Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Zesty Italian Pasta Salad

If you are looking for a really quick dish that you can make for lunch or pack in lunch boxes, this is the perfect thing for you!  This Zesty Italian Pasta Salad Recipe makes a wonderful, colorful, back-to-school side to a turkey sandwich, or it is delicious and filling all on its own!  To make a dinner out of it, serve with any kind of meat and some bread!  It has every color of the rainbow in it, which makes this pasta salad extremely healthy too!  This dish is a super fun dish to bring to a friend's house or a dinner party as well!!

If you want to save yourself some time and effort, this recipe can also easily be doubled (or tripled) to create extra freezer meals!  (see instructions for freezing below)

Zesty Italian Pasta Salad

  • 1 red pepper, chopped
  • 1 yellow pepper, chopped
  • 1 green pepper, chopped
  • 1 red onion, chopped
  • 2 carrots, chopped
  • 3 cups vegetable spiral pasta (I use Eden)
  • 1/2 cup Zesty Italian Salad Dressing, (I use homemade)
  • Sea salt and pepper to taste
  • Parmesan cheese, grated (for garnish)

  1. In a large pot, cook pasta according to package directions until al dente.  
  2. While pasta is cooking, chop veggies and prepare dressing (if using homemade).
  3. When pasta is done, strain and rinse under cold water.
  4.  Add veggies and dressing to pot.  Stir.  Season with salt and pepper.  Serve, garnished with cheese (if desired).
* This is delicious with fresh mozzarella!  For extra protein, serve with chicken or turkey!  Add fresh bread and you have a delicious and easy supper!

(Servings: 8)

To Store:
Store in refrigerator in airtight container for up to 1 week.

Easy way to fill freezer bags!

To Freeze:
After completely cooled, divide pasta salad into desired portions and place into sandwich freezer bags or freezer containers and put into freezer.  Flatten bags and stack on top of each other to save space! (The easiest way I have found to fill freezer bags is to place the ziploc bag inside a glass or cup, fold the sides of the bag over the glass, and scoop the mixture in.  This creates less spill and less mess!)

To Thaw:
If thawing portioned containers, remove from freezer in the morning and place in lunch box/bag.  They should be ready to eat by lunchtime!  If thawing a larger batch, remove from freezer the night before and place in refrigerator to thaw.

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