This BLT pasta salad is delicious any time, but especially when the weather turns hot

 

The warm weather has arrived! Get ready to dig into this BLT pasta salad at your next family reunion or barbecue. Pasta salad is easy to prepare ahead of time, making for a perfect summer side dish. A bonus is that it uses some of the same ingredients you may already be purchasing for your cookout.

 

What is a BLT Pasta Salad?

A BLT pasta salad marries the comfort of a pasta salad with the simplicity of the classic bacon lettuce tomato sandwich. Although there are now many variations of BLT sandwiches, a common BLT sandwich typically includes mayonnaise on toasted bread with layers of crunchy lettuce, tangy tomato, and crispy bacon.

 

Best Types of Pasta for BLT Pasta Salad

In general, short pasta noodles with textures and curves for holding dressing work best for pasta salads.

 

blt pasta salad

Farfalle 

Commonly referred to as bowtie pasta, farfalle adds a fun shape to a big bowl of pasta salad. The angles of the bowtie shape hold dressing well although the pasta is known to tear a bit when tossed with other ingredients. This is especially true if the pasta is overcooked and becomes overly soft and mushy. Farfalle pasta will hold up better in pasta salad if cooked al dente, that is, still a bit firm and chewy. In any case, you will want to take care to toss the pasta gently with other ingredients when preparing a farfalle pasta salad.

 

Penne 

Very popular in many hot and cold pasta dishes, penne pasta offers a tubular shape which contains the dressing well.

 

Fusilli blt pasta salad

Fusilli

A fun spiral shape, this pasta is also called rotini pasta. It can be purchased in typical pasta-colored form, or it can be purchased in a colorful veggie blend.

 

Why You’ll Love BLT Pasta Salad

It travels well. Just seal the bowl with a lid or plastic wrap and be sure to keep it cool since the base of the dressing includes mayonnaise and sour cream.

It’s easy! You can prepare this BLT pasta salad the day before.

It’s versatile. As with most good pasta salads, there is room for substitution. If you don’t want to incorporate the bacon, you can leave this dish as a meatless pasta salad. Likewise, if you don’t care for tomatoes, you could include a different chopped veggie instead. Although the classic BLT pasta salad includes bacon, lettuce, and tomatoes, there is no hard rule that you can’t make some changes to suit your mood.

 

blt pasta salad

Cooking and Rinsing the Pasta

Simply follow the cooking instructions on the pasta package for this recipe. Once the pasta is cooked al dente, pour it into a colander and rinse under cool, running water. This will help stop the cooking process so the pasta does not continue to soften. The rinse-off will also prevent an excess of starch from building up which sometimes cause the pasta to clump together.

 

Eat Your Vegetables

Choose ripe, flavorful tomatoes for this dish. BLT pasta salad shines with ripe, fresh tomato and dark green, crisp romaine lettuce. The green and the red also add some visual interest to the more muted tones of the pasta salad.

Dice the tomatoes into small pieces for better distribution throughout the pasta. The lettuce also needs to be chopped into small pieces.

blt pasta salad

Ingredients

This is an easy BLT pasta salad with classic ingredients.

• 16 ounces tri-color rotini, cooked and rinsed

• ⅔ cup Miracle Whip or mayonnaise

• ⅔ cup sour cream

• 1 teaspoon onion powder

• 1 teaspoon garlic powder

• 1 teaspoon dill weed

• 2 teaspoons parsley

• 1 teaspoon salt

• ¼ teaspoon black pepper

• 1 cup diced tomatoes

• 1 cup cheese cubes (Colby Jack or Cheddar)

• 1 cup cooked bacon, chopped

• 1 cup romaine lettuce, chopped

Instructions

The prep time for this BLT pasta salad takes about 20 minutes, and the recipe yields about 10 servings.

• While the pasta cooks, chop the lettuce, the tomatoes and the bacon. If the bacon you are using has not yet been cooked, you can also cook the bacon using your preferred method while the pasta cooks.

• Mix everything together in a large bowl.

• Place the Miracle Whip or mayo, onion powder, garlic powder, dill weed, parsley, salt and pepper into a large mixing bowl.

• Mix until well combined.

• In the same bowl, stir in the cooked and drained pasta, chopped tomatoes, cheese cubes, chopped bacon, and chopped lettuce.

• Mix until well combined.

• Cover, chill, and serve.

 

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