I have tried to make pasta salads from scratch and both times I have ended up throwing away a majority of it. The first time the canned beans I put in the mixture mushed and created this weird good all over that made everything pretty inedible. The second time the dressing I made was so spicy and vinegary I couldn’t even swallow it. So when I found this recipe I was excited but hesitant. After reading the simple ingredients of the dressing I decided to go for it and it was a good decision because I’ve found THE BEST RECIPE FOR HOMEMADE PASTA SALAD!
Below is the recipe but here are some quick tips. Don’t stray from the dressing ingredients because they are perfect the way they are. However, do stray away from the rest of the ingredients if you want. Use what you have. Use what’s in season. Use what’s on sale (that’s what I did!). Sub things you like for things you don’t! I wouldn’t eliminate the feta or kalamata olives unless you really don’t like either because they go so well with the dressing!
2 tsp garlic powder
2 tsp dried oregano
2 tsp dijon mustard
1/2 cup red wine vinegar
1 cup olive oil
pasta (I suggest rotini!)
1 large English cucumber (halved and sliced)
1 pint cherry tomatoes (halved)
red onion (sliced)
1 1/2 cup kalamata olives (halved)
6 oz feta cheese
3 cups firmly packed baby spinach
Bottom line: I really don’t like spinach but decided to add it anyway and you don’t even taste it in this so this salad is an amazing way to get the health benefits from something you don’t always eat. Also, I bought a container of feta and a jar of kalamata olives. Both were larger than the recipe called for but I tossed all of them in and it turned out awesome! I added chopped red peppers but other good additions would be carrots and arugula instead of spinach.