Pack this bright and zesty spring pasta salad for every picnic all season. Super easy to toss together, it’s bursting with vegetables and so much flavor.
- 1 pound cavatappi or other curly short pasta, cooked according to package directions
- 1/2 cup green olives, halved (I buy pitted Castelvetrano or Cerignola)
- 1/2 cup chopped roasted and salted pistachios
- 2 – 3 strips crispy bacon, crumbled
- 1/2 cup Artichoke hearts, quartered
- Spring Green Dressing (below)
- 2 cups arugula
- Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
- red pepper flakes, to taste
- lots of freshly grated parmesan, to taste
For the green dressing:
- 1/2 bunch parsley
- 2 lemons, zest and juice
- 1/2 shallot
- 1 garlic clove
- 3/4 cup olive oil
- 2 tbsp honey
- 2 tbsp hot water
- Salt and pepper
- First make the dressing by combining all ingredients in a blender. Store in a mason jar in the fridge until ready to use.
- Add the cooked pasta to a large serving bowl.
- Add the olives, pistachios, bacon, artichoke hearts, and a big drizzle of the dressing.
- Toss well to combine—add more dressing if needed.
- Add the arugula, red pepper flakes, and parmesan. Give it a light toss, taste for seasoning.
- Serve, passing more red pepper flakes and parmesan at the table.
- You can make this pasta salad ahead—combine all ingredients and store in the fridge until ready to serve.
- Use any short pasta you like: gemelli, fusilli, cavatappi, or penne all work great.
- Feel free to make it vegetarian by omitting the bacon.
- Double or triple the recipe to serve a crowd.
- Prep Time: 30
- Cook Time: 10
- Category: pasta, side dish
Keywords: spring pasta salad, easy side dish, potluck side