Italian antipasto ingredients are chopped, mixed with cooked pasta and a dressing making this Italian Pasta Salad the ultimate summer salad, potluck dish or full meal deal!
Italian Pasta Salad
This salad could easily be called an antipasto salad since it contains everything I add to my Italian antipasto boards, however we went with Italian pasta salad instead.
One of my many jobs is doing the social media for a local Italian company. I’m in their retail store weekly reviewing products, sampling, photographing and picking up items to bring home and enjoy. I oogle everything in the deli several times while in the store. That’s when I decided to make this salad.
I always say use quality ingredients whenever you can. It makes all the different in taste!
Olives: I avoid canned olives at all costs. They taste tinny to me so I always try to buy bulk fresh or jarred.
Artichoke Hearts: Buy them packed in oil and drizzle on a little of the flavourful oil.
Sun-dried Tomatoes: I admittedly eat these like candy. Again packed in oil and drained is what I choose.
Spanish Onion: Make sure it’s fresh, no brown spots or brown blemishes.
Roasted Red Peppers: I have a pepper hater in the house but that doesn’t stop me. Buy them to save time.
Arugula: Should be bright green ensuring freshness.
Salami: This comes down to personal preference and taste. Get it cut a little thicker than sandwich size so there is some bite.
Bocconcini Balls: Get the small ones. You can cut them up if need be. The pearls are too small.
Basil: Fresh basil, chopped
Parmesan Cheese: Stay away from the sawdust stuff in a can. Try to get a fresh piece and use little bits here and there.
The first time I made this salad and brought it to a potluck, it got rave reviews. Then it was completely devoured so there were no leftovers coming home! This is when you know you have a winning recipe. I’ve made it a few more times but now it’s time to share the recipe with everyone.
Here’s a few tips and tricks to get you started.
- There is a lot of chopping in this recipe. You can prepare ingredients in advance and refrigerate until ready to assemble or get some helpers to chop.
- Refrigerate salad until about an hour before serving. Then bring to room temperature.
- Salami can be whatever you like from your local deli.
- Use artichokes packed in water or in oil (more flavour).
- Substitute torn buffalo mozzarella for bocconcini balls.
- Fresh parmesan is recommended.
Here’s a few of our favourite must try summer salad recipes!
- Watermelon, Herb and Cucumber Salad
- Greek Wedge Salad
- Greek Pasta Salad
- Panzanella Salad with fresh Cherries
- Creamy Dijon Dill Potato Salad
- Green Quinoa Salad
- Chickpea and Artichoke Salad
- Lemony Coleslaw
If you made this recipe tag Wanda Baker on Instagram and hashtag it #bakersbeans or #wandabaker
- 1 454g 1 lb box pasta, rotini or fusilli
- 1/2 cup sun-dried tomatoes, chopped
- 1 can 340 ml artichoke hearts, chopped
- 1/2 cup roasted red pepper, chopped
- 1/2 cup olives
- 1 cup bocconcini balls
- 1 cup arugula
- 1/2 cup red onion, sliced thin
- 1 cup salami, sliced into 1/4 inch pieces and quartered
- 1/2 cup parmesan, grated
- 3 tbsp fresh basil
- 1 cup extra virgin olive oil
- 1/2 cup white wine vinegar
- 1 tbsp honey
- 1/4 cup parmesan, grated
- freshly grated black pepper
- sea salt
- Bring a pot of water to a boil, add salt and pasta. Drain and spread out on a baking sheet to cool. Do not rinse.
- Whisk together oil through parmesan. Add a pinch of pepper and salt. Set aside.
- Pour sun-dried tomatoes through basil into a large bowl. Toss in pasta and dressing and gently mix until combined.
- Sprinkle with more fresh basil if you have it, black pepper, salt and a drizzle of olive oil.
- Serve at room temperature.