The BEST Pasta Salad – Zesty and Zippy Recipe

Ingredients:

  • 12 oz rotini pasta (gluten-free option available)
  • 3 Roma tomatoes, seeded and chopped
  • 1 cucumber, peeled, seeded, and chopped
  • 4 oz pepperoni, chopped (use your favorite brand or substitute salami)
  • 2.25 oz can sliced black olives, drained
  • 4 oz jar McCormick Salad Supreme Seasoning
  • 16 oz bottle Ken’s Zesty Italian Dressing
  • Optional: Shredded mozzarella or Parmesan cheese

Instructions:

  • Cook the pasta: Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add the rotini and cook according to package directions until al dente. Drain and rinse under cold water until completely cool. Drain thoroughly.
  • Prep the veggies: While the pasta cooks, chop the tomatoes, cucumber, and pepperoni.
  • Assemble the salad: In a large mixing bowl, combine the cooled pasta, tomatoes, cucumber, pepperoni, and black olives.
  • Add dressing and seasoning: Start with about 1/3 of the bottle of Italian dressing and 1/4 cup of Salad Supreme Seasoning. Toss everything together to coat.
  • Taste and adjust: Give your salad a taste. Add more dressing and/or seasoning if desired. For an extra cheesy kick, add some mozzarella or Parmesan at this point!
  • Chill: Refrigerate the salad for at least 2 hours, or ideally overnight, to allow the flavors to meld.
  • Serve and enjoy! This zesty pasta salad is perfect as a side dish at potlucks, picnics, or a light lunch!

Tips:

  • Don’t overcook the pasta: Al dente pasta provides the best texture for salad.
  • Drain the pasta well: Excess water will dilute the dressing.
  • Customize it: Add other mix-ins like bell peppers, artichoke hearts, or your favorite cheeses.
  • Make it ahead! This salad actually tastes better when made ahead of time, making it great for meal prep.
  • Leftovers: Store leftovers in the refrigerator for up to 3-4 days.

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