This Greek Tortellini Pasta Salad combines tender cheese tortellini, crisp cucumbers, juicy cherry tomatoes, tangy feta cheese, and a zesty Greek-inspired dressing that’s perfect for summer gatherings. Indulge in the vibrant flavors with this Mediterranean-inspired refreshing salad.
Updated June 2023
Easy Tortellini Pasta Salad
Are you craving a refreshing and vibrant summer dish inspired with flavors of the Mediterranean? Look no further than this Greek-inspired Tortellini Pasta Salad recipe. This delightful salad brings together the best of both worlds, featuring tender tortellini, crisp vegetables, tangy feta cheese, and a zesty Greek-inspired dressing. Whether you’re hosting a summer gathering or simply want a satisfying meal, this recipe is a must-try.
Why You Should Make This Recipe:
- Bursting with Flavors: The Greek Tortellini Pasta Salad is a symphony of tastes. From the savory tortellini to the tangy feta cheese and the vibrant medley of vegetables, each bite is a burst of flavor that will transport you to the sun-soaked shores of the Mediterranean.
- Easy and Versatile: This recipe is a breeze to make, perfect for both novice and experienced cooks. Plus, it can be served as a refreshing main course or as a delightful side dish alongside grilled meats or seafood.
- Crowd-Pleaser: Whether you’re hosting a backyard barbecue or a potluck, this Greek Tortellini Pasta Salad is guaranteed to impress your guests. Its eye-catching presentation and irresistible flavors will have everyone coming back for seconds.
Ingredients you need
For the healthy pasta salad
- Gluten Free Tortellini – any gluten-free or grain free pasta brand you like. We love these grain-free Ravioli or Gnocchi from Cappello’s or the Cauliflower Gnocchi from Trader Joe’s. Or if you want a chickpea or lentil based pasta, you can use Banza pasta shells that are made with chickpeas. For keto, there’s Almond Love or use your favorite low carb pasta you like.
- Cherry or grape tomatoes – cut in halves.
- Red onion – chopped.
- Olives – sliced.
- Cucumbers – chopped.
- Radishes – thinly sliced. Omit if preferred.
- Feta – substitute with vegan feta cheese or omit. We like Violife Vegan Feta.
- Fresh herbs – We like dill and parsley to add some fresh flavor.
- Salt and pepper – to taste.
For the homemade dressing
- Extra virgin olive oil
- Red wine vinegar or apple cider vinegar
- Dijon Mustard
- Garlic – grated
- Italian seasoning
- Salt and pepper to taste
How To Make Tortellin Pasta Salad
- Make the pasta: Cook the tortellini according to pasta instructions. Drain and rinse under cool water. Set aside or pat dry if needed to remove any excess water.
- Dressing: Meanwhile, add all the ingredients for the dressing into a small bowl or a resealable jar. Whisk or shake until well combined. Adjust seasonings as needed. Set aside or chill in the fridge until ready to use, shaking or whisking prior to using..
- Assemble: In a large bowl, add the salad ingredients side-by-side: drained tortellini, tomatoes, cucumber, onion, olives, half of the feta and half of the chopped herbs, reserving the rest for garnish..
- Mix in the Dressing: Pour desired amount of the dressing (you may not need all of it) over the salad and gently toss to combine. Season with more salt and black pepper, as needed.
- Serve: Garnish with a little bit more fresh parsley and / or crumbled feta, if desired. Serve and enjoy but for best results, chill in the fridge for at least an hour for flavors to meld together before serving.
Tips for Success:
To ensure your Greek Tortellini Pasta Salad turns out perfectly, consider the following tips:
- Cook the Tortellini Al Dente: Be mindful not to overcook the tortellini, as it can become mushy. Cook until al dente, following the package instructions.
- Toss with Dressing Just Before Serving: For the freshest and most vibrant flavors, dress the salad just before serving. This will prevent the ingredients from becoming soggy and maintain their individual textures.
- Customize the Vegetables: Feel free to add or substitute vegetables based on your preferences or what’s in season. Bell peppers, artichoke hearts, or spinach can be excellent additions to enhance the salad’s flavor and nutrition.
Storage and Freezer Instructions:
If you have leftovers or want to prepare the salad in advance, here’s how to handle storage and freezing:
- Refrigeration: Store the Greek Tortellini Pasta Salad in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days. However, keep in mind that the texture of the tortellini and vegetables may slightly soften.
- Freezing: We do not recommend freezing this salad, as the ingredients may lose their texture and freshness when thawed.
This Greek Tortellini Pasta Salad shines as a standalone dish or as a delightful accompaniment. Consider these serving suggestions:
- Main Course: Enjoy a generous portion of the salad as a light and satisfying meal on its own. Serve it with warm pita bread or garlic breadsticks for a complete experience.
- Side Dish: Pair smaller servings of the salad with grilled chicken, lamb skewers, or roasted salmon for a Mediterranean-inspired feast.
Customize the Greek Tortellini Pasta Salad to suit your taste and dietary preferences with these variations:
- Vegetarian Option: Omit the tortellini and replace it with cooked quinoa or couscous for a vegetarian-friendly version.
- Protein Boost: Add grilled shrimp, chicken, or chickpeas for an extra protein kick that makes the salad more filling.
- Herb Substitutions: Experiment with different herbs in the Greek dressing. Consider using fresh dill, oregano, or mint to add a unique twist.\
- Want more gluten-free pasta salad recipes? Check out our Summer Pasta Salad, Broccoli Pasta Salad, Caprese Pasta Salad, Vegan Caesar Pasta Salad or our Avocado Spinach Pasta Salad.
More Helpful Information:
- Make-Ahead: You can prepare the ingredients in advance and store them separately. Toss them with the dressing just before serving to maintain the salad’s freshness and flavors.
- Serving Size: This recipe serves approximately 6 to 8 people as a side dish or 4 as a main course. Adjust the quantities accordingly based on your needs.
How To Store This Gluten Free Pasta Recipe
This easy pasta salad will last in the refrigerator for up to four days, and it is perfect for meal prep. Divide the cooked pasta into reusable airtight containers. This is our favorite lunch container. Here are a few of our other favorites for storing food:
- Glass meal prep containers – Divided containers with 2 compartments are great if you want to include a portion of salad plus a side of protein or fruit.
- Jars with lids – Mason jars are great for portioning out salads and they make your fridge look Pinterest-worthy. We love these reusable plastic jar lids for everything you can put in a jar. And for dressings and sauces, these flip-top lids are a must-have!
- Silicone bags – The great thing about silicone bags is that they can be re-used, are dishwasher-safe and don’t absorb odors. We LOVE stand-up bags from Stasher for their 56-ounce capacity and the fact that they stand up minimizing any risk of leakage.
Storage and Freezer Instructions
If you find yourself with leftovers, here’s how to store and freeze your Tortellini Pasta Salad:
- Storage: Place the salad in an airtight container and refrigerate for up to 2 days. However, keep in mind that the texture of avocados may change slightly after refrigeration. Store the dressing separate and add it just before serving to maintain the salad’s freshness.
- Freezing: We recommend freezing individual portions without the dressing. Freeze the remaining components in separate containers and assemble the salad after thawing. Place the salad in freezer-safe containers or bags, removing as much air as possible. It can be frozen for up to 1 month. Thaw in the refrigerator overnight and add dressing before serving.
This Greek Pasta Salad shines as a main dish or a delightful side. Here are some serving suggestions:
- Main Course: Enjoy a generous portion of this salad as a light and satisfying meal on its own. Pair it with some crusty bread or a refreshing glass of iced tea.
- Pack it in a portable container for a picnic or enjoy it at work
- Side Dish: Serve smaller portions alongside grilled chicken, steak, or seafood for a well-balanced and flavorful plate.
- This salad also makes a fantastic side dish for grilled meats or seafood. Pair it with your favorite protein for a complete and balanced meal.
- Consider serving this at barbecues, potlucks, or family gatherings. Its vibrant colors and enticing flavors will be a hit with guests.
- For an elegant twist, present the salad in individual mason jars or on a platter, allowing guests to create their own customized servings.
- To enhance the presentation, garnish the salad with a sprinkle of fresh herbs, such as chopped parsley or basil, right before serving.
- Pair the salad with a refreshing beverage like iced tea, lemonade, or a crisp white wine to complement its flavors.
Feel free to customize this recipe to suit your taste preferences and dietary needs. Here are a few variations to consider:
- Vegetarian Option: Skip the chicken and bacon, and add grilled tofu or chickpeas for a plant-based protein alternative.
- Dressing Variations: Swap out the ranch dressing for a tangy vinaigrette, a creamy Caesar dressing, or a zesty lemon herb dressing.
Additional Helpful Information:
- Make-Ahead: Prep the ingredients in advance and assemble the salad just before serving to save time.
- Serving Size: This recipe serves approximately 4 to 6 people, but you can easily double the quantities for a larger gathering.
- Customize Ingredients: You can swap in additional ingredients like corn, cucumbers, or olives to suit your taste preferences.
- Cool Down Pasta: Remember to let the cooked pasta cool down before adding the other ingredients to prevent wilting and maintain the salad’s freshness.
More healthy salad recipes you will love:
This Greek Tortellini Pasta Salad is bursting with Mediterranean flavors and perfect for summer barbecues and potlucks. This refreshing salad features cheese tortellini, crisp cucumbers, cherry tomatoes, tangy feta cheese, and a zesty Greek dressing.
- 2 8-ounce package fresh gluten-free tortellini (or one 16-ounce package) , or you can use any gluten-free or grain free pasta brand you like. We love these grain-free Ravioli or Gnocchi from Cappello's. If you are looking for a chickpea or lentil based pasta, you can use Banza pasta shells that are made with chickpeas. For keto, there's Almond Love or any low carb pasta brand you like.
- 1 cup cherry tomatoes , halved
- 1 small / medium English cucumber or 2 Persian cucumbers (about 1 cup) , cut into half moons
- 1/3 cup chopped red onions
- 1/2 - 2/3 cup Kalamata olives , halved lengthwise or thinly sliced
- 1/4 cup sliced radishes
- 1/3 cup crumbled vegan feta , we like Violife Vegan Feta. Omit or use your favorite feta if preferred.
- 1-2 tbsp chopped fresh dill
- 1-2 tbsp chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
- 1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
- 3 tbsp red wine vinegar , can sub with 2 tbsp apple cider vinegar
- 2 tbsp fresh lemon juice
- 1 tbsp Dijon mustard
- 2 cloves garlic , finely minced or grated
- 1/2 tsp dried oregano
- 1/4 tsp dried thyme
- Coarse sea salt or kosher salt , to taste
- Freshly ground black pepper , to taste
For the homemade dressing:
Add all the ingredients for the dressing into a small bowl or a resealable jar. Whisk or shake until well combined. Adjust seasonings as needed. Set aside or chill in the fridge until ready to use, shaking or whisking prior to using..
For the salad:
Cook the tortellini according to pasta instructions. Drain and rinse under cool water. Set aside or pat dry if needed to remove any excess water.
In a large bowl, add the salad ingredients: drained tortellini, tomatoes, cucumber, onion, olives, half of the feta and half of the chopped herbs, reserving the rest for garnish.
Pour desired amount of the dressing (you may not need all of it) over the salad and gently toss to combine. Season with more salt and black pepper, as needed.
Garnish with a little bit more fresh parsley and / or crumbled feta, if desired. Serve and enjoy but for best results, chill in the fridge for at least an hour for flavors to meld together before serving.
Disclaimer: This updated post was generated on June 13, 2023 by ChatGPT, an AI language model, and all info should be reviewed and validated by a human for accuracy and relevancy before implementation