5 from 7 votes
Summer pasta salad on a white plate on a wide wooden picnic table. Wooden handled fork on the side of the plate. Fresh halved strawberries on the table around the plate.
Creamy Balsamic Summer Pasta Salad
Prep Time
15 mins
Cook Time
10 mins
Total Time
25 mins
 
Creamy Balsamic Summer Pasta Salad is the perfect addition to any BBQ, picnic, or potluck. Makes a great light lunch or dinner, too. Dairy Free, Oil Free, Refined Sugar Free, Gluten Free option.
Course: Entree, Side Dish
Cuisine: dairy free, gluten free, oil free, refined sugar free, vegan
Keyword: cold pasta salad recipe, pasta salad vegetarian
Servings: 8
Calories: 245 kcal
Author: Jenn Sebestyen
Ingredients
Pasta Salad
  • 1 lb cellentani pasta (or pasta shape of choice) (use gluten free pasta if desired)
  • 1 yellow summer squash (halved lengthwise and sliced thin)
  • 1 zucchini (halved lengthwise and sliced thin)
  • 1 cup grape tomatoes (halved)
  • 1/2 red onion (diced)
  • 8-10 fresh strawberries (halved)
  • 1/2 cup fresh parsley (chopped)
  • 1/2 tsp salt (or to taste)
  • pinch black pepper (or to taste)
Creamy Balsamic Dressing
  • 1/4 cup raw cashews (soaked for 1-2 hours if you don't have a HIGH SPEED blender, like a Vitamix or Blendtec)
  • 1 garlic clove
  • 3-4 tbsp balsamic vinegar (start with 3 tbsp and add more after tasting if needed)
  • 1/2 tsp Himalayan pink salt
  • 1/4-1/2 cup water (to thin) (start with 1/4 cup and add more if needed for desired consistency)
Instructions
For the Pasta Salad
  1. Cook the pasta according to package directions. Drain and set aside to cool. 

  2. Add the chopped veggies, parsley, and strawberries to a large mixing bowl.

  3. When the pasta has cooled, add it to the vegetable mixture. Sprinkle with 1/2 tsp salt and pinch of black pepper. Toss to combine evenly. 

  4. Pour the Creamy Balsamic Dressing (instructions follow) over the pasta salad and toss well to combine.

For the Creamy Balsamic Dressing
  1. Place all ingredients (starting with 3 tbsp of balsamic vinegar and 1/4 cup water) into a high speed blender and purée until smooth. Add more water to thin if needed for desired consistency. Taste and add another 1 tbsp of balsamic vinegar if needed. (Add the water before tasting for additional need of vinegar because the water will dilute the flavor. Also, keep in the mind that once added to the pasta and veggies, the flavor will be diluted again, so you want the dressing pretty strong!).

Recipe Notes

This recipe serves 8-10 as a side dish. Nutrition facts calculated based on 8 servings.

 

Nutrition Facts
Creamy Balsamic Summer Pasta Salad
Amount Per Serving
Calories 245 Calories from Fat 27
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 3g 5%
Monounsaturated Fat 1g
Sodium 291mg 12%
Potassium 198mg 6%
Total Carbohydrates 48g 16%
Dietary Fiber 3g 12%
Sugars 6g
Protein 8g 16%
Vitamin A 15%
Vitamin C 34%
Calcium 1%
Iron 13%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.