A classic pesto pasta salad made with Rotini pasta, basil pesto, green olives, pine nuts, cherry tomatoes, peas, and fresh basil. Serve as a side dish or bring to a picnic.
What do you bring to the family picnic or work potluck when you just want something different? Try this flavorful pasta salad! I have brought this salad to many gatherings and it is always a hit. It tastes great on its own and pairs well with grilled favorites like chicken, bratwurst, and hamburgers.
This is a simple flavorful combination of ingredients which allows the basil pesto flavor to stand out.
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Classic Pesto Pasta Salad Recipe
- 1-12 ounce box uncooked tri-color Rotini Pasta
- 8 ounces prepared basil pesto
- ¼ cup chopped green olives with pimento
- 1-2.25 ounce package pine nuts
- 1 cup frozen peas, thawed
- 10 ounces cherry tomatoes, halved or quartered
- 5-6 fresh basil leaves, finely chopped
- 1 Tablespoon olive oil
- Sea Salt and Fresh Cracked Pepper to taste
- Following the box directions, cook the pasta according to package directions. I add a teaspoon of salt to the water along with a bit of olive oil once the water has reached a rolling boil but before you add in the pasta. I find it helps to keep the pasta from sticking. Cook until al dente (cooked but still firm.)
- Drain pasta with cold water and place in a large mixing bowl. Mix in the prepared basil pesto, chopped green olives, pine nuts, thawed peas, cherry tomatoes, chopped basil leaves, olive oil, and salt and pepper to taste.
- Mix well and chill until ready to eat. This also tastes good at room temperature.