Guys, I’ve been meaning to share this recipe with you all for weeks!
Somehow it got buried in my camera’s memory card, and I totally forgot about it until I was craving pizza again the other day. (Well, let’s be honest, when am I not craving pizza.) And I suddenly remembered everything about this delicious pasta salad that my friend, Rachel, and I whipped up last month.
It came about when I was cleaning out the fridge and trying to decide how to use the leftover ingredients from those Pizza Spaghetti Squash Boats I shared with you. I was fresh out of spaghetti squash. But goodness knows I’m a pasta hoarder, and always seem to have at least ten pounds of various pastas on hand. So Rachel and I decided to cook up some bow-ties and toss together this pizza-inspired pasta salad.
This one is made with all of my favorite classic pizza toppings (including double-pepperoni, holla!), but of course, it’s totally easy to customize with all of your favorite toppings. And it’s perfect for those end-of-summer picnics or back-to-school potlucks this time of year. And, since it’s still blazing hot, it’s another great meal you can make without turning on that oven.
Let’s make some!
As I said, the ingredients in this one are really up to you.
Start with a base of some freshly-cooked pasta (which you just rinse immediately afterwards with cold water to cool it down), lots of mozzarella cheese (the fresher, the better), and a good helping of diced tomatoes (you can use canned organic fire-roasted tomatoes, if you’d like to save some chopping). Then add in your favorite pizza toppings! I used lots of pepperoni, green peppers, red onions, and a few olives.
Whip up a simple Italian vinaigrette and drizzle it on.
Give everything a good toss.
And then this gorgeous salad will be yours to enjoy. It’s the perfect way to satisfy that pizza craving, and I can also vouch that it’ll be a hit if you bring it along to a potluck. Because let’s be real, who can resist pepperoni?! Not I, said the Hen. 😉
If you need more pasta salad inspiration, be sure to check out these other recipes too:
Happy pasta salad-ing!
Yield: 6-8 servings
Pizza Pasta Salad
This Pizza Pasta Salad recipe is quick and easy to make, it’s tossed with a simple Italian vinaigrette, and you can customize it with all of your favorite pizza toppings!
Pizza Pasta Salad Ingredients:
- 1 pound uncooked pasta (I used farfalle)
- 8 ounces mozzarella, diced
- 1 cup diced roma tomatoes
- 4-6 cups chopped pizza toppings (I used pepperoni, black olives, and sliced red onions)
- 1 batch Garlic-Oregano Vinaigrette (see below)
- optional toppings: freshly-grated Parmesan cheese, crushed red pepper flakes
- 1/3 cup extra-virgin olive oil
- 1/4 cup white wine vinegar (or red wine vinegar)
- 3 garlic cloves, peeled and pressed (or minced)
- 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
- 1/2 teaspoon Kosher salt
- 1/2 teaspoon freshly-cracked black pepper
To Make The Pizza Pasta Salad:
- 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. Drain completely.
- In a large bowl, combine the cooled pasta, mozzarella, tomatoes, and pizza toppings. Drizzle the vinaigrette on top, then toss to combine. Garnish with your desired toppings.
- Serve immediately, or cover and refrigerate for up to 3 days.
To Make The Garlic-Oregano Vinaigrette:
- Whisk all ingredients together until combined