Vegan Pasta Salad

A robust and healthy Greek-inspired pasta salad that works equally well as a side or main dish.

Vegan Pasta Salad

Like hot pasta dishes, cold pasta salads are a wonderful and creative side dish, and a great way to feed a crowd. Whatever dietary restrictions or preferences you’re dealing with, there’s always a way to make a pasta salad to please everyone. With the warmer weather on its way, this is the perfect side dish or lunch.

This vegan pasta salad is packed with Greek salad flavors, though it contains none of the feta cheese commonly found in the Greek salad. Vegan feta is available at most grocery stores and you could definitely add some to spruce this one up even more, but frankly we don’t miss it because of the robust flavours of the veggies and dressing.

We’ve opted for the milder flavor of canned olives for balance, but you could certainly use the more traditional Kalamata olives if you like. You should also feel free to adjust the quantities and range of veggies in here… you could add some cucumber, for example. The dressing packs a lot of flavor and is greedily absorbed by the pasta which makes sure that each bite is packed with deliciousness. Recommendation: Make extra, you’ll want some for lunch tomorrow!

Choosing Pasta for Salad

All pastas are not created equal, especially when it comes to pasta salad. Traditionally, pasta is a vehicle for sauce, and in a pasta salad it’s a vehicle for the dressing. You’ll want to use a pasta with a lot of surface area to carry the maximum flavor of the dressing. Short, spiral pastas tend to work best, but go ahead and have fun with the shapes. Remember that some pastas contain eggs, so be careful when grabbing a new unusual pasta that strikes your fancy – read the ingredient list.

Ingredients

  • 1 pound spiral pasta
  • 1/2 red onion thinly sliced
  • 1/2 cup grape tomatoes halved
  • 1 small green bell pepper chopped
  • 1 can 6 ounces sliced black olives, drained
  • 1/4 cup fresh parsley chopped
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 1/3 cup olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons white balsamic vinegar
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
  • A pinch of sugar
Vegan Pasta Salad

How to Make Vegan Pasta Salad

Step 1: Cook the pasta according to the package instructions until al dente. Drain and rinse under cold water to cool.

Vegan Pasta Salad

Step 2: Prepare the vegetables by slicing the red onion, halving the tomatoes, and chopping the green bell pepper.

Vegan Pasta Salad

Step 3: For the dressing, whisk together olive oil, white balsamic vinegar, oregano, garlic powder, onion powder, crushed red pepper, and sugar in a small bowl.

Step 4: In a large bowl, combine the cooled pasta, prepared vegetables, black olives, and parsley. Pour the dressing over the salad and toss to coat evenly.

Vegan Pasta Salad

Step 5: Season the salad with salt and pepper to taste. Serve immediately or chill in the refrigerator before serving.

FAQs & Tips

How to Make Ahead and Store?

You can make this pasta salad a day ahead and store it in the fridge until you’re ready to eat. We recommend holding a little dressing back until you serve it, and only adding the parsley at the last minute.

Pasta salad does not freeze well.

My pasta is soggy and falling apart!

As soon as your pasta is cooked al dente rinse it under plenty of cold running water. This will stop the cooking process and rinse of any surface starches. Toss the pasta in a little olive oil to prevent it from clumping together.

Can I leave out the crushed peppers?

If you don’t like any heat at all, by all means leave them out. Try adding a 1/2 tsp paprika to the dressing to get that flavor without the heat!

Vegan Pasta Salad

Serving Suggestions

We love this salad just by itself for lunch, topped with a scoop of vegan feta. For a more hearty vegan meal try adding other veggies like zucchini and, or pairing it with these sliders.

Vegan Pasta Salad
Vegan Pasta Salad

Vegan Pasta Salad

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Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Total Time 25 minutes
Course pasta
Cuisine American
Servings 8 servings
Calories 375 kcal

Ingredients
  

  • 1 lb. spiral pasta (fusilli or rotini)
  • 1/2 red onion thinly sliced
  • 1/2 cup grape tomatoes halved
  • 1 small green bell pepper chopped
  • 1 (6 oz. can) sliced black olives drained
  • 1/4 cup fresh parsley chopped
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 1/3 cup olive oil
  • 2 tbsp white balsamic vinegar
  • 1/2 tsp dried oregano
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • 1 tsp onion powder
  • 1/4 tsp crushed red pepper flakes
  • pinch of sugar

Instructions
 

  • Cook the pasta according to the package instructions until al dente. Drain and rinse under cold water to cool.
    Vegan Pasta Salad
  • Prepare the vegetables by slicing the red onion, halving the tomatoes, and chopping the green bell pepper.
    Vegan Pasta Salad
  • For the dressing, whisk together olive oil, white balsamic vinegar, oregano, garlic powder, onion powder, crushed red pepper, and sugar in a small bowl.
  • In a large bowl, combine the cooled pasta, prepared vegetables, black olives, and parsley. Pour the dressing over the salad and toss to coat evenly.
    Vegan Pasta Salad
  • Season the salad with salt and pepper to taste. Serve immediately or chill in the refrigerator before serving.

Nutrition

Calories: 375kcalCarbohydrates: 47gProtein: 8gFat: 17gSaturated Fat: 2gPolyunsaturated Fat: 2gMonounsaturated Fat: 12gSodium: 769mgPotassium: 230mgFiber: 4gSugar: 3gVitamin A: 503IUVitamin C: 16mgCalcium: 48mgIron: 1mg
Keyword pasta salad, summer recipes, vegan salad
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