I am so excited to share our gluten free pasta salad recipe with you! Every year before school starts I test old recipes to make sure my picky eaters still like them, and I create new ones to spice things up. This year, I decided to go for a hearty pasta salad that would include protein and sneak in veggies.
To make my kids feel like they were part of the process (something they love!), I chopped up tons of pasta salad mix-ins and set up an assembly line on our kitchen table. They tried each bowl of mix-ins first and reported back about what they liked, and didn’t. To my surprise, they agreed on almost everything, including their utter dislike of cucumber and cherry tomatoes, haha. In the end, their favorites were sauteed cannellini beans (white kidney beans), red bell pepper, peas, corn, and carrots.
I also made two different types of dressing, one very basic and savory, and one with a hint of sweetness to see which one they liked better. They surprised me again because I expected them to choose the sweeter one but they preferred simple salt, pepper and olive oil. To give you options, I’m going to include both dressings in the recipe, and I’d love to hear which one you prefer.
How to Make Gluten Free Pasta Salad
This recipe makes four servings and is gluten free and also free of dairy, egg, nuts and soy. It takes 20 minutes to prepare.
- 1/2 pound gluten free pasta
- 15 oz. Cannellini White Kidney Beans
- 1/2 cup carrots, diced
- 1/2 cup red bell pepper, diced
- 1/2 cup peas
- 1/4 cup corn
- 4 tablespoons olive oil
- 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1/4 teaspoon pepper
- 1/16 teaspoon sage
- Chop your red pepper and carrots and set aside. They should be diced to bite size.
- Fill one medium sauce pan and one small sauce pan 2/3 full of water, and bring them both to a boil.
- Once boiling, add your pasta to the medium pan and cook according to package directions until it’s cooked to your liking.
- Add your corn and peas to the small sauce pan and cook for 4 minutes.
- When both are finished cooking, drain the water and set them aside.
- In a medium skillet pan, add one tablespoon of olive oil, the beans, 1/8 tsp of salt and pepper, 1/16 tsp of sage to the pan.
- Saute the cannellini beans for 5 minutes at medium heat.
- In a small bowl, combine 3 tbsp olive oil, 1/8 tsp salt, and 1/8 tsp pepper for your dressing.
- In a large bowl, combine your pasta, carrots, red pepper, peas, corn, beans, and dressing.
- Mix the pasta salad with two large spoons until everything is well coated and evenly distributed.
- Serve warm or cold.
Do you prefer a sweet dressing? We have a recipe for that too!
I love how the flavors of this dressing combine to give it just a hint of sweetness without going overboard on the sugar. To make it, simply combine 3 tablespoons olive oil, 1 teaspoon white vinegar, 1/2 tsp yellow mustard and 1/2 tsp maple syrup. Mix it together in a small bowl and pour over your pasta salad.
- Choose your pasta carefully. Most gluten free pasta doesn’t maintain it’s taste and texture two hours after eating it, whether it’s in the refrigerator or kept at room temperature. So, test your pasta first to make sure it’s still edible. We like Andean Dream’s Organic Fusilli a lot.
- Don’t wait to apply your dressing. If you’re going to store the pasta in the refrigerator to eat later, add your dressing first and mix it together. Otherwise, you might end up with one giant clump of pasta later.
- Save time! Reduce the prep time by chopping the veggies ahead of time, and by cooking the beans while the pasta water is coming to a boil.