This Easiest Summer Italian Pasta Salad is just that. Super easy, fast, and tasty. It’s picnic perfect and cookout ready.
- For the Pasta Salad:
- 16 oz dry pasta (corkscrew or bowtie work well)
- 3–4 TB extra virgin olive oil
- 2 large sweet bell peppers (red, yellows, or oranges) seeded and diced
- 2 cucumbers, seeded and diced
- 1/2 cup sliced olives
- 1 cup crumbled crispy bacon
- 1 cup freshly grated parmesan
- For the Dressing:
- 16 oz your favorite Italian dressing
- 6 TB real mayo
- 1 tsp kosher salt
- 1 tsp garlic powder
- 1 tsp onion powder
- 1/2 tsp freshly ground black pepper
- Cook the pasta to al dente, according to package instruction, taking care not to over-cook. Drain (don’t rinse) and sprinkle with olive oil to prevent sticking while it cools to room temp.
- Meanwhile, make the dressing: Gently hand-whisk together all dressing ingredients in a bowl until smooth and creamy. Cover and chill until ready to use.
- Assemble: In a large serving bowl, toss cooled pasta with your prepared dressing. Add peppers, cucumbers, and olives. Toss gently to coat thoroughly. Add more salt and pepper to taste, if needed. Gently toss in the bacon and parmesan. Serve at room temp or chilled. Keeps very well covered and chilled until ready to serve (up to 24 hours.)
Leftovers should be covered and chilled. Great for lunch the next day!
Grape/cherry tomatoes are a nice sub for the peppers, if you like.
Feel free to add more bacon and parm to taste.
- Category: salad, side
- Cuisine: Italian, American