Easy Pasta Salad

Easy and delicious Italian Pasta Salad recipe that includes Rotini pasta, olives, tomatoes, & cheese in Italian dressing! It takes minutes to make and is perfect for any get together including BBQs and holidays.

Pasta Salad recipe

Best Pasta Salad

I feel like the summer is almost over, and I’m wondering how in the world it flew by so quick. It seemed just days ago that I was having a baby and packing up a house and now we’ve officially been in Texas for two months. CRAZY! It’s just a constant reminder that time flies by quick and we need to enjoy every moment as much as we can. As we try to enjoy this last month of summer we’ve been spending as much time as we can outside (without melting) with BBQs and lots of popsicles. This next Easy Pasta Salad recipe is a FAVORITE (and must-have) at any family BBQ because it is so good and is very simple.


My little sister has been making this pasta salad for our family functions for at least 10 years now, and it’s always a hit when we make and bring it to other events. Depending on the crowd you’re feeding, or what your family likes, you can customize the ingredients to your choosing. Regardless of what you decide to include, this pasta salad will not only be delicious, but it will be the easiest Pasta Salad you’ve ever tried. 😉

Pasta Salad Ingredients

We usually have this pasta salad with chunks of cheese, olives, mini pepperonis and Parmesan cheese BUT, you could easily take out or add in any of these ingredients:

  • Tomato
  • Cucumber
  • Bell Peppers
  • Ham Cubes
  • Green Onions
  • Bacon
  • Salami
  • Pepperoncinis
  • Mozzarella Cheese Balls

How to Make Pasta Salad:

We love that this recipe can be made in a jiffy. You can make a homemade dressing to go with it, but we love that Italian dressing is the perfect addition for this pasta salad. Here are the simple instructions for this pasta salad:

  1. Boil the pasta noodles as instructed on the package.
  2. When they’re cooked, drain and rinse with cold water.
  3. Add in your desired amount of other ingredients (we always use olives, cheese, and pepperonis, sometimes tomatoes and peppers).
  4. Pour at least half of the Italian dressing on the salad, and mix well.
  5. Refrigerate for at least 2 hours, and pour the remaining dressing on right before serving!

pasta salad recipes with italian dressing

I just made this last week for a BBQ and everyone loved it! And I LOVE that it saves really well and leftovers taste just as good as when it was originally served. 🙂

For more pasta salad recipes, check out:

Italian Pasta Salad Recipe

5 from 11 votes

Easy and delicious Italian Pasta Salad recipe that includes Rotini pasta, olives, tomatoes, & cheese in Italian dressing! It takes minutes to make and is perfect for any get together including BBQs and holidays.

Course Side Dish
Cuisine American
Prep Time 15 minutes
Refrigerating Time 2 hours
Total Time 2 hours 15 minutes
Servings 8
Calories 525 kcal
Author Kellyn Carpenter


  • 16 oz box colored rotini pasta
  • 16 oz bottle italian dressing
  • 1 c colby jack cheese cubed
  • 1 can black olives
  • 1/2 pkg mini pepperonis
  • parmesan cheese to taste
  • chopped tomatoes optional
  • chopped cucumbers optional


  1. Cook pasta as directed on package.

  2. Drain and rinse with cold water.

  3. Add desired amount of olives, cheese and pepperonis to pasta.

  4. Pour at least half of your Italian dressing and mix well.

  5. Refrigerate for at least 2 hours. Pour additional dressing (as much as you want) before serving. ENJOY!

Recipe Video


One of the BEST pasta salads

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Kellyn Carpenter

Kellyn is a mom of 4 and loves to try and test out new recipes. She loves to find the best dinner and dessert recipes around and share them with those in the blogosphere.

More by Kellyn

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  1. This is so similar to the pasta salad that my in-laws have always made. It is simple but really can’t be beat. It is always a hit for both the adults and kids!

  2. Someone I know makes something similar to this often, and I’ve been wanting the recipe! So easy and full of flavor. Thanks for sharing this. I’m still a newlywed and LOVE finding new recipes hubby will try! Planning to make soon for us. 🙂

  3. Do I see chopped tomato in your pasta salad? Have made your potato salad and I absolutely love it! Thanks for the great recipe.

  4. This is my all time favorite pasta salad recipe. It’s super easy and so yummy.
    Sometimes I like to use it as a main dish and put some parmesan chicken in the mix.

  5. This is my go-to salad for everything!! It is always a hit & gone so fast! And, I love how easy it is! The Italian dressing gives it a nice flavor!

  6. Thanks for the great recipe!
    My children never liked the paste, but in this interpretation with the salad, they really liked it. They say that when they come from school and do all the lessons, I would have prepared a dish for them again. I am just in joy!

    Sincerely, Anna, freelance writer at WritingCheap.

  7. This is my go-to pasta salad! I love how easy it is to make & always try to keep the ingredients on hand. Anywhere I take it, it’s gone so fast!

  8. A family favorite. This salad is easy to put together and filled with all the things we like. The dressing is light and makes a very good salad without the calories.