The Best Pasta Salad Recipe!
Soon our garden will be bursting with fresh tomatoes and peppers, so along with the other veggies that I can snag at the farmer's market and the real foodie dressing ingredients, this makes the BEST pasta salad recipe because all the flavors blend so perfectly together. It's also a super easy salad to throw together for your summer cook-outs — it'll be a hit!
The original recipe called for “Accent”. I had no idea what it was until I read the ingredient label on the bottle at the store, there's only ONE ingredient: MSG!!! Obviously, I dropped the bottle in the aisle and ran. It was still just as delicious without it.
(This recipe is from my step-sister, Mary Jane.)
Mary Jane's Pasta Salad
- 3/4 cup raw apple cider vinegar
- 1/2 cup olive oil
- 1/4 cup sesame oil
- 1/4 cup soy sauce or tamari
- 1/4 to 1/2 cup palm or coconut sugar this is cut back from original recipe which called for 3/4 cup
- 1 Tablespoon fresh herbs: fresh or dried parsley and/or cilantro
- 1/4-1/2 teaspoon pepper more if desired
- 1 teaspoon sea salt
- 1-2 teaspoons garlic powder I like a lot
- 1 pound pasta cooked -- I use mostly einkorn pasta now for the fam, and I make mine without pasta, it's still so good!
- 1-2 chopped peppers I like using all different colors. it makes it tasty and pretty!
- 1/2 chopped sweet onion or handful chopped green onion
- 1-2 tomatoes diced
- 1 cup cheddar cheese shredded
- More options, as much as you'd like: cucumbers, broccoli, cauliflower, carrots, celery chopped
- Mix together vinegar, oils, soy sauce, sugar, herbs, pepper, garlic powder and salt and chill while you boil the pasta and do the chopping of all your veggies. Once the pasta is done, drain and allow to cool a bit. Then in a large bowl, or the pot you just boiled the pasta in, add your pasta and the dressing you've had in the fridge, your chopped veggies and cheese and toss well to make sure all the pasta and veggies get coated with dressing. Serve cold. (This makes a delicious meal if you add some leftover cooked chicken to it).
More possible additions to the above that I've found or tried recently:
- To make this lower in carbs, just make a veggie salad without the pasta, it's delicious!
- 1/4 cup toasted sesame seeds
- 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger for more of an Asian taste
- Sliced black olives
- Hard-boiled eggs, chopped
- Soft mozzarella cheese
- Pieces of salami or summer sausage (go here if you don't have a local source for safe meat options)
- For a more traditional macaroni salad, use mustard, mayo, lemon juice, and salt & pepper
- Be creative!
Do you know of good variations to this recipe? If so, please share in the comments!