅓ cup red wine vinegar
▢3-4 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
▢1 ½ tablespoons dijon mustard
▢2 teaspoons maple syrup (or preferred sweetener)
▢2-3 teaspoons dried oregano
▢1 teaspoon granulated garlic (or 1 clove fresh, minced)
▢½ teaspoon granulated onion
▢1 teaspoon sea salt , more to taste
▢Fresh-cracked pepper , to taste
▢½ teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes (optional)

Instructions
Place pasta in a large pot of salted boiling water. Cook until al dente & according to package directions (about 9-10 minutes). Rinse under cold water to stop cooking , then drain well. Set aside.
In a medium bowl, whisk all the dressing ingredients together. Adjust flavors as needed. It might taste a little tangy or salty, but it will be spread over a pound of pasta, so keep that in mind.
Add the pasta, onion, cucumber, tomatoes, olives, artichokes, vegan feta, pine nuts, and basil in a large bowl. Pour the dressing over everything and gently toss to combine. Taste for seasoning and adjust as needed. Top with more vegan feta, basil and fresh-cracked pepper if preferred. Serve immediately.
Notes
The dressing is easily adjusted by taste. Add more or less of the listed ingredients as needed.
If you can’t find vegan feta, you can use shredded vegan parmesan or vegan mozzarella. You can also add cubed vegan cheese.
Vegan Feta – I’ve tried Follow Your Heart and Violife and they are both delicious!
If you want to make this recipe ahead, just keep the dressing separate and toss right before serving.
Leftovers – store in an airtight container and refrigerate for 3-4 days. The dressing will dry a little bit, but you can easily refresh it by stirring in a little oil or even a few splashes of water. Taste and add more vinegar or lemon if needed.