This is an easy and delicious Mediterranean pasta salad with feta recipe to make as a side dish for a barbecue or a healthy lunch option with clean Greek flavors.
Looking for a healthy Mediterranean cold pasta salad recipe, well I have two to choose from! You just can’t meat the great flavors associated with Mediterranean food, and pair that with pasta and it makes for a great side dish, or even lunch! Here are two ways to make this great pasta salad. (post may contain affiliate links, originally published 12/18)
Cold Pasta Salad Mediterranean
If you’re looking to incorporate more vegetables into your diet (aren’t we all) and keep your weight line trim these two recipes are great for that. Keep them cold as we did here or make roasted vegetable pasta salad still a bit warm with a bit of a char on the veggies.
You can even substitute lettuce for the bow tie pasta if you are trying to cut down on carbs. It’s very versatile, but the classic Mediterranean flavors are definitely there. This is what you need for this first pasta salad you see above, mixed in a large bowl.
- I box farfalle pasta bow tie style, I like ours a bit al dente
- Cucumber diced
- Avocado sliced in cubes
- Container of small grape tomatoes, or sun dried
- Sliced black olives sliced
- Feta cheese
- 1/4 medium red onion diced
- Olive oil vinaigrette is used for the pasta salad dressing
- could use half red wine vinegar is desired
- Italian dressing works as well
Mediterranean Pasta Salad with Sun-Dried Tomatoes
Strawberries and diced sun dried tomatoes are other optional ingredients. Feel free to mix homemade dressing ingredients together yourself if you have one that you love for this.
The fresh ingredients are the cherry tomatoes, cucumber and onion. Of course if you can find fresh olives more power to you but you may need to grab a jar of them at the store.
Black are fine but if you can find a jar of Kalamata olives they’re even better! We add those to our Mediterranean roasted vegetables and it takes it over the top.
Incorporating veggies and fruits into your meals is always great in my opinion. Add a handful of diced fresh strawberries if you choose which makes for a bit of sweetness to this Mediterranean pasta salad, but either way it is really tasty!
- Cook the pasta according to instructions on package, I like it a bit al dente, drain and place into a large serving bowl.
- Add all other salad ingredients after cutting into bite size pieces, mix well.
- Serve immediately, or place in fridge covered with plastic wrap until ready to eat
- Great side dish for a BBQ or a few lunches topped with fresh parsley to make it pretty
Can I add protein to Mediterranean Pasta Salad?
Absolutely! If you prefer a heartier salad, you can add protein to your Mediterranean Pasta Salad. Grilled chicken, shrimp, or diced salami are popular options. You can also incorporate chickpeas, cannellini beans, or grilled tofu for a vegetarian or vegan version.
What are some common vegetables and ingredients used in Mediterranean Pasta Salad?
Often this includes ingredients such as cherry tomatoes, sliced cucumbers, Kalamata olives, red onions, bell peppers, artichoke hearts, feta cheese, and fresh herbs like basil or parsley. You can customize the salad by adding or omitting ingredients based on your preferences.
Easy Side Dishes for a Potluck
If you’ve never added fruit to a salad it really brings a bright and sweetness that is a great balance and you may be surprised at just how much you enjoy it. As a tasty lunch or a side dish for a potluck or barbecue with friends served in a pretty bowl that keeps it cool like this one, it is always a hit!
- Simple potato salad is great but load it up and make our bacon pasta salad too.
- Easy ambrosia recipe is a sweet treat for dessert or just on the side.
- Savory monkey bread can be great too
- Or make smoked bread if you are cooking outside and want something else
Cold Pasta Side Dish
Looking for more easy side dishes? You can use this same dressing on spiraled vegetables too like our raw carrot salad, shredded cucumbers and more. If you do have leftovers it will save well for 1-2 days. You will want some extra dressing to toss inside when you enjoy it again as it will dry out a bit in the cold fridge while being stored.
This is typically served cold or at room temperature, making it a perfect dish for picnics, potlucks, or as a refreshing cold Mediterranean side dish on hot summer days. However, you can also enjoy it slightly warmed if desired.
Yes, you can use various types of pasta for this cold pasta salad. Popular choices include penne, rotini, fusilli, or farfalle (bowtie) pasta. Whole wheat or gluten free pasta can be used as well to accommodate dietary preferences, cooking times will vary.
This is a great make ahead side dish. In fact, it often tastes even better after the flavors have had a chance to meld together. You can prepare it a few hours or even a day in advance, keeping it refrigerated and covered until ready to serve.
Just add a bit more dressing and give it a quick toss before serving and adjust the seasoning if needed.
Want to see a few of my favorite things that I am totally obsessed with?? Take a peek and see how many you might already have…twinsies!
Mediterranean Pasta Salad with Feta
- 1 Bowl
- Cook the pasta according to instructions on package, I like it a bit al dente, drain and place into a large serving bowl to cool.
- Add all other ingredients after cutting into bite size pieces, toss together with dressing.
- Serve immediately, or place in fridge covered with plastic wrap until ready to eat, great side dish for a BBQ or a few lunches!