This Mediterranean pasta salad recipe gives a healthy twist to a classic summer side dish. Pasta salad is a great option for potluck parties, tailgates, backyard barbeques, and more!
Who else is ready for a backyard bbq with friends? If you’re like me, you want to bring an impressive bbq side dish to share with the group that is also easy to put together. Enter pasta salad. A good pasta salad is always a crowd pleaser and pairs nicely with most cookout foods.
This Mediterranean pasta salad recipe is a healthy pasta salad made with whole wheat pasta, fresh tomatoes and cucumbers, kalamata olives, feta cheese, fresh parsley, and a light homemade dressing. It’s light, filling, and vegetarian.
If you’ve been looking for easy side dishes to prepare for your family and friends, this Mediterranean pasta salad recipe is the perfect addition to your summer menu!
Why You’ll Love This Recipe
Time: It will take you approximately 25 minutes to prepare your vegetarian pasta salad. Save time by chopping your ingredients and making your dressing while the pasta cooks.
Whole Wheat Pasta: Like many kinds of carbs, whole wheat is a healthier option for you. Whole wheat pasta is a little chewier than regular pasta which is very enjoyable in a pasta salad! It also has more fiber, is lower in calories, and often has more protein than it’s regular counterpart.
Fresh Veggies & Herbs: Fresh cherry tomatoes, English cucumber, and parsley brighten this light easy side dish recipe.
Kalamata Olives: A classic flavor in many Mediterranean dishes, Kalamata olives add a great pop of flavor to this pasta salad recipe
Feta Cheese: This tangy and salty cheese complements the fresh veggies and herbs, zingy lemon in the dressing, and really enhances the flavor of this dish
See recipe card below for a full list of ingredients and measurements.
- Cook pasta: Cook your pasta according to the package directions until it is al dente. Rinse the pasta with cold water and place it in a large bowl. If you’re still chopping the other ingredients, place the bowl of pasta in the fridge to stay cool.
- Chop the veggies, herbs, and olives: While pasta is cooking, chop tomatoes, cucumbers, olives, and parsley. Set aside.
- Make the dressing: Place all dressing ingredients in a jar and shake to combine. Place in the fridge until ready to put on salad.
- Mix it up: Place all of the ingredients into the large bowl with the pasta, stir to evenly coat the pasta, and distribute the veggies throughout.
- Chill until ready to serve: If you’re like me, you’ve probably already taken a bite or two…you know, just to make sure it’s great…
- Store leftovers: Store leftover pasta salad in the fridge. Enjoy within 2-3 days.
Can I make this into a gluten free pasta salad? Yes! Use your favorite gluten free pasta and you’ve got yourself a delicious gluten free pasta salad! Your local grocery store should have a variety of gluten free pasta options to choose from. If not, order online!
Can this be made into a vegan pasta salad? Yes! Vegan pasta salads can be hard to come by, but luckily you can transform this vegetarian pasta salad into a vegan pasta salad recipe pretty easily by omitting the feta cheese! You could also replace the feta cheese with a vegan friendly alternative.
Can I add more veggies to this pasta salad? I’m always down for more veggies! You could mix in 1 cup of fresh spinach or fresh arugula if you’re looking for even more goodness in this healthy pasta salad.
What if I want to add some meat to this pasta salad? You do you! Cutting up and adding some Genoa hard salami would be a great option! I’ve also added pulled chicken to this dish for some extra protein (because we often make large batches of this to eat in various ways throughout the week) and it was yummy!
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Mediterranean Pasta Salad (Vegetarian)
- 1 lb whole wheat pasta I use rotini
- 1 pint cherry tomatoes washed and halved
- 2 mini English cucumbers washed and cut into quarter moons (approx. ⅔-1 C)
- 6 oz pitted Kalamata olives drained and halved
- ⅔-1 C parsley washed and finely chopped
- 4 oz feta cheese crumbled
- ⅓ C olive oil
- 3 tablespoon white wine vinegar
- 2 tablespoon lemon juice
- 1 teaspoon pure maple syrup
- 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
- 1 tablespoon Italian Seasoning
- ¼ teaspoon garlic powder
- pinch of salt and pepper
- Cook pasta to al dente according to package directions. Rinse with cold water and place in a large bowl. If you’re still chopping the other ingredients, place the bowl of pasta in the fridge to stay cool.
- While pasta is cooking, chop tomatoes, cucumbers, olives, and parsley. Set aside.
- Place all dressing ingredients in a jar and shake to combine. Place in the fridge until ready to put on salad.
- Place all ingredients in the large bowl with the pasta and stir to evenly coat the pasta and distribute the veggies throughout.
- Chill until ready to serve.