Garden Pesto Pasta Salad With Rotini

Garden pasta salad with rotini

The Spruce

Prep: 20 mins
Cook: 10 mins
Total: 30 mins
Servings: 4 to 6 servings
Nutritional Guidelines (per serving)
429 Calories
25g Fat
44g Carbs
8g Protein
See Full Nutritional Guidelines Hide Full Nutritional Guidelines
Nutrition Facts
Servings: 4 to 6
Amount per serving
Calories 429
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 25g 32%
Saturated Fat 4g 20%
Cholesterol 12mg 4%
Sodium 701mg 30%
Total Carbohydrate 44g 16%
Dietary Fiber 4g 14%
Protein 8g
Calcium 72mg 6%
*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.
(Nutrition information is calculated using an ingredient database and should be considered an estimate.)

This tasty garden pasta salad is loaded with fresh chopped vegetables. The lemony pesto and mayonnaise dressing flavors the salad perfectly. I used rotini in the salad, but feel free to use farfalle, fusilli, or another similar pasta.


  • 8 ounces rotini pasta
  • 1/2 medium cucumber (peeled and diced)
  • 1 cup tomato (diced, seeded)
  • 1 (2 1/2-ounce) can sliced ripe olives (drained)
  • 1/2 red bell pepper (diced)
  • 1/4 cup celery (chopped)
  • Optional: 2 tablespoons red onion (finely chopped)
  • 3/4 cup mayonnaise
  • 2 tablespoons prepared pesto
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt (or to taste)
  • Optional: 2 tablespoons fresh parsley (chopped)

Steps to Make It

  1. Gather the ingredients.

    Gather the ingredients
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  2. Cook the rotini pasta in boiling salted water following package directions.

    Cook rotini pasta
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  3. Drain in a colander and rinse with cool water.

    Drain in a colander
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  4. Set the pasta aside to cool completely and then transfer it to a large serving bowl.

    Set the pasta aside
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  5. Toss the cooled rotini pasta with the diced cucumber, tomato, sliced ripe olives, bell pepper, celery, and red onion (if using).

    Toss pasta with vegetables
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  6. In a bowl, combine the mayonnaise, pesto, lemon juice, freshly ground black pepper, salt, and parsley, if using.

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  7. Combine with the pasta and stir gently until blended. Taste and add more salt as needed.

    Pasta salad
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  8. Cover the bowl and refrigerate until serving time.

Recipe Variation

  • To make the salad hearty enough to be a main dish, add some diced cooked chicken, cheese cubes or shredded cheese, or cubed leftover ham, roast beef, or turkey.

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