We grilled almost every meal this past weekend.
Steaks, burgers, chicken sausages, veggies, bread, s’mores. You name it, we grilled it.
When it’s 90 degrees outside, I’ll do just about anything to not be inside cooking over a hot stove.
And Nick loves to grill, which means when summer hits, I’m planning as many meals that can be grilled as possible. Less time in the kitchen, less dishes to clean, less mess after dinner.
When it comes to side dishes for grilled meals, I love throwing veggies on that have been marinated in balsamic or sweet corn or even fruit.
If I cook anything else, it’s usually some beans or a pasta salad.
Growing up, I wasn’t a huge fan of cold pasta salads. I was usually reaching for macaroni and cheese or bbq chips instead.
But as I’ve gotten older and smarter and figured out that trying new things is a good thing, I’ve also figured out that I love a good, cold pasta salad for a lot of reasons.
1. Pasta salads don’t just have to be multicolored pasta with olives and a dressing.
2. I can put anything I want in my pasta salad.
3. They are one of my favorite things to have with a burger right off the grill.
4. They are pretty.
Crunchy veggies. Chewy pasta. Tangy dressing. Salty olives.
Pasta salad is just plain good.
Balsamic Vegetable Pasta Salad
Makes: 6-8 servings
- 1 lb. small shape pasta of your choice (I used a brown rice shell pasta)
- 1 zucchini
- 1 carrot
- 1/2 red pepper
- 1/2 cup olives
- 1/4 cup radishes
- 1/4 cup scallions
- 1/4 cup fresh parsley
- 1.5 tsp salt
- 1/2 tsp pepper
- 1/3 cup olive oil
- 1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
- 1 Tbsp oregano
- Fill large pot with water and bring to a boil. Add pasta and a palmful of salt, stir, and return to a boil. Cook 8-10 minutes or until tender.
- While pasta is cooking, chop your vegetables and herbs and mix together in a large bowl.
- Drizzle olive oil and balsamic over the vegetables, add your salt, pepper, and oregano and toss to combine.
- Once the pasta is cooked, drain and add to vegetables.
- Gently toss together.
- Serve warm, cold, or at room temperature.