Bowtie Pesto Pasta Salad combines Caprese salad and basil pesto with pasta for a quick, easy, and delicious pasta salad. This pasta salad recipe is perfect for any occasion, especially summer gatherings, tailgating, picnics, and potlucks.
This pasta is great for lunch, as a side, or add chicken and serve for dinner.
Bowtie Pesto Pasta Salad has a mouthwatering combination of flavors. The pesto gives it a bright and fresh but earthy flavor. It’s one of my favorite flavors.
Bowtie Pesto Pasta Salad
This cold pasta salad is always a crowd pleaser. You can make your own pesto or use store-bought pesto for an effortless meal!
I recommend tasting the pesto before adding salt to the salad or to the pasta water. Pesto tends to be salty in my opinion.
Another recommendation, don’t overcook the pasta. Cook to al dente per the package directions. Next, drain and cool. Some people recommend running the pasta under cold water to stop the cooking process while experts don’t recommend doing this. So, rinse or not whatever you prefer. Honestly, I can’t tell a difference in taste or texture of the pasta either way.
Bowtie Pesto Pasta Salad can be made ahead of time which makes it great for entertaining. You can make this recipe a few hours before serving it or the night before. Just keep it refrigerated in an airtight container.
You can store this pasta in the refrigerator for up to 5 days. If it gets dry, add a little olive oil to the pasta and toss it to coat.
- orzo instead of pasta
What to serve with Pesto Pasta
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Please keep in mind that nutritional information is a rough estimate and can vary based on products used.
- 12 ounces pasta any shape, cooked per package instructions
- 2 8.1-ounce jars basil pesto I used Classico brand
- 1 and 1/2 cup grape or cherry tomatoes halved
- 12 ounce jar marinated mozzarella balls
- 1/4 cup red onion diced
Boil pasta according to package directions. Drain. Cool
In a large bowl, add pasta, pesto, tomatoes, cheese, and onion. Toss well to coat.
Serve warm or refrigerate and serve cold.
Store in an airtight container in the refrigerator up to 5 days.