This easy pasta salad with salami is the perfect mix of delicious, simple ingredients. Quick to make and full of flavor, it will quickly become a regular favorite for dinner, lunch, or meal prep.
About This Recipe
This recipe is the ultimate pasta salad: it has just the right mix of ingredients for tasty flavors while staying simple and quick to make. It's ideal as a main course, side dish, or as meal prep for the week.
This pasta salad is also very versatile: you can add more of the ingredients you love, and skip the ones that aren't your favorite. Feel free to experiment with your toppings and the dressing.
Here's what you'll need to make this recipe. The full recipe and ingredient list can be found at the bottom of the page.
For the salad:
- Rotini pasta
- Mozzarella pearls
- Bell pepper
- Cherry tomatoes
- Red onion
- For the Italian dressing:
- Olive oil
- Red wine vinegar
- Lemon juice
- Italian seasoning (or oregano)
- Garlic powder
- Salt & pepper
How to Make Pasta Salad with Salami
Here's how to make this recipe in 4 simple steps:
- Cook the pasta according to the package directions until al dente (still slightly firm). Most packages recommend about 7-10 minutes of cook time. Once cooked, drain the pasta and rinse it under cold water. Set aside to cool completely.
- In a small bowl or jar, stir or whisk the dressing ingredients until fully combined and emulsified (slightly thickened).
- Add the pasta and the remaining salad ingredients to a large bowl. Drizzle the dressing on top and toss to mix.
- Serve immediately, or cover and refrigerate until ready to serve. For the best flavor, refrigerate for an hour (or longer) before serving to allow the flavors to marinate. Store leftovers in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 4-5 days.
Here's some of the most popular substitutions and additions for this recipe:
- Pasta: the recipe calls for rotini pasta, but this can be substituted for any medium-sized noodle (like bowtie or penne).
- Salami: use your favorite salami or summer sausage.
- Mozzarella: use mozzarella pearls or any type of fresh mozzarella cut into bite-sized pieces.
- Avocado: a diced avocado is a tasty, highly-recommended addition to the recipe!
- Olives: this recipe doesn't include olives, but ½ cup of olives (green or black) is a popular addition.
- Red pepper flakes: add a pinch or two of red pepper flakes to your dressing to turn it into a 'zesty' Italian dressing
About the Dressing
This recipe includes a simple, traditional homemade Italian dressing. If you love classic salad dressings or Italian flavors, you'll love this dressing.
You can make the dressing included in the recipe, or use your favorite store-bought Italian dressing instead.
Other Dressing Options
This pasta salad is tasty with many dressing options! Here are a few ideas:
- Any Italian or Greek vinaigrette dressing
- Red wine vinaigrette
- Garlic herb vinaigrette
How to Make Pasta Salad for a Crowd
Pasta salad is a great recipe to make for a crowd because you can make it ahead of time and it's easy to prepare in large quantities. The recipe at the bottom of this page serves about 8 people as a side dish. To make it for more people, you can double or triple the ingredients and prepare the salad using the same instructions.
Store your salad in large, airtight containers until it's ready to serve. You can make the salad up to a day ahead of time. Stir your salad before serving it so that the dressing is evenly distributed.
How to Store Leftovers
Store your leftover pasta salad in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 4-5 days.