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Italian Pasta Salad

This Italian pasta salad is packed full with so many Italian flavours, it’s guaranteed to have you going back for more.

This salad starts with a pasta base, with the addition of fresh mozzarella balls, olives, salami and cherry tomatoes.  It is then drizzled with a flavour filled Italian dressing.

Italian pasta salad in white salad bowl

Pasta salad recipes

Nothing beats a pasta salad for a side dish or delicious lunch. Take a look at the following recipes for more pasta salad ideas:

Italian salad dressing being poured on Italian pasta salad


Store the salad in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 1 day.

This salad is not suitable for freezing.

Italian pasta salad in white pasta bowl

Any leftover dressing can be stored in an airtight container or jar in the fridge for up to 1 week.  Shake or stir well before using.

Italian pasta salad in white salad bowl

Ingredients and subsitutions

To make this salad you will need the following ingredients:

  • Dried pasta – I used fusilli in this salad but any bite sized pasta will do.
  • Bocconcini – Bocconcini are fresh baby mozzarella balls. They are mild in flavour and add a little creaminess to the salad.
  • Baby spinach leaves – These can be replaced with small mixed lettuce leaves
  • Cherry tomatoes – Chopped full size tomatoes can be used if cherry tomatoes are not available.
  • Red capsicum – This can be replaced with yellow or green capsicum, however red tends to be the sweetest variety.
  • Salami – Use your favourite variety.
  • Black olives – Even those not so keen on olives will love the flavour hit in this salad.
Italian pasta salad ingredients

For the dressing:

  • Olive oil – Use a good quality extra virgin olive oil.
  • White wine vinegar
  • Garlic powder
  • Dried basil
  • Oregano
  • Dried chilli flakes – These can be omitted if preferred.
  • Salt and pepper
Unmixed Italian pasta salad in white salad bowl
Italian pasta salad in white salad bowl

Italian Pasta Salad

Yield: Serves 4 as a light meal or 6 as a side dish
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 15 minutes
Total Time: 30 minutes

This Italian pasta salad is packed full with so many Italian flavors, it’s guaranteed to have you going back for more.


  • 250g fusilli pasta
  • 170g fresh mozzarella balls (bocconcini)
  • 1 cup lightly packed baby spinach
  • 250g cherry tomatoes, halved
  • 1 small red capsicum, chopped
  • 60g salami, quartered
  • 1/2 cup black olives, halved
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon white wine vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon dried basil
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • pinch dried chilli flakes
  • salt and pepper, to taste


  1. Cook the pasta according to packet directions.  Drain and set aside to cool.
  2. Add the pasta to a large salad bowl, along with the mozzarella balls, baby spinach, cherry tomatoes, capsicum, salami and olives.  Stir until well combined.
  3. Add the olive oil, vinegar, garlic powder, dried basil, dried oregano, chilli flakes and salt and pepper to a small bowl.  Stir until well combined.  Just before serving, drizzle the dressing over the salad and stir until well combined.


If preferred, the dressing can be served alongside the salad and everyone can pour a little dressing over the salad on their individual plates or bowls.

The Italian dressing can be also be made in a small jar.  Add all of the dressing ingredients to the jar, screw the lid on tightly and shake until well combined.

A bottled Italian salad dressing can be used in this salad.  Replace the salad dressing in the recipe with 3 tablespoons of store-bought dressing.

Once the pasta has been cooked and drained, stir through a little olive oil before setting aside to cool.  The olive oil will help prevent the pasta sticking together as it cools.

Any Italian style chopped cold deli meats work great in place of the salami in this salad.

The pepper flakes can be omitted from the salad dressing if preferred.

Any bite sized pasta works well in this salad.

Stir fresh basil leaves through the salad for extra flavour.

Larger fresh mozzarella can be used in the salad, simply chop it into bite sized pieces before adding to the salad.

This salad also tastes great with fresh rocket leaves in addition to or in place of the spinach.

Nutrition Information:
Yield: 4 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 410Total Fat: 22gSaturated Fat: 8gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 13gCholesterol: 43mgSodium: 690mgCarbohydrates: 36gFiber: 4gSugar: 3gProtein: 18g

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