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BLT pasta salad recipe

BLT pasta salad recipe


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  • Recipes
  • Dish type
  • Salad
  • Pasta salad

This is an economical pasta salad that's great for picnics or barbecues.


Shetland, Scotland, UK

66 people made this

IngredientsServes: 10

  • 1 (500g) packet penne pasta
  • 350g bacon rashers, diced
  • 8 tablespoons mayonnaise
  • 2 tablespoons white wine vinegar
  • 1 punnet cherry tomatoes, halved
  • 1 (50g) bag wild rocket, to serve

MethodPrep:30min ›Cook:10min ›Extra time:2hr › Ready in:2hr40min

  1. Bring a large pot of lightly salted water to the boil. Add the pasta, and cook until tender, about 8 minutes. Drain, and rinse under cold water to cool.
  2. Meanwhile, cook the bacon in a large deep frying pan over medium-high heat until browned. Remove from the pan and drain on kitchen roll.
  3. In a large bowl, stir together the mayonnaise and the vinegar till smooth. Add tomatoes, and the cooled bacon and pasta. The pasta will absorb some of the dressing, so don't worry if it seems like too much. Refrigerate for a few hours or overnight. When serving, mix in the rocket, or spoon pasta salad over a bed of rocket leaves.

Cook's notes

Feel free to use a different pasta shape if desired. Also, if you're not fond of rocket, you can use most any salad green - watercress works quite well!

Recently viewed

Reviews & ratingsAverage global rating:(4)

Reviews in English (3)

This is such an easy pasta salad to make, you really do need to cool it down for the full amount of time though, for some reason its not as nice warm/tepid. I also added a small clove of garlic which really lifted the flavours. I'd recommend it to anyone and my picnic friends eat the lot!-02 Jun 2010

I used babyleaf lettuce and added a dollop of mustard to the dressing. Exellent dish!-04 Jul 2013

Really lovely meal, i didnt have any wine vinegar so i just used some white wine and a little mustard in the mayo- yum, yum-17 Sep 2011


BLT Pasta Salad

Raise your hand if you adore salad. (&ldquoBueller&hellip?&rdquo) We get it. That&rsquos because you haven&rsquot met BLT pasta salad. It combines all the crunchy, savory, creamy ingredients of the classic sandwich&mdashminus, well, the bread (because pasta is way more fun).

Freshly ground black pepper

3 tablespoons Dijon mustard

3 tablespoons cider vinegar

3 medium tomatoes, cut into small wedges

1 head romaine lettuce, chopped

1. Preheat the oven to 375°F. Line a baking sheet with aluminum foil. Arrange the bacon on the baking sheet season generously with black pepper. Bake until the bacon is crisp, 15 to 17 minutes. Remove from the pan from the oven and cool completely.

2. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil over medium-high heat. Add the pasta and cook according to the packageinstructions, 7 to 9 minutes. Drain and cool to room temperature.

3. In a small bowl, whisk together the mayonnaise, mustard and vinegar season with salt and pepper.

4. In a large bowl, toss together the pasta, tomato, avocado and romaine. Crumble the bacon into the salad.

5. If serving immediately, add the dressing and toss well to coat. Or leave undressed and store in the refrigerator for up to two days.


BLT Pasta Salad

Up your pasta salad game with BLT Pasta Salad, which takes the classic sandwich combo and turns it into a quick and easy summer dinner or BBQ side dish. Red onion, cooked bacon, cherry tomatoes, and baby arugula get tossed with your favorite pasta, giving you the flavor of a delicious BLT in every bite. This recipe only gets better as it sits, so you can make this ahead of time and bring it with you for your next cookout or picnic. It&rsquos so easy you can also make it for a fast, healthy lunch to brighten up your workday.

We love mezzi rigatoni for this recipe, which is a smaller version of rigatoni. It has the same great crevices for soaking up maximum flavor, but in perfectly sized pieces to get all of the tasty ingredients in each forkful. Rotini and fusilli are also good options for pasta salad, and you can never go wrong with a classic bowtie (or farfalle).

If you make this recipe in the summer with juicy, in-season tomatoes, you don&rsquot need a pasta salad dressing (the tomatoes provide enough acid). But if you&rsquore making this earlier in the year or if you&rsquod just like to add extra oomph, a simple oil and vinegar dressing will do. Mix it up with ranch dressing or even a creamy chipotle dressing for a little spice.

Fresh, cubed avocados make a delicious addition to this recipe, as would any sort of shredded or crumbled cheese&mdash Cheddar, feta, blue, you name it. This recipe is so versatile that you can really add whatever you&rsquore craving or whatever needs to be used up in the back of your fridge. Swap out arugula for spinach, double up on protein and stir in chopped, cooked chicken, or load up on extra crunchy veggies. Anything goes!


Recipe Summary

  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • ½ pound bacon, cut crosswise into 1-inch pieces
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 teaspoons lemon zest
  • ⅔ cup creme fraiche
  • 2 cups ditalini pasta
  • 2 cups halved cherry tomatoes
  • 4 cups baby arugula, coarsely chopped
  • salt and ground black pepper to taste
  • 1 pinch cayenne pepper, or to taste
  • 1 tablespoon freshly shredded Parmesan cheese, or to taste (Optional)

Pour olive oil into a heavy skillet over medium heat, add bacon, and cook until almost crisp, 5 to 8 minutes. Turn off heat. Hold a paper towel with tongs and mop up excess bacon grease with the paper towel, leave about 2 teaspoons bacon grease in the skillet.

Stir minced garlic and lemon zest into bacon in the skillet and let cook in residual heat until fragrant, 2 to 3 minutes. Stir creme fraiche into bacon mixture.

Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil and stir in 2 cups of ditalini. Cook till tender, about 8 minutes. Drain and add pasta to the skillet. Stir pasta thoroughly into bacon and creme fraiche mixture.

Return skillet to medium heat. Add tomatoes cook and stir until slightly softened, about 1 minute. Mix in arugula, stirring until wilted, about 30 seconds, and turn off heat.

Season with salt, black pepper, and cayenne pepper. Stir again and garnish with Parmesan cheese.


How to Make BLT Pasta Salad

Just like with any pasta salad recipe, this one starts with cooking your Rotini pasta to al dente.

Cook the rotini pasta until al dente and then rinse in cold water to stop the cooking process.

Although you could use penne pasta or even bow tie pasta, we prefer rotini pasta for this recipe. The spirals are the perfect vessel to hold the BLT ingredients.

Once the pasta has been cooked, drained and cooled, pour it into a large bowl and set aside.

The Dressing

Now it is time to make your BLT Pasta Salad dressing. For this recipe use the simple combination of Ranch Dressing and Mayonnaise. We prefer to use our own Dry Ranch Dressing mix. However, store bought salad dressing will work as well.

Add the pasta, onion, bacon, tomato and cheese to a large bowl.

Next, add the diced tomatoes, bacon, cheddar cheese and onion to the noodles.

Here is where you need to decided whether or not to add the lettuce and avocado at this point or not. If you are going to serve the salad immediately, then mix them in right now.

Add the BLT pasta salad dressing on top and toss to coat the noodles.

Then pour the dressing on top of the noodles mixture and toss to coat. Serve immediately.

If you are making this ahead of time, which I prefer, then do not add the lettuce or avocado until you are ready to serve. Simply pour the dressing over the noodles and refrigerate.

Right before you are ready to serve the BLT Pasta Salad, add the lettuce and avocado and toss to coat.

Use a knife to cut the avocado and then scoop it out using a large spoon.

Because this is salad has mayonnaise and Ranch dressing, be sure to keep it cool when serving and refrigerate any leftovers.

Check out the printable recipe below and let me know what you think!

To receive our 3 Recipe Articles in your inbox each week, sign up for our free email list located on the side and bottom of each recipe. You can also follow us on Facebook and Pinterest. This article may contain affiliate links where a small commission is paid if you purchase a product at no additional cost to you.


If you are looking for the perfect salad for your summer BBQs then look no further than this delicious BLT Pasta Salad.

Y&rsquoall know how much I love Salads in the summer. They are quick, easy, light, and taste amazing! This BLT salad is one of a kind! It combines everything you love about the classic blt sandwich and makes a delicious filling pasta salad!

This is one of those dishes that I love making on a Sunday night and eating outside on the porch for lunch for the next several days! Pair this with our delicious Watermelon and Mint salad and you will be in heaven!


  • You can use any shortcut pasta you have to make this salad. Bowtie, Penne, and Rotini all work very well
  • If you don’t have romaine lettuce you can use iceberg or even baby spinach.
  • I like starting with raw bacon and cooking until crisp, but you can use pre-cooked bacon or even bacon those bacon pieces in the salad aisle if that is all you have. Not the bacon bits, but the actual pieces of real bacon that are often in a jar.
  • The dressing is a mix of mayo, Greek yogurt, garlic and chives. I prefer this to the ranch and mayo dressing that you often see on this salad. But you can substitute ranch dressing for the yogurt.

There are lots of different things that you can add to this salad to make it even better!


A BLT Pasta Salad is the perfect way to enjoy bacon, lettuce, and tomato, but with a twist. Instead of two slices of bread, you use orzo pasta for the carby part of the equation. This dish travels very well, so it is ideal for picnics and tailgating. As long as you can keep it iced until you are ready to serve, it will be good to go.

What bacon is best for BLT Pasta Salad?

Thick sliced bacon that&rsquos cooked crispy is the way to go for this recipe. Use my No-Flip Bacon method if you have a pellet grill! You could also likely use that method in a convection oven too.

If you are bringing this somewhere it would be best to keep the mix-ins out of the bowl until you get there.

To make things super simple, just carry a big enough lidded container where you can throw in all the ingredients, slap on the lid, then shake to mix.

How to store pasta salad

In the fridge, you can keep this salad for three or four days. I do not recommend freezing pasta salad. I would also recommend only mixing together as much as you are going to eat in a day since there&rsquos lettuce in the mix.

Lettuce doesn&rsquot like to be dressed for too long. Much like me, in 2020.

The best lettuce for BLT pasta salad

Chopped dark green romaine gets my vote here. I always like romaine better than iceberg lettuce in my BLT sandwiches, and the salad benefits from it too.

If you are feeling on the adventurous side and ready for some variations on the good old standby of regular old lettuce, then try using arugula or mustard greens.

I recommend staying away from the more bitter leafy veggies unless you are able to grill them first. Grilling will reduce the bitterness and bring out nice sweet caramelized qualities of things like endive or escarole.

The perfect tomato for a BLT pasta salad

If we were talking sandwiches, then the big tomatoes like beefsteak tomatoes work wonderfully, but for a nice orzo pasta salad, you can&rsquot go wrong with cherry tomato halves. The size works wonderfully, plus they don&rsquot tend to get too soft too fast..

You can find cherry tomatoes in a variety of really cool colors like purple, yellow, and orange. So you can really add some appetizing colors to the dish as well.

The perfect dressing for your BLT pasta salad

A pasta salad is only as good as the dressing it is tossed in, and this one is no exception.

To help bring in more of that classic sandwich flavor, I dress this in a tangy mayo-based sauce with herbs that&rsquos basically a creamy balsamic vinaigrette.

Keep in mind, the avocado will mix into the dressing to add creaminess too. Luckily, the vinegar in the dressing will also help prevent the avocado from browning too quickly as well.

More BBQ Side Dishes to enjoy!

  • Grilled Corn on the Cob
  • PERFECT Grilled Asparagus
  • Smashed Potatoes

More orzo recipes to enjoy!

Orzo is great for pasta salads. Although it is pasta and made of flour, it is intentionally shaped to resemble rice. Like a giant grain of rice, it is the perfect pasta for pasta salads. It is quick to cook to al dente, and it holds up well in pasta salads.

I have a few orzo pasta salad recipes to recommend.

Salmon orzo pasta salad is one you can make a meal out of!

Orzo with Swedish meatballs has a nice thick and hearty sauce along with nice big meatballs.

Broccoli cheese orzo is every bit as delish as any style of mac and cheese, and adds broccoli to make sure the veggies get eaten too.


Recipe BLT Pasta Salad

  • Calories: 240
  • Protein: 12 g
  • Total Fat: 9 g
    • Unsaturated Fat: 6 g
    • Saturated Fat: 3 g
    • Natural Sugar: 4 g
    • Added Sugar: 0 g

    It’s true—everything is better with bacon! In this recipe, the classic BLT sandwich is transformed into pasta perfection. It’s a unique side that you can serve at barbecues alongside burgers, chicken or fish entrées, or enjoy as a generous helping for a luscious lunch or fuss-free supper. It’s a very versatile dish. You can swap the dressing: Top your bowl with Italian-style dressing (bottled or homemade) for a Mediterranean spin or enjoy it with creamy Bacon-Buttermilk for a traditional take. Add pearl mozzarella balls or feta crumbles. Top with jalape ñ os, diced chicken or avocado—you’re the boss of your bowl.

    • • 1 pound rotini or fusilli pasta, preferably whole grain
    • • 12 ounces (

    Bacon Buttermilk Dressing (makes 1 cup)

    • • ½ cup light sour cream
    • • 2 tablespoons low-fat mayonnaise
    • • 3 tablespoons low-fat buttermilk
    • • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
    • • ¾ teaspoon onion powder
    • • ¼ teaspoon garlic powder
    • • ¼ teaspoon ground black pepper
    • • 2 to 3 strips cooked turkey bacon, finely minced
    • • 1 to 2 tablespoons chopped scallion (green onion) or chives
    • • 1 tablespoon finely chopped fresh parsley

    Cook the pasta according to package directions for al dente. Drain and set aside.

    While the pasta cooks, make the dressing by tossing all ingredients in a bowl and mix until well combined. Set aside.

    Slice all the cooked turkey bacon (with the exception of the few strips you minced for the dressing) into about 1-inch pieces.

    Add the cooked pasta to a large mixing bowl and toss with the bacon, tomato halves, baby arugula leaves and dressing. Or, serve the dressing on the side and let everyone mix in their own.


    The Most Delicious BLT Pasta Salad Recipe

    I love pasta salad – I mean, all pasta salads. They’re all my favorites. It’s filled with wonderful ingredients – I mean, there’s bacon – and has such a beautiful color when it’s all put together. If you tend to do pasta salads for reunions or potluck, this is a good one to try. It only takes about 25 minutes including prep time, so it’s fast and easy. And of course, it’s delicious. What wouldn’t you love about a bow tie pasta salad that has bacon, lettuce, purple onion, tomatoes, and other yumminess?


    Watch the video: Πας μαγειρεύοντας - Σαλάτα με ζυμαρικά πικάντικο σαλάμι και μανούρι


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