This creamy and delicious greek pasta salad is one of my go-to summer salad recipes! It comes together quickly, is basically no cooking required, and packs perfectly for picnics, potlucks, or road trips.
Start with your favorite pasta (gluten free if you need!) and add greek olives, peppers, cucumbers, salty feta cheese, and top it all off with creamy dressing. This classic pasta salad is always a hit no matter when you serve it. Plus, it is an easy pasta salad recipe that anyone can make.
This makes the perfect side dish or enjoy it for a quick and healthy lunch.
Free from: wheat, gluten, dairy(optional), casein (optional), eggs, soy, peanuts, tree nuts, coconut, fish, shellfish, crustaceans, mollusks, celery, corn, sesame, mustard (optional), lupin, sulfites (optional), and more
Why you’ll love this pasta salad
- Super adaptable recipe with so many variations to suit all your dietary needs. Make it gluten free, vegan, mustard free, egg free, and more!
- Full of veggies making this really healthy.
- The noodles are the only thing that need to be cooked, making this a perfect recipe for when it’s too hot to cook.
While this is how I make my greek pasta salad, feel free to add your favorite veggies! You need two sets of ingredients, one for the dressing and one for the salad itself.
For any substitutions, see below.
- Pasta - You can use any pasta that you like for this salad, including gluten free! My favorite gluten free pastas are the penne pasta from Whole Foods and the Chickpea pasta from Banza. A brown rice pasta also tastes great in this and they come in fun shapes!
- Mayo - Use any mayonnaise that you like, including a vegan option if you need an egg free version. If you want to avoid mayo altogether, you can swap it for an equal amount of tahini.
- Olives - You can use any type of olive that you like, though kalamata olives are the traditional ingredient. I personally love black olives which is why you see them in these photos!
If avoiding gluten and wheat, use your favorite brand of gluten free pasta. Banza Chickpea and Whole Foods gluten free pasta are some of my favorites!
Need this without dairy? Easy! Use a plant-based feta cheese substitute or omit the ingredient entirely. It still tastes amazing.
If you are avoiding eggs, use an egg free mayo, like this, or swap it for an equal amount of tahini.
Need to avoid sulfites? Replace the red wine vinegar with lemon juice. This will make it a lemony pasta salad that is just as delicious without the vinegar!
Step by step instructions
For the full recipe complete with measurements, please see the recipe card below.
Start by mixing up your dressing. In a medium sized bowl, add the olive oil, lemon juice, red wine vinegar, dijon mustard, mayonnaise, honey, and spices of oregano, dill, salt, and pepper. Give this a good whisk with a fork or with a small whisk. Set this aside for later use.
In a large pot on the stove, cook your pasta of choice according to the package instructions. For me, this was about 11 minutes to cook al dente.
While your pasta is cooking, chop up your veggies!
Chop the red onion into small bites. I like to make half moon shapes with tiny Persian cucumbers. The red bell pepper I also roughly chop. The cherry tomatoes I slice in half.
Set all these into a large bowl for mixing.
Drain the cooked pasta and rinse it under cold water to stop the cooking process. Add the pasta to the large mixing bowl with your fresh veggies.
Now add the olives, drained and rinsed chickpeas, and feta cheese.
Finally, pour the dressing over top and give it a good mix with a large spoon. Roughly chop a few tablespoons of fresh basil to sprinkle on top of each serving.
Tips for the best pasta salad
If you are sensitive to red onion, chop the red onions and then rinse them in cool water a few times. This will help to remove the sulfur from the onions, making them less powerful and easier to eat.
If you are using a garden or english cucumber, I recommend that you use a spoon to deseed the cucumbers.
Don't want to use feta cheese? Another great option is to use mozzarella cheese! Look for small freshly packaged cheese in containers like Bocconcici.
To make this meal a main dish, add baked or grilled chicken.
While I love this salad with my homemade Greek dressing, Italian dressing would also be delicious!
How can I store this pasta salad?
This pasta salad keeps for quite a few days, making it perfect to make on the weekend and enjoy as lunch all week long!
Fridge: Store in an airtight container and keep refrigerated at all times. It will keep for 5 days. You may need to add a little more dressing on days 4 and 5 to freshen it up as it does dry out, especially if you are using gluten free pasta.
Can I make this vegan?
Yes! Replace the feta cheese with your favorite plant-based feta substitute, or omit. In place of the honey, use a light agave syrup. Replace the mayo with tahini.
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- mixing bowls
- mixing spoons
- measuring cups
- measuring spoons
- cutting board
- Large pot
- ¼ cup olive oil
- 3 tablespoons lemon juice
- 3 tablespoons red wine vinegar
- 2 teaspoons dijon mustard
- 2 teaspoons mayonnaise of choice
- 1 teaspoon honey or agave
- ½ teaspoon dried oregano dill also is good
- Salt and pepper to taste
- 1 lbs pasta gluten free or wheat
- 1 pint cherry tomatoes
- ½ red onion
- 2 cups cucumbers chopped and deseeded if desired
- 1 15 oz can chickpeas
- 1 red bell pepper chopped
- ½ cup black olives
- 1 cup feta cheese
- Combine all ingredients for the dressing in a small bowl and whisk until combined. Set aside.
- Cook the pasta according to the package directions. Rinse under cool water and add to a large mixing bowl.
- Chop and prep all other ingredients for the salad. Combine noodles, veggies, and dressing. Mix well.
- Serve the salad warm or chilled. Enjoy!