This creamy Chicken Pasta Salad is packed with pretty much everything you could want out of a salad and ready in under 20 minutes. A great BBQ side dish, or a hearty lunch, it is easy to adapt and can be made in advance too. Chicken, bacon, pasta, and chunky vegetables all brought together in a creamy dressing for delicious summer comfort food.
Not only is this healthy pasta salad easy to adapt with any vegetables that you have that need using, but it’s also a great way to use up leftover chicken. Made our Slow Cooker Roast Chicken? Shred it up and add it to this recipe. You can eat this as a main or a side (this recipe is for a side) and it’s great for work and school packed lunches too.
Looking for some other pasta salad recipes? Why not try our Salmon Pasta Salad or Tuna Pasta Salad.
- Why you will love it
- Ingredients and substitutions
- How to make chicken pasta salad – Step by step
- What pasta to use
- What to serve with chicken pasta salad
- Extra tips
- More pasta recipes
Why you will love it
Also read: Chicken Pasta Salad
A full ingredients list with measurements is in the recipe card below.
What pasta to use
You should avoid using long pastas such as spaghetti or linguine. A good sturdy pasta will work best, such as fusilli or penne. Rigatoni, farfalle or macaroni are all good choices for this pasta salad.
Meat – If chicken isn’t your thing, you can replace it with turkey, ham, extra bacon or even cooked cubes of halloumi. You could add some tofu or use chickpeas to get a nice creamy texture.
If you are using chicken, then why not make our Slow Cooker Whole Chicken or The Best Roast Chicken and shred it up and use some in this.
Also read: Chicken Pasta Salad
Vegetables – This pasta salad is a great opportunity to add loads of vegetables. Not only does it make it more nutrient dense, but it adds lots of colour and texture too. We like a good mix of crunchy and leafy.
For this, we used cherry tomatoes, cucumber, red and green bell pepper, spring onion (scallion) and some spinach. We added some olives to that for an extra burst of flavour, but sun dried tomatoes or anchovies would work.
As for other vegetables, the options are almost endless. You could add small chunks of raw broccoli or red onion, or you could roast up vegetables like courgette and aubergine and add those. A good mix of colours is the way to go. We also like some diced avocado for extra creaminess.
Also read: Creamy Chicken Pasta Salad
Dressing – Personally, I love a creamy pasta salad, so we have kept it classic and used mayonnaise in this. However, you could use yogurt, sour cream or creme fraiche to still keep it creamy without mayo.
If you don’t want a creamy dressing, then a honey and mustard vinaigrette or Lemon Vinaigrette would work really well. Any kind of salad dressing really – we have used a balsamic one before too.
What to serve with chicken pasta salad
This is a delicious BBQ side dish, so anything you would make for a BBQ is good. Why not try our Honey and Lime Chicken, Vegetable and Halloumi Kebabs, Peri Peri Chicken, Hidden Vegetable Beef Burgers, or Cajun Chicken Burgers.
More pasta recipes
If you’ve tried chicken pasta salad, then let us know how you got on in the comments below.Tag us in your creations on Instagram @hungryhealthyhappy – You can use the hashtag #hungryhealthyhappy too.
Through this article, we hope to help you understand Cold pasta chicken salad recipes