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This fresh and easy salad combines all the classic flavors of a Caprese Salad with pasta! Perfect as a simple family side dish or when feeding a crowd this make-ahead recipe for the best Caprese Pasta Salad delivers a burst of flavor everyone will love.
Pasta salad is something that everyone loves! It doesn’t matter whether you serve as a side dish, take it with you on a picnic, or share it a potluck or covered dish supper, it’s always one of the first foods to disappear.
Recently, I decided to give one of my most popular recipes on A Southern Soul twist. I’ve taken my Simple Caprese Salad recipe and turned it into a pasta salad. The result? Outstanding!
This pasta salad is
- simple to make with just 5 ingredients.
- made with fresh tomatoes and basil giving a pop of summertime flavor.
- a make-ahead recipe saving you time when you need to get a meal on the table.
- great for feeding a crowd.
- so versatile since you can change it up with added ingredients.
- simply the BEST!
Ingredients For This Recipe
- Grape Tomatoes – sliced in half or quartered
- Mozzarella Pearls – small balls of cheese found at the deli counter
- Fresh Basil – sliced into ribbons
- Pasta – you can use any shape you like
- Homemade Vinaigrette – olive oil, balsamic vinegar, lemon juice, Italian seasoning, salt and pepper
What Is A Caprese Salad?
A classic Caprese Salad, also known as Insalata Caprese, is an Italian salad most often served in the summer. It’s made with ripe tomatoes layered between slices of fresh mozzarella, basil leaves then drizzled with olive oil and balsamic vinegar. It’s light, refreshing, and totally delicious.
Can Caprese Pasta Salad Be Made Ahead Of Time?
You bet. I like to make the salad the night before I’ll be serving it. I drizzle on about 3/4 of the dressing, toss all the ingredients together then store the pasta salad and remaining dressing in an airtight container in the fridge. Before serving, I let the salad sit on the counter for about 10 to 15 minutes to come to room temperature. I drizzle on the remaining dressing, toss and serve.
How To Serve This Salad
Caprese Pasta Salad is best served at room temperature. It makes a great side dish to serve with so many other recipes. Here are a few of my favorites:
- alongside Grilled Pork Tenderloin, Balsamic Chicken Thighs, or Marinated London Broil.
- as a light lunch with Roasted Garlic Tomato Soul.
- for game day with Air Fryer Chicken Wings.
- at a summer cookout with Grilled Sausages and hot dogs and burgers with Home Run Hot Dog Chili.
Want To Change Things Up?
This salad lends itself perfectly to all kinds of yummy additions.
- add avocado, sliced peppers, or onions.
- toss in leftover chicken for a salad main dish.
- tuna makes a great add-in along with some black or green olives.
How To Store Caprese Pasta Salad
If you’re lucky enough to have some of this salad leftover, you can store in overed in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.
More Great Pasta Salad Recipes You’ll Love!
- Mediterranean Pasta Salad
- Creamy Tomato Cucumber Pasta Salad
- Lemony Asparagus and Pea Pasta Salad
- Broccoli Pasta Salad
- Italian Pasta Salad
- Macaroni Salad For A Crown
Last But Not Least…
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Best Caprese Pasta Salad Recipe
- 1/4 cup olive oil
- 1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
- 2 -3 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
- 1 clove minced garlic
- 1 teaspoon Italian seasoning
- 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
Caprese Pasta Salad
- 1/2 pound dried pasta (farfalle or other small pasta works best)
- 8 ounces mozzarella pearls (or cubed fresh mozzarella)
- 2 cups grape tomatoes sliced in half
- 1/4 cup fresh basil leaves thinly sliced
- salt and pepper to taste
- To a small bowl or jar with a lid, add olive oil, balsamic vinegar, lemon juice, garlic, Italian seasoning, salt, and pepper. Whisk or shake until all ingredients are incorporated. Set aside.
- Cook pasta according to package directions. Drain and rinse with cold water.
- To a large bowl add cooked pasta, tomatoes, mozzarella pearls, and basil. Drizzle with vinaigrette dressing and toss. Taste and adjust seasoning. Serve immediately.