Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Spinach Pesto Pasta Salad

Pasta salad is a staple in the summer. Now I'm not talking about that dish made with elbow noodles and mayo- that's macaroni salad (and not something you'll ever see me eating since I strongly dislike mayo). I typically make pasta salad with Italian salad dressing/peppers/cheddar cheese, but a year ago we went to a family party with John's cousins and I was introduced to this pasta salad. I have since made it several times and always love it. I still haven't made it exactly like John's cousin, hers was much more spinach-y and I can't figure out if she used frozen chopped spinach, or a ton of fresh, or what. So if you want to use frozen spinach, just defrost it and throw it in. Or add more fresh spinach. Or make it exactly as I state. There's no right or wrong to pasta salad!

Source: John's cousin, Michelle

1 pound mini penne
12 ounces fresh baby spinach, roughly chopped
1 pint grape tomatoes, diced in quarters
1 cup pesto sauce
3/4 cup grated parmesan cheese

1- Cook pasta according to directions. In the last 3 minutes toss in the spinach and allow to boil. Drain.
2- Add the pasta and spinach to a large bowl. Stir in the pesto, tomatoes, and cheese.
3- Serve at room temperature. Stir well before serving.


  1. I love pasta salads too! Different dressings are sooo much better than the mayo stuff!

  2. this looks delicious! i love pasta salads!