Greek Pasta Salad with fresh tomatoes, cucumber, red bell pepper, red onion, parsley, Kalamata olives and feta cheese, in a tangy lemon and olive oil dressing - a healthy dish jam-packed with the delicious flavours of Greece. It's a great side for any BBQ or your favourite roast, it's light but filling, and perfect on a warm sunny day.
It's salad season, with its fresh and delicious fruit and veggies to spoil our taste buds and give us all the goodness of Mother Nature. Salads are a real godsend as we come closer to Summer, and comfort food becomes a tad too heavy.
But salads don't have to be just a boring side dish, you can pack them with loads of fresh ingredients for a lighter, but totally filling meal or meal accompaniment. And what a better choice here than adding some good old pasta.
Whether you go for fusilli pasta like I did, or penne or any other shape indeed, your salad will be taken to the very next level of texture and taste. Swap it for orzo or even rice, if you like, it's still as good.
To me, using Kalamata olives and feta cheese is enough to get that Mediterranean feel, that freshness that energises us and leave us filling full and happy. Let's see how to get a salad that will knock everyone's socks off!
- pasta - I used fussily pasta, but feel free to use anything else you have around
- tomatoes - fresh juicy tomatoes are the best, I used 3 tomatoes on the vine, you might have to use more or less depending on the size of the tomatoes
- cucumber - I used half of an English cucumber, but if you use the small ones, you can use 2 or 3
- red bell pepper - or any other colour
- Kalamata olives - or any other olives you have
- red onion - you can use green onions instead or regular onion
- feta cheese - or cow's cheese
- parsley - fresh is best
- salt & pepper
- olive oil and lemon juice for the dressing
While this vegetarian salad is so delicious and filling too, you can easily customise it to cater for all tastes and lifestyles. You can add any leftover chicken, ham, beef or pork to make it even more comforting.
Other great addition are salami of all sorts, ready-to-eat chorizo or any other deli products. Or even a combo of meats.
Step-by-step photos and instructions
- Cook the pasta according to the packet instructions
- Drain well and rinse with cold water
- Chop the cucumber, tomatoes, red pepper, onion and parsley
- Cut the cheese into cubes
- Add everything to a large mixing bowl
- To make the dressing, mix the olive oil with the juice from half of the lemon, season with salt and pepper, and mix well - add more lemon juice if needed
- Drizzle the dressing over the salad, and toss well to combine
- Refrigerate until ready to serve
What makes a good salad is the freshness of the produce that is in season - we all know how tasteless tomatoes and cucumbers especially are in the cold season, but at this time of the year they are ripe and juicy and just perfect.
You can refrigerate the salad for up to 2 days - just cover the bowl with kitchen foil or clingfilm. While the veggies won't look as great as the first day, the flavours would have had time to proper mix, so the salad still tastes phenomenal.
Other pasta salad recipes
- BLT Pasta Salad with Ranch Dressing30 Minutes
- Tuna Sweetcorn Pasta Salad20 Minutes
- Roasted Vegetable Pasta Salad35 Minutes
- Salmon Pasta Salad (No Mayo)25 Minutes
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Greek Pasta Salad
- 1 cup fusilli pasta
- ½ English cucumber
- 3 tomatoes on the vine
- 1 red bell pepper
- 1 cup feta cheese
- 1 cup Kalamata olives
- 2 tablespoon fresh parsley (chopped)
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- 1 small red onion
- ⅛ teaspoon ground black pepper
- ¼ cup extra virgin olive oil
- juice from half a lemon
- Cook the pasta according to the packet instructions.
- When the pasta is ready, drain and rise well with cold water.
- Chop the tomatoes, cucumber, parsley, red bell pepper and onion.
- Cut the feta cheese into cubes.
- Add all the ingredients to a large mixing bowl.
- To make the dressing, mix the olive oil with the lemon juice, and use a fork to beat it well.
- Season with salt and pepper, then drizzle the dressing over the rest of the ingredients.
- Toss well to combine.
- Refrigerate until ready to use.
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