Main Dishes Salads

Caprese Pasta Salad

This Caprese Pasta Salad Recipe is quick and easy to make, tossed with a delicious balsamic vinaigrette, and perfect for picnics, potlucks, or just a regular weeknight meal! | gimmesomeoven.com

This weekend, my small group from church decided to head outta town for an impromptu little Memorial Day campout.

Although, I should probably say that “campout” was a generous term. 😉

As it turned out, my friend’s parents’ house where we were staying actually had enough bedrooms and couches for the dozen of us who preferred to sleep indoors, so I didn’t have to snuggle up with the insect kingdom. We also nixed cooking by campfire and instead made use of their amazing big kitchen, cooking up a big dinner spread together complete with burgers and hot dogs and grilled veggies and (this!) pasta salad and old-school potato chips and dips and local craft beers galore. Which was followed, the next morning, by a fabulously long and lazy homemade breakfast together the next morning, where we sat around the dining table in the morning sunlight chatting about everything from theology to the best oysters in KC to the Enneagram to The Bachelorette.

Granted, we did build a big campfire that we sat around late at night. And we did spend plenty of time outside paddle-boating around the lake, riding four-wheelers around, and star-gazing with this amazing app. So maybe it could still count as campout-ish. But hey, whatever you call it, it was just one of those deeply good, restorative weekends all around. So thankful to have had the chance to get outta town, and soak up some wide open spaces (and wide-open free time) with good friends. Good for my little soul.

Also good? This yummy little impromptu caprese pasta salad that I whipped up to bring with me. My friends gave it two thumbs up, so I thought I’d share it with you guys today as well.


This Caprese Pasta Salad Recipe is quick and easy to make, tossed with a delicious balsamic vinaigrette, and perfect for picnics, potlucks, or just a regular weeknight meal! | gimmesomeoven.com

I’ve been cooking all things caprese lately, thanks to all of the fresh basil that seems to be abounding this time of year. So this salad made use of some leftover ingredients that I needed to use up, and ended up being so easy to make and tasty.

All you need is some pasta, tomatoes, mozzarella, basil…

This Caprese Pasta Salad Recipe is quick and easy to make, tossed with a delicious balsamic vinaigrette, and perfect for picnics, potlucks, or just a regular weeknight meal! | gimmesomeoven.com

…and a simple vinaigrette that just takes a minute to whip up. Just drizzle it on the pasta salad ingredients…

This Caprese Pasta Salad Recipe is quick and easy to make, tossed with a delicious balsamic vinaigrette, and perfect for picnics, potlucks, or just a regular weeknight meal! | gimmesomeoven.com

…and toss everything together…

This Caprese Pasta Salad Recipe is quick and easy to make, tossed with a delicious balsamic vinaigrette, and perfect for picnics, potlucks, or just a regular weeknight meal! | gimmesomeoven.com

…and within no time, this beautiful and colorful pasta salad will be ready to serve. Super easy, and super good, so I hope that you all (super) enjoy it as much as we did. 🙂


Yield: 4-6 servings

Caprese Pasta Salad


This Caprese Pasta Salad is quick and easy to make, it’s tossed with a homemade balsamic vinaigrette, and it’s perfect for picnics, potlucks, or just any normal weeknight meal.

Ingredients:

Caprese Pasta Salad Ingredients:

  • 1 pound dry pasta (any shape will do)
  • 1 pint cherry or grape tomatoes (I used a combination of red/yellow cherry tomatoes)
  • 1 (8 oz) ball of fresh mozzarella, diced (or you can use the brick of cheese)
  • 1/3 cup julienned or shredded fresh basil leaves
  • 1 batch balsamic vinaigrette (see below)

Balsamic Vinaigrette Ingredients:

  • 1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 3 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon honey
  • 1/4 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly-cracked black pepper
  • pinch of Italian seasonings (store-bought or homemade)

Directions:

To Make The Caprese Pasta Salad:

  1. Cook the pasta in a large stockpot of generously-salted water al dente according to package directions. Drain pasta and rinse under cold water for about 20-30 seconds until no longer hot.
  2. In a large serving bowl, toss pasta with the remaining ingredients until combined.
  3. Serve immediately, or refrigerate in a sealed container for up to 3 days.

To Make The Balsamic Vinaigrette:

  1. Whisk all ingredients together until combined.

This Caprese Pasta Salad Recipe is quick and easy to make, tossed with a delicious balsamic vinaigrette, and perfect for picnics, potlucks, or just a regular weeknight meal! | gimmesomeoven.com

About the author

Mr.HungryMan

Hi There, I am Mr. Hungry Man , Love to Eat , Travel and Blog about Technology . Professional IM Strategist .

17 Comments

  • Great timing, Ali! I am starting to plan for our upcoming summer bash and always make a macaroni salad to go with our burgers and dogs – this would be PERFECT! Lighter than your typical mayo based salad, much better for a humid summer BBQ! =D

    Hayley @ Gimme Some Oven — June 13th, 2016 @ 9:17 am
    Awesome! We hope you enjoy this! 😀


  • Pasta salad is one of my all time favorites for summer! Loving all the bright and beautiful colors in this one especially!

  • YUM. Camping is SO not my thing, but with this in hand, I may just become a camping convert 😉

  • Caprese pasta salad looks spectacular !! It looks like a spicy dish and it is my favourite. Thanks for sharing this recipe ???? Keep posting.

    Hayley @ Gimme Some Oven — June 13th, 2016 @ 9:49 am
    Thanks, we appreciate that! 😀


  • I am allergic to dairy and I was wondering if you had any recommendations to substitute for cheese. I love pasta salad and I have been craving it sooooo badly(I’m a 14 year old girl that’s allergic to the whole world, so I’m sure you can imagine what it’s like to crave so many wonderful foods that you can’t eat). Anyways, I have tried brainstorming ideas, and I have also tried making it without cheese and you can tell that something is missing for sure. I thought your chef mind might be able to come up with something 🙂
    thank you,
    Lindsey

    Hayley @ Gimme Some Oven — June 14th, 2016 @ 11:09 am
    Hi Lindsey! We’re so sorry about your food allergies — we can imagine how frustrating they must be! 🙁 As for non-dairy cheese substitutes, unfortunately we’re not the best people to ask. However, we did find some articles with some good info that might be helpful to you (we hope)! Also, for this particular recipe (we know the flavor won’t be the same), but the texture will be pretty darn close), we think you could try using tofu. Get the extra firm, drain and dry it really well, and then cut it into little cubes. We hope this is somewhat helpful — best of luck to you!


  • This looks great! It would be really yummy with those little ball of mozzarella they sell at Trader Joe’s! those things are so dang perfect

    Hayley @ Gimme Some Oven — June 13th, 2016 @ 10:01 am
    Thanks Sarah — we hope you enjoy! 🙂


  • Ali! I’ve made your Brussels sprout tacos for my BF twice now – he’s obsessed. Thx for letting me impress him. Also added jack fruit to your chipotle adobo sauce from the sofritas recipe – delicious and vegan! 
    Do you mind sharing your enneagram ? I’m a six 🙂 I love the enneagram and I’m just curious. 
    Kaitlin 

    Hayley @ Gimme Some Oven — June 16th, 2016 @ 9:35 am
    Hi Kaitlin! We’re so glad you and your boyfriend enjoy the tacos, and that jack fruit in the adobo sauce sounds amazing — what an awesome idea! 😀


  • Thanks for the share! Looks like a quick easy recipe to make, thanks for the post!

    Hayley @ Gimme Some Oven — June 14th, 2016 @ 5:57 pm
    You’re welcome Kylie — we hope you enjoy it! 🙂


  • Balsamic vinegar made this dressing quite brown. It tastes great but doesn’t look very appetizing. How can I get the flavor with no color?

    Ali — June 20th, 2016 @ 9:59 am
    Hey Kerry! Sorry about the coloring — some balsamic vinegars are darker than others. If you want to nix the dark coloring all together, you can purchase white (or “golden”) balsamic vinegar at most stores now. I really love the DeLallo brand — http://www.delallo.com/products/golden-balsamic-style-vinegar


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