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Italian Pasta Salad with Pepperoni is the perfect cold pasta salad to bring to any BBQ, potluck or summer backyard party. Quick, easy and tangy, this Italian Pasta Salad with Pepperoni is the perfect side dish.
Well my friends, summer is officially here and I am chowing down on a bowl of my favorite cold pasta salad, my Italian Pasta Salad with Pepperoni. Ok, I lied … I’m on my second bowl … judgement is not necessary!
As I look out the windows from my air conditioned world, I can tell you that our temperatures outside are reaching 98 degrees on an almost daily basis, the humidity index is the equivalent of a YMCA sauna and right now it is 3:00 in the afternoon and here in Florida you can set your watch by the time the thunderstorms start every day. Sounds delightful doesn’t it? (munching on my 5th bite of Italian Pasta Salad with Pepperoni … oooh… feta!!!)
For you amazing people who do not have the life sentence …er…. privilege of living in an area that is plagued by daily extreme heat and humidity topped off with thunderstorms, bugs and a biblical infestation of frogs (they like rain!), let me give you the tour. The only good thing that This Girl likes about summertime is all of the amazing barbecues, pool parties and picnics that go on and let’s not forget about grilling up dinner by the pool. It’s not a perfect life but at least we have good food!
Now that we are talking the good stuff, what better way to enjoy summer time then with an amazing Italian Pasta Salad with Pepperoni? Yes, I know, not all problems can be solved with food… but I have yet to find one that doesn’t at least get a little bit better with something tasty to nosh on. This Italian Pasta Salad with Pepperoni recipe is one that you will not be able to keep your fork out of. Trust me!!! It is 100% pool party approved!
DO YOU RINSE PASTA FOR COLD PASTA SALAD?
When pasta is being used for a cold salad, pasta should always be rinsed after cooking. By rinsing your pasta in cold water, it brings the temperature of the pasta down and will stop the cooking process. This is not favorable when using pasta for a hot dish but is ideal for using pasta in cold pasta salads.
WHAT KIND OF ITALIAN DRESSING DO I USE FOR MY ITALIAN PASTA SALAD WITH PEPPERONI?
That choice depends entirely on you.. there is no wrong answer. If you have a homemade Italian dressing that you absolutely love, go ahead and use it. If you prefer grabbing a bottle from the dressing aisle of your supermarket, go for it! Whatever works for you will work for this Italian Pasta Salad with Pepperoni.
HOW DO YOU MAKE ITALIAN PASTA SALAD WITH PEPPERONI?
Easy!! To make your Italian Pasta Salad with Pepperoni, start by bringing a large pot of salted water to boil. Add pasta to boiling water and cook to package instructions. When cooked, drain pasta and rinse with cold water until pasta has cooled. Transfer pasta to large mixing bowl and mix well tomatoes, olives, pepperoni, cheese and Italian dressing and all other ingredients, cover and place in refrigerator.
You may want to add a bit more dressing and another squeeze of lemon immediately before serving. I usually like this best when it has been made the day before.
I came, I saw, I conquered!! My inspiration for this Italian Pasta Salad with Pepperoni recipe was a cold pasta salad I had many years ago at a friends house for a summer afternoon party. Back then, I was in my twenties and I was more interested in drinks and socializing and not so much in the food that was served. But I did try the pasta salad and it was so good.. simple.. but it stayed with me after all those years. It wasn’t fancy, just pasta with red onions, olives, feta cheese and Italian dressing but it was delicious and remember I even had two servings that day. Now, it’s my turn to put my spin on that simple recipe from so many summers gone by.
This Italian Pasta Salad with Pepperoni is ideal for taking to picnics, barbecues, or just a tasty side to grilling chicken or shrimp on the grill. There is nothing us Floridians like less than having to turn on the oven when it’s 147000 degrees outside so just throw this Italian Pasta Salad with Pepperoni pasta salad together, stash it in the fridge and you have an amazing side dish to go with your outdoor eating activities. Trust me on this one, your family is going to love this!
Now if only there was something as easy to get rid of the frogs! …
Have you made this recipe yet? Your feedback, ratings and comments mean the world to me and help ME write recipes better recipes for YOU!
Italian Pasta Salad with Pepperoni
- 12 oz Tri-color rotini pasta
- 1 pint cherry tomatoes cut in half
- 1/3 red onion diced
- 5.5 oz sliced olives
- 6 oz pepperoni, hard salami or summer sausage chunked or diced
- 6 oz crumbled goat or feta cheese
- 1/2 cup Parmesan cheese grated
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1 cup Italian dressing
- Squeeze of lemon
- Sprinkle of Italian parsley for garnish optional
- Start by bringing a large pot of salted water to boilAdd pasta to boiling water and cook to package instructions.When cooked, drain pasta and rinse with cold water until pasta has cooledTransfer pasta to large mixing bowl and mix well with all other ingredients, cover and place in refrigerator. You may want to add a bit more dressing and another squeeze of lemon immediately before serving