Healthy Pepperoni Pasta Salad

This recipe is sponsored by Pick ‘N Save. I’m pairing their pub burgers with this tasty Pepperoni Pasta Salad!

We are entering one of the most important seasons of the year: potluck season. Grills will be lit, coolers packed, and plastic silverware upgraded to the status of fine china. I’m bringing my A game and a giant bowl of this Healthy Pepperoni Pasta Salad.

This Pizza Pasta Salad is the PERFECT pasta salad recipe. A fresh twist on classic Italian pasta salad made with real, simple ingredients. Loaded with meat, cheese, and crunchy veggies, everyone loves it and there are never any leftovers! @wellplated

“A” game in this case being my “appetite” game, and Pepperoni Pasta Salad being the potluck MVP!

On any sunny summer Saturday or Sunday, you’ll find Ben and me at his parent’s house, which is situated on a lake 20 minutes from us. During the summer, my in-laws graciously open their home (and pontoon boat) to the two of us, along with any of our friends who care to join.

We are very popular in the summer.

Without fail, our afternoons on the lake turn into impromptu potlucks. Ben’s parents keep a big stash of Italian sausages and burgers on hand for grilling, and friends who come for the day bring their favorite six packs and a side dishes to share.

During the last few summers on the lake, I’ve tasted and observed dozens of different potluck side dishes in action, and while there are many that I love, classic Italian Pepperoni Pasta Salad is the consistent crowd favorite.

The best ever Italian Pepperoni Pasta Salad, made better with real, fresh ingredients. Easy to make and ALWAYS a crowd favorite! @wellplated

Traditional Italian pasta salad recipes often call for bottled Italian dressing and a slew of less-than-wholesome ingredients. I decided to give the classic recipe an update by using fresh ingredients: yummy, crunchy veggies, lean turkey pepperoni, whole wheat noodles, and an easy homemade Italian dressing.

A lighter version of Italian Pasta Salad made better with real, fresh ingredients. So easy to make, but ALWAYS a favorite. Everyone always asks for the recipe and there are never any leftovers! @wellplated

The pontoon boat isn’t in the water yet, so I may be speaking too soon, but this Pepperoni Italian Pasta Salad could end up being the top-requested potluck side of the summer.

The spice of the pepperoni combined with the creaminess of the feta, chewiness of the pasta, zip from the Italian dressing, and crispness of the veggies is absolutely addictive. This Pepperoni Pasta Salad reminds me of a fabulous slice of pizza, but in light, bright pasta salad form.

Because this Pepperoni Pasta Salad is on the healthy side, it’s ideal paired with summertime grilling favorites, like the pub burgers currently being offered by our local grocery store Pick ‘N Save. The burger patties are available in both a full size and a slider size and are made fresh, meaning I can enjoy homemade burger taste and save time, since they come ready to grill. The flavor options range from classic, to cheddar and jalapeno, to the juicy onion and garlic patties I paired with this Healthy Pepperoni Pasta Salad. The two are a match made in summertime grilling heaven!

Pizza Pepperoni Pasta Salad — a fresh twist on classic Italian pasta salad made better with real, fresh ingredients. Perfect for a summertime lunch or dinner. Everyone loves it and there are never any leftovers! @wellplated

Pepperoni Pizza Pasta Salad — our favorite pasta salad recipe and PERFECT for a summertime lunch or dinner. Made with an easy homemade Italian dressing and loaded with meat, cheese, and fresh crunchy veggies @wellplated

Whether your next potluck is on a lake, in your backyard, or crowded around your coffee table, this Healthy Pepperoni Pasta Salad will be sure hit with guests. In the unlikely event of leftovers, it’s easy to pack for lunch and makes for a light and lovely summertime dinner too.

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Healthy Pepperoni Pasta Salad

The best ever Italian Pepperoni Pasta Salad, made better with real, fresh ingredients. Easy to make and ALWAYS a crowd favorite!

Yield: Serves 8 (as a side dish)

Prep Time: 20 minutes

Total Time: 30 minutes

Ingredients:

For the Pepperoni Pasta Salad:

  • 8 ounces uncooked whole wheat rotini, fusilli, or similar pasta
  • 1 1/2 cups small-cut broccoli florets
  • 1 cup cherry or grape tomatoes, halved
  • 1 small orange or yellow bell pepper, cored and diced
  • 1/3 cup sliced turkey pepperoni, quartered
  • 1/4 cup diced red onion (about 1/2 small)
  • 1 (2.25 ounce) can sliced black olives, rinsed and drained
  • 1/2 cup reduced fat crumbled feta cheese
  • 3 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley

For the Italian Dressing

  • 1 small, ripe tomato, halved
  • 1 tablespoon red wine vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon non-fat plain Greek yogurt
  • 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
  • 1 teaspoon honey
  • 1/2 teaspoon minced garlic
  • 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1/4 teaspoon dried basil
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground black pepper

Directions:

  1. Cook the pasta until al dente according to package directions. Drain and set aside to cool, then transfer to a large serving bowl.
  2. Add the remaining salad ingredients to the bowl with the pasta: broccoli, tomatoes, bell pepper, pepperoni, red onion, black olives, feta cheese and parsley.
  3. Prepare the Italian dressing: Slice the tomato in half. Rub the inside edges (non-peel side) against a coarse grater over a small bowl. Grate all of the tomato’s interior (juices and flesh) into the bowl, then discard the peel. Whisk in the remaining dressing ingredients until smooth. Pour dressing over the pasta bowl.
  4. Toss the Pepperoni Pasta Salad gently to combine. Serve chilled or at room temperature.
  • Pepperoni Pasta Salad can be prepared up to 1 day in advance. Pour the dressing over the salad and toss up to 4 hours before serving. Store in the refrigerator.
  • Leftovers will keep for a few days in the refrigerator but may dry out a little. If you know you will be serving leftovers, consider making a little extra dressing, then storing the dressing separately. Just before serving, toss the extra dressing with the pasta to moisten it.
All images and text ©/Well Plated.

Nutrition Facts

Serving Size: 1 (of 8)

  • Amount Per Serving:
  • Calories: 195
  • Total Fat: 6g
  • Saturated Fat: 1g
  • Cholesterol: 18mg
  • Sodium: 452mg
  • Carbohydrates: 25g
  • Fiber: 3g
  • Sugar: 4g
  • Protein: 11g

Did you try this recipe? I want to see! Follow Well Plated on Instagram, snap a photo, and tag it #wellplated. I love to know what you are making!

More Potluck-Perfect Side Dish Recipes:

BLT Pasta Salad with Creamy Ranch Dressing

BLT Pasta Salad

A skinny version of the Asian Ramen Salad that everyone loves!

Asian Ramen Salad

Full of spinach, feta, avocado, and lots of fresh strawberries, this Strawberry Farro Salad makes a perfect summer meal. Tossed in a balsamic poppy seed dressing. YUM! @wellplated

Strawberry Farro Salad with Avocado and Feta

I am sharing this post in partnership with Pick ‘N Save. As always all opinions are my own. Thanks for supporting the brands and companies that make it possible for me to continue sharing quality content with you!

About Erin Clarke

I’m fearlessly dedicated to making healthy food taste incredible. Wearer of plaid, travel enthusiast, and firmly convinced that sweets and veggies both deserve a place at the table. MORE ABOUT ERIN…

19 comments

  1. Yummy salad recipe I will soon try this. Thanks for sharing :) 

  2. When most people think of summertime, they think of sunshine, swimming and taking it easy. I, on the other hand think of only one thing: pasta salad. And let me tell ya, this one is stinking amazing. LOVE LOVE LOVE this!

  3. So many colors! I love pasta salads for the summer :)

  4. Is it wrong that I want to eat the whole bowl?

  5. What a beautiful and colourful salad for this time of the year! Love it!

  6. I love this pepperoni pasta salad!!! It’s just how I like them! Colorful, flavorful and fresh! Delicious!

  7. I love this recipe! I can eat healthy but also sneak in my favorite guilty pleasure snack–pepperoni!!

  8. Perfect for summer!!  Love this!

  9. Loving everything about this — so much flavor! And HEALTHY?? I’m in!

  10. You had me at pepperoni!! Adding this to my summer picnic rotation!

  11. This salad would definitely go well with that big burger! I think I’ll be making it all summer long!

  12. This is the sort of salad this is always popular at a party!  Good idea to lighten it up!

  13. How fun would this be for a potluck or picnic dish this summer! WOW!

  14. These photos are gorgeous, and that pasta looks just scrumptious. I can t wait to try this one

  15. Looks Yummy! Lots of veggies, light and summery, gonna have to try this!!

  16. Yummy salad recipe I will soon try this. Thanks for sharing…

    Rating: 5
  17. This is a keeper. Very good pasta salad. I used original pepperoni instead of the turkey, otherwise I followed the recipe. I also used a 12 oz box of rotini instead of 8 oz but it had enough dressing to cover it very well. The dressing is wonderful. Thanks for a great summer recipe.  I will be making this again and again.  

    Rating: 5

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